Symfony is a PHP framework that’s well suited for large-scale or complex enterprise level projects. It is a quite stable framework. Symfony 3.1 (the current version) helps full stack developers create scalable websites that are flexible to changing business requirements. Symfony can work with some of the largest open source platforms such as PHPBB, Piwik, and Drupal.
Symfony comprises of a set of PHP components, an Application Framework, a Community and a Philosophy, and all of them work in tandem to help realize a common goal on the web. These are the reasons that make Symfony an advanced framework for web development.
Symfony Components are a set of decoupled and reusable PHP libraries. They are becoming the standard foundation on which the best PHP applications are built on. You can use any of these components in your own applications independently from the Symfony Framework.
Why should I use a framework?
A framework is not absolutely necessary: it is “just” one of the tools that is available to help you develop better and faster!
Better, because a framework provides you with the certainty that you are developing an application that is in full compliance with the business rules, that is structured, and that is both maintainable and upgradable.
Faster, because it allows developers to save time by re-using generic modules in order to focus on other areas. Without, however, ever being tied to the framework itself.
WHAT IS A FRAMEWORK AND WHY DO YOU NEED IT?
Before we jump into the discussion of Symfony, let’s clarify what a framework is.
A framework is a collection of universal, reusable programs that accomplish particular tasks to facilitate the development of software applications.
Metaphorically, it is a skeleton, carcass or basement for a web application or website development. The same way as you buy an empty house and fill it with furniture, developers take a framework and fill it with modules of features.
Using a framework is not a must, but it is a good practice to make the coder’s life simpler.
The reasons to use a framework are:
- Faster development. You can save two or three days of work when reusing generic components that go out-of-box. The saved time can be dedicated to developing of specific features.
- Easier maintainability. Using a framework imposes a certain structure and common rules to follow. Thus, it won’t be a problem for a new developer or team to join the ongoing project.
- Fewer issues. The framework code is clear and proven which reduces the number of mistakes.
- Better security. The framework components are supported with timely upgrades and enhancement of security.
- There is probably no good answer which solution suits better for your project. You can read tons of researches and still do not receive a clear vision. Any tool can be equally good or bad depending on people who use it. When you make a choice, let the following idea lead you:
- A framework means nothing without a developer who is good in it. If you find an excellent specialist, it won’t really matter which framework to use as far as he/she is proficient in it.
GOOD REASONS FOR CHOOSING SYMFONY
Symfony was released in 2005 and has made a long way to win the reputation of the most mature and reliable PHP framework. It is the number 1 choice for the enterprise web applications. And here is why:
Symfony is one of the most feature-rich PHP frameworks. The two most outstanding technological benefits of Symfony that make it so awesome are Bundles and Components.
The components are generic features that reduce the routine tasks and allow developers to focus on specific business features. There are 30 helpful Symfony components that facilitate the development process. You can use components independently and add your own custom modules with no trouble to the architecture. Symfony components can also be used stand-alone in other frameworks (for ex., Laravel) or in plain PHP solutions.
Bundles and components help to eliminate strict dependencies in the architecture. The fewer dependencies you have, the easier it will be to make changes without risk of breaking other parts of the system. Thus, you can adapt the solution to any requirements and user scenarios to create a highly flexible application.
2. Company behind the technology
Symfony is one of few frameworks that are commercially supported. SensioLabs, the company-creator, and sponsor, actively contributes to its reputation. They provide official tutorials and certification. In the Company website, you will find a schedule of the upcoming conferences all over the world. This shows the scale and seriousness of their intentions and beliefs.
3. Proven reliability
Symfony has proven its reliability over time while many other frameworks failed. Many notable platforms as phpBB, Drupal, Magento, and eZ Publish use its components.