Benjamin Tigano Developer at Large

Zend Framework

Introduction
In 2009, I became certified by Zend (“the PHP company”) as a Zend Certified Developer (ZCE) for PHP. It’s one of the only PHP certifications offered, and I used it as more of a reason to learn about the aspects of the language that I may not use regularly. This year, I’ve again turned to Zend to become a ZCE for Zend Framework (ZF), one of the leading PHP frameworks available. I’ve been reading books about Zend Framework for a while, but the amount of knowledge I absorb from reading a book for 8 hours is equal to the amount of knowledge I get from developing with it for 10 minutes. And the more I use it, the more I’m comfortable with it and convince myself to use it more – not only in preparation for the exam, but because it provides a lot of value in the development projects I work on. In an effort to be as comfortable with ZF as I am with PHP, I’m creating write-ups on how to do various tasks using Zend Framework.

While you can use components of the framework individually, for this series I have chosen to use it as a whole and leverage the Zend_Application component. MVC applications (the way that Zend_Application is implemented) is not ideal for every task. If you want a blog, use WordPress. If you want a basic content management system, Drupal or WordPress will work. But if you want a custom web application, with users signing in, database connectivity, or anything requiring custom features/development, ZF can give you a huge jump ahead of writing the basic PHP yourself. Reinventing the wheel benefits nobody, so start out with a framework, be it Zend, CakePHP, or any others.

I’ll be starting with a basic Zend framework application, and will be building upon that application. Each item in the series will build upon the first section – the basic project. Once you’ve gone through the first section, you should be able to go to any other section, though you’ll benefit the most by stepping through each section in order. If one section is dependent upon something in a previous section, I’ll try to mention it. If you’re lost, just ask in the comments, or contact me.

Note: All examples are using Zend Framework v1.11.11. The online reference manual is available here.

UPDATE: I was going to add a whole lot more to these tutorials, but decided instead to try and grab a hold of ZF2 and do tutorials using the new framework instead.

Sections
** Anything that isn’t a link hasn’t been completed yet. Check back for updates.

  1. A Basic Zend Framework MVC Application
  2. Adding styles, scripts, meta, and other information
  3. Adding site navigation
  4. Using alternate layouts
  5. Adding logging capabilities
  6. Adding page caching capabilities

If you have basic questions or comments not pertaining to a specific section, leave it in the comments, or contact me!

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