You can use the experimental labs feature, Project Import, to import files from other LookML projects and external repositories into your current project. This lets you use model files, view files, and other files in more than one project.
There are several use cases for this. A few examples:
Building on top of an installed Looker Block without having to make direct changes to it. If Looker makes changes to the Block, you can easily pull the changes in because all of the LookML you’ve added to it is kept in a separate repository.
Maintaining a base project that is autogenerated based on the database schema. You can put all your custom dimensions, measures, and so on, in a separate project that imports all the LookML from the autogenerated project. You can regularly regenerate the base project as the database schema changes without overwriting all your custom LookML.
Encapsulating shared objects in a single project and then importing them into multiple other projects. For example, if you’ve got a table that is common to multiple databases, you could put the view for it in one project and maintain it in that one place. Then have multiple other projects make use of it by importing the table into those projects.
To import files from another project, perform the following tasks:
- Create a project manifest file.
- Specify the projects from which you want to import.
- Include files from an imported project.
Create a Project Manifest File
All projects that import files from other projects must have a project manifest file. A project that does not reference any files outside of itself does not need a project manifest file.
To create a manifest file:
- Ensure Development Mode is set to ON.
- In the IDE, click the + icon next to Add Files.
- Select Create Project Manifest.
This will add a Project section to the sidebar and a new file called
manifest.lkml. This file details which other projects are known and usable by the current project:
Specify the Projects from which You Want to Import
To import projects, specify them in the manifest. There are two methods of doing so: locally and remotely.
Specifying Local Projects
In a local import, the imported project must be present on the same Looker instance. Versioning is dynamic, meaning that changes in the imported project will immediately impact the project that imports it. This is a good option when the same team owns both projects and can validate changes in both places before pushing to production.
To import locally, use the
project_name parameter to specify the current project. Use one or more
local_dependency parameters to specify the project or projects to import:
Specifying Remote Projects
In a remote import, the imported project does not need to be on the same instance. Rather, the project is imported through its remote Git repository. Versioning is static; changes in the imported project will not automatically reflect in the project that imports it. The desired version of the imported project is explicitly indicated. This is a good option for using Looker Blocks.
Remote imports work only with public repositories.
To import a remote repository, use the
remote_dependency parameter to specify the URL of the Git repository and the commit SHA representing the version of the repository you want:
To get the URL for a public repository, copy its HTTPS URL and replace
You can find commit SHAs anywhere you can browse the commit history. Git service providers usually makes the SHA clearly visible and copyable.
The name (in this example above,
ga_360_block) can be anything you like. It will be used when you include its files in the following step.
Include Files from an Imported Project
include parameter in model files specifies the dashboards, documentation, and view files that will be available to that model. To use
include to reference a file in another project, preface the filename with the other project name. For example:
You can use wildcards to include multiple files. For example, to include all view files in the
Although this syntax looks like a pathname, it doesn’t imply that files for the project are laid out in any particular way. You cannot use
..to specify relative paths as these are not paths — this is just how files are named in an include statement.
Including Model Files
You cannot directly include a model file. Models for a project can only come from that project.
If you want to reuse or extend explores across projects, in the imported project you could put your explores in a dedicated file that does not end with
.model.lkml, such as
.explore.lkml. Then include that file as described above.
Including Files That Also Include Files
When including a file that includes other files, all the includes are resolved before being passed on to the next project that includes it.
For example, if in your current project, you import a file
A from another project
proj_A and the imported file contains an
include parameter that includes file
B from project
proj_B, then file
B will be included into file
A before file
A is imported into the current project.