January 28, 2023


Unlimited Technology

gRPC Remote Procedure Call (with Protobuf) – Grape Up

gRPC Remote Procedure Call (with Protobuf) – Grape Up

A person of the most crucial technological choices during building API is to decide on the right protocol for interchanging knowledge. It is not an uncomplicated undertaking. You have to answer at the very least a couple significant queries – which will integrate with API, if you have any network restrictions, what is the volume and frequency of calls, and will the level of your organization’s technological maturity enable you to maintain this in the upcoming?

When you assemble all the facts, you can assess various technologies to opt for one particular that suits you most effective. You can choose and pick involving nicely-acknowledged Soap, Rest, or GraphQL. But in this report, we would like to introduce fairly a new player in the microservices globe – gRPC Distant Course of action Connect with.

What is gRPC (Distant Procedure Contact)?

gRPC is a cross-platform open up-supply Remote Course of action Call (RPC) framework originally designed by Google. The platform utilizes Protocol Buffers as a data serialization protocol, as the binary structure needs much less means and messages are more compact. Also, a deal among the shopper and server is outlined in proto format, so code can be routinely produced. The framework depends on HTTP/2 (supports TLS) and past general performance, interoperability, and code generation gives streaming capabilities and channels.

Declaring techniques in agreement

Have you examine our report about serializing data with Protocol Buffers? We are going to include some more definitions there:

concept SearchRequest 
  string vin = 1
  google.protobuf.Timestamp from = 2
  google.protobuf.Timestamp to = 3

message SearchResponse 
  recurring Geolocation geolocations = 1

company GeolocationServer 
  rpc Insert(Geolocation) returns (google.protobuf.Empty)
  rpc Search(SearchRequest) returns (SearchResponse)

The construction of the file is really uncomplicated – but there are a few issues really worth noticing:

  • assistance GeolocationServer – provider is declared by key word with that name
  • rpc Insert(Geolocation) – techniques are outlined by rpc search phrase, its title, and ask for parameter type
  • returns (google.protobuf.Empty) – and at the conclusion finally a return variety. As you can see you have to generally return any worth, in this scenario, is a wrapper for an empty structure
  • message SearchResponse repeated Geolocation geolocations = 1 – if you want to return a record of objects, you have to mark them as recurring and supply a title for the subject

Establish configuration

We can combine functions of Spring Boot and simplify the set up of gRPC server by making use of the dedicated library GitHub – yidongnan/grpc-spring-boot-starter: Spring Boot starter module for gRPC framework. (abide by the set up guidebook there).

It enable us use all the goodness of the Spring framework (these types of as Dependency Injection or Annotations).

Now you are prepared to crank out Java code! ./gradlew generateProto

Server implementation

To carry out the server for our strategies definition, initially of all, we have to increase the good abstract course, which had been created in the previous step:

community course GeolocationServer extends GeolocationServerGrpc.GeolocationServerImplBase

As the subsequent stage insert the @GrpcService annotation at the course degree to sign-up gRPC server and override server procedures:

public void insert(Geolocation request, StreamObserver responseObserver) 
    GeolocationEvent geolocationEvent = convertToGeolocationEvent(ask for)
    geolocationRepository.help save(geolocationEvent)


general public void look for(SearchRequest ask for, StreamObserver responseObserver) 
    Checklist geolocationEvents = geolocationRepository.searchByVinAndOccurredOnFromTo(
        convertTimestampToInstant(ask for.getFrom()),

    Listing geolocations = geolocationEvents.stream().map(this::convertToGeolocation).toList()


  • StreamObserver<> responseObserver – stream of messages to ship
  • responseObserver.onNext() – writes responses to the customer. Unary phone calls ought to invoke onNext at most as soon as
  • responseObserver.onCompleted() – gets a notification of successful stream completion

We have to transform inner gRPC objects to our domain entities:

personal GeolocationEvent convertToGeolocationEvent(Geolocation request) 
    Fast occurredOn = convertTimestampToInstant(request.getOccurredOn())
    return new GeolocationEvent(
        ask for.getVin(),
        ask for.getSpeed().getValue(),
        new Coordinates(ask for.getCoordinates().getLatitude(), request.getCoordinates().getLongitude())

non-public Instant convertTimestampToInstant(Timestamp timestamp) 
    return Prompt.ofEpochSecond(timestamp.getSeconds(), timestamp.getNanos())

Error managing

Neither shopper constantly sends us a legitimate concept nor our system is resilient more than enough to manage all faults, so we have to supply means to deal with exceptions.

If an mistake occurs, gRPC returns one particular of its mistake status codes instead, with an optional description.

We can cope with it with relieve in a Spring’s way, working with annotations previously offered in the library:

general public class GrpcExceptionAdvice 

    general public Position handleInvalidArgument(IllegalArgumentException e) 
        return Standing.INVALID_ARGUMENT.withDescription(e.getMessage()).withCause(e)

  • @GrpcAdvice – marks the course as a container for unique exception handlers
  • @GrpcExceptionHandler – process to be invoked when an exception specified as an argument is thrown

Now we ensured that our error messages are apparent and meaningful for consumers.

gRPC – is that the proper choice for you?

As demonstrated in this post, gRPC integrates effectively with Spring Boot, so if you’re acquainted with it, the mastering curve is smooth.

gRPC is a deserving option to take into account when you’re doing the job with lower latency, hugely scalable, dispersed systems. It provides an accurate, successful, and language-unbiased protocol.

Examine out the official documentation for extra awareness! gRPC