Zend_Application Quick Start

There are two paths to getting started with Zend_Application, and they depend on how you start your project. In each case, you always start with creating a Bootstrap class, and a related configuration file.

If you plan on using Zend_Tool to create your project, continue reading below. If you will be adding Zend_Application to an existing project, you'll want to skip ahead.

Using Zend_Tool

The quickest way to start using Zend_Application is to use Zend_Tool to generate your project. This will also create your Bootstrap class and file.

To create a project, execute the zf command (on *nix systems):

  1. % zf create project newproject

Or the Windows zf.bat command:

  1. C:> zf.bat create project newproject

Both will create a project structure that looks like the following:

  1. newproject
  2. |-- application
  3. |   |-- Bootstrap.php
  4. |   |-- configs
  5. |   |   `-- application.ini
  6. |   |-- controllers
  7. |   |   |-- ErrorController.php
  8. |   |   `-- IndexController.php
  9. |   |-- models
  10. |   `-- views
  11. |       |-- helpers
  12. |       `-- scripts
  13. |           |-- error
  14. |           |   `-- error.phtml
  15. |           `-- index
  16. |               `-- index.phtml
  17. |-- library
  18. |-- public
  19. |   `-- index.php
  20. `-- tests
  21.     |-- application
  22.     |   `-- bootstrap.php
  23.     |-- library
  24.     |   `-- bootstrap.php
  25.     `-- phpunit.xml

In the above diagram, your bootstrap is in newproject/application/Bootstrap.php, and looks like the following at first:

  1. class Bootstrap extends Zend_Application_Bootstrap_Bootstrap
  2. {
  3. }

You'll also note that a configuration file, newproject/application/configs/application.ini, is created. It has the following contents:

  1. [production]
  2. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 0
  3. phpSettings.display_errors = 0
  4. includePaths.library = APPLICATION_PATH "/../library"
  5. bootstrap.path = APPLICATION_PATH "/Bootstrap.php"
  6. bootstrap.class = "Bootstrap"
  7. resources.frontController.controllerDirectory = APPLICATION_PATH "/controllers"
  8.  
  9. [staging : production]
  10.  
  11. [testing : production]
  12. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 1
  13. phpSettings.display_errors = 1
  14.  
  15. [development : production]
  16. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 1
  17. phpSettings.display_errors = 1

All settings in this configuration file are for use with Zend_Application and your bootstrap.

Another file of interest is the newproject/public/index.php file, which invokes Zend_Application and dispatches it.

  1. // Define path to application directory
  2. defined('APPLICATION_PATH')
  3.     || define('APPLICATION_PATH',
  4.               realpath(dirname(__FILE__) . '/../application'));
  5.  
  6. // Define application environment
  7. defined('APPLICATION_ENV')
  8.     || define('APPLICATION_ENV',
  9.               (getenv('APPLICATION_ENV') ? getenv('APPLICATION_ENV')
  10.                                          : 'production'));
  11.  
  12. /** Zend_Application */
  13. require_once 'Zend/Application.php';
  14.  
  15. // Create application, bootstrap, and run
  16. $application = new Zend_Application(
  17.     APPLICATION_ENV,
  18.     APPLICATION_PATH . '/configs/application.ini'
  19. );
  20. $application->bootstrap()
  21.             ->run();

To continue the quick start, please skip to the Resources section.

Adding Zend_Application to your application

The basics of Zend_Application are fairly simple:

  • Create an application/Bootstrap.php file, with the class Bootstrap.

  • Create an application/configs/application.ini configuration file with the base configuration necessary for Zend_Application.

  • Modify your public/index.php to utilize Zend_Application.

First, create your Bootstrap class. Create a file, application/Bootstrap.php, with the following contents:

  1. class Bootstrap extends Zend_Application_Bootstrap_Bootstrap
  2. {
  3. }

Now, create your configuration. For this tutorial, we will use an INI style configuration; you may, of course, use an XML or PHP configuration file as well. Create the file application/configs/application.ini, and provide the following contents:

  1. [production]
  2. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 0
  3. phpSettings.display_errors = 0
  4. includePaths.library = APPLICATION_PATH "/../library"
  5. bootstrap.path = APPLICATION_PATH "/Bootstrap.php"
  6. bootstrap.class = "Bootstrap"
  7. resources.frontController.controllerDirectory = APPLICATION_PATH "/controllers"
  8.  
  9. [staging : production]
  10.  
  11. [testing : production]
  12. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 1
  13. phpSettings.display_errors = 1
  14.  
  15. [development : production]
  16. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 1
  17. phpSettings.display_errors = 1

Now, let's modify your gateway script, public/index.php. If the file does not exist, create it; otherwise, replace it with the following contents:

  1. // Define path to application directory
  2. defined('APPLICATION_PATH')
  3.     || define('APPLICATION_PATH',
  4.               realpath(dirname(__FILE__) . '/../application'));
  5.  
  6. // Define application environment
  7. defined('APPLICATION_ENV')
  8.     || define('APPLICATION_ENV',
  9.               (getenv('APPLICATION_ENV') ? getenv('APPLICATION_ENV')
  10.                                          : 'production'));
  11.  
  12. // Typically, you will also want to add your library/ directory
  13. // to the include_path, particularly if it contains your ZF installed
  14. set_include_path(implode(PATH_SEPARATOR, array(
  15.     dirname(dirname(__FILE__)) . '/library',
  16. )));
  17.  
  18. /** Zend_Application */
  19. require_once 'Zend/Application.php';
  20.  
  21. // Create application, bootstrap, and run
  22. $application = new Zend_Application(
  23.     APPLICATION_ENV,
  24.     APPLICATION_PATH . '/configs/application.ini'
  25. );
  26. $application->bootstrap()
  27.             ->run();

You may note that the application environment constant value looks for an environment variable "APPLICATION_ENV". We recommend setting this in your web server environment. In Apache, you can set this either in your vhost definition, or in your .htaccess file. We recommend the following contents for your public/.htaccess file:

  1. SetEnv APPLICATION_ENV development
  2.  
  3. RewriteEngine On
  4. RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -s [OR]
  5. RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -l [OR]
  6. RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -d
  7. RewriteRule ^.*$ - [NC,L]
  8. RewriteRule ^.*$ index.php [NC,L]

Note: Learn about mod_rewrite
The above rewrite rules allow access to any file under your virtual host's document root. If there are files you do not want exposed in this way, you may want to be more restrictive in your rules. Go to the Apache website to » learn more about mod_rewrite.

At this point, you're all set to start taking advantage of Zend_Application.

Adding and creating resources

If you followed the directions above, then your bootstrap class will be utilizing a front controller, and when it is run, it will dispatch the front controller. However, in all likelihood, you'll need a little more configuration than this.

In this section, we'll look at adding two resources to your application. First, we'll set up your layouts, and then we'll customize your view object.

One of the standard resources provided with Zend_Application is the "layout" resource. This resource expects you to define configuration values which it will then use to configure your Zend_Layout instance.

To use it, all we need to do is update the configuration file.

  1. [production]
  2. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 0
  3. phpSettings.display_errors = 0
  4. bootstrap.path = APPLICATION_PATH "/Bootstrap.php"
  5. bootstrap.class = "Bootstrap"
  6. resources.frontController.controllerDirectory = APPLICATION_PATH "/controllers"
  7. ; ADD THE FOLLOWING LINES
  8. resources.layout.layout = "layout"
  9. resources.layout.layoutPath = APPLICATION_PATH "/layouts/scripts"
  10.  
  11. [staging : production]
  12.  
  13. [testing : production]
  14. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 1
  15. phpSettings.display_errors = 1
  16.  
  17. [development : production]
  18. phpSettings.display_startup_errors = 1
  19. phpSettings.display_errors = 1

If you haven't already, create the directory application/layouts/scripts/, and the file layout.phtml within that directory. A good starting layout is as follows (and ties in with the view resource covered next):

  1. <?php echo $this->doctype() ?>
  2. <html>
  3. <head>
  4.     <?php echo $this->headTitle() ?>
  5.     <?php echo $this->headLink() ?>
  6.     <?php echo $this->headStyle() ?>
  7.     <?php echo $this->headScript() ?>
  8. </head>
  9. <body>
  10.     <?php echo $this->layout()->content ?>
  11. </body>
  12. </html>

At this point, you will now have a working layout.

Now, we'll add a custom view resource. When initializing the view, we'll want to set the HTML DocType and a default value for the title to use in the HTML head. This can be accomplished by editing your Bootstrap class to add a method:

  1. class Bootstrap extends Zend_Application_Bootstrap_Bootstrap
  2. {
  3.     protected function _initView()
  4.     {
  5.         // Initialize view
  6.         $view = new Zend_View();
  7.         $view->doctype('XHTML1_STRICT');
  8.         $view->headTitle('My First Zend Framework Application');
  9.  
  10.         // Add it to the ViewRenderer
  11.         $viewRenderer = Zend_Controller_Action_HelperBroker::getStaticHelper(
  12.             'ViewRenderer'
  13.         );
  14.         $viewRenderer->setView($view);
  15.  
  16.         // Return it, so that it can be stored by the bootstrap
  17.         return $view;
  18.     }
  19. }

This method will be automatically executed when you bootstrap the application, and will ensure your view is initialized according to your application needs.

Next steps with Zend_Application

The above should get you started with Zend_Application and creating your application bootstrap. From here, you should start creating resource methods, or, for maximum re-usability, resource plugin classes. Continue reading to learn more!

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