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Getting Started with the Experimental App Router

This tutorial will introduce you to Faust’s experimental app router example project. It contains a site demonstrating the use of utilities like getClient, getAuthClient, faustRouteHandler, loginAction, and logoutAction. You can use this project as a base for future projects and as a good reference site for app routing. It assumes you are comfortable with the command line, have a foundational knowledge of Faust and Next.js routing, and understand the basics of JavaScript, WordPress and Bash.

Links

How to Get the Example Working Locally

Install and Build

Get started by downloading the example project by running:

npx create-next-app \
    -e https://github.com/wpengine/faustjs/tree/main \
    --example-path examples/next/app-router \
    --use-npm
Code language: PHP (php)

.env.local File Set Up

Copy the example’s .env.local.sample file, ensuring you rename the file .env.local.

You’ll see an example NEXT_PUBLIC_WORDPRESS_URL in this file. Set this to your WordPress site’s URL.

You’ll also see a NEXT_PUBLIC_URL set to http://localhost:3000. You can keep that as is for now.

Set your FAUST_SECRET_KEY. For more information on where to find this secret key, refer back to this example.

Run the Project

Run the example project by entering npm run dev
Navigate to http://localhost:3000/.

You should now see a simple site page using your site’s name and a few published posts:

The front page of the app displaying a list of published posts.

The Example Project File Structure

This is the new standard file structure for App Router Next.js apps. For more information, check out the App Router docs from Next.js.

❯ tree -L 2
.
│ν app
│   └──  [postSlug]
│            └──  page.tsx
│   └──  api/faust/[route]
│            └──  route.ts
│   └──  my-account
│            └──  page.tsx
│   └──  making-client-queries
│            └──  page.tsx
│   └──  login
│            └──  page.tsx
│   ├──  layout.tsx
│   └──  page.tsx
│❯ node_modules
│.env.local.sample
│faust.config.js
│next-end.d.ts
│next.config.ts 
│package.json
│possibleTypes.json
│tsconfig.json

Fetching Data

getClient is a function that returns an ApolloClient, specifically for use in React Server Components (RSC). When making authenticated requests in the Next.js App Router from an RSC, the getAuthClient is used instead. Both are part of the @faustwp/experimental-app-router package.

In the example project under the folder my-account, you’ll find an example of getAuthClient in action:


// in examples/next/app-router/app/my-account/page.tsx
import { gql } from '@apollo/client';
import { getAuthClient } from '@faustwp/experimental-app-router';

export default async function Page() {
  const client = await getAuthClient();

  if (!client) {
    return <>You must be authenticated</>;
  }

  const { data } = await client.query({
    query: gql`
      query GetViewer {
        viewer {
          name
          posts {
            nodes {
              id
              title
            }
          }
        }
      }
    `,
  });

  return (
    <>
      <h2>Welcome {data.viewer.name}</h2>

      <ul>
        {data.viewer.posts.nodes.map((post) => (
          <li key={post.id}>{post.title}</li>
        ))}
      </ul>
    </>
  );
}

Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

Fetching Data on the Client

Additionally, you can make client side requests using Apollo’s useQuery hook like usual (You will need to do this in a client component using the use client directive):

'use client';

import { gql, useQuery } from '@apollo/client';

export default function Page() {
  const { data } = useQuery(gql`
    query MyQuery {
      generalSettings {
        title
      }
    }
  `);

  return <>{data?.generalSettings?.title}</>;
}Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

For client side queries to work, make sure you are wrapping your root layout with the <FaustProvider> component imported via:

import { FaustProvider } from '@faustwp/experimental-app-router/ssr';Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

Authentication

Authentication in the experimental-app-router is powered by two utilities, onLogin and onLogout. These are built on Next.js server actions and perform an action to log a user in and out using cookie caching and cookie removal, respectively.

In the example project, navigate to http://localhost:3000/login and log into your app using your wp-admin credentials from the NEXT_PUBLIC_WORDPRESS_URL you set in your .env.local file.

The login page displays a username field and a password field with a login button below them.

Upon successfully logging in, you’ll be directed to http://localhost:3000/my-account. This functionality comes from the helper function, onLogin.

The /my-account page grabs the authenticated user’s name and posts and displays them.

This page also has a “Logout” button, clicking it calls the onLogout server action, the user is logged out, and the page is refreshed with no authenticated user.

Note that when viewing the /my-account without an authenticated user, the first conditional statement in the associated my-account/page.tsx will be triggered, and the message, You must be authenticated will show on the screen.