Choosing a good PHP frameworks can help you develop complex Rich Internet Applications quickly, with a best practices oriented approach, and saving a lot of time reusing code snippets that are already available. There are a lot of interesting PHP frameworks you can choose for your next web project. Which framework you choose is really a personal decision. There is no one “best” framework on the market at the moment. Different frameworks are better for different types of projects, and for different developer.

Today we will focus on 7 secure, lightweight and easy to use PHP Frameworks.

Why Use a PHP Framework?

There are plenty of reasons to use a PHP Framework to build your websites. They can speed up development, make your sites more aesthetically pleasing, and they can help eliminate all those nasty tasks you have to deal with in every project. They can also be a steep learning curve to figure out which framework you should use (or if you should use one at all) and then how to use it. with more simplicity, Rapid development results in faster response to user bugs and requests.

  • 1. Enables PHP users at all levels to rapidly develop robust web applications.
  • 2. Frameworks help you cut out much of the repetitive tasks that normal custom programming would require.
  • 3. Almost every framework out there exclusively uses the MVC pattern. MVC, which stands for Model-View-Controller, helps you keep your data: the model, the logic: the controller and the user interface: the view, separate from each other. This in turn lets you write better, tighter code which ultimately results in better applications.

Below we’ve covered some of the best frameworks available today. There’s almost certainly one in the list below that will meet your needs. Experiment with different ones until you find the one that you’re most comfortable with and that can meet your needs efficiently.

1. CodeIgniter

CodeIgniter is a powerful, high-performance, open-source PHP framework that helps you author PHP applications rapidly. CodeIgniter is known for having a light footprint, there by reducing your server’s work.

CodeIgniter has an exciting online manual, a couple of helpful video tutorials and an active user forum.


Useful Resources for getting started with CodeIgniter

2. Kohana PHP

Kohana is a PHP 5 framework that uses the Model View Controller architectural pattern. Kohana is a fork of CodeIgniter intended to work only with PHP 5. Kohana is completely community driven. What makes Kohana favored by many developer is it’s super lightweight, it has no dependencies on PECL extensions or PEAR libraries. Large, monolithic libraries are avoided in favor of optimized solutions.


Useful Resources for getting started with Kohana

3. CakePHP

CakePHP might just be the most popular PHP framework around right now. Also uses the MVC framework. CakePHP is a little heavier than CodeIgniter and Kohana but has it has its own advantages: It has plenty of documentation which makes it fun and easy to understand, an interesting collection of helper classes developed by the community and having a well studied and structured approach on how to bake your cake.


Useful Resources for getting started with CakePHP

4. Symfony

Symfony is a full-stack framework that provides an architecture, components and tools for developers to build complex web applications faster. It uses most of the best practices of web development and integrates some great third-party libraries.

Symfony is a bit harder to use than CakePHP and CodeIgniter, requiring the use of the command-line to run configuration commands and to create applications.

It’s packed with powerful features, has thorough documentation, and is constantly improving thanks to its active and helpful community.


Useful Resources for getting started with Symfony

5. Zend

Zend framework is an extremely powerful framework with a slightly higher learning curve. Developed by Zend Technologies, Zend Framework is licensed under the New BSD license. It is along the same lines as CodeIgniter and CakePHP.

Extending the art & spirit of PHP, Zend Framework is based on simplicity, object-oriented best practices, corporate friendly licensing, and a rigorously tested agile codebase. Zend Framework is focused on building more secure, reliable, and modern Web 2.0 applications & web services, and consuming widely available APIs from leading vendors like Google, Amazon, Yahoo!.


Useful Resources for getting started with ZendFramework

The Akelos PHP Framework is a web application development platform based on the MVC (Model View Controller) design pattern. Based on good practices, it allows you to:
Write views using Ajax easily, Control requests and responses through a controller, Manage internationalized applications, Communicate models and the database using simple conventions.

6. Akelos

The Akelos PHP Framework is a web application development platform based on the MVC (Model View Controller) design pattern similar to Ruby on Rails. It aims at helping programmers build multilingual database-backed web applications and write less code, which allows for the creation of uniform, simple to understand scripts.

The Akelos PHP framework allows programmers to write views using Ajax, to control requests and responses through a controller, and to create and maintain internationalized applications. By using the conventions integrated in Akelos, developers can establish communication between the framework’s models and databases. In order to distribute standalone web applications Akelos demands only that PHP be installed on the server.


Useful Resources for getting started with Akelos

7. Yii framework

Here is a high-performance component-based PHP framework that is purely object-oriented. Everything in Yii is a self-contained component which can be configured, reused or extended easily. An optimal solution for developing large-scale Web applications. Yii supports MVC, DAO/ActiveRecord, I18N/L10N, caching, jQuery-based AJAX support, authentication and role-based access control, scaffolding, input validation, widgets, events, theming and Web services.

Yii has a smaller community than the CakePHP, Zend and CodeIgniter, it is however growing rapidly as the framework itself gains more attention. Yii offers a forum, a project hosted at Google Code and a documentation section that supports user comments.


Useful Resources for getting started with Yii

Author: Noura Yehia

Noura Yehia is a Web Designer, Blogger and Creative Thinker. Founder of a popular blog about web design, tutorials, resources and inspiration. If you’d like to connect with her, you can follow her on Twitter or at her blog Devsnippets.