Developing software in the Real World

Testing my ZF1 app on PHP 7

Zend Framework 1 is still actively maintained and we fully intend to ensure that ZF1 works with no problems on PHP 7 when its released.

Now that PHP 7.0.0 Alpha 1 has been released, it’s time to find out if your Zend Framework 1 app works with it. The easiest way to do this is to use a virtual machine. My preference is Vagrant with Rasmus’ PHP7dev box.

A simple VM

I wanted to test a client’s ZF1 application with PHP 7, so I created this drop-dead simple Vagrantfile to will boot up a virtual machine running PHP7:

The nice thing about creating the provisioning script within the Vagrantfile itself is that we now have a one file solution, but it’s probably not the best solution for more complex set ups!

It’s slow to start because it re-compiles PHP 7 via the makephp 7 command. Note that the MySQL username and password is vagrant, so I set APPLICATION_ENV to php7dev, so that I can set the correct configuration in application.ini.

What I found

You must read the UPGRADING file as it tells you all the BC breaks. There’s a lot of nice tidy-ups and consistency improvements, which fortunately, haven’t affected us.

As we’ve been working on ensuring ZF1 works with PHP7, my client’s website worked with just one issue:

“Deprecated: Methods with the same name as their class will not be constructors in a future version of PHP;”

It turned out that we had an old version of the PHP Markdown library. So I upgraded it and this issue was sorted.

In summary

I’ve explored using Rasmus’ box before for unit testing and playing with extensions, but it also turned out that it’s the ideal starting point for running my web applications under PHP7 too! I was pleased to discover that so far, I’ve found nothing broken on my ZF1 applications.

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