Useful Links (learning resources):


This file describes experimental and more advanced Relay features. It can be very unstable due to its nature so be careful. Here be dragons!

There are different tradeoffs across completeness, consistency, and performance, and there isn't one approach that is appropriate for every app. Relay focuses on cases where consistency matters: if you don't need consistency then a simpler/lighter solution can be more appropriate. (source)

How to test latest unreleased changes from Relay master?

Relay team publishes master on NPM (new). You can find it under names like 0.0.0-master-62d0ae50. See:

You will find old instructions below which are still somehow relevant but outdated thanks to the new approach.

These changes are unreleased so you cannot easily install (uncompiled) master from NPM and use it. The easiest way how to try master is to clone Relay somewhere and run yarn install in the root. This will not only install all the necessary dependencies but also compile Relay packages. Now, just replace your versions with file paths in package.json:

diff --git a/src/packages/relay/package.json b/src/packages/relay/package.json
index 45a44734..99be1766 100644
--- a/src/packages/relay/package.json
+++ b/src/packages/relay/package.json
@@ -10,9 +10,9 @@
"dependencies": {
"@kiwicom/fetch": "^2.3.1",
"@kiwicom/js": "^0.8.0",
- "react-relay": "^3.0.0",
- "relay-compiler": "^3.0.0",
- "relay-runtime": "^3.0.0"
+ "react-relay": "file:/Users/mrtnzlml/Work/mrtnzlml/relay/dist/react-relay",
+ "relay-compiler": "file:/Users/mrtnzlml/Work/mrtnzlml/relay/dist/relay-compiler",
+ "relay-runtime": "file:/Users/mrtnzlml/Work/mrtnzlml/relay/dist/relay-runtime"
"peerDependencies": {
"react": "^16.8.0"

Do not forget to run yarn install in your project as well.

Relay Config


Future of QueryRenderer/useQuery pattern

In general we're planning to move away from the QueryRenderer/useQuery pattern, which we're referring to as "fetch-on-render". This design makes behavior unpredictable (rendering can happen arbitrarily due to changes in parent components, suspense can cause re-renders and doesn't guarantee cleanup). The alternative is "fetch-then-render" - perform your data-fetching based on some event (user interaction, navigation, timer, app initialization) and then consume that result during render. Then "how do i refetch?" has the same answer as "how do i fetch?". Expect to see more API changes in this direction.


New Connection Model

@connection_resolver(resolver: "FeedbackCommentsResolver")

Streaming support @stream_connection_resolver( ... )




query ViewerQuery @raw_response_type {
viewer {
actor {

Client field via @__clientField(handle: " ... ")

This directive is not intended for use by developers directly. To set a field handle in product code use a compiler plugin


Anyway, you can compute the client field value from other server field:

fragment Example on Article {
body @__clientField(handle: "draft")
# this is a client field and it will contain uppercased `body` value

This obviously means that you need to define your local client schema (schema.local.graphql):

extend type Article {
draft: String

And you have to create the handler which is being registered when you are creating new Relay environment (

const DraftHandler = {
update(store, payload) {
const record = store.get(payload.dataID);
const content = record.getValue(payload.fieldKey);
record.setValue(content.toUpperCase(), 'draft');
// Set the original value to handleKey, otherwise the field with @__clientField directive will be undefined
record.setValue(content, payload.handleKey);

Don't forget to run Relay compiler after you add these changes.

More info:

@connection(handler: "custom_handler", ...)

It is possible to specify custom handler when using @connection. This way you can define custom behavior and effectively completely replace the default RelayConnectionHandler. This handler must be added to the handlerProvider (default is connection handler for the raw @connection). This is how default Relay handler provider looks like.

See also:

@connection(dynamicKey_UNSTABLE: $someVariable, ...)


RelayResponseNormalizer: handleStrippedNulls

Relay is able to recover completely missing fields in the response. You can use this knowledge to optimize JSON response from the server. Let's say this is our incoming payload from the server:

"data": {
"allLocations": {
"edges": [
{ "node": { "id": "san-francisco_ca_us", "name": "San Francisco" } },
{ "node": { "id": "boston_ma_us", "name": "Boston" } },
{ "node": { "id": "washington_dc_us", "name": "Washington, D.C." } }

Traditionally, server would return something like this in case of failure (or just missing data):

"data": {
"allLocations": {
"edges": [
{ "node": { "id": "san-francisco_ca_us", "name": "San Francisco" } },
{ "node": { "id": "boston_ma_us", "name": null } },
{ "node": { "id": "washington_dc_us", "name": null } }
"errors": ...

But it's not necessary to send the nullable fields at all. Afterall, server knows what fields were requested. RelayResponseNormalizer by default recovers from this state so you can send response like this from the server (see the missing names):

"data": {
"allLocations": {
"edges": [
{ "node": { "id": "san-francisco_ca_us", "name": "San Francisco" } },
{ "node": { "id": "boston_ma_us" } },
{ "node": { "id": "washington_dc_us" } }
"errors": ...

Relay will show you this warning in this console (dev mode only):

Warning: RelayResponseNormalizer(): Payload did not contain a value for field name: name. Check that you are parsing with the same query that was used to fetch the payload.


Relay hooks useQuery, useFragment, usePaginationFragment, useRefetchableFragment, useBlockingPaginationFragment, useLegacyPaginationFragment


@refetchable(queryName: " ... ")

Currently broken:

export default createRefetchContainer(LocationsPaginatedRefetch, {
data: graphql`
fragment LocationsPaginatedRefetch_data on RootQuery
@argumentDefinitions(count: { type: "Int", defaultValue: 20 }, after: { type: "String" })
@refetchable(queryName: "LocationsPaginatedRefetchRefetchQuery") {
incrementalPagination: allLocations(first: $count, after: $after)
@connection(key: "allLocations_incrementalPagination") {
edges {
node {
pageInfo {

Refetch container

When refetch is called and the refetchQuery is executed, Relay doesn't actually use the result of the query to re-render the component. All it does is normalize the payload into the store and fire any relevant subscriptions. This means that if the fetched data is unrelated to the data that the mounted container is subscribed to (e.g. using a totally different node id that doesn't have any data overlaps), then the component won't re-render.

Refetch containers are only really meant to be used when you are changing variables in the component fragment. If you don't want or need to include variables in the fragment, you could go one level up and set new variables directly in the QueryRenderer (using props or state).

@defer, @stream, @stream_connection


@inline ???

* A transform that converts fragment spreads where the referenced fragment
* is annotated with @inline to a InlineDataFragmentSpread.
* InlineDataFragmentSpreads have the selections of the referenced fragment inlined.



import RelayNetworkLogger from 'relay-runtime/lib/RelayNetworkLogger';
import fetchFunction from './fetchFunction';
import subscribeFunction from './subscribeFunction';
const fetch = __DEV__ ? RelayNetworkLogger.wrapFetch(fetchFunction) : fetchFunction;
const subscribe = __DEV__ ? RelayNetworkLogger.wrapSubscribe(subscribeFunction) : subscribeFunction;
const network = Network.create(fetch, subscribe);
const source = new RecordSource();
const store = new Store(source);
const env = new Environment({
export default env;


You can override default behavior of unhandled errors when using Relay Observable:

import { Observable } from 'relay-runtime';
if (__DEV__) {
Observable.onUnhandledError((error, isUncaughtThrownError) => {
Observable.create( ... )

Default implementation:

if (__DEV__) {
// Default implementation of HostReportErrors() in development builds.
// Can be replaced by the host application environment.
RelayObservable.onUnhandledError((error, isUncaughtThrownError) => {
declare function fail(string): void;
if (typeof fail === 'function') {
// In test environments (Jest), fail() immediately fails the current test.
} else if (isUncaughtThrownError) {
// Rethrow uncaught thrown errors on the next frame to avoid breaking
// current logic.
setTimeout(() => {
throw error;
} else if (typeof console !== 'undefined') {
// Otherwise, log the unhandled error for visibility.
// eslint-disable-next-line no-console
console.error('RelayObservable: Unhandled Error', error);