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Write a GraphQL Subscription with React Hooks using Urql

Ian Jones
I build software on the web.
・2 min read

Watch "Write a GraphQL Subscription with React Hooks using Urql" (community resource) on egghead.

Urql provides a useSubscription hook for us to subscribe to a GraphQL subscription. The first thing we need to do is import {useSubscription} from 'urql'.

useSubscription takes an object, like useQuery this object expects a property of query and variables to be defined on it. In our particularly query, we are subscribing to the comments on a course. So we need to pass the slug of the course to our subscription query.

function App(){
  const course_slug = 'usesubscription-example'
  useSubscription({
    query: commentSubscriptionQuery,
    variables: {course_slug}
  })
  return (
    // ...
  )
}

Heres what our subscription query looks like:

const commentSubscriptionQuery = `
  subscription subscribeToComments($course_slug: String!) {
    comments(where: {course_slug: {_eq: $course_slug}}){
      text
    }
}`

useSubscription returns an array with the first element in that array being the result: const [result] = useSubscription({})

Like the the result of useQuery, this result has a couple methods on it that are useful to use.
We can use result.error to display any errors that the my have ran into.

const commentSubscriptionQuery = `
  subscription subscribeToComments($course_slug: String!) {
    comments(where: {course_slug: {_eq: $course_slug}}){
      text
    }
  }
`

function App(){
  const course_slug = 'usesubscription-example'
  const [result] useSubscription({
    query: commentSubscriptionQuery,
    variables: {course_slug}
  })

  if (result.error !== undefined) {
    return <div>{res.error.message}</div>
  }
  return (
    // ...
  )
}

Next, we need to tell the user if the query is fetching or if the data hasn't arrived yet.

function App(){
  // ...
  if (!res.fetching && res.data === undefined) {
    return <p>Loading...</p>
  }
  return (//...)

If result passes all of these checks, we know that we have result.data.comments and we can display them in a list.

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