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    AceBase realtime database client

    This repository is to connect to a remote AceBase server. See AceBase for more information about AceBase databases and usage.

    Getting started

    Install the acebase-client npm package: npm install acebase-client (github, npm)

    Then, require it like so:

    const { AceBaseClient } = require('acebase-client');

    OR, if you want to use the client in the browser, use the following code:

    <script type="text/javascript" src=""></script>

    Connect to an AceBase server

    Use the following code the connect to an AceBase webserver:

    const db = new AceBaseClient({ host: 'localhost', port: 5757, dbname: 'mydb', https: false });
    db.ready(() => {
        console.log('Connected successfully');

    After the ready event has fired, you can read, write, setup data change event listeners etc:

    const user = {
        id: 'john_doe'
    // Log something to the database...
        type: 'connect',
        datetime: new Date()
    // Read something from the database...
    const userRef = db.ref(`users/${}`);
    userRef.get(snapshot => {
        let details = snapshot.val(); =;
    // Get notifications for data events
    const todoRef = userRef.child('todo');
    todoRef.on('child_added', (snapshot) => {
        const item = snapshot.val();
        console.log(`Added to the todo list: ${item.text}`);
    // Query to last 50 posts from less than a day ago, containing the word "awesome"
    .filter('posted', '>', yesterday)
    .filter('title', 'matches', /awesome/i)
    .get(snaps => {
        // snaps is an array of matching posts
        const posts = => snap.val());
    // Get data but exclude nested data
    .get({ exclude: ['posts'] })
    .then(snap => {
        // snap contains all user's properties except "users/some_user/posts"


    If the server you are connecting to has authentication enabled, you can (or have to) sign in to access specific resources. To so this, use the auth authentication api.

    Sign in with username:

    db.auth.signIn('admin', 'thepassword')
    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Signed in as ${result.user.username}, got access token ${result.accessToken}`);

    Sign in with email:

    db.auth.signInWithEmail('', 'thepassword')
    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Signed in as ${}, got access token ${result.accessToken}`);

    Sign in with access token:

    Because storing a user's password is a bad thing (NEVER do that!), the signIn and signInWithEmail methods return an accessToken you can store somewhere. The next time a user runs your app, you can use the accessToken to automically sign them in again.

    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Signed in as ${}, got access token ${result.accessToken}`);

    Signing out:

    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Signed out!`);

    Create a new user account:

    You can create a new user account by passing username or email (or both), and displayName and password to the signUp method. A currently signed in user will be signed out, and the newly created user will be signed in automatically.

    let userDetails = {
        username: 'ewout',      // optional when email is given
        email: '',   // optional when username is given
        displayName: 'Ewout Stortenbeker',
        password: 'TooEasy4U?' // password requires a-z, A-Z and 0-9
    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Signed up and in as ${result.user.username}, got access token ${result.accessToken}`);

    NOTE: Users are only able to signUp themselves if the connected AceBase server configuration allows for it. (see allowUserSignup in the server documentation)

    NOTE: If you are signed in as admin, calling signUp will keep you signed into your own account, and the callback will not include the accessToken.

    Change password

    To change the password of the signed in user, use changePassword:

    db.auth.changePassword(currentPassword, newPassword)
    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Changed password, new accessToken is: ${result.accessToken}`);

    NOTE: When a password is changed, any access tokens given to clients signed in with the old password become invalid. All clients using the old password for the account will have to sign in again.

    Change email address

    Users can change their email address using changeEmail

    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Changed email address`);
    .catch(err => {
        if (err.code === 'conflict') {
            console.log('Email address belongs to a different account');

    Change username

    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Changed username`);
    .catch(err => {
        if (err.code === 'conflict') {
            console.log('Username belongs to a different account');

    Add miscellaneous data to user account

    You can store up to 100 additional fields of data with the user account, to eliminate the need for user data to be added to the main database. Store data here that doesn't change frequently, such as profile info. You can do this with updateUserSettings:

    let updates = {
        profilePic: '',
        website: ''
    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Updated user settings: `, result.user.settings);

    NOTE: These settings can be read from db.auth.user.settings.

    Deleting account

    To completely remove an account from the database, use deleteAccount

    .then(result => {
        console.log(`Account is gone and we're signed out`);

    NOTE: This does not remove any data you have stored for this user, it only removes the account. You will have to remove any data yourself, eg by db.ref('posts').child(db.auth.user.uid).remove()

    Monitoring user events

    To keep track of sign in and out events in the background, add listeners to the 'signin' and 'signout' events:

    db.on('signin', evt => {
        console.log(`User ${evt.user.uid} signed in, source: ${evt.source}`);
        // evt.source can be one of these: 'signin', 'email_signin', 'token_signin', 'password_change', 'signup'
    db.on('signout', evt => {
        console.log(`User ${evt.user.uid} signed out, source: ${evt.source}`);
        // evt.source can be 'signout', 'signup' or 'delete_account'

    Monitoring connection events

    Use the connect and disconnect events to detect if the connection with the server has been broken or re-established:

    db.on('connect', evt => {
    db.on('disconnect', evt => {

    Offline access & synchronization

    If you want to be able to use the database even if your app goes offline, you can use a local AceBase database as cache db. While online, any data you fetch from the server will be cached in your local database, and data changes will also update the local cache. When the app goes offline, all requests for data will be served from cache, updates will be logged and performed on the cached data, and data change events will be fired by the cache db. Once the client connects to the server again, it will synchronize all changes with the server.

    const localCacheDb = new AceBase('offlinecache');
    const client = new AceBaseClient({ 
        cache: { db: localCacheDb }, // Enables offline access
        host: 'my.acebase.server', port: 443, https: true, dbname: 'mydb'
    client.ref('some/data').set('Works even when offline');


    AceBase uses a simple synchronization, conflict avoiding approach: all changes made offline will be replicated to the server once it reconnects. It does not check if the data being updated was changed by other clients in the mean time. That means that the last one to update the server data, wins a conflict.

    In many situations this approach is acceptible, because AceBase updates are performed on the property level: if 2 clients both changed my e-mail address in users/ewout/email, there is no easy way to determine which edit should 'win' the conflict. Some would argue time-based logic should be used to resolve conflicts, to avoid an offline client for 2 months overwriting a value just updated yesterday. I would argue that even a long-time offline client might have a good reason to 'win' the conflict.

    In situations where you think this sync strategy might be a problem, you can easily implement history tracking on your server, allowing users to revert changes made to any point in time. Doing this will make your users happy: the app didn't decide what update was the "right" one while tossing away others - you kept track and the user can fix anything sync'ed "wrong":

    // Run this on the server:
    db.ref("users/$uid/$property").on("value", snap => {
        // Logs any user property being changed
        const uid = snap.ref.vars['uid'];
        const property = snap.ref.vars['property'];
        const value = snap.val();
        // create edit history item at "history/users/[uid]/[newuniqueid]"
        db.ref("history/users").child(uid).push({ time:, property, value });

    Getting change history for any user now is a breeze:

    .then(snap => {
        // Got all edits to my user account
        const allEdits = snap.val(); 

    And, reverting to a previous edit:

    const edit = allEdits[userChosenEditId];

    Offline transactions

    Running transactions while offline is impossible because there is no access to live data. The idea behind a transaction is being able to change data that is guaranteed not to be changed by others while you are processing it. Because this is not possible with cached data, running transactions offline has been disabled since client v0.9.22.

    If you want your app to be optimistic about the outcome of a transaction while offline, handle it with the knowledge you have now (eg is the last known balance sufficient?) and run the actual transactions once the connection is back online. This requires a bit more work, but you'll be able to let a user pay for something offline, and commit or reverse the purchase once the connection is back.

    See the example below, where users are able to purchase inventory while being offline:

    const userId = db.auth.user.uid; // Assuming signed in user here!
    // Keep track of inventory
    let inventory = [];
    db.ref(`users/${userId}/inventory`).on('child_added', snap => {
    db.ref(`users/${userId}/inventory`).on('child_removed', snap => {
    // Keep track of balance
    let balance = 0;
    db.ref(`users/${userId}/balance`).on('value', snap => {
        balance = snap.val();
    // Function we'll call if we're online
    function purchaseOnline(item) {
        // If we're online, perform transaction
        return db.ref(`users/${userId}/inventory`).transaction(snap => {
            // Check if the user doesn't already have this item
            const inventory = snap.val();
            const hasItem = in inventory;
            if (hasItem) {
                throw new Error(`You already own a ${}`);
            else {
                inventory[] = true;
            // Is there is enough cash?
            return db.ref(`users/${userId}/balance`).transaction(snap => {
                let balance = snap.val();
                balance -= item.price;
                if (balance < 0) {
                    throw new Error(`You don't have enough money to buy a ${}!`);
                // Ok, update balance
                return balance;
            .then(() => {
                // Now update inventory
                return inventory;
    // Function we'll call when we're offline.
    async function purchaseOffline(item) {
        // If we're offline, perform in-memory balance and inventory checks
        if (inventory.contains( {
            throw new Error(`You already own a ${}`);
        if (balance < item.price) {
            throw new Error(`You don't have enough money to buy a ${}`);
        // Now add the purchase to a pending_purchases collection that will be processed when we're online again
        return db.ref(`users/${userId}/pending_purchases`).push(item)
        .then(() => {
            // Subtract from in-memory balance
            balance -= item.price;
            // Add to in-memory inventory
    // Function that initiates offline and online purchases, depending on connection state
    function purchase(item) {
        if (db.connected) {
            return purchaseOnline(item);
        else {
            return purchaseOffline(item);
    // Function that synchronizes purchases done offline
    function processOfflinePurchases() {
        // Reload inventory from online db
        return db.ref(`users/${userId}/inventory`).get()
        .then(snap => {
            // Got inventory
            snap.forEach(childSnap => {
            // Reload balance from online db
            return db.ref(`users/${userId}/balance`).get();
        .then(snap => {
            // Got balance
            balance = snap.val();
            // Perform transaction on pending_purchases
            db.ref(`users/${userId}/pending_purchases`).transaction(pendingSnap => {
                const purchasePromises = [];
                pendingSnap.forEach(snap => {
                    const item = snap.val();
                    // Purchase item online
                    const promise = purchaseOnline(item).catch(err => {
                        // Online purchase failed.
                        // User either double-spent their money, or purchased the item already
                        // Should tell the user
                    // Add to promise array
                // Now wait until all purchases completed
                return Promise.all(purchasePromises);
            .then(() => {
                // All purchases were now processed online, return null to delete pending_purchases
                return null;
    // Keep track of synchronization event (happens after reconnect) to complete pending purchases
    db.on('sync_done', processOfflinePurchases);
    // Now, let's purchase a sword
    purchase({ id: 'sword', name: 'Massive shiny sword', price: 2 })
    .then(() => {
        // Success!
        console.log(`You've got it!`);
    .catch(err => {
        // Ooops!

    More information

    See acebase-server for more information about running an AceBase server (npm, github)

    See acebase for more information about how to use AceBase (npm, github)


    npm i acebase-client

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    • 4ewout