5

Noting these related questions (1 2 3) and these two wiki pages (1 2) and the psr-0 standard, I remain a bit lost about current best practice in CiviCRM extensions!

So if I have an extenstion org.goodfolk.magichtml

Would I put my classes in

org.goodfolk.magichtml/Civi/MagicHtml/

So in org.goodfolk.magichtml/Civi/MagicHtml/HtmlFlash.php I would have the following:

<?php namespace org.goodfolk.magichtml/MagicHtml; class HtmlFlash { public function squirmLeft() {}; public function squirmRight() {}; }

Is that correct?

or can it be simplified to:

org.goodfolk.magichtml/Civi/HtmlFlash.php:

<?php namespace org.goodfolk.magichtml; class HtmlFlash { public function squirmLeft() {}; public function squirmRight() {}; }

  • note I deliberately put multiword class and extension in the example as I'd like to clarity capitalization and underscore patterns too – ErichBSchulz Dec 27 '16 at 1:45
  • and proper handling html/HTML/Html (which also relates to SQL, API, PDF etc etc etc) – ErichBSchulz Dec 27 '16 at 1:58
4

The conventional approach

Generally, the safe play is to make a file like <myextension>/CRM/MyExtension/MyClass.php:

<?php
class CRM_MyExtension_MyClass { ...}

(Be sure to match the capitalization of files and classes.)

Most documentation and tooling is based on CRM_* conventions, and a handful of things in core (such as civicrm_payment_processor_type.class_name) make quirky assumptions which only work with CRM_* classes.

How it works: In civix-based extensions, the default hook_civicrm_config adds your extension to the include_path. The classloader CRM_Core_ClassLoader searches the include_path automatically for CRM_* classes.

Critique: In older PHP projects, it was common to automatically link the class-loading with the include_path, but in large codebases this can lead to a large number of file-system checks. Now-a-days many frameworks will reduce lookups by pre-generating some kind of map (namespaces<=>directories or classes<=>files).

The PSR-4 approach (Civi v4.7+)

PSR-4 is a more contemporary technique in which you explicitly map a directory to a namespace. Many PHP developers have been exposed to PSR-4 through composer.json. Civi v4.7 adds CRM_Extension_ClassLoader; with this, you can use info.xml to declare similar mappings:

<extension key="..." type="module">
  ...
  <classloader>
    <psr4 prefix="My\Namespace\" path="src" />
  </classloader>
  ...
</extension>

In this case, the file <myextension>/src/Foo.php would look like:

<?php
namespace My\Namespace;
class Foo { ... }

In terms of lookup performance and caching, this should be better than CRM_Core_ClassLoader. However, it doesn't have full parity with CRM_* in terms of documentation / tooling / testing.

Custom class loader

You should be able to register your own class-loaders -- e.g. just call spl_autoload_register(...) in your module's main PHP file (perhaps in hook_civicrm_config). If you do this, I suggest following a convention like PSR-0 or PSR-4.

Compared to the PSR-4/Civi v4.7 approach above:

  • Pro: Should be compatible with any version of Civi
  • Con: Requires more lines of code
  • Con: Has the same issue of negligible documentation / tooling / testing

PHPUnit Base Classes

There is an issue if you want to write a custom base-class for PHPUnit tests within an extension -- which is the topic of Does class autoloading not work in standalone phpunit testing?

  • Thanks Tim, so since I'm on 4.6 currently path of least resistance is The conventional approach then? There's no standard backport example for 4.6 laying about? – ErichBSchulz Dec 28 '16 at 5:55
  • sorry I know I could nut this out but if i do my own home grown I will exacerbate the "negligible documentation / tooling / testing" problem! – ErichBSchulz Dec 28 '16 at 6:15
0

In general, when developing extensions I would take a look at the existing ones authored by the core team or by heavily active contributors. To give some importance on my suggestion below I just checked widely used cms independent extensions available and landed at https://github.com/dlobo/org.civicrm.module.cividiscount.

Extensions that I wrote and most I know hold classes under <tld.domain.ext>/CRM/ExtensionName/ and follow php's naming conventions there. API methods are located under api/v3/ and named in api manner (classes reflecting api, methods reflecting actions).

  • Thanks @Neilo - I'm just wondering about best practice since php 5.3 became standard and introduced namespacing. (see the comments here that imply a new pattern but aren't clear on if it applies to extensions or not. – ErichBSchulz Dec 28 '16 at 3:03
  • Jesus, sorry! Reading the "When to use" column in the doc you linked I dare to say I'd know what to use in my extensions. But my suggestions wouldn't be more than hardly educated guesses. A question for more advanced people. – nielo Dec 29 '16 at 22:20

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