Here's your chance to speak at GraphQL Summit in New York City, October 8 - 10, 2024! 🏙️ Submit your proposal by May 31.
Launch GraphOS Studio
You're viewing documentation for an upcoming version of this software. Switch to the latest stable version.

Apollo compiler plugins

The Apollo compiler supports a wide range of options. For the cases where these options are not enough, you can use Apollo compiler plugins to modify the behaviour of the compiler.

Apollo compiler plugins allow to:

  • Change the layout of the generated sources (name of the classes, package names, capitalization rules).
  • Change the ids of for .
  • Transform the JavaPoet/KotlinPoet models.
  • Transform the Apollo IR.

Implementing a compiler plugin

In this example we will implement a plugin that uses custom persisted queries ids registered on your backend.

The Apollo compiler use the ServiceLoader API to load plugins at runtime. Plugins need to be implemented in a separate module that is added to the classpath.

To start, create a new Gradle module and add apollo-compiler as a dependency to the module build.gradle[.kts] file. In this example, we'll use apollo-compiler-plugin for the module name:

// apollo-compiler-plugin/build.gradle.kts
plugins {
dependencies {
// Add apollo-compiler as a dependency

Next create your plugin in a src/main/kotlin/mypackage/MyPlugin file:

package mypackage
import com.apollographql.apollo3.compiler.OperationOutputGenerator
import com.apollographql.apollo3.compiler.ApolloCompilerPlugin
import com.apollographql.apollo3.compiler.operationoutput.OperationDescriptor
import com.apollographql.apollo3.compiler.operationoutput.OperationId
class MyPlugin: ApolloCompilerPlugin {
override fun operationIds(descriptors: List<OperationDescriptor>): List<OperationId> {
// This assumes the returned ids are in the same order as the descriptors
return registerOperations(descriptors).withIndex().map { OperationId(it.value, descriptors[it.index].name) }
* Send operations to a remote server and return the server persisted ids
fun registerOperations(descriptors: List<OperationDescriptor>): List<String> {
// ...

Make your plugin discoverable by ServiceLoader using a resource in src/main/resources/META-INF/services/com.apollographql.apollo3.compiler.ApolloCompilerPlugin. This file contains the fully qualified name of your plugin:



The name of the resource file is important. It must be com.apollographql.apollo3.compiler.ApolloCompilerPlugin and be in the META-INF/services folder. This is how ServiceLoader looks up plugins at runtime.

Adding a plugin to the Apollo compiler classpath

Use the Service.plugin() Gradle method to add the plugin to the Apollo compiler classpath:

// app/build.gradle.kts
plugins {
apollo {
service("service") {
// Add your plugin to the Apollo compiler classpath

The plugin code will now be invoked the next time the compiler is invoked.

Passing arguments to your Apollo compiler plugin

Because the compiler plugin runs in an isolated classpath, you can't use classes or data from your main build logic classpath.

In order to pass build-time to your Apollo compiler plugin, you can use code generation and tools like gradle-buildconfig-plugin:

// my-plugin/build.gradle.kts
plugins {
buildConfig {
buildConfigField("arg1", arg1Value)
buildConfigField("arg2", arg2Value)
// etc...


Because codegen is run in a separate classloader when using compiler plugins, it's not possible to use packageNameGenerator, operationIdGenerator or operationOutputGenerator at the same time as compiler plugins. If you want to use them, you'll have to:

  • use ApolloCompilerPlugin.layout() instead of packageNameGenerator
  • use ApolloCompilerPlugin.operationIds() instead of operationIdGenerator and operationOutputGenerator

Other references

For other plugin APIs like layout, IR, JavaPoet and KotlinPoet transforms, check out the ApolloCompilerPlugin API docs

For more examples, check out the integration-tests.

Apollo AST
JS Interoperability
Edit on GitHubEditForumsDiscord

© 2024 Apollo Graph Inc.

Privacy Policy