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DI/1 - a.k.a Inject One - is a simple, convention-based Dependency Injection framework.

DI/1 searches specified directories for CFCs and treats them as singletons or non-singletons (transients) based on naming conventions for the CFCs themselves, or the folders in which they are found. You can override the conventions by configuration if needed.


Getting Started with DI/1

Most users will be using DI/1 as the default bean factory for FW/1, but you can also use DI/1 in a non-FW/1 application, and that can be a good way to start adding structure and automation to an existing legacy project if you’re not ready for an MVC framework. Both approaches will be covered below.

Getting Started with DI/1 and FW/1

By default, FW/1 creates an instance of DI/1 to use as its bean factory, to manage controller CFCs and also CFCs that are part of your application model. You control how FW/1 uses DI/1 through the diEngine, diComponent, diLocations, and diConfig settings.

You should only need to call getBean() to get a transient – by default, a CFC found in a folder called beans:

var user = fw.getBeanFactory().getBean( "user" ); // or "userBean"

CFCs found in other folders (e.g., services) are treated as singletons and will be autowired into each other, based on property declarations (if you have accessors=true on your component), setXxx() methods, and constructor arguments (init()). Read Using Bean Factories in the Developing Applications Guide for more detail.

Getting Started with DI/1 Standalone

If you want to use DI/1 outside of FW/1, here’s how you should do it: create an instance of the DI/1 bean factory and specify the folder(s) you want it to search for beans (CFCs):

var beanFactory = new framework.ioc("/model");
// or multiple folders:
var beanFactory = new framework.ioc("/model,/common/model");
// or an array:
var beanFactory = new framework.ioc(["/model", "/common/model"]);

If CFC names are unique, you can use that name to get the bean out of the factory:

var userManager = beanFactory.getBean("userManager");

See below for how DI/1 handles CFCs that have the same name, found in different folders.

Basic DI/1 Conventions

CFCs found in a folder called beans are assumed to be transients; otherwise CFCs are assumed to be singletons, this includes beans found in folders under the beans folder. A singleton has just a single instance and DI/1 will cache that instance. A transient is created afresh every time you ask DI/1 for an instance.

The name of a bean is the name of the CFC (without the path information or file extension). All beans are also given an alias which is the name of the CFC followed by (the singular form of) the folder name in which it was found, e.g., /model/beans/product.cfc would get the alias "productBean". If no other CFC is called product.cfc in the folders that you asked DI/1 to search, you can use "product" or "productBean" to reference that bean (in your property declarations or getBean() calls).

If a CFC has a constructor (a method called init()), DI/1 will use the argument names to look up beans and call the constructor with those beans. If a CFC has setter methods, DI/1 will use their names to look up beans and call the setters with those beans. If a CFC has property declarations and implicit setters are enabled (accessors=true on component), DI/1 will use their names to look up beans and call the implicit setters with those beans. This is called autowiring. By the time you get a bean back from DI/1, it should be fully populated. You can also specify an "init-method" function name that DI/1 should call after a bean has had its dependencies injected - see Configuration below. When using property to declare a dependency, do not specify a type or a default: DI/1 assumes that typed properties (and defaulted properties) are intended to generate specific getters and setters on transients or for ORM integration, rather than just dependencies. You can override this default behavior - see Configuration below.

// usermanager - managers/user.cfc or usermanager.cfc
component accessors=true {

    property roleService; // autowire services/role.cfc

    function setLoggingService( loggingService ) { // autorwire services/logging.cfc
        variables.logger = loggingService.getLogger( "user" );

    function init( userdao ) { // autowire daos/user.cfc
        variables.userdao = userdao;
        return this;


When you get this usermanager bean from DI/1 – either by calling getBean( "usermanager" ) directly or autowired into another bean via property usermanager; (or a setter or constructor argument), it will already have roleService, loggingService, and userDAO autowired into it.

If DI/1 cannot find a matching bean for a constructor argument, it will throw an exception. If DI/1 cannot find a matching bean for a setter method or property, it will log the failure and ignore it (by default), and the corresponding variable will not be populated. You can configure DI/1 to be strict about matching bean names - see the configuration section below - in which case it will throw an exception.

As of FW/1 4.0 (DI/1 1.2), you can specify a second argument to getBean() that provides constructor arguments that should be used instead of beans in the factory:

var user = fw.getBeanFactory().getBean( "user", { name : "Sean", email : "" } );

This will use name and email as overrides so that they hide any beans of the same name when DI/1 calls the init() method. This can be particularly valuable when you are migrating legacy code to DI/1 and want it to manage bean creation while still providing constructor arguments in the (legacy) code.

Note that DI/1 will inject both singletons and transients via constructors, but it will inject only singletons via setters or properties, not transients. Injecting transients in those situations often leads to unexpected results (consider a transient invoice bean that has a setCustomer() method when you also have a transient customer bean - you almost certainly don’t want DI/1 to automatically create a customer instance and inject it every time you ask DI/1 for a new invoice bean!). If a constructor argument matches a transient bean, DI/1 will still create an instance since it has to finish constructing the original bean.

Acceptable Folder Paths

In general, you should use webroot-relative folders - starting with / - or mappings - also starting with / - as the constructor arguments to ioc. If you pass a full file system path, DI/1 will only be able to deduce the dotted-name of CFCs found there if it points into the webroot tree. Similarly, if you pass a relative folder path, it must point into the webroot tree. If DI/1 cannot deduce the dotted name of a CFC, it will throw an exception.

Beyond Convention

For many applications, DI/1’s default conventions will be sufficient but it also supports more advanced usage through three avenues:

Each of these approaches will be discussed in the following sections.


When the bean factory is created, you can optionally supply a struct containing configuration for DI/1. At present, DI/1 understands the follow configuration options:

The examples below all show diConfig for FW/1 (and diLocations in some examples). If you are using DI/1 standalone, you can imagine creating the instance of DI/1 like this, in order to map those examples to your usage:

var beanFactory = new framework.ioc( diLocations, diConfig );

Configuring “Constant” Beans

The constants config element is a struct containing mappings from bean names to specific constant values. This allows you to specify non-CFC values for constructor arguments, setters and properties (but is most commonly used for constructor arguments). The value may be of any type and any reference to that bean name will return the specified value as a singleton.

These values may also be added after DI/1 has been initialized using the declare() method as shown below (in Customization).

Specifying Additional Transient Beans

By default, any CFC in the beans folder is considered a transient and everything else is considered a singleton. There are three ways to specify other CFCs should be considered transient:

For config.singulars, any folder name whose singular name is bean will cause CFCs to get an alias that ends in Bean and will be considered transients (see below for examples). For config.transients, the singular transformation will still be applied to create the alias, but the CFCs will be considered transients anyway. For config.singletonPattern, CFCs will also be considered transients if their name does not match the regular expression pattern supplied. For config.transientPattern, CFCs will also be considered transients if their name does match the regular expression pattern supplied. You cannot specify both config.singletonPattern and config.transientPattern.

For example:

diConfig : { singulars : { objects : "bean" }, transients : [ "models" ] }

This will cause CFCs found in the objects folder to be treated as if they were in the beans folder (their alias will end with Bean and they will be considered transients because of that) and CFCs found in the models folder to be treated as transients too (but their alias will end with Model, the singular of models).

diConfig : { singulars : { services : "manager" }, transients : [ "objects" ] }

This, on the other hand, will cause CFCs found in the services folder to be treated as if they were in the managers folder (their alias will end with Manager and they will be considered singletons because of that) and CFCs found in the objects folder to be treated as transients (their alias will end with Object, the singular of objects).

diConfig :{ singletonPattern : "(Service|Factory)$" }

In addition to any CFCs found in a folder called beans, any CFC whose name does not end in Service or Factory will be considered a transient.

diConfig : { transientPattern : "(Entity)$" }

In addition to any CFCs found in a folder called beans, any CFC whose name ends in Entity will be considered a transient.


In addition to the configuration that lets you specify additional “constant” beans and define how the conventions work, DI/1 provides four ways to programmatically add beans to the bean factory:

There is a corresponding method on DI/1 for each of these, but as of FW/1 4.0 (DI/1 1.2), there is a better way to declare beans to the bean factory, using a new “builder” syntax:

beanFactory.declare( beanName ).aliasFor( existingBean );
beanFactory.declare( beanName ).asValue( beanValue );
beanFactory.declare( beanName ).instanceOf( dottedPath );
beanFactory.declare( beanName ).fromFactory( factory, methodName );

For the last two declarations, you can also call .asSingleton() or .asTransient() to specify whether the bean should be a singleton or transient. Also for the last two declarations, you can call .withOverrides() to specify a struct containing bean / value pairs that should be used for constructor arguments and property injections, instead of existing beans in the factory.

For the factory declaration, you can call .withArguments() to specify an array of bean names that should be looked up and passed as arguments to the factory’s methodName.

All of the above declarations return the declaration itself, so you can chain the modifier functions:

beanFactory.declare( "generated" ).fromFactory( factory, "gen" )
    .withArguments( [ "rand256", "gaussDistStrategy" ] );

When DI/1 is asked for the "generated" bean, it will call the gen() method on the factory, passing two arguments: the values of the beans "rand256" and "gaussDistStrategy" respectively.

In addition, you can call .done() on a declaration to get the bean factory back so that you can chain declarations:

beanFactory.declare( "abbrev" ).aliasFor( "longBeanName" ).done()
    .declare( "answer" ).asValue( 42 ).done()
    .declare( "copyright" ).asValue( 2016 );

See Customization Examples below for more examples and explanations.

Here are the four direct methods, as present in earlier versions of DI/1 (these may be deprecated in a future release):

The recommended way to perform this programmatic customization is inside a load listener. A load listener is a function, closure, or method that accepts a bean factory as an argument and performs all the customization you need on that bean factory. You can register a load listener either by specifying it in the config struct, above, as loadListener, or by calling onLoad( listener ) on the bean factory itself.

See the next section for examples of customizing the bean factory.

Customization Examples

You can add an alias for a bean:


That will tell DI/1 that alsoKnownAs is an alias for the bean identified by navigation so getBean("alsoKnownAs") will behave the same as getBean("navigation").

You can programmatically add new bean instances - or named values:

beanFactory.declare("logger").asValue(new LogFactory("log4j"));

After these calls, getBean("magicvalue") will return the value 42 and getBean("logger") will return the CFC instance you provided. That means that any properties, setter methods or constructor arguments that refer to magicvalue or logger will get those values injected.

You can also programmatically declare new beans to be managed by DI/1:


That will tell DI/1 that /site/utils/navigation.cfc should be managed as a singleton with name navigation. You can declare transients by adding a call to .asTransient().

When declaring a bean, you can also optionally provide a set of overrides for named beans, so that constructor arguments or properties will take on specified values, rather than what is managed by the bean factory. This is useful for creating variants of a single bean:

    .withOverrides( { dsn = "main" } );
    .withOverrides( { dsn = "admindb" } );

You can declare a factory bean - like Spring/ColdSpring - as follow:

beanFactory.declare("generated").fromFactory(factory, "method")
    .withArguments( [ ..args.. ] ).withOverrides( { ... } );

This tells DI/1 that when you call getBean("generated"), instead of trying to create the bean itself, it should call factory.method(..args..) to get the bean instance. If you don’t call .withArguments() then the method is called with no arguments.

Using Load Listeners

The easiest way to organize all your customization of the DI/1 bean factory is to use a load listener. I prefer to have a CFC, called LoadListener.cfc, somewhere in my /model folder that contains an onLoad() method, and I declare this in the config struct when I create DI/1:

// if letting FW/1 create DI/1 for you:
variables.framework = {
    diLocations : [ "/model", "/controllers" ],
    diConfig : { loadListener : "LoadListener" },

// if creating DI/1 explicitly:
var bf = new framework.ioc( [ "/model", "/controllers" ], { loadListener : "LoadListener" } );

This tells DI/1 that when it has first discovered all the beans in the folders you specified (after construction but before any further operations take place on the bean factory), it should call getBean( "LoadListener" ) and then call onLoad( this ) on that bean (i.e., passing itself into your method).

Your load listener CFC would look like this:

// LoadListener.cfc:
component {
    function onLoad( beanFactory ) {
        beanFactory.declare( ... ).asValue( ... ).done()
            .declare( ... ).asValue( ... ).done()
            .declare( ... ).instanceOf( ... ).done()
            // eagerly load all the singletons:

That last step is optional, but I like to avoid lazy loading of singletons in applications that see heavy load (DI/1 deliberately avoids locks so heavy load can cause singletons to be constructed multiple times if you don’t eagerly load the singletons at startup).

If you are using DI/1 standalone, you can also manually add load listeners by calling onLoad() on the bean factory itself, as long as you do it before any other operations are performed:

// only when creating DI/1 explicitly:
var bf = new framework.ioc( [ "/model", "/controllers" ] );
bf.onLoad( "LoadListener" );

If you let FW/1 manage your DI/1 bean factory for you, you need to specify the load listener as part of the configuration (diConfig) as shown above.

Note that you cannot add load listeners inside your load listener method itself! If you want to add more load listeners, your best choice is to extend ioc.cfc and in your init() function, after calling super.init(), call this.onLoad() to register them before you return this;. You can easily tell FW/1 to use you extended version of DI/1 with the variables.framework.diComponent setting.

Note that a load listener can also be passed as a function or closure, or as a CFC instance, so if you only wanted to eagerly load the singletons, you could declare it inline like this:

variables.framework = {
    diConfig : { loadListener : function( di1 ) { di1.load(); } },


Customizing the behavior of DI/1 by overriding its methods should probably be considered a “last resort” so before you go down this path, ask on Slack or on the mailing list if there is a way to achieve your goals without doing this.

DI/1 provides no specific public extension points but it does provide a few private extension points that are considered documented and supported. These are described in detail near the end of this document and they are primarily intended to allow you to customized how CFC instances are actually constructed, how metadata is obtained, and what to do if DI/1 cannot locate a bean that you have requested.

In addition, there is a hook for modifying beans as they are initialized – setupInitMethod() – which is called after a bean has been fully populated but prior to calling the "init-method" (if any is specified).

See Overriding DI/1 Behavior for more detail.

Other Public Methods

This section describes some of the other methods that DI/1 provides, which applications may find useful. See the Reference Manual section below for full details of the function signatures.

Given a struct of values (such as form scope or URL scope), you can ask DI/1 to inject those values as properties into a given bean:

bean = beanFactory.injectProperties(myBeanInstance, form);
user = beanFactory.injectProperties("user", userAttributes);
user = beanFactory.injectProperties("user", userAttributes, true); // Ignore additional keys in userAttributes not defined in the user bean

The first call will loop over the form scope and, for each key in that scope, call a setter on myBeanInstance. The second call asks DI/1 to create a user bean and populate it by calling a setter for each element of the struct userAttributes. You may also use a dotted-path to a CFC as the first argument in which case DI/1 will use createObject to instantiate it and will not call the constructor. Caution: DI/1 assumes you know what you’re doing and will call a setter for every member of the struct passed in!

You can ask if the bean factory knows about a particular bean using the containsBean() method:

if ( beanFactory.containsBean("productService") ) ...

(although you probably shouldn’t need to do this unless you are building some sort of framework plugin that needs to check what is available to it at runtime!).

You can force all singletons to be reloaded using the load() method:


That will empty the bean cache and then call getBean() on every bean that DI/1 knows about. Note: it does not call load() on any parent bean factory (see below) and it does not perform a new search on the folders (so it won’t see newly written CFCs). To force the search to be performed again, create a new instance of the bean factory as shown above.

Metadata can be queried using the following methods:

if ( beanFactory.isSingleton("someBean") ) ...
info = beanFactory.getBeanInfo("someBean");
if ( beanFactory.hasParent() ) ...

I would expect these only to be useful to framework authors. The first two methods walk up into parent bean factories, if present, the third indicates whether the bean factory has a parent. If you omit the bean name for getBeanInfo() you get back a struct with a key beanInfo that refers to metadata for all of the beans known in the factory. If there is a parent bean factory, its metadata is returned under a key parent in that struct.

getBeanInfo() can be called with a beanName argument - the default - or with a regex argument which will return metadata about all the beans in the factory whose names match the regular expression, in a struct with the single key beanInfo, whose value will be a struct with a key for each matching bean.

getBeanInfo() can also be called with no arguments, in which case it will return metadata for all the beans in the factory (in the beanInfo key of the result) and metadata for all the beans in the factory’s parent, if any, in the parent key of the result. Optionally, you may specify an argument of flatten = true and the parent structures will be merged (recursively through the parents) into beanInfo, producing a flat struct.

getConfig() can be called to get a copy of the bean factory’s configuration, in case you need to have conditional behavior in your load listeners.

Parent Bean Factories

If your application is assembled from multiple modules, you may have a main bean factory containing shared CFCs and each module may also have a bean factory. You can tell a module’s bean factory about the shared CFCs in the main bean factory using the setParent() method:

var moduleBeanFactory = new framework.ioc("/moduleModel");
moduleBeanFactory.setParent( mainBeanFactory );

This causes DI/1 to ask its parent bean factory about any beans that are requested but unknown (within the moduleBeanFactory). Because DI/1 uses only containsBean(name) and getBean(name) the parent bean factory does not need to be another DI/1 instance - it can be any bean factory that provides that API.

Note that this is done automatically by FW/1 in an application with subsystems: each subsystem has its own bean factory with the main application’s bean factory as the parent.

Bean Factory Aware

If you need access to the bean factory itself within one of your CFCs, either declare a constructor argument called beanFactory, provide a setBeanFactory( any beanFactory ) setter or declare property beanFactory; (with implicit setters enabled). DI/1 declares itself as a bean called beanFactory and will inject itself where any such dependencies appear.

Reference Manual

This section lists every public method in DI/1, along with a brief explanation. After the listing of public methods, some additional discussion is provided about extending DI/1 and overriding its behavior.

Public Methods

This section describes the supported public API of DI/1.

public any function init( any folders, struct config = { } )

The constructor. folders can be a list or array of paths to search for CFCs to manage. It is recommended to use webroot-relative paths or mappings (both starting with /) for the paths. The optional config struct can supply various configuration settings to override the default behavior.

public any function addAlias( string aliasName, string beanName )

Add an alias for a given bean name. Prefer the new “builder” syntax of the declare() method.

public any function addBean( string beanName, any beanValue )

Tell DI/1 that the given bean name should resolve to the supplied value. The value may be any type of data. Prefer the new “builder” syntax of the declare() method.

public boolean function containsBean( string beanName )

Returns true if DI/1 knows about the given bean name. If DI/1 doesn’t know about it directly, but has been given a parent bean factory, it will ask the parent (by calling containsBean() on the parent).

public boolean function hasParent()

Returns true if DI/1 has been given a parent bean factory.

public any function declare( string beanName )

Declare a new bean in the bean factory. Returns a “builder” on which you can call aliasFor, asValue, instanceOf, fromFactory, asSingleton, asTransient, withArguments, and/or withOverrides.

public any function declareBean( string beanName, string dottedPath, boolean isSingleton = true, struct overrides = { } )

Tell DI/1 that the given bean name should resolve to an instance of the named CFC. Prefer the new “builder” syntax of the declare() method.

public any function factoryBean( string beanName, any factory, string methodName = “”, array args = [ ], struct overrides = { } )

Tell DI/1 that the given bean name should be resolved by called the specified methodName on the factory bean, with the specified arguments (args by name). Prefer the new “builder” syntax of the declare() method.

public any function getBean( string beanName, struct constructorArgs = { } )

Ask DI/1 for the specified bean. If constructArgs are provided, they are treated as overrides and will hide any beans of the same name that DI/1 is managing, just for the initialization of the requested bean.

public any function getBeanInfo( string beanName = ‘’, boolean flatten = false, string regex = ‘’ )

Return metadata about the named bean. If no bean name is given, return a struct containing metadata about all beans that DI/1 knows about. By default, any parent bean factory’s metadata is returned as a nested struct but flatten will recursively unroll the chain of parent metadata (so the structKeyList() of the returned metadata will be all beans, not just the ones in the child bean factory). In addition, you can specify a regex to return metadata just for beans whose name matches the regular expression.

public struct function getConfig()

Return a (shallow) copy of DI/1’s configuration struct, with all the defaults populated.

public string function getVersion()

Return a string indicating the version of DI/1 being used.

public boolean function isSingleton( string beanName )

Return true if the specified bean is known to be a singleton. If the bean is known to be a non-singleton, this will return false. If the bean is not known in the current bean factory but a parent bean factory exists, the parent will be asked isSingleton(beanName). If the bean is not known at all (or asking the parent fails), this will return false.

public any function injectProperties( any bean, struct properties, boolean ignoreMissing=false )

Given a bean (either a name, a dotted path to a CFC, or an actual instance), inject each of the (non-null) properties specified by calling the matching setter on the bean. If a bean name is given, it will be fully constructed by DI/1 first, and then populated. If a dotted path to a CFC is given, it will be created – but its constructor will not be called – and then it will be populated. If an actual bean instance is given, it will be populated. If calling any setter fails, that exception will propagate and other properties of the bean will not be populated. In general, use of this method is not recommended as it is not very flexible and you need to know what you are doing!

If ignoreMissing is true then missing properties not defined in the bean but present in the properties struct will not throw an error

public any function load()

This causes DI/1 to flush all its caches and to go through all the singleton beans it knows about and force full resolution of each. This can be used to reload a bean factory (although it is safer to just create a new instance of DI/1 and start over, because load() does not reload any parent bean factories), but the most common usage is to avoid lazy loading of beans (e.g., if you want to “warm up” your application after a deployment before putting it back in the cluster). Calling load() at the end of a load listener will also avoid any potential thread safety issues caused by lazy loading beans under heavy load in an application.

public any function onLoad( any listener )

Register a load listener that DI/1 should call after the factory has initialized itself. This is the recommanded way to provide additional bean declarations since it ensures they all run before the constructed instance of DI/1 is returned to your program. The listener may be a bean name, in which case DI/1 will look it up internally, or an instance of a CFC, or a user-defined function or closure. If the listener resolves to a CFC instance, DI/1 will call onLoad() on that instance and pass itself in as the only argument. If the listener is a function or closure, DI/1 will call it and pass itself in as the only argument. You can then manipulate the bean factory further as part of its initialization. A single load listener is usually registered via the loadListener element of the config struct when DI/1 is initialized but onLoad() can be called multiple times to register additional listeners. When muliple listeners are registered, they are called in the reverse order of registration.

public any function setParent( any parent )

Tell DI/1 that the given parent object should be treated as a parent bean factory. Several calls in DI/1 will delegate to a parent bean factory if the specified information is not present in the child bean factory. This allows common beans to be shared with several child factories, for example with a main application that has subsystems.

Overriding DI/1 Behavior

If you want to override the methods in DI/1, such as logMissingBean(), you can create your own CFC that extends ioc.cfc and overrides the desired methods. Then use your CFC instead of ioc.cfc. If any particular use case becomes common, we can discuss incorporating it into DI/1 as a configuration option.

One possible use case is overriding the constructor to provide your own init() method that does additional configurtion (although using a load listener is probably a better way to do this in general).

The following supported extension points are provided:

Overriding missingBean()

missingBean() is called when DI/1 cannot find a bean. The default behavior when called from getBean() is to throw a “bean not found” exception. The default behavior when called during dependency resolution is to either throw a “bean not found” exception (when running in strict mode) or just call logMissingBean(). Prior to FW/1 4.0 (DI/1 1.2), getBean() threw the exception directly, and during dependency resolution the result of calling missingBean() was ignored.

If you override missingBean() you could delegate bean lookup / creation to your own convention-based bean factory and return your own bean. You could decide whether to invoke that just for failed calls to getBean() (when dependency is false) or also for bean lookup during dependency resolution (when dependency is true). The resolvingBeanName argument is provided to allow for better error messages during failures to resolve dependencies and is not expected to affect the behavior of any override. If your missingBean() does not throw an exception, whatever result it returns will be used in place of the bean that DI/1 could not find. If you return nothing (return;), then DI/1 will not attempt to use the result: for dependency resolution that means the dependency will simply by ignored (and nothing injected); for getBean() calls that means that getBean() itself will return nothing (instead of throwing an exception - its default behavior) so be careful there!