Reference documentation providing information on assets.
Table of Contents
Assets are a mechanism for defining client application configuration data and content for a marketplace. The assets are managed by a marketplace operator and changes relatively infrequently. Each asset is an object that defines a path and content. The path gives the asset a name and allows organizing assets in a way similar to a file system, where assets can be organized in directory-like structure. The content of the asset is its data in one of the supported data types.
At present, Flex supports only JSON data as assets. Support for images (JPEG, PNG, etc) is coming in the future.
The assets are typically edited by a marketplace operator though Flex Console.
All assets are considered public and must not be used to store secret or otherwise sensitive information.
At present, Flex uses assets for managing marketplace content without code changes:
- you can modify microcopy strings and
- create content pages for your marketplace
For example, a marketplace may have assets with the following assets:
├── config │ └── client.json └── content └── translations.json
config/client.json could contain configuration data (for
instance, UI colors, marketplace pricing settings, etc) and
content/translations.json could contain string microcopy data to be
used in a marketplace client application (such as one based on one of
the FTW templates).
Collectively, the set of assets of a marketplace is called the asset tree. Each time the data of one or more assets is changed, a new asset is added, or an existing asset is deleted, a new version of the asset tree is created. Old asset tree versions are never updated. In other words, tree versions are immutable.
Each tree version, therefore, represents the exact set of assets and their data at the time when the version was created.
The following analogy with the Git version control system may be useful to consider: The asset tree versions are analogous to Git commit SHAs. The entire asset tree is versioned as a whole and individual assets do not have their own independent versions. Unlike Git, however, the asset tree versioning does not support branching.
To facilitate access to the latest asset data, Flex maintains a built-in
latest that always refers to the latest asset tree
Note: Old versions of the asset tree may be automatically deleted, but no sooner than 24 hours after the version gets succeeded by a newer one.
Retrieving asset data
Client applications retrieve asset data through the
Asset Delivery API.
Asset data can be access either by alias (using the built-in
alias) or by specific version.
See the Asset Delivery API reference for more information.
Asset data caching
In order to ensure as efficient data retrieval as possible, the Asset
Delivery API response data can be cached by both the Asset CDN and the
client. Each API response comes with appropriate
ETag HTTP headers automatically and caching works out of the box with
clients that support these headers (such as the end users' web
Since asset versions are immutable, asset data that is accessed by a
specific version can be cached for extended period of time. On the other
latest alias is mutable and therefore asset data retrieved
by alias cannot be cached indefinitely. The cache time for access by
alias can differ depending on whether your marketplace environment is a
development or production one. For production marketplaces the cache
time can be up to 5 minutes, while for development marketplaces it is
much lower. Refer to the
Asset Delivery API reference
for up-to-date-information. The
Cache-Control HTTP header will always
provide correct data and client applications should observe that if
custom caching is being implemented.
In production marketplaces, the latest asset data can be cached and it may take up to 5 minutes before any changes are visible to all end users.