Development Tools

12 Top Free and Open Source PHP Web Frameworks

One of the types of software that’s important for a web developer is the web framework. A framework “is a code library that makes a developer’s life easier when building reliable, scalable, and maintainable web applications” by providing reusable code or extensions for common operations. By saving development time, developers can concentrate on application logic rather than mundane elements.

A web framework offers the developer a choice about how to solve a specific problem. By using a framework, a developer lets the framework control portions of their application. While it’s perfectly possible to code a web application without using a framework, it’s more practical to use one.

PHP has been at the helm of the web for many years. It’s an extremely popular, interpreted scripting language that is ideally suited for web development in part because it has an approachable syntax and supports different operating systems. This language powers millions of web sites on the net and is extremely well supported by its user community.

When it comes to web development, there are a wide range of PHP frameworks to choose. The choice depends on finding the right tool for the job at hand. Here’s our pick of the finest PHP web frameworks.

Best Free and Open Source PHP Web Frameworks

Let’s explore the 12 PHP web frameworks. For each program we have compiled its own portal page, a full description with an in-depth analysis of its features, together with links to relevant resources.

PHP Web Frameworks
LaravelWeb application framework with expressive, elegant syntax
PhalconHigh performance, full-stack PHP framework delivered as a C extension
CakePHPMVC rapid application development framework
CodeIgniterPowerful framework with a very small footprint
Nette FrameworkFamily of mature and stand-alone components for PHP 8
YiiHigh-performance component-based framework
LaminasEnterprise-ready PHP Framework and components
Fat-FreePowerful micro-framework to build dynamic and robust Web applications
SymfonyFull-stack framework, a library of cohesive classes
PHPixieModern component based PHP framework
KosevenObject oriented HMVC framework built using PHP 7
SilverStripeProgramming framework and content management system

Read our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. The collection covers all categories of software.

The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk. There are also fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.
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