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Yannick Mahe:
The Walking Dead the consequences of living with a legacy PHP framework
August 20, 2013 @ 13:51:21

Yannick Mahe has posted some thoughts (from personal experience) about living with a legacy framework and some of the consequences that come with it. In his case, it's a Symfony 1.0-based application that would require a complete rewrite to migrate even up to the Symfony 2.x range.

At our company, our main web app is based on Symfony 1.0, a PHP framework released in 2008. It was developed by a company called Sensio and open-sourced shortly after. It was a great framework when it came out, with all the good ideas from Ruby On Rails, CakePHP, etc. as well as great documentation, tutorials and a growing community.

[...] Since that framework came out, its subsequent versions, Symfony 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4 came out and died out. The 1.4 version came with a 3 year long term support promise from Sensio which ended in 2012. All the 1.X versions are based on the same overall architecture, and same principles. Sensio also released Symfony 2.0, 2.1, 2.2 and very recently, 2.3. which have a whole new architecture.

He talks about some reasons why they're not migrating (the risk involved, the product focus, etc) and some of the trials they did to see what kind of effort would be involved. He then puts some context around working with a legacy framework, pointing out that:

  • You can no longer rely on the community and time is lost figuring things out yourself
  • Documentation is harder to find
  • The ecosystem (ex. plugins) is no longer seeing new features or updates
  • The compatibility issues with newer versions of PHP
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Link: http://blog.yannickmahe.com/symfony/2013/08/19/the-walking-dead.html

Henrik Bjørnskov's Blog:
Symfony2 Using the validator symfony1 style
February 03, 2012 @ 11:15:01

In this quick new post to his blog Henrik Bjørnskov shows how to use the validators in Symfony2 in a more traditional Symfony 1 style for a form.

Two of the more complicated components in Symfony2 is the Form and Validator component. The Validator is created in such a way it "always" need an Domain Object with Constraints associated through metadata. This is explained in detail here. But there is another way. A way that resemble's the symfony1 forms. Where you could specify the validations directly in your form class.

Code is included in the post to show how to load in a few of the validators (like NotBlank, Email and Choice) and how to use them in the settings defined in the "getDefaultOptions" method.

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Joshua Thijssen's Blog:
Compatible code starting with symfony2
December 02, 2011 @ 09:22:42

In a new post to his blog, Joshua Thijssen documents some of his first steps into the world of the Symfony2 framework (as a developer who has lived mostly in a Zend Framework/CodeIgniter world). His post doesn't compare the frameworks, it's just his discovery along the way.

A friend of mine who is a big supporter of Symfony told me to give Symfony1 a shot. Off course I was skeptical since I knew less about symfony1 than I did on Zend_Tool. That, plus the fact we needed to autoload, bootstrap and get two frameworks up and running simultaneously. What could possibly go wrong! Conclusion: I've got my tool up and running about a 45 minutes later...

He talks about the process he went through to download, setup and configure the framework and start using a "task" to create a simple executable script. He also briefly compares Symfony1 to Symfony2, noting that SF2 is a bit more "out-out-of-the-box friendly" than SF1. The overall experience was a positive one, though. You can find out more about Symfony1 here and Symfony2 here.

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Mike Purcell's Blog:
Symfony - PHP - Possibly Forking 1.x so Invested Companies don't Lose Millions
July 01, 2011 @ 11:05:45

Mike Purcell has a recent post to his blog looking at the rumors of a Symfony 1.x fork and some of his own thoughts on the matter.

It's amazing that we are even having this type of discussion. We opted to use Symfony back in 0.x for some high traffic projects. [...] And now here we are on 1.4. Content and happy with the throughput the dev team is able to maintain. But now Symonfy says that 2.0 will be released and is completely different than 1.x? How is that fair to the companies, individuals, and hobbyists who have sunk time over the last four years ramping up to a point where we can take advantage of RAD (rapid app development) approach that Symfony provides?

He wonders if this same discussion will be being had years down the line when Symfony3 decides to come up on the horizon. Will there be such a major change in the architecture that developers, only a few years earlier making the major change to to Symfony2, will get burnt again?

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Symfony Blog:
Getting help on symfony1 or Symfony2
June 24, 2011 @ 09:02:02

On the Symfony blog Fabien Potencier has a new post talking about a change in the support structure for developers wanting to get help with either Symfony1 or Symfony2 - a split in the mailing list to help make things a bit easier to split out.

Now that Symfony2 is just around the corner, we need to better organize community support for both symfony1 and Symfony2. As more people start using Symfony2, the user mailing-list is becoming more and more difficult to follow. [...] After an opinionated discussion on the mailing-list, I've decided to create two new mailing-lists that are replacing the current users mailing-list: one for symfony1 and another one for Symfony2. The current mailing-list has been switched to the archive mode; all messages will remain browseable and searchable but new messages will be rejected.

If you're a current member of the "users" mailing list and want a similar experience, you'll need to subscribe to both. Otherwise, pick the one you like and watch your inbox fill up. This break up makes it easier for people to find messages specifically related to their version of choice without having to look for the "[Symfony2]" tag in the subject line.

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