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SensioLabsInsight Maintainability

Polyfony is an intuitive, light and powerful PHP micro-framework.


Inspired by Symfony and Laravel but tailored to favour an inclination towards extreme simplicity and efficiency.
Compared to major PHP frameworks, Polyfony covers 95%+ of what we need most of the time, and does so using a fragment of the ressources, space, configuration files and dependencies required by major frameworks.
It features routing, bundles, controllers, profiler, views, ORM, tests, caches, locales, events, authentication, environments, form helper, CLI helper... and extensibility via composer.

Footprint of an Hello World

  • ≤ 300 Ko of disk space (35% of comment lines)
  • ≤ 400 Ko of RAM
  • ≤ 2.5 ms (cold)


You need a POSIX compatible system (Linux/MacOS/xBSD), PHP >= 7.4 with ext-pdo, ext-sqlite3, ext-mbstring, ext-msgpack and a rewrite module for your webserver.


If you are considering using this framework instead of a major and well supported framework such as Laravel, there is something very wrong with your decision making process and/or project assesment.

In almost every case, using mainstream framework would be a better choice.


To download & preconfigure the framework in your-project-folder
composer create-project --stability=dev polyfony-inc/polyfony your-project-folder

--stability=dev is mandatory since we don't publish releases yet Pretty much all the dependencies that get installed by composer are only required by PHPUnit.

NginX configuration
root /var/www/your-project-folder/Public
location / {
	try_files $uri $uri/ /index.php?$query_string;
LigHTTPd configuration
server.document-root 	= "/var/www/your-project-folder/Public/"
url.rewrite-once 		= ("^(?!/Assets/).*" => "/?")
Apache configuration
DocumentRoot "/var/www/your-project-folder/Public/"

Almost no learning required

This file should be enough to get you started, you can also browse the Private/Bundles/Demo/ bundle and browse the Framework's source code. As the framework classes are static, everything is always available, everywhere thru simple and natural naming.

The code bellow assumes you are prefixing the Polyfony namespace before each call.


// retrieve an url parameter

// retrieve a posted field named `search_expression`

// retrieve a posted file

// retrieve a request header

// retrieve the user agent

// check if the method is post (returns a boolean)

// check if the request is done using ajax (returns a boolean)

// check if the request is done thru TLS/SSL (returns a boolean)

// check if the request is from the command line (returns a boolean)


Polyfony provides self-aware entities, in a similar way to an ActiveRecord (RubyOnRails) or an Eloquent object.

Examples bellow assume a table named Pages exists in the database. The Models\Pages file has the following minimum amount of code.

namespace Models;
class Pages extends \Polyfony\Entity {}
// Retrieve a database entity by its ID, here, the id 67
$webpage = new Pages(67);

// Retrieve another database entity by its `url` column
$webpage = new Pages(['url'=>'/my-awesome-vegan-burger-recipe/']);

// Retrieve a single Entity by its ID and generate an input to change its title property, with a custom css class
// note that any html in the title field will be escaped in the <input> to prevent XSS
// returns <input type="etextmail" name="Pages[title]" value="My awesome Vegan burger recipe is so yummy" />
(new Pages(67))
	->input('title', ['class'=>'form-control']);

// Create an new page, populate and save it
(new Pages)
		'url'				=> '/veganaise-c-est-comme-de-la-mayonnaise-mais-vegan/',
		'title'				=> 'I\'m running out of ideas...',
		'description'		=> 'Meta descriptions get less and less important with Google\'s newest algorithms',
		'creation_date'		=> '18/04/1995', // this gets converted to a unixepoch automagically
		'modification_date'	=> time(), 
		'contents'			=> 'Meh...',
		'categories_array'	=> ['Cooking', 'Organic'], // this get's saved as json automagically
		'id_creator'		=> Security::getAccount()->get('id') // assuming you are logged in

// Alternatively, you can also create an entity this way
	'url'		=>'...',
	'title'		=>'...',
	// more columns and values...

// Retrieve the `title` and `id` of 5 pages that have the `Organic` category, 
// that have been modified in the last week, 
// and that have been created by user's id 7.
$pages = Pages::_select(['title','id'])
	->whereGreaterThan('modification_date', time() - 7*24*3600)


->where()			// == $value
->whereNot()			// <> $value
->whereBetween()		// BETWEEN $min_value AND $max_value
->whereMatch()			// MATCH column AGAINST $value
->whereContains()		// % $value %
->whereEndsWith()		// % $value
->whereStartsWith() 		// $value %
->whereNotEmpty() 		// <> '' and NOT NULL
->whereEmpty() 			// '' or NULL
->whereNotNull() 		// NOT NULL
->whereNull() 			// NULL
->whereGreaterThan() 		// < $value
->whereLessThan() 		// > $value


->orderBy()				// associative array ('column'=>'ASC')
->limitTo()				// $start, $end
->groupBy()				// ?
->first()				// return the first Entity instead of an array of Entities

Magic columns

  • Columns ending with _date, _on, _at will be converted from DD/MM/YYYY to a timestamp and vice-versa
  • Columns ending with _datetime will be converted from DD/MM/YYYY HH:mm to a timestamp and vice-versa
  • Columns ending with _array will be converted and stored as json, then restored to their original type
  • Columns ending with _size will be converted from bytes to human readable size
Setters Stored as Getters var_dump
->set(['creation_date'=>'01/01/2018']) 1514808000 ->get('creation_date') string '01/01/2018'
->set(['creation_at'=>'01/01/2018']) 1514808000 ->get('creation_at', true) string '1514808000'
->set(['creation_on'=>'1514808000']) 1514808000 ->get('creation_on') string '01/01/2018'
->set(['creation_datetime'=>'1514808000']) 1514808000 ->get('creation_datetime') string '01/01/2018 12:00'
->set(['products_array'=>['apple','peach']]) ["apple","peach"] ->get('products_array') array ['apple','peach']
->set(['picture_size'=>'24938']) 24938 ->get('picture_size') string '24.4 Ko'
->set(['picture_size'=>'24938']) 24938 ->get('picture_size',true) string '24938'

You add easily add elements to the end of an _array column. Assuming you have a Process object/table, which has a events_array attribute/column.

// create a new Process object
(new Process)
	// push an event into the events_array object
	->push('events_array', [
		// this array is arbitrary, you are free to push anything into the column
		'date'			=>time(),
		'is_important'	=>false,
		'message'		=>'Something just happened !'
	// your can also ommit the _array, the framework will find the right column
	->push('events', [
		// this array is arbitrary, you are free to push anything into the column
		'date'			=>time(),
		'is_important'	=>true,
		'message'		=>'Something dubious just occured !'

Entities accessors

Entites have basic ->set([$column=>$value]) and ->get($column, $bymypass_html_entities_protection=false) methods. In addition, there are

  • ->oset($associative_array, $columns_to_actualy_set) "OnlySet", certain columns
  • ->lget($column) "LocalizedGet", will attempt to use a locale for the returned value
  • ->tget($column, $length) "TruncatedGet", will truncate a returned value exceeding the length

XSS Protection

Invoking ->get() on any other columns will automatically escape special html symbols using PHP's FILTER_SANITIZE_FULL_SPECIAL_CHARS as to prevent XSS attacks. In situation where you actually want the raw data from the database, add true as a second parameter as such $object->get('column_name', true); to retrieve the data "as is". Calling Format::htmlSafe() anywhere in your code will provide you with the same escaping features.

Data validators

Data validation should be managed by the developer with symfony/validator, respect/validation, wixel/gump, or similar packages. That being said, there is a very basic (and optional) built-in validator, to prevent corrupted data from entering the database while manipulating objects.

To enforce it, declare a VALIDATORS constant array in your model, each key being a column, and each value being a regex, an array of allowed values or a standard PHP filter name (ex. FILTER_VALIDATE_IP).

  • Example
Models\Accounts extends Polyfony\Security\Accounts {
// Normal model classes extend Polyfony\Entity. 
// Accounts extends an intermediate (but transparent) class that adds authentication logic.

	const ID_LEVEL = [
		0		=>'Admin',
		5		=>'Privileged User',
		10		=>'Simple User',

	const IS_ENABLED = [
		0	=>'No',
		1	=>'Yes'

	const VALIDATORS = [

		// using PHP's built in validators
		'login'					=>FILTER_VALIDATE_EMAIL, 
		'last_login_origin'		=>FILTER_VALIDATE_IP,
		'last_failure_origin'	=>FILTER_VALIDATE_IP,

		// using arrays
		'id_level'	=>self::ID_LEVEL


The validation occurs when ->set() is invoked and will throw exceptions.

Note that you don't have to include NULL or EMPTY values in your validators to allow them. NULL/NOT NULL are to be configured in your database, so that the framework knows which column can, and cannot be null.

Please be aware that doing a batch ->update (aka : not using distinct objects/Entities) on a table will circumvent those validators. This will get fixed in a later version.

Data filtering

Data filtering and sanitizing can be used in addition or instead of data validators. While validators throw exception when invalid data is encountered, data filters will clean up the data, so that it matches the expected nature of said data.

To enforce data filtering, declare a FILTERS constant array in your model, each key being a column, and each value being a filter name, or an array of filters names that will be applied one after the other.

  • Example
// an imaginary group model, that represent a group of people
Models\Groups extends Polyfony\Entity {

	const FILTERS = [
		// replaces , with a dot and removes everything except 0-9 + - .
		'group_monthly_allowance'	=> 'numeric', 
		// trim spaces, removes any special chars and capitalize each words
		'group_name'				=> ['trim','text','ucwords'], 
		// removes any special chars and capitalize each words
		'group_manager_name'		=> ['text','strtoupper'], 
		// cleanup an email address
		'group_manager_email'		=> 'email' 


The filtering occurs when ->set() is invoked, and after the validations (if any).

List of available filters
Filter name What that filter does
strtoupper applies mb_strtoupper()
strtolower applies mb_strtolower()
ucfirst applies ucfirst()
ucwords applies ucwords()
trim applies trim()
numeric replaces coma with dot then applies FILTER_SANITIZE_NUMBER_FLOAT
phone removes anything but 0 to 9 the plus sign and parenthesis
text replaces ' with ’ then removes < > & " \ /
name removes anything but letters, space and ’
slug applies Polyfony/Format::slug()
length{4-4096} applies mb_substr()
capslock{30,50,70} applies ucfirst(mb_strtolower()) if the uppercase ratio exceeds XX %

The capslock30, capslock50 and capslock70 don't affect the data if it has a low enough uppercase ratio. This filter allows for nicer and cleaner databases, it has been designed for older people who enjoy the FUCK YEAH CAPS LOCK !! lifestyle.

An added benefit of using model's filters is that your inputs and textarea automatically get the right html attributes and types.

Check out the following Model, View and HTML output.

class User extends Polyfony\Entity {
	const FILTERS = [
<?= (new Models\Users->input('user_login')); ?>
<input name="Users[user_login]" type="email" maxlength="128" value="" />

Your input also gets a required="required" attribute if the column cannot be null. This is deduced from the database schema.

Please be aware that doing a batch ->update (aka : not using distinct objects/Entities) on a table will circumvent those validators. This will get fixed in a later version.

Data auto-population

The framework will look for some common columns and try to populate them with either the unix epoch or the ID of the currently authenticated user.

Upon Entity creation : creation_by, creation_date, created_by, created_at, creation_datetime

Upon Entity modification : modification_by, modification_date, modified_by, modified_at


A route maps an URL to an Action, which resides in a Controller, which resides in a Bundle
An Action is a method, a Controller is a class, a Bundle is a folder. Routes are to be declared in each bundle's Loader directory, in a file called Route.php

Example : Private/Bundles/{BundleName}/Loader/Route.php

Routes can accept a number of parameters, and lack thereof
  • Router::map('/admin/:what/:id/', 'Bundle/Controller@{what}').
  • Router::map('/url/', 'Bundle/Controller@action').
The action can
  • be a parameter of the url (as with the first example. The action would be the 2nd parameter {what})
  • be ommited. In that case an ->index() is called. If it doesn't exist, ->default() will be called, if it doesn't exist an exception is thrown.

Note that as an additional safety measure, Actions can only contain alphanumerical characters, -, _ and ..

Before calling the desired action a ->before() method will be called on the controller. You can declare one, or ommit it.
after the desired action has been be called, a ->after() method will be called on the controller. You can declare one, or ommit it.

  • The following route will match a GET request to /about-us/
Router::get('/about-us/', 'Pages/Static@aboutUs');

It will call Private/Bundles/Pages/Controllers/Static.php->aboutUs();

  • The following route will match a request of any method (GET,POST...) to /admin/{edit,update,delete,create}/ and /admin/
Router::map('/admin/:section/:id/', 'Admin/Main@{section}')
			// section must be one of the following four
			// though you can ommit this, a wrong section value will trigger a defaultAction() on the controller
			// which means an exception if you have not declared it.
			// id has to be a numeric value
			// id can't be 0

It will call Private/Bundles/Admin/Controllers/Main.php->{section}();

Route can also be generated dynamically, over database iterations.

// assuming you have a Pages table containing, well, pages. 
// those would have an "url" column that define the absolute url of the page.
// you should replace the _select with a cachable method in the model though.
foreach(Pages::_select(['url'])->execute() as $page) {

	// map that url to a single "Pages" controller 
	// that resides in a "Site" bundle


then, in Bundles/Site/Controllers/Pages.php

class PagesController extends Controller {

	public function viewAction() {

		// retrieve your webpage from the database
		// using not its id, but its url column value !
		$page = new Pages(['url'=>Request::getUrl()])

		// maybe set the title and description using that database object
				'title'			=>$page->get('title'),
				'description'	=>$page->get('description')

		// and pass your variables to the view
		$this->view('Pages/FromTheDatabase', [
			'title'		=>$page->get('title'),
			'contents'	=>$page->get('contents')


URL Parameters constraints
  • "in_array" => [allowed values]
  • "!in_array" => [disalowed values]
  • "preg_match" => "regex-to-match"
  • "!preg_match" => "regex-not-to-match"
  • "is_numeric"
  • "!is_numeric" If multiple constraints are declared, they all have to match.
Redirects declaration
  • The following will redirect from /some-old-url/ to /the-new-url/ using a 301 status code.
Router::redirect('/some-old-url/', '/the-new-url/', [$status_code=301]);

Those are static redirections, not rewrite rules. They cannot include dynamic parameters.

URL Parameters signing

Sometimes, you may want to share a link with someone who doesn't have an account on your software. You may not want to bother those people with the requirements of having an account. In those cases, signing the url parameters and passing the hash along is a good way of securing an URL. The generated URL will be unique and unpredictable.

To require a route to be signed, apply the ->sign() method to your route declaration.

// the associated signed URL can be sent by email
// the client would not have to log in to track their order, how comfortable

To get a signed URL, use the Router::reverse() method, the generated URL will automatically be signed.

// this will generate an URL looking like this 
	true, 	// force TLS
	true 	// include domain name

You can customize the name of the hash parameter in Config.ini then [router] then signing_parameter_name = 'url_parameters_hash', so that it doesn't conflict with your named parameters.


Throttling is by default based on the route name and the remote address (IP), you therefor must name your routes. The mechanisms used is Leaky Bucket.

To throttle a route

)->throttle(2, 3600); // enforces a limit of 2 requests every 3600 minutes (one hour, leaky bucket)

To throttle manually (in a controller)

// you can use the method enforce (this limits to 5 per hour)
Throttle::enforce(5, 3600);

// method shortcuts (this limits to 2 per minute)

// and even define your own keys (here, the lookup table will use a hash of id_client+IP instead of the IP address + route name)

When someone is being throttle, a 403 Exception is thrown with the message You are being rate-limited. Note that

  • new hits while being rate-limited will not extend a lock
  • there is not burst support
  • the backend used is APCu for performance and DoS safety reasons


Environments characterize a context of execution, with their own set of variables. Two environments exist in Polyfony

  • Dev, the development environment (this is where your coding occurs, most likely on your local developement server, or your own computer),
  • Prod, the production environment (also referred to as Live).

Variables that are common to both environments should be put in the main configuration file Private/Config/Config.ini The environment detection can be based on either :

  • the domain name
  • the port.

You can chose the detection method in Config.ini

detection_method = "domain" ; or "port"

Depending on the detected environment, either

  • Private/Config/Dev.ini or
  • Private/Config/Prod.ini will overload/merge with the main Config.ini

Contrary to many frameworks, your development application folder and production folder are strictly identical. You do not need to use different .env files on your production server.

Bellow is a sample Dev.ini with its development domain

domain =
port = 80
And a sample Prod.ini with its production domain

The framework falls back to production if neither domain or port are matched


domain =
port 80

minify = 1
compress = 1
cache = 1
pack_js = 1
pack_css = 1

Default configurations files with ready-to-go settings are put in place by composer during installation

You will need to modify your /etc/hosts file to point to or modify your local DNS server.

To retrieve configurations values (from the merged configurations files)
// retrieve the whole 'response' group

// retrieve only a key from that group
Config::get('response', 'minify');

Having distinct configuration files allows you to :

  • set a bypass email to catch all emails sent in development environment
  • enable compression, obfuscation/minifying and caching only in production
  • show the profiler in development (and even, in the early production stage if needed)
  • use different database configuration
  • harden security parameters in production while allowing softer settings during local tests
  • etc.


The security is based around on a common email/password couple. Passwords are strongly hashed and salted before storage in the database. The hash algorithm can be tweaked using the algo (default is sha512) and salt parameters.

In addition, two mechanisms tighten the security :

  • a throttling mechanism preventing bruteforce attacks. It can be tweaked using forcing_timeframe and forcing_maximum_attempts parameters.
  • an anti cookie-theft mechanism, checking that the used that initially logged in is still the same one. Even if he/she has the correct session cookie in his/her possession. This can be disabled by changing the enable_signature_verification parameter (default is 1 - enabled)

You can disable the cookie theft protection on a per-request basis. By chaging the configuration on the fly Config::set('security','enable_signature_verification', 0) which can be useful in very specific cases

To secure a page (require a user to be logged in)

Users can have any number of roles AccountsRoles and permissions AccountsPermissions directly assigned to them. Roles themselves can have permissions assigned to them. Users will inherit permissions from their roles. Permissions must be grouped into at least one logical group AccountsPermissionsGroups.

Failure to authenticate will throw an exception, and redirect to Private/Config/Config.ini -> [router] -> login_route = ""

If a page or action requires a specific permission
Security::denyUnlessHasPermission('permission_name or permission_id or permission entity');

Failure to comply with those requirements will throw an exception, but won't redirect the user anywhere.

To check manually for credentials
		$permission_id // or permission_name or permission entity
		$role_id // // or role_name or role entity


Set markers arounds heavy code blocks to estimate the time and memory impact of that block.


If the Config::get('profiler', 'enable') if set to true (1) and your Response is of type html, you will see a nice bar at the bottom of the page, with lots of useful informations. That bar depends on bootstrap 4 CSS and JS. Be sure to add those to your assets to enjoy the bull benefits of the Profiler. By default, some markers are placed in key places (around every Database queries, around Controller forwarding...).

If your Response is of type json, then the Profiler ìnformations will be merged with your Response as an array.

Profiler Demo1

Profiler Demo2

Profiler Demo3


Locales are stored in csv files (tab + double-quotes), stored in each bundle in the Bundles/MyBundle/Locales/ folder. The files are parsed the first time you ask for a locale. The language is automatically detected using the browser's language, you can set it manually.

Retrieve a locale in the current language (auto-detection)
Retrieve a locale in a different languague
Locales::get($key, $language)
Set the language (it is memorized in a cookie for a month)


Exception are routed to a route named « exception » if any, otherwise exception are thrown normally. The status code is 500 by default, you can specify any HTTP status code. The cache is disabled by such a status code.

Throw new Exception($error_message, $http_status_code);


The response if preconfigured according to the Config.ini to render an full HTML page (body, header, metas,, stylesheets, etc.) You can alter the response type and parameters at runtime.

Anything that is common to all responses, you will find in Response. As links, scripts, and metas are specific to HTML Responses, those are set in the subnamespace Response\HTML

To redirect
Response::setRedirect($url [, $after_seconds=0])
to change the charset
to output a file inline
to download a file
Response::download('Myfilename.ext'[, $force_download=false])
to change the status code (to 400 Bad Request for example)

Doing that will prevent the response from being cached. Only 200 status can be cached.

to output plaintext
to output json
to add css files and headers links

You can also specify optional attributes, such as media


Or even set totaly different types of links, such as a favicon

		'rel'	=>'icon',
		'sizes'	=>'any',
		'type'	=>'image/svg+xml'
to add js files (local or remote)
	'Shared/myfile.js' // this will import directly from the Bundle/Shared/Assets/Js folder
to add a meta tag
to manually push and preload assets using HTTP/2 feature
	'/Assets/Css/Shared/common.css'	=>'style',
	'/Assets/Js/Shared/common.js'	=>'script',
to automatically push all assets declared to Response\HTML

Enable the parameter push_assets in the [response] section. This will push your assets before the DOM has been loaded and parsed. Making for quicker webpages loading.

To output a spreadsheet

You can either output

  • CSV
  • XLS (Requires phpoffice/spreadsheet)
  • XLSX (Requires phpoffice/spreadsheet)
Response::setType('xlsx'); // xls or csv
// Response::setContent(Models\Accounts::_select()->execute());

Note that arrays of objects from the database will automatically be converted to arrays.

In the case of CSV files

You can pass (optional) options thru the global configuration.

csv_delimiter = ','
csv_encloser = '"'

In the case of XLSX files

You can pass an (optional) compatibility option thru the global configuration.

office_2003_compatibility = 1
To cache the result of a reponse (all output type will be cached except file)

Note that cache has to be enabled in your ini configuration, posted Request are not cached, errors Response neither.


A cache hit will always use less than 400 Ko of RAM and execute much faster, under a millisecond on any decent server

The Response provides some headers by default Relative slowness of this example is due the the filesystem being NFS thru wifi
< HTTP/1.1 200 OK
< X-Powered-By: PHP
< Server: None of your business
< Content-Language: fr
< Content-type: text/html; charset=utf-8
< Content-Length: 11
< X-Memory-Usage: 436.9 Ko
< X-Execution-Time: 13.5 ms
The example bellow shows the same Hello World Response as above, but from the cache
< HTTP/1.1 200 OK
< X-Powered-By: PHP
< Server: None of your business
< Content-type: text/html; charset=utf-8
< Content-Encoding: gzip
< Content-Length: 31
< X-Footprint: 13.5 ms 436.9 Ko
< X-Environment: Prod
< Date: Mon, 19 Feb 2018 19:54:19 +0100
< Expires: Mon, 19 Feb 2	018 23:54:19 +0100
< X-Cache: hit
< X-Cache-Footprint: 1.2 ms 418.2 Ko


The Store interface looks like this
Store\Engine::put($variable, $value [, $overwrite = false]);
You can choose from different storage engines

The last one stores your key-value only for the time of the current request. Some of those engines have more capabilities than others, but all implement the basic interface and can store both variables, arrays, or raw data.

Bundle configurations

Storing some bundle specific data

Configurations that are specific to a bundle should be placed in Bundles/{MyBundle}/Loader/Config.php (ex. static list choices, etc.) Note that these configurations are merged with Config.ini + Dev.ini/Prod.ini so all your configs are available with one interface : Config::{get()/set()}

Config::set($group, $key, $value);
Retrieve values (whole bundle, or a subset)
Config::get($group, $key);


Emails are very simple to use and built over PHPMailer. They extend Entity object, so there are normal database entries that have a few more methods, and they can be sent !

(new Models\Emails)
		'charset'	=>'utf8', 			// (get its defaults from Config.ini)
		'format'	=>'text', 			// (get its defaults from Config.ini)
		'from_name'	=>'Me me me', 		// (get its defaults from Config.ini)
		'from_email'=>'', 	// (get its defaults from Config.ini)
		'subject'	=>'Hello !',
		'body'		=>'Hello again ?',
		'reply_to'	=>'',		// fake column
		'to'		=>'', 	// fake column
		'bcc'		=>'', 	// fake column
		'cc'		=>[ 					// fake column
	->send([bool $save=false])				// instead of ->send() you can ->save(), to send it later

An email that fails to send, but has ->send(true) will end up in the Emails table. You can send it later. Its creation_date column will be filled, but it will have an empty sending_date column, making it really easy to retry later.

(new Emails(267)) // assuming its id is 267

Even though ->save() isn't explicitely called, nor is ->send(true), since the email has been retrieved from the database, upon sending, its sending_date column will be updated and it will be saved.

Using templates
(new Models\Emails)
		'subject'	=>'Another passionnating subject',
		'to'		=>[
			''	=>'Jack',
			''	=>'Jill'

		// set a PHP view, that is searched for in the "Emails" bundle.
		'view'		=>'OrderConfirmation' // fake column, .php is suffixed automatically
		// pass variables to the view, instead of directly setting the body
		'body'		=>[ 
			'firstname'		=>'Louis',
			'order_number'	=>'XH20210722',

		// pass any number of CSS files. They will get inlined into style="" attributes of your view
		'css'		=>[
			'OrderConfirmationStyling', // .css is suffixed automatically
	->isSent() ? do_something() : do_something_else();

Your Bundles/Emails/Views/OrderConfirmation.php view could look something like this

		Order Confirmation N° <?= $order_number; ?>

		Hi <?= $firstname; ?>, <br />
		We have received your order and will ship it as soon as possible.

	<table class="products-table">
		<?php foreach($products as $product): ?>
					<?= $product->getName(); ?>
		<?php endforeach; ?>

Your Bundles/Emails/Assets/Css/OrderConfirmationStyling.css css could look something like this

body {
	background: #efefef;
h1 {
	font-size: 16px;
p {
	font-weight: bold;
table {
	padding: 25px;

And the sent email would look like this

<body style="background: #efefef">
	<h1 style="font-size: 16px;">
		Order Confirmation N° XH20210722

	<p style="font-weight: bold;">
		Hi Louis, <br />
		We have received your order and will ship it as soon as possible.

	<table style="padding: 25px;">
				F1 Steering Wheel signed by Louis Hamilton signed
				Driving shoes, size 43

Always pay serious attention to validate user inputs that are inserted into emails (or anywhere for that matter).


Create an HTML tag (similar to mootools' Element)
<?= Element('img',['src'=>'/img/demo.png'])->set('alt','test'); ?>
<img src="/img/demo.png" alt="test" />
Create an HTML element with an opening and a closing tag
$quote = new Element('quote',['text'=>'Assurément, les affaires humaines ne méritent pas le grand sérieux']);
<quote>Assurément, les affaires humaines ne méritent pas le grand sérieux<img src="/img/demo.png" alt="test" /></quote>

Setting value will escape its html so will with setting text.


Form helper allow you to build and preset form elements, ex.
<?= Form::input($name[, $value=null [, $options=[]]]); ?>
This will build a two element select (with the class form-control), and preset Peach.
<?= Form::select('sample', [] 0 => 'Apple', 1 => 'Peach' ], 1, ['class'=>'form-control']); ?>
This will build a select element with optgroups.

Note that optgroup are replaced by a matching locale (if any), and values are also replaced by matching locale (if any).

<?= Form::select('sample', [
		0 => 'Cheese',
		1 => 'Houmus',
		2 => 'Mango'
		3 => 'Dog',
		4 => 'Cow',
		5 => 'Lizard'
], 3); ?>
<select name="sample">
	<optgroup label="food">
		<option value="0">Cheese</option>
		<option value="1">Houmus</option>
		<option value="2">Mango</option>
	<optgroup label="not_food">
		<option value="3" selected="selected">Dog</option>
		<option value="4">Cow</option>
		<option value="5">Lizard</option>

Shortcuts are available from objects that extends the Entity class (ex: your Models).

retrieve an account from its id
<?= (new Accounts(1))
	->set('login', '')
	->input('login', ['data-validators'=>'required']); 
<input type="text" name="Accounts[login]" value="" data-validators="required"/>

List of available elements :

  • input
  • select
  • textarea
  • checkbox

Form elements general syntax is : $name, $value, $options when you get a form element from a Entity, the $name and $value are set automatically, only $options are available. The select elements is slighly different : $name, $list, $value, $options

To obtain, say, a password field, simply add this to your array of attributes : 'type'=>'password'

CRSF Protection

A CRSF Protection and double-submit guard is available.

In the middle of your html form (in a View)
<form action="" method="post">
<!-- more form here -->

<?= new Polyfony\Form\Token(); ?>

<!-- more form here -->
In your controller

That's it.

Instanciating a "Token" objet generates a unique token, stores it in the PHP SESSION and builds an html input element.
The static enforce method, checks if a request has been POSTed, and if so, if a token exists, and matches one stored in the session. Otherwise, throws an exception and redirects to the previous page.

Captcha Protection

A Captcha provider is available, it's a wrapper of gregwar/captcha.

In the middle of your html form (in a View)

Show the captcha image itself

<?= new Polyfony\Form\Captcha(
	5, // number of characters in the captcha (optional)
	150, // width of the captcha, in px (optional)
	40 // height of the captcha, in px (optional)
); ?>

Show an input to type the captcha in

<?= Polyfony\Form\Captcha::input([
	// html attributes (optional)
	'placeholder'=>'Type the captcha here'
]); ?>
In your controller

That's it.

Instanciating a "Captcha" objet generates a phrase, stores it in the PHP SESSION and builds a captcha image using gregwar/captcha builder.
The static enforce method, checks if a request has been POSTed, and if so, if a captcha value exists, and matches one stored in the session. Otherwise, throws an exception and redirects to the previous page. You can manually try/catch exception to avoid loosing what the user typed, in that case, use Captcha::enforce(true) to prevent automatic redirections.

Database structure

The framework has been extensively tested using SQLite, it may work with other engines, it defitively works without. Without, you'd just loose Security, the Emails storage feature, the Store\Database engine and the Logger's database feature.

The database's structure is available by dumping the SQLite Database Private/Storage/Database/Polyfony.db. The PDO driver can be changed to MySQL, Postgres or ODBC in Private/Config/Config.ini. There is no Query object support for Postgres and ODBC.


The framework exposes a Logger class, with the following static methods

  • debug(string $message, ?mixed $context) :void (level 0)
  • info(string $message, ?mixed $context) :void (level 1)
  • notice(string $message, ?mixed $context) :void (level 2)
  • warning(string $message, ?mixed $context) :void (level 3)
  • critial(string $message, ?mixed $context) :void (level 4)

The logs can be sent to a file, or to your database (see Config.ini [logger][type]). The minimum level to log is configurable (see Config.ini [logger][level]) by default, Dev environement is configured to log from the 0 level, Prod environment is configured to log from the 1 level. Critital level logs (4) can also be sent automatically via email (see Config.ini [logger][mail].

Logged message/objects/array are also automatically made available in the Profiler


Logger::notice('Something not too worrying just happened');
Logger::debug('Someone did something', $some_kind_of_object);
Logger::critical('Failed to contact remote API', $api_handler);

Updating the framework

To updade the framework, run this command from your project directory (beware of backward incompatible changes)

The first and last command allow you to preserve and restore your composer.json after the udpate

git stash
git pull
git stash apply

To updade the dependencies, run this command from your project directory

composer update

Deprecated, discontinued and renamed features

Previous Feature Status Replacement How to get it
Polyfony\HttpRequest() DISCONTINUED Curl\Curl() require php-curl-class/php-curl-class
Polyfony\Filesystem() DISCONTINUED Filesystem\Filesystem() require symfony/filesystem
Polyfony\Uploader() DISCONTINUED FileUpload\FileUpload() require gargron/fileupload
Polyfony\Validate() DISCONTINUED Validator\Validation() require symfony/validator
Polyfony\Thumnbail() DISCONTINUED Intervention\Image() require intervention/image
Polyfony\Notice() DISCONTINUED Bootstrap\Alert() require polyfony-inc/bootstrap
Polyfony\Keys() RENAMED Polyfony\Hashs() bundled with polyfony

Release history

Version Major change
2.0-alpha Major rewrite from 1.x new folder structure, routes syntax, new helpers, new configuration files, MVC architecture, database entries are instanciated as Entity objects.
2.0 Better ORM, Database entries now are instanciated as Models/{TableName} that inherit the Entity class
2.1 PHP 7.2 support, composer support, new debugging tools are introduced (Profiler), deprecation of old helpers
2.2 Old routes syntax have been dropped, redirections are now supported directly in routes declaration
2.3 XSS escaping as default for all Entity->get(), Filters are now supported on Entities, Entities Validators are enhanced
2.4 Query->first() used to return false when no result were found, it now returns null.
2.5 Query->get() shortcut for ->first()->execute(), enhanced Profiler, Console shortcut
2.6 Emails refactoring, Tests support via PHPUnit, Events support
3.0 New ACLs, PHP views and CSS inlining in emails, new helper accessors for Entities, HTTP/2 push support, discontinuation of HttpRequest, Filesystem and Uploader classes
3.1 New Routes signature feature, Keys renamed to Hashs, PHP 7.4+ required
4.0 PHP 8.0+ required, minor refactoring of some classes


Polyfony has been designed to be fast, no compromise (> 2000 req/s). If implementating a « convenience » tool/function into the framework was to cost a global bump in execution time, it is either implemented in a more efficient manner, or not implemented at all.


The codebase is small, straightforward and abundantly commented. It's audited using SensioInsight, CodeClimate, RIPS, and Sonar.

Coding Standard

Polyfony follows the PSR-0, PSR-1, PSR-4 coding standards. It does not respect PSR-2, as tabs are used for indentation.