Working with Deprecated Custom Transformers

Liz Sanderson
Liz Sanderson
  • Updated

What are deprecated custom transformers?

Deprecated transformers are custom transformers that are no longer visible or accessible in FME Desktop. This "visibility" is set by the 'Deprecated' parameter, available under the Transformer Parameters in the Navigator Pane when editing any custom transformer.

!! Note for users of FME 2017.1 and Newer !! The most recent "non-deprecated" version of a custom transformer will be visible in FME Workbench. For example, imagine I create Version 1 of a custom transformer in FME 2016.0, and later created and deprecated Version 2 in FME 2018.0 - the custom transformer (Version 1) will be visible in FME 2017.1, but not in FME 2018.0 (nor FME 2017.0 or Older).

The Safe Software Tech Experts Team, often with consultation from the Development Team, will identify and review custom transformers that should be deprecated. Please note that we will only deprecate custom transformers that are published to FME Hub by Safe Software, and not transformers created by the FME Community.

We deprecate transformers (1) when their functionality has been replicated in another transformer included in FME Desktop, (2) if the functionality of the transformer has any deprecated dependencies, or (3) if the logic is outdated or difficult to support and requires various workarounds to achieve the desired functionality.


How do I access deprecated custom transformers?

Deprecated transformers can still be downloaded through the FME Hub website; they are not available in the Transformer Gallery of FME Workbench.

To search for deprecated transformers on FME Hub, make sure to enable the "Deprecated Items" checkbox located below the list of categories.



How do I enable deprecated custom transformers?

Even if you download a deprecated transformer, it is still flagged as deprecated - so how can we change this and allow us to see it in the "Quick Type Search" of FME Workbench or the Transformer Gallery? It requires manually editing the transformer.

Let's work with a real example! The GoogleGeocoder.

Step 1) Download the GoogleGeocoder, or any other deprecated transformer to work through this example.

On the FME Hub page for the GoogleGeocoder, note that Version 5 was created with FME 2017.0 Build 17228. This indicates the build of FME when the transformer was deprecated.

Navigate to the History tab, here we can find valuable information about why the transformer was deprecated. In this example, we find that the GoogleGeocoder has been replaced by a new transformer for FME 2017.0, the Geocoder! It's always great when a custom transformer is promoted to our base product (often with more features).


Step 2) Open the transformer with FME Workbench. You may be prompted to either "Create New Version" or "Edit Existing Version" - it is best practice to always create a new version.


IMPORTANT NOTE: Editing a custom transformer locally by modifying an existing version or creating a new version will only affect your local installations of FME. It is also recommended to only use deprecated transformers as 'Embedded' and not 'Linked'. (Linked transformers will try to communicate with FME Hub and download the latest version - there is a chance for conflict here!)

Step 3) In the Navigator Pane, select the Transformer Properties > Deprecated parameter and change the value to 'No'.


Note: You can also set the Transformer Insert Mode to 'Embedded by Default' if not already selected. This will avoid the potential conflict as indicated above in Step 2.

Step 4) Save the edits to this transformer and close all instances of FME Workbench. You must place this transformer in the following directory in order for FME Workbench to register it.

Windows: C:\Users\<user_name>\Documents\FME\Transformers
macOS: ~/Library/Application Support/FME/Transformers

Note: Transformers located here should take precedence over anything downloaded from FME Hub in FME Workbench. If you have conflicting versions, they will be noted in the Translation Log window when you open FME Workbench.


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