Simplest Drupal iPhone App

Feb 7, 2009

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Maybe not the most simple, but pretty close. This app posts a node to Drupal Services using XML-RPC. We thought it would be useful for anyone interested in building an iPhone app that interacts with Drupal and wanted a basic starting point. It provides two text fields and a submit button. Enter some text and press submit and the fields get posted to the Drupal site (the URL is hardcoded into the app, not very useful).

On the Drupal end, you will need the Services, the XML-RPC server, and the Node Service modules enabled (these are all bundled with Services). In addition you will have to disable keys and sessid in Services (Site Building > Services > Settings). Also you have to allow anonymous access to services, and allow anonymous creation of story nodes (both in User management > Permissions). So you really do not want to do this on any kind of production site.

The iPhone calls the node.save method by posting the following XML:

<methodName>node.save</methodName>
<params>
<param><value><struct>
<member><name>type</name><value><string>story</string></value></member>
<member><name>title</name><value><string>title text</string></value></member>
<member><name>body</name><value><string>body text</string></value></member>
</struct></value></param>
</params></methodCall>

The iPhone app provides two ways to accomplish this. The first (commented out in the code) creates a HTTP POST request with the XML above as the body. This is not very useful since you have to provide the raw XML, but it shows how to execute an HTTP POST which is useful for many other things. The second uses XML-RPC functionality borrowed from the open-source wordpress app (which itself is a version of the Cocoa XML-RPC Framework ). This makes it much easier to formulate and execute XML-RPC calls, and the whole thing boils down to this:


XMLRPCRequest *request = [[XMLRPCRequest alloc] initWithHost:[NSURL URLWithString: @"http://192.168.1.14/drupal-6.6/services/xmlrpc"]];
NSMutableDictionary *postParams = [NSMutableDictionary dictionary];
[postParams setObject:@"story" forKey:@"type"];
[postParams setObject:titleString forKey:@"title"]; // title input from iphone
[postParams setObject:bodyString forKey:@"body"]; // body input from iphone
[request setMethod:@"node.save" withObject:postParams];
XMLRPCResponse *nodeSaveResponse = [XMLRPCConnection sendSynchronousXMLRPCRequest:request];

The full app below. Developed with iPhone SDK 2.2.

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simpleNodeTitleBody-XMLRPC.zip899.47 KB
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