# Activator Quick Start

These instructions will get the Kgrid Activator running with sample set of Knowledge Objects.

# Overview

As a key component of Knowledge Grid, an activator allows knowledge objects to be executable against collected data.

For the information on the activator API and the usage of the activator, see KGRID Activator API

# Prerequisites

For running the application you need:

# Running the Activator

  1. Create a new directory, named whatever you like
  2. Create a directory named shelf in the working directory
  3. Download kgrid-activator-#.#.#.jar from the latest activator release
  4. Place the kgrid-activator-#.#.#.jar into your working directory
  5. Download js-simple-v1.0.zip from the latest release of the Example Collection
  6. Place the js-simple-v1.0.zip into the activator/shelf directory and unzip. This will make the KO ready to load by the activator.

Directory structure should look similar to the following

 ├──  YourProjectDirectory   
 │    ├──  kgrid-activator-#.#.#.jar
 │    └──  shelf
 │         └── js  
 │             └── simple  
 │                 └── v1.0
 │                     ├── src
 │                     │  └── index.js
 │                     ├── deployment.yaml
 │                     ├── metadata.json
 │                     └── service.yaml

The activator is an executable jar and can be run from the command line. Open a terminal window and navigate to the directory where the jar and shelf are located.

Type in the following to start the activator in dev mode:

 java -jar kgrid-activator-#.#.#.jar --spring.profiles.active=dev

By default, the activator will run on port 8080. You can validate the activator is up and running using the activator's health endpoint at http://localhost:8080/actuator/health. The health of the Activator should display a status of UP.

 "status": "UP",
 "components": {
  "activationService": {
   "status": "UP",
   "details": {
    "kos": 1,
    "endpoints": 1,
    "activatedEndpoints": 1
  "org.kgrid.adapter.v8.JsV8Adapter": {
   "status": "UP",
   "details": {
    "engines": [
  "shelf": {
   "status": "UP",
   "details": {
    "numberOfKOs": 1,
    "kgrid.shelf.cdostore.url": "file:///home/username/activator/shelf/"

# Activation on startup

  • On startup, the Activator loads Knowledge Objects onto a local "shelf", using a manifest of packaged KOs, or loads directly from the local "shelf".

  • The Activator loads adapters and initializes any embedded runtimes. The proxy adapter is initialized and ready to register remote runtimes. Any additional adapters/runtimes are also loaded and initialized.

  • When runtimes are initialized, or registered (for remote runtimes), the Activator attempts to activate KOs for each runtime. It logs a warning if an endpoint cannot be activated.

  • You can see the KOs that were loaded onto the shelf at the shelf's Get All KOs endpoint (located at http://localhost:8080/kos).

  • You can also see the status of each endpoint the activator found at the activator's Get All Endpoints endpoint (located at http://localhost:8080/endpoints).

  • See Activation API for more info.

# Using the js-simple-v1.0 KO on the Activator

The js-simple KO is a very simple KO with a Javascript based service that takes in a name and displays a Welcome to the Knowledge Grid message.

First, lets look at JS Simple's metadata using the shelf endpoint http://localhost:8080/kos/js/simple/v1.0.

The JS Simple KO has one service called welcome. The welcome service expects you to pass it a json object containing the name key.

For example: {"name":"Fred Flintstone"}.

# Using curl to try out a KO

curl -X POST -H "Content-Type:application/json"  \
    -d "{\"name\": \"Fred Flintstone\"}" \

The JS Simple KO will return the following

 "result": "Welcome to Knowledge Grid, Fred Flintstone",
 "info": {
  "ko": {
   "@id": "js/simple/v1.0",
   "@type": "koio:KnowledgeObject",
   "identifier": "ark:/js/simple/v1.0",
   "version": "v1.0",
   "title": "Hello world",
   "description": "An example of simple Knowledge Object",
   "keywords": [
   "hasServiceSpecification": "service.yaml",
   "hasDeploymentSpecification": "deployment.yaml",
   "hasPayload": "src/index.js",
   "@context": [
  "inputs": "{\"name\": \"Fred Flintstone\"}"

# Using the Swagger Editor to try out a KO

Navigate to http://localhost:8080/endpoints/js/simple/1.0/welcome and click the swagger editor link:

"swaggerLink": https://editor.swagger.io?url=...

The online Swagger Editor should load the OpenAPI service description and generate a generic client for the JS Simple KO. Click the POST button for the /welcome endpoint and then the Try it out button to populate a sample request. The blue Execute bar will send the request to your local Activator. The results will be similar to the response above.

The Swagger Editor is a great tool for getting familiar with the "service" perspective for knowledge objects!

For more advanced topics, check out:

Last Updated: 6/10/2021, 3:25:09 PM