CakePHP Structure

Posted on in University

CakePHP is an open-source, free, and rapid development framework of PHP, which serves as a foundational structure for programmers and developers to create web applications. The primary advantage of using this framework is that it enables the user to work in a rapid and structured manner without compromising on flexibility and functionality.


The Structure

CakePHP framework features major classes including View, Model and Controller, along with some additional objects and classes that enable the users to develop in MVC more quickly and easily. Classes including Components, Helpers and Behaviors provide reusability and extensibility to enhance the functionality of the base MVC classes in applications developed using CakePHP.

Component Class (Controller Extensions)

It is a class which helps in controller logic. If there is a logic the user wants to share between two or more controllers, then a component is the best extension class for the job. For example, the Email Component class makes creating and sending emails, a piece of cake. The user can also create a package of logic to be shared between different controllers through the component class, instead of incorporating the controller method for every other controller that performs this logic.

Mostly, the controller classes are fitted with callback operations. They are used to insert logic between different core operations of CakePHP. These callbacks include:

  • beforeFilter()
  • beforeRender()
  • afterFilter()
  • Helper Class (View Extensions)

    Much similar to the component class, Helper class aids the user in viewing logic. Helpers enable the ‘viewable’ logic to be accessed, presented, and shared between different views. AjaxHelper, one of the core helpers, makes Ajax view requests rather easier. Applications usually have a view code in place that can be used repeatedly. CakePHP allows view code to be reused with elements and layouts. The purpose of elements is to reuse the small snippets of content in multiple views, while every view provided by a controller is fitted inside a layout by default.

    Behavior Class (Model Extensions)

    Same as Helpers and Components, Behavior class aids in adding common functionality among models. For example, the user specifies the “User” model when storing the data in a tree structure, which behaves like a tree, and is granted free functionality to add, remove and shift nodes in the tree structure.
    Similar to controllers, model extensions also have callback functions, which include:

  • beforeSave()
  • afterSave()
  • beforeFind()
  • afterFind()
  • beforeDelete()
  • afterDelete()
  • Applications Extensions

    All the above three classes have a parent class which is used for defining changes throughout the application. AppController, AppHelper, and AppModel are great places where the users can place the methods they want to share between helpers, models, or controllers. However, these are not files or classes, which is why routes play an important role in delivering requests made to CakePHP.

    A route definition tells CakePHP how the user wants it to map URLs to controller actions. The routes are used for customizing the URLs and influence the way the application interprets those URLs. There are also some features that can be incorporated in an application which comes as a package. For example, a plugin is a package which contains controllers, views and models that are aimed at achieving a specific purpose and can be integrated in multiple applications.

    Why Opt for CakePHP?

    There are a variety of reasons why users should opt for the CakePHP structure. First of all, CakePHP is licensed under MIT, which means that it is perfect for commercial applications. CakePHP is customized with tools for validating input. Moreover, CakePHP is extremely efficient, as you don’t have to plan much. CakePHP structure comes with pre-set conventions that aid developers with their applications.

    CakePHP is a complete web application framework as it comes with everything you may need. This includes translations, caching, authentication, database access, and authentication, making it exceptionally useful.

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