Import Export Model

Import Export Model

Learn how to customize the import and export process.

Import and Export models define the logic used when processing the import or export action, extending the Backend\Models\ImportModel and Backend\Models\ExportModel models respectively. These models are designed to be used with the Import Export Controller, however, it is possible to work with them directly in PHP.

# Import Model

For importing data you should create a dedicated model for this process which extends the Backend\Models\ImportModel class. Here is an example class definition:

class SubscriberImport extends \Backend\Models\ImportModel
     * @var array rules to be applied to the data.
    public $rules = [];

    public function importData($results, $sessionKey = null)
        foreach ($results as $row => $data) {

            try {
                $subscriber = new Subscriber;

            catch (Exception $ex) {
                $this->logError($row, $ex->getMessage());


The class must define a method called importData used for processing the imported data. The first parameter $results will contain an array containing the data to import. The second parameter $sessionKey will contain the session key used for the request.

Method Description
logUpdated() Called when a record is updated.
logCreated() Called when a record is created.
logError(rowIndex, message) Called when there is a problem with importing the record.
logWarning(rowIndex, message) Used to provide a soft warning, like modifying a value.
logSkipped(rowIndex, message) Used when the entire row of data was not imported (skipped).

# Importing with PHP

Use the importFile method process an import manually from a local file stored on the disk.

$importModel = new MyImportClass;

$importModel->file_format = 'json';


If the file is coming from an uploaded file use the Input facade to access the local path.


# Export Model

For exporting data you should create a dedicated model which extends the Backend\Models\ExportModel class. Here is an example:

class SubscriberExport extends \Backend\Models\ExportModel
    public function exportData($columns, $sessionKey = null)
        $subscribers = Subscriber::all();

        $subscribers->each(function($subscriber) use ($columns) {

        return $subscribers->toArray();

The class must define a method called exportData used for returning the export data. The first parameter $columns is an array of column names to export. The second parameter $sessionKey will contain the session key used for the request.

# Exporting with PHP

Use the exportDownload method to process an export manually and return a download response.

$exportColumns = ['id', 'title'];

$exportModel = new MyExportClass;

$exportModel->file_format = 'json';

return $exportModel->exportDownload('myexportfile.json', ['columns' => $exportColumns]);

# Custom Options

Both import and export forms support custom options that can be introduced using form fields, defined in the form option in the import or export configuration respectively. These values are then passed to the Import / Export model and are available during processing.

# config_import_export.yaml
    # ...
    form: $/acme/campaign/models/subscriberimport/fields.yaml

    # ...
    form: $/acme/campaign/models/subscriberexport/fields.yaml

The form fields specified will appear on the import/export page. Here is an example fields.yaml file contents:

# fields.yaml

        label: Automatically create lists
        type: checkbox
        default: true

The value of the form field above called auto_create_lists can be accessed using $this->auto_create_lists inside the importData method of the import model. If this were the export model, the value would be available inside the exportData method instead.

class SubscriberImport extends \Backend\Models\ImportModel
    public function importData($results, $sessionKey = null)
        if ($this->auto_create_lists) {
            // Do something

        // ...