There are scenarios when outside of a view we need to fetch results of any particular view. This is a very specific case when we just want the records compiled by Drupal Views. In that case obviously views api or views hooks are of no use, as we are not looking for event driven activities. It’s just the results needs to be fetched using views because of the complexity of the criterion on which these results are computed.
We won’t go for this approach when we want simple results like all the nodes of a specific content type sorted alphabetically. In that case, simply db_select would be better choice again depending on various project specific factors. In general, we can’t actually tag any approach as the best or optimal for general purpose as these are scenario specifics.
In our case, the scenario is we have a very complex view having good amount of filters or simply i would say the corresponding sql query is complex. Now in that case outside of the view we have two options to get results:
- Function views_get_view_result()
- Executing corresponding SQL Query
Approach 1: Function views_get_view_result():
This looks promising, provided by views module. Accepts views name and display_id as parameter and simply fetches you the result. What we wanted is accomplished.
Limitation: In case of pagination, probably we want to get all the results and this approach fails there. We cannot fetch all the results if the corresponding view limits results to specific number per page. So, what should we do next!
Let’s look at our second approach, would that be useful in our case?
Approach 2: Executing corresponding SQL Query:
We can directly execute static sql query, which is a good solution for this scenario. But when we want to enjoy further flexibilities of this approach, say we want to change the query a bit then what? It is possible with this approach but the method is not recommendable. Infact best way to proceed further using this approach is to convert static query into dynamic drupal query which is a tedious process. So, how to achieve this?
Looking at how the views work, we got a very promising structured way of solving all our related problems. Views provide several methods for views object which can be used to get all the results with/without customization of a particular view. Let’s see how:
So, we finally have all the results of a view. As far as the above implementation is concerned, we basically are fetching a view, then building a specific display of that view and after customization we are finally executing it to get the results. In simple language, we are creating a similar temporary instance to get the desired results.
Hope this helps you