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Route Configuration
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Route Configuration

One of the foundational concepts in Remix's routing system is the use of nested routes, an approach that traces its roots back to Ember.js. With nested routes, segments of the URL are coupled to both data dependencies and the UI's component hierarchy. A URL like /sales/invoices/102000 not only reveals a clear path in the application but also delineates the relationships and dependencies for different components.

Modular Design

Nested routes provide clarity by segmenting URLs into multiple parts. Each segment directly correlates with a particular data requirement and component. For instance, in the URL /sales/invoices/102000, each segment - sales, invoices, and 102000 - can be associated with specific data points and UI sections, making it intuitive to manage in the codebase.

A feature of nested routing is the ability for several routes in the nested route tree to match a single URL. This granularity ensures that each route is primarily focused on its specific URL segment and related slice of UI. This approach champions the principles of modularity and separation of concerns, ensuring each route remains focused on its core responsibilities.

Parallel Loading

In some web applications, the sequential loading of data and assets can sometimes lead to an artificially slow user experience. Even when data dependencies aren't interdependent, they may be loaded sequentially because they are coupled to rendering hierarchy, creating an undesirable chain of requests.

Remix leverages its nested routing system to optimize load times. When a URL matches multiple routes, Remix will load the required data and assets for all matching routes in parallel. By doing this, Remix effectively sidesteps the conventional pitfall of chained request sequences.

This strategy, combined with modern browsers' capability to handle multiple concurrent requests efficiently, positions Remix as a front-runner in delivering highly responsive and swift web applications. It's not just about making your data fetching fast; it's about fetching it in an organized way to provide the best possible experience for the end user.

Conventional Route Configuration

Remix introduces a key convention to help streamline the routing process: the app/routes folder. When a developer introduces a file within this folder, Remix inherently understands it as a route. This convention simplifies the process of defining routes, associating them with URLs, and rendering the associated components.

Here's a sample directory that uses the routes folder convention:

app/
ā”œā”€ā”€ routes/
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ _index.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ about.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ concerts._index.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ concerts.$city.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ concerts.trending.tsx
ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ concerts.tsx
ā””ā”€ā”€ root.tsx

All the routes that start with app/routes/concerts. will be child routes of app/routes/concerts.tsx.

URL Matched Route Layout
/ app/routes/_index.tsx app/root.tsx
/about app/routes/about.tsx app/root.tsx
/concerts app/routes/concerts._index.tsx app/routes/concerts.tsx
/concerts/trending app/routes/concerts.trending.tsx app/routes/concerts.tsx
/concerts/salt-lake-city app/routes/concerts.$city.tsx app/routes/concerts.tsx

Conventional Route Folders

For routes that require additional modules or assets, a folder inside of app/routes with a route.tsx file can be used. This method:

  • Co-locates Modules: It gathers all elements connected to a particular route, ensuring logic, styles, and components are closely knit.
  • Simplifies Imports: With related modules in one place, managing imports becomes straightforward, enhancing code maintainability.
  • Facilitates Automatic Code Organization: Using the route.tsx setup inherently promotes a well-organized codebase, beneficial as the application scales.

The same routes from above could instead be organized like this:

app/
ā”œā”€ā”€ routes/
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ _index/
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ signup-form.tsx
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ about/
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ header.tsx
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ concerts/
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ favorites-cookie.ts
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ concerts.$city/
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ concerts._index/
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ featured.tsx
ā”‚   ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ concerts.trending/
ā”‚       ā”œā”€ā”€ card.tsx
ā”‚       ā”œā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā”‚       ā””ā”€ā”€ sponsored.tsx
ā””ā”€ā”€ root.tsx

You can read more about the specific patterns in the file names and other features in the Route File Conventions reference.

Only the folders directly beneath app/routes will be registered as a route. Deeply nested folders are ignored. The file at app/routes/about/header/route.tsx will not create a route.

app/
ā”œā”€ā”€ routes/
ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ about/
ā”‚       ā”œā”€ā”€ header/
ā”‚       ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā”‚       ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā””ā”€ā”€ root.tsx

Manual Route Configuration

While the app/routes folder offers a convenient convention for developers, Remix appreciates that one size doesn't fit all. There are times when the provided convention might not align with specific project requirements or a developer's preferences. In such cases, Remix allows for manual route configuration via remix.config.js. This flexibility ensures developers can structure their application in a way that makes sense for their project.

A common way to structure an app is by top-level features folders. Consider that routes related to a particular theme, like concerts, likely share several modules. Organizing them under a single folder makes sense:

app/
ā”œā”€ā”€ about/
ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā”œā”€ā”€ concerts/
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ card.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ city.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ favorites-cookie.ts
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ home.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ layout.tsx
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ sponsored.tsx
ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ trending.tsx
ā”œā”€ā”€ home/
ā”‚   ā”œā”€ā”€ header.tsx
ā”‚   ā””ā”€ā”€ route.tsx
ā””ā”€ā”€ root.tsx

To configure this structure into the same URLs as the previous examples, you can use the routes function in remix.config.js:

/** @type {import('@remix-run/dev').AppConfig} */
export default {
  routes(defineRoutes) {
    return defineRoutes((route) => {
      route("/", "home/route.tsx", { index: true });
      route("about", "about/route.tsx");
      route("concerts", "concerts/layout.tsx", () => {
        route("/", "concerts/home.tsx", { index: true });
        route("trending", "concerts/trending.tsx");
        route(":city", "concerts/city.tsx");
      });
    });
  },
};

Remix's route configuration approach blends convention with flexibility. You can use the app/routes folder for an easy, organized way to set up your routes. If you want more control, dislike the file names, or have unique needs, there's remix.config.js. It is expected that many apps forgo the routes folder convention in favor of remix.config.js.

Docs and examples licensed under MIT