Random thoughts

experimenting on different framework

Whenever I get some time, I try to learn and experiment on different frameworks. I would like to stay away from pin pointing to the frameworks I have looked, so they don't feel bad.

Long live components

Components are awesome!. You can plug your favourite components to any system. Thank you composer. One strong preference choosing a framework was

  • It should be built from components


  • I could use those components on a different project without spending long time learning a different API.

Choosing Symfony as a framework

  • Symfony framework have been used in production for long, big community, and backed by Sensio Labs.
  • Many of the libraries, cms and frameowrks that exists on packagist rely on symfony components.

Look at phinx a db migration tool, drupal 8 etc. These makes use of components like symfony/console, symfony/http-foundation, symfony/router etc.

Some of the good things I like in symfony console component are its helpers.


use Symfony\Component\Console\Helper\Table;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Output\ConsoleOutput;

$output = new ConsoleOutput();
$table = new Table($output);
    ->setHeaders(array('ISBN', 'Title', 'Author'))
        array('99921-58-10-7', 'Divine Comedy', 'Dante Alighieri'),
        array('9971-5-0210-0', 'A Tale of Two Cities', 'Charles Dickens'),
        array('960-425-059-0', 'The Lord of the Rings', 'J. R. R. Tolkien'),
        array('80-902734-1-6', 'And Then There Were None', 'Agatha Christie'),

Progress bar

use Symfony\Component\Console\Helper\ProgressBar;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Output\ConsoleOutput;

$output = new ConsoleOutput();

// create a new progress bar (50 units)
$progress = new ProgressBar($output, 50);

// start and displays the progress bar

$i = 0;
while ($i++ < 50) {
    // ... do some work

    // advance the progress bar 1 unit

    // you can also advance the progress bar by more than 1 unit
    // $progress->advance(3);

// ensure that the progress bar is at 100%


use Symfony\Component\Console\Helper\QuestionHelper;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Output\ConsoleOutput;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Input\StringInput;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Question\ConfirmationQuestion;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Question\ChoiceQuestion;

$output = new ConsoleOutput();
$helper = new QuestionHelper();
$input = new StringInput('action');
$question = new ConfirmationQuestion('Continue with this action?', false);

if ($helper->ask($input, $output, $question)) {
    $question = new ChoiceQuestion(
        'Please select your favorite color (defaults to red)',
        array('red', 'blue', 'yellow'),
    $question->setErrorMessage('Color %s is invalid.');

    $color = $helper->ask($input, $output, $question);
    $output->writeln('You have just selected: '.$color);
} else {
    $output->writeln('Exiting !');

Hidden Passwords

use Symfony\Component\Console\Helper\QuestionHelper;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Output\ConsoleOutput;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Input\StringInput;
use Symfony\Component\Console\Question\Question;

$output = new ConsoleOutput();
$helper = new QuestionHelper();
$input = new StringInput('action');
$question = new Question('What is the database password?');

$password = $helper->ask($input, $output, $question);
$output->writeln('Entered password : ' . $password);

and more.. I hope you will also add symfony/console into your list.

Http Foundation

The symfony/http-foundation is another extensively used component. It is actually Aura.Web + Aura.Session with more session handlers. Used by drupal, laravel etc in core. When working on mixed projects like drupal, laravel etc, it is good to be in your list.

use Symfony\Component\HttpFoundation\Request;
use Symfony\Component\HttpFoundation\Response;

$request = Request::createFromGlobals();
$response = new Response(
    'Hello symfony',
    array('content-type' => 'text/html')


Another wonderful component is the finder.

use Symfony\Component\Finder\Finder;

$finder = new Finder();

$iterator = $finder

foreach ($iterator as $file) {
    print $file->getRealpath()."\n";


Filesystem is another nice component which helps you to copy, rename, create directories.

Complex components

So far, the above components are easy to use. One of the complex component is the security component. It tries to do authentication and authorization.

As a person who have worked with zend framework, I love how authentication and authorization is done. I do love the latest Aura.Auth library.

If you are using symfony as a framework, there is a bundle to rescue. Yes, FOSUserBundle. I believe most of them who use symfony will be using it.

Part of the complexity may be because symfony security was based on Spring security from Java. I am not sure why Fabien choose Spring when there were good ones in the PHP world, but I hope there is a reason behind it.

Conclusion : Symfony as a framework is nice!.