Last updated March 14, 2012. Created on June 16, 2010.
Edited by eiriksm, figaro, Countzero. Log in to edit this page.

This page shows how to create new facets for the SOLR Multisite search module.

This issue lists the steps I went through and are more like notes to self than real documentation.

Standard text facets

You first need to patch the module as described in the issue. I could post a patch, but pasting the code yourself guarantees you'll be able to apply the correction if the module evolves.

It basically renders the apachesolr_multisitesearch_enabled_facets_form function hookable.

You can then implement this in your module :

function yourmodule_apachesolr_multisitesearch_facets($rebuild = FALSE) {
  $facets = array();
  $facets['yourfacetfield'] = array(
    'info' => t('yourmodule search: Filter by human_readable_name_of_your_field'),
    'facet_field' => 'yourfacetfield',
  return $facets;

To enable a block for your facet, you have to implement hook_block :

function yourmodule_block($op = 'list', $delta = 0, $edit = array()) {
  switch ($op) {
    case 'list':
      // This code is copied from the original apachesolr_multisitesearch module
      $enabled_facets = apachesolr_multisitesearch_enabled_facets('yourmodule');
      // This line must be modified to take advantage of the new hook
      $facets = yourmodule_apachesolr_multisitesearch_facets();
      // Add the blocks
      $blocks = array();
      foreach ($enabled_facets as $delta => $facet_field) {
        if (isset($facets[$delta])) {
          $blocks[$delta] = $facets[$delta] + array('cache' => BLOCK_CACHE_PER_PAGE,);
      return $blocks;
    case 'view' :
      if (apachesolr_multisitesearch_has_searched()) {
        // Get the query and response. Without these no blocks make sense.
        $response = apachesolr_static_response_cache();
        if (empty($response)) {
        $query = apachesolr_current_query();

        // Here is the place where you inform Drupal about your blocks
        switch ($delta) {
          case 'yourfacetfield' :
            return apachesolr_facet_block($response, $query, 'yourmodule', $delta, $delta, t('Filter by human_readable_name_of_your_field'));

Your facet should then be visible on the page admin/settings/apachesolr/multisite-filters.

Once you’ve enabled it, you should see a corresponding block on admin/build/block/list.

You can customize the block a bit if you like, and then assign it to a region.

You don’t have to worry about visibility settings as the various Drupal SOLR modules take care of this for you.

For a standard text facet, that’s all there is to it.

Numeric values based facets

If you need to build a facet based on a numeric field and want some understandable (mean : string) output, you have to code a callback function. Otherwise, numeric values will be shown which seldomly make sense for the user.

In the code for hook_block above :

case 'yourfacetfield' :
                        return apachesolr_facet_block($response, $query, 'yourmodule', $delta, $delta, t('Filter by human_readable_name_of_your_field'));

You must add a call to your callback function :

case 'yourfacetfield' :
                        return apachesolr_facet_block($response, $query, 'yourmodule', $delta, $delta, t('Filter by human_readable_name_of_your_field'), 'yourmodule_yourfacetfield');

You can name the function whatever you want, but a bit of namespacing never hurts.

You then have to code your callback function:

function yourmodule_yourfacetfield($facet) {
    if (! $facet) {
        return "No value";  
   // Fetch whatever text value matching the numeric id passed by the facet
   // Here, as often, we just query the node database table
   // but you can code any way to match your ids to string values
   $sql = 'SELECT title FROM {node} WHERE nid = %d';
   return db_result(db_query($sql, $facet));

Other considerations

  • Beware if you personalized some fields in schema.xml. Some parsers render custom string fields unusable for faceting. With the standard type ‘string’, no problem.
  • It’s a bit out of this page's scope, but anytime you change something in schema.xml, you have to restart the SOLR service, or the container running it (i.e /etc/init.d/tomcat restart or something like that) otherwise your changes are not validated.
  • You can test your environment directly from the SOLR interface:*,score&sort=field_to_sor... desc&facet=true&facet.field=yourfacetfield. It can really be useful to test this way before spending hours wondering what's wrong with your code.

I used it to enable more than 10 facets on one of my sites. Feel free to comment.

Looking for support? Visit the forums, or join #drupal-support in IRC.