Test.loadData() – undocumented (but useful) behavior loading relationships


I want to load Accounts and their related Contacts using Test.loadData() and StaticResources. How do I do this given that the Contact records must have the ID of their parent Account yet the CSV file containing the Contacts can’t know in advance what the Account’s ID will be?

SFDC Help KB has one solution using Cases and CaseComment and there is an Idea here.

The SFDC KB article uses legitimate ID values (18 chars) in the parent CSV’s ID column and child CSV’s parentId column. The child CSV parentId column must reference the same ID as used for its intended parent.

But clearly the parentId in the CSV won’t be the real ID of the inserted parent SObject. So, can the ID values be arbitrary as long as they are unique?


Moving question into answer

And the answer appears to be yes (a tip to a colleague of mine who discovered this) and it works for master-detail relationships too

The Proof

  • Account
  • Contact with lookup relationship AccountId and custom lookup Alternate_Account__c

Here’s the CSV file for the Account – note the values of 0 and 1 for the test Account.ID rows:
enter image description here

And here’s the CSV for the Contacts – note the values in the AccountId column and Alternate_Account__c column reference the artificial IDs of Account CSV rows:

enter image description here

Using this Apex testmethod, I loaded the Accounts data from the static resource first and then the Contacts data from its static resource. I displayed the constructed SObject relationships using System.debug:

private class TestStaticResourceDataLoad {
    private static void testStaticResourceDataLoadMasterDetail() {
        List<SObject> aList = Test.loadData(Account.sObjectType,'testAccounts');
        List<SObject> cList = Test.loadData(Contact.sObjectType,'testContacts');

        String res = '';
        for (Account a: [select id, name, (select id, firstname, lastName,email, 
                                 reportsTo.lastname, alternate_account__r.name from Contacts) 
                             from Account where id IN :aList]) {
            String cRes = '';
            for (Contact c: a.contacts)
                cRes += '\n...name= ' + c.firstName + ' ' + c.lastName + ' ' + c.email + 
                             ' altAcct=' + c.alternate_account__r.name;
            res += '\n account id/name: ' + a.id + ' ' + a.name + ' w/ contacts: ' + cRes;

And here are the results:

13:11:43.657 (3657616477)|USER_DEBUG|[15]|INFO|res=
 account id/name: 001m0000007pN6hAAE 00AccountName w/ contacts: 
   name= 0.0fname 0.0lname 0.0lname@fubar.com altAcct=01AccountName
   name= 0.1fname 0.1lname 0.1lname@fubar.com altAcct=01AccountName
 account id/name: 001m0000007pN6iAAE 01AccountName w/ contacts: 
   name= 1.0fname 1.0lname 1.0lname@fubar.com altAcct=00AccountName

The Contacts are appropriately parented and the Contact.alternate_account__c lookup is also accurate.

Side note – what does not work is references within a StaticResource dataset. For example, I tried to use the Contact.ReportsToId field to have one Contact be a child of another in the same batch as shown here:

enter image description here

This isn’t surprising as the Sobjects are inserted as a batch and the intra-Sobject reference is not resolvable yet. No different than using DataLoader.

Side note 2
Another use case I couldn’t get to work via this approach was loading PricebookEntry rows for the standard pricebook unless you used the actual ID of the standard Pricebook as you can’t insert a standard pricebook via testmethods. This can have some portability issues


What is striking to me is that across Apex statement executions (the successive Test.loadData(..) lines), SFDC keeps track of a mapping between real IDs of the loaded Sobject and the fake ID you specify in the CSV file so you can build relationships. None of this is documented in the Apex Developer’s Guide and the casual developer could easily assume that Test.loadData(..) can only load top level SObjects or otherwise force the developer to post-process and add the relationships later.

Source : Link , Question Author : cropredy , Answer Author : cropredy

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