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#247 ✓stale
Brian Takita

validates_associated - Detailed Validation error messages on associations

Reported by Brian Takita | May 25th, 2008 @ 07:57 AM

When an associated object (has_one, belongs_to, has_many, etc.) has a validation error, Rails currently gives a non-detailed error message. For example we have a User that has one Profile:

class User < ActiveRecord::Base

has_one :profile


If there is a validation error in Profile, the User error message says "Profile is invalid", instead of the actual error message in Profile.

This makes rendering form validation error messages more cumbersome.

I will be attaching a patch that adds a validates_associated method soon.

Comments and changes to this ticket

  • Brian Takita
  • Anton Kuzmin

    Anton Kuzmin May 25th, 2008 @ 05:46 PM

    I used your patch. I was wondering, does user really need to know that his "Profile is invalid"?

    In fact, I see this message twice. I don't know exactly why. Maybe it's because one of my today's hacks when I started trying to understand rails internals for the first time and make the saving of multi-model forms like a breeze.

    Anyway, I uncommented this line:

    record.errors.add(attr_name, ActiveRecord::Errors.default_error_messages[:invalid])

    But the 1 message still stayed. It was coming from add_single_associated_save_callbacks method. So I moved a part of your code there. Now I don't even have to call validates_confirmation_of :password

    diff --git a/activerecord/lib/active_record/associations.rb b/activerecord/lib/active_record/associations.rb
    index fb5f1f8..6a2d706 100644
    --- a/activerecord/lib/active_record/associations.rb
    +++ b/activerecord/lib/active_record/associations.rb
    @@ -1148,7 +1148,11 @@ module ActiveRecord
               define_method(method_name) do
                 association = instance_variable_get("@#{association_name}")
                 if !association.nil?
    -              errors.add "#{association_name}" unless || association.valid?
    +              unless || association.valid?
    +                association.errors.each do |error_name, error_value|
    +                  errors.add(error_name, error_value)
    +                end
    +              end

    So, it's not just one place where detailed validation error message is needed.

    I will continue hacking. Will create a ticket and a patch just after I find it worth sharing.

  • Anton Kuzmin

    Anton Kuzmin May 25th, 2008 @ 09:31 PM

    My damn brain and linux copy-paster :) Sorry

    • Anyway, I uncommented this line:
    • Anyway, I commented this line:
    • Now I don't even have to call validates_confirmation_of :password
    • Now I don't even have to call validates_associated :profile
  • Brian Takita

    Brian Takita May 26th, 2008 @ 02:30 AM

    I'm in favor of not having to validates_associated.

    I think that it would be useful to attach the name of the association that owns the invalid attribute because two models may have the same attribute names.

    This is if the error is attached to object with the association, and not the association that is invalid. Ideally validation errors would be attached to its object and reporting on the validation errors would be recursive. However, it seems like that would be difficult.

    One of the patches attached to this ticket provides an easy to implement interim solution.

  • josh

    josh August 27th, 2008 @ 02:06 AM

    • State changed from “new” to “stale”
    • Tag set to activerecord

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