Expressions and Predicates can then be used to create the various Enterprise Integration Patterns in the DSL like with the Content Based Router EIP.

To support dynamic rules Camel supports pluggable Predicate strategies using a variety of different Languages.

Predicate API

The API for a Camel Predicate is defined in the org.apache.camel.Predicate interface as shown:

public interface Predicate {

     * Evaluates the predicate on the message exchange and returns true if this
     * exchange matches the predicate
     * @param exchange the message exchange
     * @return true if the predicate matches
    boolean matches(Exchange exchange);


A Predicate is being evaluated to a boolean value so the result is either true or false. This makes predicates so powerful as it is often used to control the routing of message in which path they should be routed.

A simple example is to route an Exchange based on a header value with the Content Based Router EIP:


In the route above the Predicate is the header("type").isEqualTo("widget") as it is constructed as an Expression that is evaluated as a Predicate. To do this the various Builder classes help us here to create a nice and fluent syntax. isEqualTo is a builder method that returns a Predicate based on the input.

Sometimes the fluent builders can get long, and a bit complex to read, then you can just define your predicate outside the route and then just refer to the predicate in the route:

Predicate isWidget = header("type").isEqualTo("widget");

And then you can refer to it in the route as:


Negating a Predicate

You can use the not method on the PredicateBuilder to negate a predicate.

First, we import the static method not, so it makes our route nice and easy to read:

import static org.apache.camel.builder.PredicateBuilder.not;

And then we can use it to enclose an existing predicate and negate it as the example shows:


Compound Predicates

You can also create compound predicates using boolean operators such as and, or, not and many others.

Currently, this feature is only available in the Java-based DSLs, and not in other DSLs such as XML.

Using the PredicateBuilder class, you can combine predicates from different Expression Languages based on logical operators and comparison operators:

  • not, and, or

  • isNull, isNotNull

  • isEqualTo, isGreaterThan, isLessThan

  • startsWith, endsWith

  • in ("any of X predicates stands true")

Additionally, with PredicateBuilder you can create regular expressions and use them as predicates, applying them to the result of an expression, e.g.

PredicateBuilder.regex(header("foo"), "\d\{4}");

applies the regular expression to the foo header.

Combining different Expression Languages is also possible, e.g.:

PredicateBuilder.and(XPathBuilder.xpath("/bookings/flights"), simple("${ = 'Spain'}"))

The sample below demonstrates further use cases:

// We define 3 predicates based on some user roles
// we have static imported and/or from org.apache.camel.builder.PredicateBuilder

// First we have a regular user that is just identified having a username header
Predicate user = header("username").isNotNull();

// The admin user must be a user AND have a admin header as true
Predicate admin = and(user, header("admin").isEqualTo("true"));

// And God must be an admin and (either have type god or a special message containing Camel Rider)
Predicate god = and(admin, or(body().contains("Camel Rider"), header("type").isEqualTo("god")));

// As you can see with the predicates above we can stack them to build compound predicates

// In our route below we can create a nice content based router based on the predicates we
// have defined. Then the route is easy to read and understand.
// We encourage you to define complex predicates outside the fluent router builder as
// it will just get a bit complex for humans to read