Flow Ref Component Reference
+ *Purpose:* Use a Flow Reference to synchronously execute another flow that is external to the current flow.
Minimum Configuration: The name of the external flow.
Discussion: A Flow Reference component lets you execute a flow that is external to the current flow. When processing reaches the Flow Reference, Mule invokes the external flow referenced by the Flow Reference. Control passes back to the initiating flow only after the external, referenced flow completes. A Flow Reference acts much like invoking a sub-flow in a synchronous mode, where the main flow suspends its processing until the sub-flow completes.
A Flow Reference is particularly useful for invoking a private flow, which is a flow that has no Endpoint to receive incoming data and thus cannot be invoked by a client outside the JVM. You might define a private flow for accomplishing some specific task, then incorporate it into your main flow using a Flow Reference. (See Private Flows for more information.)
Place the Flow Reference on the canvas at the point where you want the current flow to invoke the sub-flow. Double-click the Flow Reference on the canvas to open the Pattern Properties dialog. Set the Name attribute for Flow Reference Properties to the name of the external flow.