zomnombom zomnombom - 3 months ago 29
Android Question

Google firebase check if child exists

I am trying to create an app on android. I need to check if a given element of my database on firebase has a child with a given name. I hoped it could be done by using something along the lines of:

DatabaseReference rootRef = FirebaseDatabase.getInstance().getReference();

if (rootRef.childExists("name")) {
//run some code

I searched but I didn't find anything useful. Thanks for any help in advance.


A database reference is effectively the URL for that data. You want to actually get data to see whether a child exists. This is why the method you seem to be looking for is on DataSnapshot.

DatabaseReference rootRef = FirebaseDatabase.getInstance().getReference();
rootRef.addListenerForSingleValueEvent(new ValueEventListener() {
  void onDataChange(DataSnapshot snapshot) {
    if (snapshot.hasChild("name")) {
      // run some code

Now, this design pattern feels a bit strange. You're reading the whole database just to see whether "name" exists. You can make this a bit more efficient by listening to rootRef.child("name") and then just checking whether snapshot.exists().

If you're trying to do validation here, and not control flow, you should consider putting this code in your rules.json.

edit: I originally used the wrong function name (childExists instead of hasChild)