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Node a Zend-Framework-Module

What does this module do?

Node is a module, which has grown by the time to support more features than initially planned. It brings a layer into your Zend-Framework application to create url-rewrites (route) for each of your contents.

The module ships with 3 types of nodes: MVC-Nodes, Content-Nodes and Redirect-Nodes.

MVC-Nodes can be created from the backend (requires ZfcAdmin) of the module. The configuration-form allows you to specify the url-path this node should be available at. In dropdowns you select the controller (all controllers in your application are retrieved from the service-manager) and the action within this controller. Optionally you can provide further parameters which will be passed 1:1 into the router. Also optionally you can provide an original-url-path if the specified controller, action and parameters are already assigned to a certain route. Whenever this route will be output, e.g. in your templates, it will be replaced by the new node-based-url, which you just created.

So MVC-Nodes allow you to achieve the following: route the url to a potential News-Controller, to the Index-Action with the parameter Sort=ASC.

Redirect-Nodes are an additional feature, which wasn't planned initially, but can be very useful. Just like MVC-Nodes you can create these kind of nodes within the backend by configuring it with the help of a form. You specify the url-path for this node and the target url (can be external), where the node should redirect to. You may also specify the http-status-code which will be used upon redirection.

So Redirect-Nodes allow you to do the following: create a redirect from to

Content-Nodes are the initial idea of the module. They are nodes, which can't be created manually from the backend, since they always should be related to a content (e.g. a blog-post). Whenever you create a specific content, a node should be created - whenever you delete this content, the node should be deleted as well. Since this Node-Module doesn't know the internals of the other modules which delivers the content, you are responsible for creating a third module, which ties the module, which allows managing a certain content, with the Node-Module.

So Content-Nodes are basically the same as MVC-Nodes. However you can't create or delete them manually as this task has to be implemented within the code itself. The following task can be achieved with a Content-Node: when calling internally execute the View-Action within a BlogController with the parameter id=5.

Additional features

There are some other features, which can be dis-/enabled in the config-file.

  • Enable meta-fields. If enabled, the add/edit-forms in the node backend allow you to specify a meta-description, meta-keywords and robots-settings for your seo-concerns.
  • Enable access-counter. If enabled, whenever a node-route gets called a counter for this node is incremented. Also the timestamp of the last access of this node is being saved. These information is presented within the node-overview in the backend.
  • Caching. The nodes are stored within a database. The first time you call the page, all nodes are fetched, processed and put into the router of your application. While doing that, the router-config is cached, so in the next request it's not necessary to fetch all nodes again.
  • Translatable. All strings within the module are wrapped with the translate()-method from the translator-instance.
  • Rich usage of events. This module triggers events at certain points, which gives you the chance of extending nodes with additional fields for example. Think of nodes as a central place to store information, that is relevant for all your content. Maybe you want to have a different header-image for each of your nodes - no problem. Through the triggered events you can easily modify the backend-forms or hook into the process of saving the nodes into the database.

Future plans

  • This module is currently written for ZF2, however I want to make it compatible with ZF3. Therefore I will probably create another branch.
  • The composer.json of this module doesn't really list the correct requirements. If you install the whole ZF2, everything should be fine. However in fact you only need certain components.
  • Maybe I will put some efforts in translating this module into german. Now it's english, however you can easily call your own translations, if available.


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