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Data Migrations (OrchardCore.Data.Migration.DataMigration)

Data Migration classes can be used to alter the content type definitions (like by adding new types, or configuring their parts and fields), initializing recipes or creating indices.

There should be one Migrations file per module inheriting from DataMigration. However, if a module has more than one feature and multiple migrations per feature, each migration should be decorated with the Feature attribute i.e. [Feature("OrchardCore.ContentFields.Indexing.SQL")]

Initial migration method should be named public int Create or public Task<int> CreateAsync and it should return a number (like return 1). Any subsequent migration should follow the convention public int UpdateFromX or public Task<int> UpdateFromXAsync, where X is the number returned from the last migration method. Migrations are strictly chained: eg. UpdateFrom4 will only be executed if the last executed migration returned the number 4. You should not revise these numbers after the fact because it could break migrations for other people.

Migrations are executed automatically on application start.

The following example showcases three different data migrations (recipe migration, creating a map index, creating content type and updating content type).

using System.Threading.Tasks;
using Members.Indexes;
using OrchardCore.ContentManagement.Metadata;
using OrchardCore.ContentManagement.Metadata.Settings;
using OrchardCore.Data.Migration;
using OrchardCore.Recipes.Services;
using YesSql.Sql;

namespace Members
    public class Migrations : DataMigration
        private readonly IRecipeMigrator _recipeMigrator;
        private readonly IContentDefinitionManager _contentDefinitionManager;

        public Migrations(IRecipeMigrator recipeMigrator, IContentDefinitionManager contentDefinitionManager)
            _recipeMigrator = recipeMigrator;
            _contentDefinitionManager = contentDefinitionManager;

        public async Task<int> CreateAsync()
            await _recipeMigrator.ExecuteAsync("init.recipe.json", this);

            return 1;

        public int UpdateFrom1()
            SchemaBuilder.CreateMapIndexTable<MemberIndex>(table =>
                // Make sure to set column length, otherwise migration will not work for all databases
                table.Column<string>(nameof(MemberIndex.SocialSecurityNumber), column => column.WithLength(11))
                .Column<string>(nameof(MemberIndex.Name), column => column.WithLength(26))
                .Column<string>(nameof(MemberIndex.Surname), column => column.WithLength(26))

            // This will create index on the sql table itself, 
            // which will make fetches by 'SocialSecurityNumber' column faster
            SchemaBuilder.AlterIndexTable<MemberIndex>(table => table
            return 2;

        public int UpdateFrom2()
            _contentDefinitionManager.AlterTypeDefinition("Product", type => type
                // Content items of this type can have drafts
                // Content items versions of this type are versionable
                // This content type appears in the New menu section
                // Permissions can be applied specifically to instances of this type
            return 3;

        public int UpdateFrom3()
            _contentDefinitionManager.AlterTypeDefinition("Product", type => type
            return 4;


Additional information

Please refer to separate sections for more details on data migrations:

Last update: July 6, 2021
Authors: brunoAltinet