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Version: 2022-05__Heidelbeere



  • Routing:
    • old controllers are mostly called through these kinds of URLs: /?page=general&sub=
    • Symfony does not support that kind of routing, so you will have to make up new REST-style URLs.
    • Check in - is there a rewrite related to the controller you want to refactor? Getting rid of those is a hard topic, because it involves synchronizing the MR with an MR in the images repository (for the dev environment), an MR in the ansible repository (for beta and production), and finally the deployment to beta and production. @_fridtjof_ is working towards getting rid of those. If you want to get involved, ask him for details on slack.
  • The sub parameter
    • does the controller use the sub parameter? Telltale signs are: $_GET['sub'], $request->query->get('sub') and $this->sub. In the first iteration of the FoodsharingController compatibility layer, there is no support for porting this yet.


  • Create a new Controller extending FoodsharingController in the same module as the old one

    • The name should be the same, except the suffix, which should be Controller instead of Control. This allows for keeping both the old and the new controller side by side. It also ensures Webpack does not break (Javascript files in the same Module are loaded based on the Controller name).
  • Port the code from the old controller to the new one for each action. This is the most individual step, so only the most common patterns are documented here:

Basic controller structure


namespace Foodsharing\Modules\Basket;

use Foodsharing\Lib\FoodsharingController;
use Symfony\Component\HttpFoundation\Response;
use Symfony\Component\Routing\Annotation\Route;

class ExampleController extends FoodsharingController
* @Route("/example/{id}", name="example_id", requirements={"id"="\d+"})
* @return Response
public function someAction($id): Response
// controller logic here
return $this->renderGlobal();

Notable differences:

  • FoodsharingController is extended instead of Control. It is intended as a compatibility layer for some of the features Control has. However, if there is a better way to do something using Symfony features, use it!
  • Routes are defined as annotations on the actions they lead to. If you worked on the REST API before, this should be quite familiar.
  • Parameters are part of the route, which can also have validation for them.
  • Parameters are direct arguments to the function, based on their name. Magic, isn't it?
  • Any response to the request must be returned as a Response object.

How do I port...?

Common code patterns and how to port them:

There is a constructor

Port: Usually, you should be able to carry over the constructor from the old controller as-is. You will have to pass through a ContainerInterface to the superclass though.

public function __construct(ContainerInterface $container /* other DI arguments */)

The controller (and/or its View class, if it has one) uses PageHelper everywhere and never calls Control::render

Explanation: PageHelper stores (mostly) HTML and other data for rendering. IndexController uses it to render the final website after the controller finishes.

Port: You can replicate this by doing the following at the end of your controller action:

return $this->renderGlobal();

The controller sets $g_template (this is only the case for MapControl or MessageControl)

Explanation: IndexController uses this global to determine the template to render. It is almost always set to the 'default' template.

Port: Instead of setting $g_template, just pass the value it would be set to as an argument to renderGlobal.

The controller takes a $response argument, and renders into it

Explanation: Some controllers already use a Response object.

Port: Create the response manually instead of taking it as a parameter, and explicitly return it.

public function someAction($id): Response
$response = new Response();
// do stuff with it as usual
return $response;

Finishing up

  • Change any URLs in other parts of the code to refer to the new Controller's URLs. If it's in a controller, generate the URL instead of hardcoding it: Generating URLs for other parts of the application (mainly JS) is not easily possible yet.

  • Keep the old controller to catch any requests using the old scheme, and rewrite it to forward to the new controller. Ideally (TODO), we should use metrics to figure out if old URLs are still requested (through bookmarks, or maybe even code missed while porting)

  • Finally, update any tests that expected the old URLs