6.4. Collection examples

The previous sections are pretty confusing. So lets look at an example. This class:
package eg;
import java.util.Set;

public class Parent {
    private long id;
    private Set children;

    public long getId() { return id; }
    private void setId(long id) { this.id=id; }

    private Set getChildren() { return children; }
    private void setChildren(Set children) { this.children=children; }

    ....
    ....
}
has a collection of Child instances. If each child has at most one parent, the most natural mapping is a one-to-many association:
<hibernate-mapping>

    <class name="Parent">
        <id name="id">
            <generator class="sequence"/>
        </id>
        <set name="children">
            <key column="parent_id"/>
            <one-to-many class="Child"/>
        </set>
    </class>

    <class name="Child">
        <id name="id">
            <generator class="sequence"/>
        </id>
        <property name="name"/>
    </class>

</hibernate-mapping>
This maps to the following table definitions:
create table parent ( id bigint not null primary key )
create table child ( id bigint not null primary key, name varchar(255), parent_id bigint )
alter table child add constraint childfk0 (parent_id) references parent
If the parent is required, use a bidirectional one-to-many association:
<hibernate-mapping>

    <class name="Parent">
        <id name="id">
            <generator class="sequence"/>
        </id>
        <set name="children" inverse="true">
            <key column="parent_id"/>
            <one-to-many class="Child"/>
        </set>
    </class>

    <class name="Child">
        <id name="id">
            <generator class="sequence"/>
        </id>
        <property name="name"/>
        <many-to-one name="parent" class="Parent" column="parent_id" not-null="true"/>
    </class>

</hibernate-mapping>
Notice the NOT NULL constraint:
create table parent ( id bigint not null primary key )
create table child ( id bigint not null
                     primary key,
                     name varchar(255),
                     parent_id bigint not null )
alter table child add constraint childfk0 (parent_id) references parent
Alternatively, if you absolutely insist that this association should be unidirectional, you can declare the NOT NULL constraint on the <key> mapping:
<hibernate-mapping>

    <class name="Parent">
        <id name="id">
            <generator class="sequence"/>
        </id>
        <set name="children">
            <key column="parent_id" not-null="true"/>
            <one-to-many class="Child"/>
        </set>
    </class>

    <class name="Child">
        <id name="id">
            <generator class="sequence"/>
        </id>
        <property name="name"/>
    </class>

</hibernate-mapping>
On the other hand, if a child might have multiple parents, a many-to-many association is appropriate:
<hibernate-mapping>

    <class name="Parent">
        <id name="id">
            <generator class="sequence"/>
        </id>
        <set name="children" table="childset">
            <key column="parent_id"/>
            <many-to-many class="Child" column="child_id"/>
        </set>
    </class>

    <class name="Child">
        <id name="id">
            <generator class="sequence"/>
        </id>
        <property name="name"/>
    </class>

</hibernate-mapping>
Table definitions:
create table parent ( id bigint not null primary key )
create table child ( id bigint not null primary key, name varchar(255) )
create table childset ( parent_id bigint not null,
                        child_id bigint not null,
                        primary key ( parent_id, child_id ) )
alter table childset add constraint childsetfk0 (parent_id) references parent
alter table childset add constraint childsetfk1 (child_id) references child
For more examples and a complete walk-through a parent/child relationship mapping, see Chapter 21, Example: Parent/Child.
Even more exotic association mappings are possible, we will catalog all possibilities in the next chapter.