Custom Settings and Custom Metadata are two types of custom configuration data in Salesforce. Here are the main differences between them:
- Purpose and Usage:
- Custom Settings: Custom Settings are used to store application settings and data that can be accessed and modified by Salesforce users. They provide a way to create custom configuration data for an application.
- Custom Metadata: Custom Metadata is used to store application metadata that is typically used for configuring the behavior of an application. It is generally read-only and provides a way to deploy configurable metadata across different environments.
- Data Visibility:
- Custom Settings: Custom Settings data is stored in the Salesforce database and can be accessed by Salesforce users based on their organization-wide sharing settings. They can be accessed and modified through the Salesforce user interface or programmatically.
- Custom Metadata: Custom Metadata records are stored in the metadata repository and are accessible to the application code. They are not directly visible or editable by Salesforce users through the user interface. They are typically accessed programmatically using the Metadata API or Apex code.
- Deployment and Packaging:
- Custom Settings: Custom Settings can be deployed using change sets, packages, or metadata tools like Salesforce DX. They can be included in the deployment process along with other Salesforce metadata components.
- Custom Metadata: Custom Metadata records are deployed as part of a metadata package. They are typically deployed using metadata tools like Salesforce DX, Salesforce CLI, or the Metadata API. They can be included in the deployment process along with other metadata components.
- Configuration Flexibility:
- Custom Settings: Custom Settings can be modified by Salesforce administrators or users with the appropriate access permissions. They offer more flexibility for making configuration changes on the fly.
- Custom Metadata: Custom Metadata records are typically created and managed by developers. They are more suitable for defining static configuration data that doesn’t require frequent changes.
- Namespace Support:
- Custom Settings: Custom Settings can be defined within a namespace, which allows them to be namespaced and used in a multi-tenant environment.
- Custom Metadata: Custom Metadata records can also be defined within a namespace, providing namespacing support similar to Custom Settings.
Overall, the choice between Custom Settings and Custom Metadata depends on the specific use case and requirements of the application. Custom Settings are more suitable for dynamic configuration data that may need to be modified by Salesforce users, while Custom Metadata is ideal for static configuration data that is managed by developers and deployed across environments.