Flatpack Component

The Flatpack component supports fixed width and delimited file parsing via the FlatPack library.
Notice: This component only supports consuming from flatpack files to Object model. You can not (yet) write from Object model to flatpack format.

Maven users will need to add the following dependency to their pom.xml for this component:

    <!-- use the same version as your Camel core version -->

URI format


Or for a delimited file handler with no configuration file just use


You can append query options to the URI in the following format, ?option=value&option=value&...

URI Options

Name Default Value Description
delimiter , The default character delimiter for delimited files.
textQualifier " The text qualifier for delimited files.
ignoreFirstRecord true Whether the first line is ignored for delimited files (for the column headers).
splitRows true As of Camel 1.5, the component can either process each row one by one or the entire content at once.


  • flatpack:fixed:foo.pzmap.xml creates a fixed-width endpoint using the foo.pzmap.xml file configuration.
  • flatpack:delim:bar.pzmap.xml creates a delimited endpoint using the bar.pzmap.xml file configuration.
  • flatpack:foo creates a delimited endpoint called foo with no file configuration.

Message Headers

Camel will store the following headers on the IN message:

Header Description
camelFlatpackCounter The current row index. For splitRows=false the counter is the total number of rows.

Message Body

The component delivers the data in the IN message as a org.apache.camel.component.flatpack.DataSetList object that has converters for java.util.Map or java.util.List.
Usually you want the Map if you process one row at a time (splitRows=true). Use List for the entire content (splitRows=false), where each element in the list is a Map.
Each Map contains the key for the column name and its corresponding value.

For example to get the firstname from the sample below:

  Map row = exchange.getIn().getBody(Map.class);
  String firstName = row.get("FIRSTNAME");

However, you can also always get it as a List (even for splitRows=true). The same example:

  List data = exchange.getIn().getBody(List.class);
  Map row = (Map)data.get(0);
  String firstName = row.get("FIRSTNAME");

Header and Trailer records

In Camel 1.5 onwards the header and trailer notions in Flatpack are supported. However, you must use fixed record IDs:

  • header for the header record (must be lowercase)
  • trailer for the trailer record (must be lowercase)

The example below illustrates this fact that we have a header and a trailer. You can omit one or both of them if not needed.

    <RECORD id="header" startPosition="1" endPosition="3" indicator="HBT">
        <COLUMN name="INDICATOR" length="3"/>
        <COLUMN name="DATE" length="8"/>

    <COLUMN name="FIRSTNAME" length="35" />
    <COLUMN name="LASTNAME" length="35" />
    <COLUMN name="ADDRESS" length="100" />
    <COLUMN name="CITY" length="100" />
    <COLUMN name="STATE" length="2" />
    <COLUMN name="ZIP" length="5" />

    <RECORD id="trailer" startPosition="1" endPosition="3" indicator="FBT">
        <COLUMN name="INDICATOR" length="3"/>
        <COLUMN name="STATUS" length="7"/>

Using the endpoint

A common use case is sending a file to this endpoint for further processing in a separate route. For example:

  <camelContext xmlns="http://activemq.apache.org/camel/schema/spring">
      <from uri="file://someDirectory"/>
      <to uri="flatpack:foo"/>

      <from uri="flatpack:foo"/>

You can also convert the payload of each message created to a Map for easy Bean Integration

Flatpack DataFormat

The Flatpack component ships with the Flatpack data format that can be used to format between fixed width or delimited text messages to a List of rows as Map.

  • marshal = from List<Map<String, Object>> to OutputStream (can be converted to String)
  • unmarshal = from java.io.InputStream (such as a File or String) to a java.util.List as an org.apache.camel.component.flatpack.DataSetList instance.
    The result of the operation will contain all the data. If you need to process each row one by one you can split the exchange, using Splitter.

Notice: The Flatpack library does currently not support header and trailers for the marshal operation.


The data format has the following options:

Option Default Description
definition null The flatpack pzmap configuration file. Can be omitted in simpler situations, but its preferred to use the pzmap.
fixed false Delimited or fixed.
ignoreFirstRecord true Whether the first line is ignored for delimited files (for the column headers).
textQualifier " If the text is qualified with a char such as ".
delimiter , The delimiter char (could be ; , or similar)
parserFactory null Uses the default Flatpack parser factory.


To use the data format, simply instantiate an instance and invoke the marhsal or unmarshal operation in the route builder:

  FlatpackDataFormat fp = new FlatpackDataFormat();
  fp.setDefinition(new ClassPathResource("INVENTORY-Delimited.pzmap.xml"));

The sample above will read files from the order/in folder and unmarshal the input using the Flatpack configuration file INVENTORY-Delimited.pzmap.xml that configures the structure of the files. The result is a DataSetList object we store on the SEDA queue.

FlatpackDataFormat df = new FlatpackDataFormat();
df.setDefinition(new ClassPathResource("PEOPLE-FixedLength.pzmap.xml"));


In the code above we marshal the data from a Object representation as a List of rows as Maps. The rows as Map contains the column name as the key, and the the corresponding value. This structure can be created in Java code from e.g. a processor. We marshal the data according to the Flatpack format and convert the result as a String object and store it on a JMS queue.


To use Flatpack in your camel routes you need to add the a dependency on camel-flatpack which implements this data format.

If you use maven you could just add the following to your pom.xml, substituting the version number for the latest & greatest release (see the download page for the latest versions).


See Also

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