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Surrogate Key Based Cache Purging

Before You Begin

You should be familiar with the concept of surrogate key based caching and purging.

See for more information on working with surrogate keys.

This guide uses Drupal with the Pantheon Advanced Page Cache module installed.

How It Works


The following diagram shows the request/response for a Pantheon Front-End Site which is fetching data from Drupal also hosted on Pantheon

The PantheonDrupalState class from our @pantheon-systems/drupal-kit npm package includes an adapted fetch method which adds the Pantheon-SKey header to each request to Drupal. Responses from Drupal will contain the Surrogate-Key header. With these keys, your frontend can be instructed to purge content from a cache when the content in Drupal changes.

How To Ensure Headers Are Set On Custom Routes


The Decoupled Kit Drupal Backend Starter Project and Drupal Next.js Starter Kit handle the configuration below automatically.

  • The Drupal backend has the Pantheon Advanced Page Cache module installed.
  • Create an instance of PantheonDrupalState imported from @pantheon-systems/drupal-kit in your application.
  • Use the fetch methods available (see drupal-kit for more information). The Surrogate-Key header should be set automatically if Drupal is configured correctly.
  • Pass the context.res from getServerSideProps into the PantheonDrupalState fetch method so that the headers are added to the outgoing response.

For example, the following code could be used to set the headers necessary for cache purging on an article list page:

  1. In your article list page, create an instance of DrupalState:
import { DrupalState } from '@pantheon-systems/drupal-kit';

const store = new DrupalState({
apiBase: '',
  1. In getSeverSideProps use the store instance to fetch data from Drupal and provide the outgoing response object:
export async function getServerSideProps(context) {
const articles = await store.getObject({
objectName: 'node--article',
res: context.res,

return { props: { articles } };

Assuming that your backend is correctly configured, you should now see the Surrogate-Key header on the outgoing response for /articles/, which will allow the cache for this page to be purged automatically when any related content changes in Drupal.