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Rector Training Step by Step

A. Theory

  • what Rector is (why it was created - story!)
  • how it works & what it uses (AST, nikic/php-parser, PHPStan)
  • how to configure it (rector.yaml)
  • simple to use!


  • show on 1 practical example
    • use coding standard
    • instant refactoring/upgrades
    • why keep manual and automated changes separated

Is it safe to Automatically Refactor?

(ask people)

  • the most common fears

    • will it break my code
    • how does is know the context (vs. coding standrards + regulars)
    • what will be the output
    • my code is too complicated/huge/ugly/old to automatically refactor
  • insure

    • driven by community
    • x contributors
    • used by big companies (Glami, Spaceflow, Entrydo any millions others but we don't have space for them here :)
    • runs on PHPStan
    • --dry-run
    • start with 1 rule

B. Practice

1. Install Rector

  1. clone this repository :check:
    git clone
  2. run composer install

2. First Changes

(2-3 general examples)

  • how to rename a class in whole project (with rector.yaml) - instant upgrade (we know what must be changed, e.g. PHP deprecations)
  • rename function (mt_rand()random_int())

3. More Complex Problems

  • instant refactoring (we have to figure out the result - now together!)

  • complete PHP 7.1 type declarations - return type, param type, @param array → @param int[]

  • how to get to PSR-4

    • theory (from what code)
    • practical (show it in example - class without namespace, 2 classes in one file, wrong namespace, underscored_namespace)

4. Your Real Problems

  • your own fist rule
  • @todo build from answers
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