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MongoRecord is a simple, easy to set-up Mongo ORM for PHP with ActiveRecord-like features.



MongoRecord is a PHP Mongo ORM layer built on top of the PHP Mongo PECL extension

MongoRecord is an extraction from online classifieds site Oodle. Oodle’s requirements for a manageable, easy to understand interface for dealing with the super-scalable Mongo datastore was the primary reason for MongoRecord. It was developed to use with PHP applications looking to add Mongo’s scaling capabilities while dealing with a nice abstraction layer.


  • Collection names by convention
  • Attributes by convention
  • Validations
  • Callbacks
  • Sorting, offsets, limits


  • PHP 5.3+
  • Mongo PECL


Extract the source files into a directory in your PHP library path.



Using MongoRecord is as simple as declaring classes that are extensions of the base ORM class.

class Person extends BaseMongoRecord
// initialize connection and database name
BaseMongoRecord::$connection = new Mongo();
BaseMongoRecord::$database = 'myapp';

This gives Person basic CRUD methods: save(), destroy(), findOne(), and find().

Every class automatically gets mapped to a Mongo collection by convention.


It is possible to set collection name manualy for child class.
You can do it by overriding class name as in example.

class PersonClassNameIsTooComplicated extends BaseMongoRecord
    protected static $collectionName = 'person';

Creating and Fetching

New records can be created by instantiating and saving:

$person = new Person();
$person->save(); // true or false depending on success
$person = Person::findOne();

You can also add options to how you want to find.

// find the first Person sorted by name, starting from the tenth
Person::find(array(), array('sort' => array('name' => 1), 'offset' => 10, 'limit' => 1));


Attributes can be set in bulk on the constructor, one-by-one, or chained.

$person = new Person(array('name' => 'Bob', 'description' => 'foobar'));
$person->save(); // returns true or false
Person::find(array('name' => 'Bob', 'gender' => 'Male')); // finds all male Bobs in the people collection.


Validations can be added based on the name of the attribute

class Person extends BaseMongoRecord
    public function validatesName($name)
        if ($name == 'Bob')
            return false;
            return true;
$person = new Person();
$person->save(); // fails!


Callbacks can be added for the following events:

  • beforeSave()
  • afterSave()
  • beforeValidation()
  • afterValidation()
  • beforeDestroy()
  • afterNew()

In a new, save, destroy cycle, the validations are called in the following order:

afterNew -> beforeValidation -> afterValidation -> beforeSave -> afterSave -> beforeDestroy

class Person extends BaseMongoRecord
    public function beforeSave()
         if ($this->getName() == 'Bob')

Differences between MongoRecord 1.x and 2.x

In 2.x the find() method is lazy and returns a MongoRecordIterator instead of a MongoRecord. The Iterator can be treated like an array and implements the PHP Iterator and Countable interfaces.

Because of this, 2.x is not backwards compatible with 1.x, since the result of find() is not guaranteed to behave the same. (e.g. $results[3] does not work with @find() in 2.×.) You may use findAll() instead, which exhibits the same behavior as find() in 1.×.


Thanks to Rasmus for the suggestion for lazy find().

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