Feature Request: Update After @auth Validation

@aman-bansal - I know you guys have been busy with v21.12, but I just want to make sure it is still being worked on, and there are some new things I realized you need to consider:

  • The update-after-auth directive needs to validate the complete data set of data from what the database WOULD look like after the update – it should not just validate the incoming data like add does.
    a. That means it should be a compilation of the current data merged with the update data.
    b. This also means the field-level auth capability and input validation will not work in certain situations, which means we need to rethink that as well.
  • This also means it could be a hell of a lot more complicated if it were to work how an update-after directive should work.

I can give two major examples of what this will solve:

  1. I should not be able to change the user who owns a posts (as there is no way to stop that in an update)
    • I can own the post, but I shouldn’t be able to change the owner to someone else
  2. I should not be able to change the role of a user
    • I can own my User node, but I shouldn’t be able to change my own role to Admin
    • Right now, it is possible to do role based authorization by creating an intermediary root node - see here for an example, so this is important

What it does NOT solve

  • Input Validation
  • Field Restriction

I still need input validation as a separate feature, but more importantly I need field restriction. Let’s say I want to prevent the user from updating the timestamp, because this will be done automatically by DGraph…

Example 1:

{ not: { has: updatedAt } }

This will not work as expected. If updatedAt already exists in the database, this rule will fail even if updatedAt is not in the input.

Example 2:

If I have a schema:

type Post {
  name: String!
  likes: [User]

My @auth directive can stop unauthorized users from updating my Post, and update-after-auth will prevent me from assigning the post to some random user, but what if I want any user to be able to like the post? There is no way to ONLY allow likes to be able to be updated, even with update-after-auth as it should work. This is VERY COMMON need, which renders the mutations pointless.

Possible Solutions


As we can see @auth and Input Validation can overlap, but they’re really two separate features.

  1. Field Authorization (depends on user / role / group)
    a. By Field Value – we already have this with add and update rules, just not update-after rule — solves the owner and role problem, just based on the final database record
    b. By Field Name – this is really field restriction. We will be able to stop certain values from being added, but not certain fields from being edited at all.
  2. Field Validation (same for everyone)
    a. By Field Value - Regex, Min, Max
    b. By Field Name – hasOnly, hasAll, @disable directive, query for everyone, perhaps similar to firebase rules


We really need three different features in this order of importance:

  1. Update After Rule
  2. Field Level Auth Rule (for Field Restriction) — add, update, update-after, delete, query
  3. Field Validation — This is more or a data integrity issue than a security issue, so NOT as important as #1 and #2

That being said, if we base the update-after rule on the input values, and not the completed data set, it sort of solved all 3 problems… but is that how it should work?

Either way, in order for us users to avoid extraneous lambda maintenance, and make the current state of DGraph GraphQL usable for a real app, we definitely need #1 (update-after-rule) and #2 (field-level-auth), hands down. Field Validation should be added one-day when the major missing features are in DGraph Cloud.

Please let me know your thoughts and current status of this…

Thank you!