An incredibly lightweight and flexible MVC framework for PHP 5.4

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Table of Contents

  1. What is this?
  2. Licence
  3. Structure [General | Namespaces]
  4. Workflow [Main Concept | The global Alo class | Controllers | Views]
  5. Routing
  6. Logging
  7. Initial setup
  8. Updating
  9. Running tests
  10. Latest Changes
  11. External Libraries

What is this?

AloFramework is an incredibly lightweight and flexible MVC framework for PHP 5.4+. It has a lot of built-in functionality including but not limited to:



This product is licenced under the GNU General Public Licence Version 3




You will find code documentation under the docs directory, some setup scripts under setup and source files under src. In src the main components are app, *resources, sys and files under the directory root.



The class, trait and interface directories found under src/app and src/sys follow a namespaced structure, e.g. the class Alo\Db\MySQL would be found in the file class/alo/db/mysql.php. Please not that all directory and file names should be lowercase.



Main concept

For most projects, you will want to write your own classes that extend those of the framework's. That way you will be completely safe from losing any code during a framework upgrade. The built-in autoloader will automatically load any required interfaces found in app/class, app/interface, sys/class and sys/interface.


The global Alo class

This class is always loaded by default and contains static references to objects which are in most cases used as singletons. You should try to load most of your classes into its static properties, e.g. you will usually only need one database connection, so you can assign it to Alo::$db and access it from anywhere in your code.



All controllers must go under app/controllers (accessible via the DIR_CONTROLLERS method), have the Controller namespace and extend the class Alo\Controller\AbstractController. To make this easier, you can write your own Abstract controller and extend that of Alo\ from within, for example:


namespace Controller;

class AbstractController extends Alo\Controller\AbstractController {
   //Your code


namespace Controller;

class Home extends AbstractController {
   //Your code

Only public, non-abstract, non-static methods will be used for routing. The default method for most controllers is index(). Controllers can be in any of DIR_CONTROLLERS' subdirectories.



Any view can be loaded via Alo\Controller\AbstractController's protected method loadView:

  * Loads a view
  * @author Art <>
  * @param string  $name   The name of the view without ".php".
  * @param array   $params Associative array of parameters to pass on to the view
  * @param boolean $return If set to TRUE, will return the view, if FALSE,
  *                        will echo it
  * @return null|string
  protected function loadView($name, $params = [], $return = false) {
     // Code

This will load a view under app/view/$name.php. You can provide parameters to pass on to the view via $params, e.g. if you pass on ['foo' => 'bar'] and echo $foo in the view, the output will be bar. If instead of echoing the output you want to retrieve it, provide $return with true. Each view can be reused during the same execution.



All routing is done in the router.php config file. By default, if a route is not found, the router will look in your controllers directory's root for an automatically calculated route:[...]/argN. This can be overwritten in the $routes array, where the array keys are case-insensitive regular expressions for the request URI (without delimiters or modifiers) and the values are configuration arrays containing the following keys (bold values mean the default values if the key is not set):



All logging is done via the global static class \Log's public methods - please refer to the documentation. You will can set the logging level (during the Initial Setup phase described below).


Initial setup



Updates are applied by following these 6 steps:

  1. Look through the changelog for to see if any changes will cause issues (e.g. a deprecated method being removed), prepare your code if necessary.
  2. Make a copy of your index.php and .htaccess files.
  3. Delete the above, as well as the sys directory.
  4. Extract the new code. It will never contain files other than blank index.htmls and sample.phps under app/, so no application code will be overwritten.
  5. If there are any changes to .htaccess, merge them with your version.
  6. Re-apply your personal settings under index.php's // ===== General setup BEGIN =====


Running tests

When running PPHUnit tests be sure to use the phpunit.php bootstrap file from the root directory. It will make sure that all classes are loaded correctly and that the framework behaviour is altered to not interfere with the tests. Please note that in PHPUNIT mode the framework does not automatically initialise the Router - you will have to run the code below to test a controller:

$router = new \Alo\Controller\Router();
$router->init(); //Or ->initNoCall() if you just want to initialise it, but not call the relevant controller


Latest changes

See for a full changelog of previous versions.

1.0 (2015-05-08)


Major bugfixes

Misc bugfixes

Added features

Removed items



External Libraries

AloFramework uses the following external libraries for its functionality: