A lot of factors have to be taken in to consideration while choosing a PHP framework. Initially, the needs and requirements have to be considered before choosing a PHP framework. You will have to ask yourself a few questions that will help you make an informed decision.
Here are the questions that you will have to ask yourself prior to choosing a framework.
- Determine the purpose of your application. You might be willing to start an eCommerce business application or it can be a messaging platform or a directory. Determining the purpose of your application is important to choose whether you want to make use of a platform with databases and multiple servers that would enable faster connectivity or a framework that arrives with libraries and extensions to deal efficiently with credit card processing.
- Secondly, find out what kind of hosting environment is needed for your business. Check whether your business is going to deal with large information processing or shared hosting environments or a lightweight framework that is self-contained and highly portable.
- The next question to ask yourself would be how talented and skilled your developers are since these developers would be responsible for the building and maintaining of your application.
Now that you have answers for all the questions you had in mind, let's take you through some of the popular PHP frameworks and its features which would help you determine which of the PHP framework to choose from.
Coming back to CodeIgniter, it is an easy-to-use framework that is flexible and powerful enough to make use of. CodeIgniter is based on PHP5.2 + MVC Framework that are comprised of a great documentation and smaller footprint. You can get assistance regarding anything related to CodeIgniter PHP framework easily from libraries since CodeIgniter has a large community support as a PHP framework.
If you are planning to create small to medium web applications or a content site, then CodeIgniter is the most suitable framework for such applications. It is easier to learn and is among the few that are designed to be user-friendly. It is among the only one which can be learned quickly making it an ideal choice for beginner PHP developers.
Other few PHP frameworks to consider include Cake PHP and Zend Framework.
Cake PHP is among the oldest frameworks and is also among the most popular frameworks. Some of the key features of this framework include,
- Formidable framework
- Capable framework
- Plenty of support features available such as message boards and groups
- Lot of tutorials available for references
- Built-in tools available for unit testing
- Integration with web services is made possible using Feed Parsing
- Scaffolding is also possible for performing rapid prototyping
Zend framework best suits users who want to build enterprise-level applications that are complex and also is preferable if you have experienced developers within your organization.
Key highlights of Zend Framework
- Highly modular characteristics
- Enhanced built-in support for integration with existing web services framework, unit testing and localization etc
- Libraries can be extracted with ease for stand-alone uses
- Strong community support for Zend Framework
Best choice for large-scale applications