Bridge module between Gatsby and Drupal.

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A Drupal module that provides integration endpoints for the @amazeelabs/gatsby-source-silverback Gatsby plugin. Allows writing custom GraphQL schema definitions based on GraphQL V4 and automatically send incremental updates to Gatsby.


In version 2, a couple of breaking changes have been introduced due to the new dependency on the graphql_directives module.

  • @resolveEntityReference and @resolveEntityReferenceRevisions do not support the single parameter any more. They can be chained with @seek instead.
  • Gutenberg directives moved to the silverback_gutenberg module and changed in naming and parameters. Refer to the generated directives for more information.
  • New default value handling requires either nullable custom type invocations, or @default directives on them. Refer to the graphql_directives module for more information.

Getting started

First, simply install and enable the module.

composer require amazeelabs/silverback_gatsby
drush en -y silverback_gatsby

Create a GraphQL folder at the root of your project. This will contain all the schema definitions. To improve IDE support, you can export all the schema definitions in a single file:

drush graphql:directives > graphql/directives.graphqls

It is advised to ignore this file in version control and rather re-create it when needed.

Now you can start to create the project schema defintion and fill in resolvers by using the directives provided.

schema {
  query: Query

type Query {
  page(id: String!): Page @loadEntity(type: "node", id: "$id")

type Page @entity(type: "node", bundle: "page") {
  path: String! @resolveEntityPath
  title: String! @resolveEntityLabel
  body: String @resolveProperty(path: "body.value")

Now create a new GraphQL server configuration, use the Directable schema plugin and make sure to enable the "Silverback Gatsby" extension. The Explorer or Voyager screens should show root level fields for loading and querying our type (loadPage, queryPages) that you should be able to test now.

Automatic creation of Gatsby pages

Available using @isPath and @isTemplate field directives. See @amazeelabs/gatsby-source-silverback plugin README for details.

Automatic resolvers

There are directives which create GraphQL resolvers automatically.


This field directive is a shortcut for property_path data producer.

For example, this schema

type Page @entity(type: "node", bundle: "page") {
  body: String @resolveProperty(path: "field_body.0.processed")

Will create the following resolver for Page.body field

$builder->produce('property_path', [
  'path' => $builder->fromValue('field_body.0.processed'),
  'value' => $builder->fromParent(),
  'type' => $builder->fromValue('entity:node:page'),


Resolves the relative path to an entity. A shortcut for entity_url+url_path data producers.


type Page @entity(type: "node", bundle: "page") {
  path: String! @resolveEntityPath


Resolves the references entities. A shortcut for entity_reference data producer.


type Page @entity(type: "node", bundle: "page") {
  relatedArticles: [Article]! @resolveEntityReference(field: "field_related_articles", single: false)
  parentPage: Page @resolveEntityReference(field: "field_related_articles", single: true)


Resolves the entity reference revisions fields, e.g. Paragraphs. A shortcut for entity_reference_revisions data producer.


type Page @entity(type: "node", bundle: "page") {
  paragraphs: [PageParagraphs!]! @resolveEntityReferenceRevisions(field: "field_paragraphs", single: false)
  singleParagraph: ParagraphText @resolveEntityReferenceRevisions(field: "field_single_paragraph", single: true)


To expose Drupal menus to Gatsby, one can use the @menu directive.

type MainMenu @menu(menu_id: "main") {
  items: [MenuItem!]! @resolveMenuItems

type MenuItem {
  id: String! @resolveMenuItemId
  parent: String! @resolveMenuItemId
  label: String! @resolveMenuItemLabel
  url: String! @resolveMenuItemUrl

GraphQL does not allow recursive fragments, so something like this would not be possible:

query Menu {
  drupalMainMenu {
    items {
fragment MenuItem on MenuItem {
  children {
    # Fragment recursion, not allowed in GraphQL!

That's why the menu tree is automatically flattened, and id and parent properties are added to each item, so the tree can easily be reconstructed in the consuming application.

query MainMenu {
  drupalMainMenu(langcode: { eq: "en" }) {
    items {

The @menu directive also takes an optional max_level argument. It can be used to restrict the number of levels a type will include, which in turn can optimize caching and Gatsby build times. In many cases, the main page layout only displays the first level of menu items. When a new page is created and attached to the third level, Gatsby will still re-render all pages, because the menu that is used in the header changed. By separating this into two levels, we can make sure the outer layout really only changes when menu levels are changed that are displayed.

type MainMenu @menu(menu_id: "main") {...}
# Will only include the first level and trigger updates when a first level item
# changes.
type LayoutMainMenu @menu(menu_id: "main", max_level: 1) {...}

Menu negotiation

In some cases, the same GraphQL field might have to return different menus, based on the current context. A prominent use case would be a multi-site setup where different menus should be displayed based on the current account Gatsby is using to fetch data with.

In this case, multiple menu id's can be passed to the @menu directive, and the resolver will pick the first one that is accessible to the user account.

type MainMenu
  @menu(menu_ids: ["site_a_main", "site_b_main"], item_type: "MenuItem")

It checks access for the view label operation on the Menu entity, which is allowed for everybody by default. The consuming project has to implement other mechanisms to restrict access therefore control which menus are used for which site.

Configuring update notifications

The last thing to do is to tell Gatsby whenever something noteworthy changes. By using the @entity directive in our schema, we already told Drupal to keep track of all changes related to the entity types we care about. All there is missing is a Gatsby webhook url to trigger a refresh. We provide this via an environment variable that is named after our configured GraphQL server.


So if the server was called My Server and the automatically generated machine name is my_server, then the environment variable would look like this:


The value is a semicolon-separated list of urls that will be called in case of an update. This can be http://localhost:8000/__refresh, for local testing a Gatsby environment with ENABLE_GATSBY_REFRESH_ENDPOINT=true, or the build and preview webhooks provided by Gatsby Cloud.

The Gatsby site has to contain the @amazeelabs/gatsby-source-silverback plugin for this to work.

Access control

By default, @amazeelabs/gatsby-source-silverback behaves like an anonymous user. To change that, simply create a user account with the required permissions and pass the credentials to the auth_user and auth_pass configuration options of the plugin.

A very common use case would be to create a "preview" user that bypasses content access control and use it for the "Preview" environment on Gatsby cloud, so unpublished content can be previewed. Another sensible case would be to create a "build" user that has access to published content and block anonymous access to Drupal entirely.

Trigger a build

There are multiple ways to trigger a Gatsby build:

  • on entity save
  • via the Drupal UI or Drush.

On entity save

On the Build tab of the schema configuration, check the Trigger a build on entity save checkbox.

Drupal UI

On the same Build tab, click the Gatsby Build button.


This command can be configured in the system cron. drush silverback-gatsby:build [server_id]