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Version: 9.x

Software Architectural Patterns


The two most common architectures, used for building projects on top of Apiato are:

  • Porto (Route Request Controller Action Task Model Transformer).
  • MVC (Model View Controller). The Apiato MVC version is a little different from the standard MVC.

Porto is the Apiato recommended architecture for building scalable API's with Apiato. However, it also supports building API's using the popular MVC architecture (with a little modifications).

Apiato features are written using Porto, and can be used by any architecture.

Below you will see how you can use any of the architectures to build your project.


Porto Introduction

Porto is an architecture that consists of 2 layers the Containers layer and Ship layer.

The Container layer holds your application business logic code. Same like Modular, DDD and plugins architectures; Apiato allows separating the business logic into multiple folders called Containers while Ship layer holds the infrastructure code (your shared code between all Containers) you will rarely touch it anyway.

The Apiato features themselves are developed using the Porto Software Architectural Pattern. (Means the features provided in Apiato live in Containers).

Spending 15 minutes, reading the Porto Document before getting started, is a great investment of time.

The Containers Layer

Read about the Containers layer here

Remove a Container (default Containers)

Apiato comes with some default containers. All the containers are optional, and some of them contain essential features.

Let's say you don't want to use the built-in documentation generator feature of Apiato. To get rid of that feature you can simply delete the documentation container.

To remove a Container, simply delete the folder then run composer update to remove its dependencies.

Create a new Container

Option 1) Using the Code Generator:

php artisan apiato:container

Refer to the code generator page for more details.

Option 2) manually:
  1. Create a folder in the Containers folder.
  2. Start creating components and adding them in it.

(The Ship engine will auto load and register everything automatically for you).

For the auto-loading to work flawlessly you MUST adhere to the component's naming conventions and directories. So you need to refer to the documentation page of the component when creating it.

Container Conventions

  • Containers names SHOULD start with Capital. Use CamelCase to rename Containers.
  • Namespace should be the same as the container name, (if container name is "Printer" the namespace should be App\Containers\Printer).
  • Container MAY be named to anything however. A good practice is to name it to its most important Model name. Example: If the User Story is (User can create a Stores and Stores can have Items) then we you could have 3 Containers (User, Store and Item).

The Ship Layer

Read about the Ship layer here


MVC Introduction

Due to the popularity of MVC, and the fact that many developers don't have enough time to learn about new architectures. Apiato, supports the MVC architecture. That is 97% compatible with the laravel MVC.

Below you will learn how you can build your API on top of Apiato, using your previous knowledge of the Laravel MVC framework.

Differences between Standard MVC and Apiato's MVC

The Porto architecture, does not replace the MVC architecture, instead it extends it for good. So Models, Views, Routes and Controllers all still exist, but in different places with a strict set of responsibilities for each component class type.

Set up my Apiato MVC App

1) First get a fresh version of Apiato
2) Create the Application

If you open app/Containers/ you will see a list of Proto's Containers, each container provide some features for you. However, you don't need to modify them, whether you are using the Porto or MVC architecture. So forget about all these folders for now.

All we need is to create a new folder called Application (your MVC application, it's an alternative to the app folder on the root of the Laravel project). This folder will hold all your Models, Views, Routes, Controllers etc files.

3) Create route file

In Laravel, the routes files live in the routes/ folder on the root of the project but In Apiato MVC, the routes files should live in:

  • app/Containers/Application/UI/API/Routes/ (for API Routes)
  • app/Containers/Application/UI/WEB/Routes/ (for WEB Routes)

Create api.php at app/Containers/Application/UI/API/Routes/api.php "alternative to Laravel's routes/api.php" Create web.php at app/Containers/Application/UI/API/Routes/web.php "alternative to Laravel's routes/web.php"

In both files create all your endpoints as you would in Laravel.

NOTE: You must use $router-> instead of the facade Route:: in the route files.



// Use this `$router` variable
$router->get('/', function () {
return view('welcome');

// DO not use the `Route` facade
Route::get('/', function () {
return view('welcome');
4) Create Controller

In Laravel, the Controllers classes live in the app/Http/Controllers/ folder but In Apiato MVC, the Controller classes should live in:

  • app/Containers/Application/UI/API/Controllers/Controller.php (To handle API Routes) MUST extend from App\Ship\Parents\Controllers\ApiController
  • app/Containers/Application/UI/WEB/Controllers/Controller.php (To handle WEB Routes) MUST extend from App\Ship\Parents\Controllers\WebController
5) Create Models

In Laravel, the Models classes live in the root of the app/ folder but In Apiato MVC, the Models classes should live in app/Containers/Application/Models.

All model must extend from App\Ship\Parents\Models\Model.

Note the User Model should remain in the User Container (app/Containers/User/Models/User.php), to keep all the features working without any modifications.

6) Create Views

In Laravel, the Views files live in the resources/views/ folder. In Apiato MVC, the Views files can live in that same directory or/and in this container folder app/Containers/Application/UI/WEB/Views/.

7) Create Transformers

In Laravel, the Transformers classes live in the app/Transformers/ folder but In Apiato MVC, the Transformers classes should live in app/Containers/Application/UI/API/Transformers/.

Transformers must extend from App\Ship\Parents\Transformers\Transformer.

8) Create Service Providers

In Laravel, the Service Providers classes live in the app/Providers/ folder but In Apiato MVC, the Service Providers classes can live in app/Containers/Application/Providers/, but also can live anywhere else.

If you want the Service Providers to be automatically loaded (without having to register it in the config/app.php file), rename your file to MainServiceProvider.php (full path app/Containers/Application/Providers/MainServiceProvider.php). Otherwise, you can create Service Providers anywhere and register them manually in Laravel.

9) Create Migrations

In Laravel, the Migrations classes live in the database/migrations/ folder on the root of the project. In Apiato MVC, the Migrations classes can live in that same directory or/and in this container folder app/Containers/Application/Data/Migrations/.

10) Create Seeds

In Laravel, the Seeds files live in the database/migrations/ folder on the root of the project. In Apiato MVC, the Seeds files can live in that same directory or/and in this container folder app/Containers/Application/Data/Seeders/.

More Classes

All other classes types work the same way, you can refer to the documentation for where to place them and what they should extend. For more details you can always get in touch with us on Slack.

How to use Apiato features

Apiato features are all provided as Actions & Tasks classes.

  • Each Action class has single function run which does one feature only.
  • Each Task class has single function run which does one job only (a tiny piece of the business logic).

You can use Actions/Tasks classes anyway you want:

  • Using Apiato Facade with Apiato caller style $user = \Apiato::call('Car@GetDriversAction', [$request->id]);
  • Using Apiato Facade with full class name $user = \Apiato::call(GetDriversAction::class, [$request->id]);
  • Using the helper call function with full class name $user = $this->call(GetDriversAction::class, [$request->id]);
  • Using the helper call function with Apiato caller style $user = $this->call('Car@GetDriversAction', [$request->id]);
  • Without Apiato involvement using plain PHP $user = $action = new GetDriversAction::class; $action->run($request->id);
  • Without Apiato involvement using plain Laravel IoC $user = \App::make(GetDriversAction::class)->run($request->id);

Be creative, at the end of the day it's a class with a function.