This article was published 10 years ago, therefore the contents of this post may be out of date.

As PHP is one of the most powerful & popular coding language to learn among web devs. As majority of websites that we see on a regular basis are based on PHP.

Nearly every developer know that a proper framework enables us to create apps more quicker, safer and more efficient and choosing a framework before you even start building your app is crucial for it robustness & success as they are some real time-savers when it comes to creating and maintaining any PHP built websites.

In today’s article, you will see that we are looking to helping you to choose a PHP framework and as there are quite alot of solid PHP frameworks that you can find on the market, searching and find what the right one to choose is a time-consuming task, So I’ve done it for you.

1. CodeIgniter


CodeIgniter is a powerful PHP framework that has  a very small footprint as it’s been built for coders that’s need a simple & elegant toolkit to create full-featured web applications and if you’re a developer who lives in the real world of shared hosting accounts and clients with deadlines, and if you’re tired of ponderously large and thoroughly undocumented frameworks, then CodeIgniter might be a good fit.

2. CakePHP


With the framework happily named CakePHP it’s makes building web apps easier, faster & requires less code. CakePHP enabled us to use code generation & scaffolding features to rapidly build prototypes. As it contains no additional XML or YAML file configuration that is required, you simply just setup your database & you are ready to bake.

As CakePHP is licensed under the MIT license which makes it perfect for use in common applications and as the things you need are built-in such as translations, database access, caching, validation, authentication, and much more are all built into one of the original PHP MVC frameworks. CakePHP comes with built-in tools for input validation, CSRF protection, Form tampering protection, SQL injection prevention and XSS prevention, helping you keep your application safe and secure.

And the bakers of this frameworks are about to release their3.0 to the public.

3. FuelPHP


The FuelPHP framework is a simple, flexible, community driven PHP 5.3+ framework that based on the best ideas that you see in other frameworks. In the nearest of future we will see Fuel releasing it’s version 2 of the project, which is their version 1.7.2.

FuelPHP is a MVC (Model-View-Controller) framework that was designed from the ground up to have full support for HMVC as part of its architecture. But the makers of FuelPHP didn’t stop there as their have also added ViewModels (which is also known as presentation models) into the mix which give you the option to add a powerful layer between the Controller and the View.

As this framework also supports a more router based approach where you might route directly to a closure which deals with the input uri, making the closure the controller and giving it control of further execution.

4. Laravel


Laravel is an open source & free PHP web app framework which is designed for developing MVC web applications. As Laravel helps you create applications using simple, expressive syntax, aiming to take the pain out of development by easing you with common tasks, such as authentication, routing, sessions and caching.

As Laravel is well readable & well-documented that helps you speed up your coding, it also makes development easy and more creative for devs and lets them produce some outstanding result with it.

With the composer you can manage all your application’s third-party packages, and works great with MySQL, Postgres, SQL Server, and SQLite.

5. Phalcon


Phalcon is an open source, full stack framework for PHP 5 that been built on C-extension but offered as a PHP extension, it’s optimised for high performance. As you don’t need to learn or use the C language, as PHP classes are ready to use.

By creating a rich, fully featured framework written entirely in C and packaged as a PHP extension, Phalcon is able to save processor time & boost overall performance.

6. Silex


Silex is a PHP microframework for PHP 5.3. As it is built on the shoulders of Symfony2 and Pimple which also inspired by Sinatra.  As Silex is a microframework its provides the guts for building simple single-file apps.

Silex aims to be concise that exposes an intuitive and concise API that is fun to use, extensible which means it has an extension system that based around the Pimple micro service-container which makes it even easier to tie in third-party libraries, it’s testable as Silex uses Symfony2’s HttpKernel which abstracts request and response.

As its makes it very easy to test apps and the framework itself, it’s also respects the HTTP specification and encourages its proper use.

7. Symfony


Taking about Symfony above lets actually take a peek on the framework, Symfony is a PHP framework for web projects as its speed up the creation and maintenance of your PHP web applications. Replacing the repetitive coding tasks by power, control and pleasure.

Symfony is a set of reusable PHP components and a PHP framework for web projects. It is well documented, it is free under MIT license, and it is getting more and more popular every day. Drupal, one of the most popular CMS systems, as well as phpBB, one of the most used discussion board system that actually use symfony.

As this framework is powerful, scalable and flexible but yet it is considered by many, especially those new to frameworks, to have a very steep learning curve.

8. Yii Framework


Yii is one of the fastest, secure and professional PHP Framework as it is a high-performance PHP framework which is best for developing web 2.0 applications. It’s comes with a rich features: MVC, DAO/ActiveRecord, I18N, caching, authentication and role-based access control, scaffolding, testing, open source, high performing, object-oriented, database access object, easy form validation, default support for web services and many more.

9. Aura


The Aura project provides independent library packages for PHP 5.4+. these packages can be used alone, in concert with each other, or combined into a full-stack framework of their own, the Aura project is essentially the second major version of Solar which was reimagined and rewritten as a library collection with dependency injection instead of a framework with service location.

As Aura is a libraries first, framework second type of project the primary goal of Aura is to provide high-quality, well-tested, standards-compliant, independent library packages that can be used in any codebase. Which means developers can use as much or as little of the project as necessary.

And with the goal of a “libraries first” project all of its packages are as self-contained as possible and are independently downloadable and in some cases this level of independence may lead to some class duplication between packages. In other cases, it may lead to data-transfer objects being used to carry information across package boundaries, so that the package can be used with non-Aura code bases.

Plus with Aura it has enough libraries to form a full-stack framework of its own. With a system repository is available to incorporate them all into a coherent framework for application development.PHP 5.4+

As Aura is intended to take advantage of the features available that you can find in PHP 5.4+ (as compared to PHP 5.2.x and prior). This means formal namespaces, anonymous functions and closures, late static binding, short array syntax, traits, the callable typehint, and other features not available in PHP 5.2.x and earlier.

10. Simple MVC Framework


Simple MVC Framework was designed to be extremely easy to set up as it’s has a clean coding structure & is easy to learn as it is a lightweight, less than 1 MB size.

The framework can be setup just by setting the site path. As it’s features simple theme files, as well as full control over views themes can be used to quickly change the look of your application/website.

MySQL is provided using a PDO helper, of course this can be swapped to MySQLI, Medoo or another database engine. Support is provided by a variety of source, Twitter, Facebook Groups and a dedicated Forum.


10 Great & Popular PHP Frameworks To Start Building Apps


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