Updating a phpBB 3.0 modification to an extension

Extension Structure

The most obvious change should be the location where the MODs / Extensions are stored. In phpBB 3.0 all files were put into the core’s root folder. In phpBB 3.1 a special directory for extensions has been created. It’s called ext/.

Directory

Each extension has its own directory. However, you must also use an additional vendor directory (with your author name or author-group name). In the case of my Newspage, the files will be in

phpBB/ext/nickvergessen/newspage/

There should not be a need to have files located outside of that directory. No matter which files, may it be styles, language or ACP module files. All of them should be moved into your extension’s directory:

new directory current directory
acp/*_module.php phpBB/includes/acp/
acp/*_info.php phpBB/includes/acp/info/
adm/style/ phpBB/adm/style/
config/
controller/ *.php
event/
language/ phpBB/language/
migrations/
styles/ phpBB/styles/

Newly added, additional directories have already been listed. Their use will be explained in the following paragraphs.

Important new files

There is a new file your extension needs in order to be recognised by the system. It’s called composer.json: it specifies the requirements of your extension as well as some author information. The layout is a simple json array, the keys should really explain enough.

Note

You must not change the type element.

In the require section you can also specify other extensions which are required in order to install this one. (Validation for this is not yet implemented, but should be in 3.3.0)

{
    "name": "nickvergessen/newspage",
    "type": "phpbb-extension",
    "description": "Adds a extra-page to the board where a switchable number of news are displayed. The text can be shorten to a certain number of chars. Also the Icons can be switched of (post icons, user icons)",
    "homepage": "https://github.com/nickvergessen/phpbb3-mod-newspage",
    "version": "1.1.0",
    "time": "2013-03-16",
    "license": "GPL-2.0",
    "authors": [
        {
            "name": "Joas Schilling",
            "email": "nickvergessen@gmx.de",
            "homepage": "http://www.flying-bits.org",
            "role": "Lead Developer"
        }
    ],
    "require": {
        "php": ">=5.3.3"
    },
    "extra": {
        "display-name": "phpBB 3.1 NV Newspage Extension",
        "soft-require": {
            "phpbb/phpbb": ">=3.1.0-RC2,<3.2.*@dev"
        }
    }
 }

The second new file is called ext.php. It can be used to extend the functionality while install/uninstalling your extension:

<?php
// ext/nickvergessen/newspage/ext.php

// this file is not really needed, when empty it can be ommitted
// however you can override the default methods and add custom
// installation logic

namespace nickvergessen\newspage;

class ext extends \phpbb\extension\base
{
}

Front-facing files, routes and services

While in 3.0 you just created a new file in the root directory of phpBB, you must use the new controller system in 3.1 for extensions. Your links will change from something like phpBB/newspage.php to phpBB/app.php/newspage. If the board has enabled url rewriting, your links will look a little nicer like phpBB/newspage.

In order to link a specific routing rule to your extension, you need to define the route in your extension’s config/routing.yml.

For an easy start to the Newspage, two rules are enough. The first rule is for the basic page, currently newspage.php. The second one is for the pagination, like newspage.php?start=5. The first rule sets a default page (1), while the second rule requires a second part of the url to be an integer.

# ext/nickvergessen/newspage/config/routing.yml
newspage_base_controller:
    pattern: /newspage
    defaults: { _controller: nickvergessen.newspage.controller:base, page: 1 }

newspage_page_controller:
    pattern: /newspage/{page}
    defaults: { _controller: nickvergessen.newspage.controller:base }
    requirements:
        page:  \d+

The string we define for _controller defines a service (nickvergessen.newspage.controller) and a method (base) of the class which is then called. Services are defined in your extensions config/services.yml. Services are instances of classes. Services are used, so there is only one instance of the class which is used all the time. You can also define the arguments for the constructor of your class. The example definition of the Newspage controller service would be something similar to:

# ext/nickvergessen/newspage/config/services.yml
services:
    nickvergessen.newspage.controller:
        class: nickvergessen\newspage\controller\main
        arguments:
            - '@auth'
            - '@cache'
            - '@config'
            - '@dbal.conn'
            - '@request'
            - '@template'
            - '@user'
            - '@controller.helper'
            - '%core.root_path%'
            - '%core.php_ext%'

Any service that is previously defined in your file, or in the file of the phpBB core phpBB/config/services.yml, can also be used as an argument, as well as some predefined strings (like core.root_path here).

Note

The classes from phpBB/ext/ are automatically loaded by their namespace and class names, whereby backslash ( \ ) represent directories. In this case the class nickvergessen\newspage\controller\main would be located in phpBB/ext/nickvergessen/newspage/controller/main.php

For more explanations about Routing and Services see our documentation.

In this example my controller/main.php would look like the following:

<?php
// ext/nickvergessen/newspage/controller/main.php

/**
 *
 * @package NV Newspage Extension
 * @copyright (c) 2013 nickvergessen
 * @license http://opensource.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.php GNU General Public License v2
 *
 */

namespace nickvergessen\newspage\controller;

class main
{
   /**
    * Constructor
    * NOTE: The parameters of this method must match in order and type with
    * the dependencies defined in the services.yml file for this service.
    *
    * @param \phpbb\config            $config    Config object
    * @param \phpbb\template          $template  Template object
    * @param \phpbb\user              $user      User object
    * @param \phpbb\controller\helper $helper    Controller helper object
    * @param string                   $root_path phpBB root path
    * @param string                   $php_ext   phpEx
    */
   public function __construct(\phpbb\config\config $config, \phpbb\template\template $template, \phpbb\user $user, \phpbb\controller\helper $helper, $root_path, $php_ext)
   {
       $this->config = $config;
       $this->template = $template;
       $this->user = $user;
       $this->helper = $helper;
       $this->root_path = $root_path;
       $this->php_ext = $php_ext;
   }

   /**
    * Base controller to be accessed with the URL /newspage/{page}
    * (where {page} is the placeholder for a value)
    *
    * @param int    $page    Page number taken from the URL
    * @return Symfony\Component\HttpFoundation\Response A Symfony Response object
    */
   public function base($page = 1)
   {
       /*
       * Do some magic here,
       * load your data and send it to the template.
       */

       /*
       * The render method takes up to three other arguments
       * @param    string        Name of the template file to display
       *                        Template files are searched for two places:
       *                        - phpBB/styles/<style_name>/template/
       *                        - phpBB/ext/<all_active_extensions>/styles/<style_name>/template/
       * @param    string        Page title
       * @param    int            Status code of the page (200 - OK [ default ], 403 - Unauthorised, 404 - Page not found, etc.)
       */
       return $this->helper->render('newspage_body.html');
   }
}

Note

The order of arguments in services.yml should match the order of arguments passed to the class constructor public function __construct(). Otherwise, an error will be thrown and the board will be broken if you try to enable the extension.

You can also have multiple different methods in one controller as well as having multiple controllers, in order to organise your code a bit better.

ACP Modules

This section also applies to MCP and UCP modules.

As mentioned before these files are also moved into your extensions directory. The info-file, currently located in phpBB/includes/acp/info/acp_newspage.php, is going to be ext/nickvergessen/newspage/acp/main_info.php and the module itself is moved from phpBB/includes/acp/acp_newspage.php to ext/nickvergessen/newspage/acp/main_module.php. In order to be able to automatically load the files by their class names we need to make some adjustments to the classes themselves.

As for the main_info.php we need to adjust the class name from acp_newspage_info to main_info and also change the value of 'filename' in the returned array.

<?php
// ext/nickvergessen/newspage/acp/main_info.php

/**
 *
 * @package NV Newspage Extension
 * @copyright (c) 2013 nickvergessen
 * @license http://opensource.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.php GNU General Public License v2
 *
 */

/**
* @ignore
*/
if (!defined('IN_PHPBB'))
{
   exit;
}

namespace nickvergessen\newspage\acp;

class main_info
{
   function module()
   {
       return array(
           'filename' => '\nickvergessen\newspage\acp\main_module',
           'title'    => 'ACP_NEWSPAGE_TITLE',
           'modes'    => array(
               'config_newspage' => array(
                   'title' => 'ACP_NEWSPAGE_CONFIG',
                   'auth'  => 'acl_a_board',
                   'cat'   => array('ACP_NEWSPAGE_TITLE')
               ),
           ),
       );
   }
}

In case of the module, just adjust the class name:

<?php
// ext/nickvergessen/newspage/acp/main_module.php

/**
 *
 * @package NV Newspage Extension
 * @copyright (c) 2013 nickvergessen
 * @license http://opensource.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.php GNU General Public License v2
 *
 */

/**
 * @ignore
 */
if (!defined('IN_PHPBB'))
{
   exit;
}

namespace nickvergessen\newspage\acp;

class main_module
{
   var $u_action;

   function main($id, $mode)
   {
       // Your magic stuff here
   }
}

Database Changes, UMIL replaced by Migrations

See also

For more documentation about migrations, see the Migrations API and Tutorial: Migrations documentation

Basically migrations do the same as your 3.0 UMIL files. It performs the database changes of your MOD/Extension. The biggest difference between migrations and UMIL is that while you had one file with one array in UMIL for all your changes, you can have multiple files in Migrations. You usually create a new migration file each time you need to introduce new database changes. But let’s have a look at the Newspage again.

$versions = array(
   '1.0.0'    => array(
       'config_add' => array(
           array('news_number', 5),
           array('news_forums', '0'),
           array('news_char_limit', 500),
           array('news_user_info', 1),
           array('news_post_buttons', 1),
       ),
       'module_add' => array(
           array('acp', 'ACP_CAT_DOT_MODS', 'NEWS'),

           array('acp', 'NEWS', array(
                   'module_basename'    => 'newspage',
                   'module_langname'    => 'NEWS_CONFIG',
                   'module_mode'        => 'overview',
                   'module_auth'        => 'acl_a_board',
               ),
           ),
       ),
   ),
   '1.0.1'    => array(
       'config_add' => array(
           array('news_pages', 1),
       ),
   ),
   '1.0.2'    => array(),
   '1.0.3' => array(
       'config_add' => array(
           array('news_attach_show', 1),
           array('news_cat_show', 1),
           array('news_archive_per_year', 1),
       ),
   ),
);

Schema Changes

The Newspage does not have any database schema changes, so I will use the Schema changes example from the Documentation. Basically you need to have two methods in your migration class file:

public function update_schema()

and

public function revert_schema()

whereby both methods return an array with the changes:

public function update_schema()
{
   return array(
       'add_columns'        => array(
           $this->table_prefix . 'groups'        => array(
               'group_teampage'    => array('UINT', 0, 'after' => 'group_legend'),
           ),
           $this->table_prefix . 'profile_fields'    => array(
               'field_show_on_pm'        => array('BOOL', 0),
           ),
       ),
       'change_columns'    => array(
           $this->table_prefix . 'groups'        => array(
               'group_legend'        => array('UINT', 0),
           ),
       ),
   );
}

public function revert_schema()
{
   return array(
       'drop_columns'        => array(
           $this->table_prefix . 'groups'        => array(
               'group_teampage',
           ),
           $this->table_prefix . 'profile_fields'    => array(
               'field_show_on_pm',
           ),
       ),
       'change_columns'    => array(
           $this->table_prefix . 'groups'        => array(
               'group_legend'        => array('BOOL', 0),
           ),
       ),
   );
}

The revert_schema() should thereby revert all changes made by the update_schema().

Data Changes

The data changes, like adding modules, permissions and configs, are provided with the update_data() function.

This function returns an array as well. The example for the 1.0.0 version update from the Newspage would look like the following:

public function update_data()
{
   return array(
       array('config.add', array('news_number', 5)),
       array('config.add', array('news_forums', '0')),
       array('config.add', array('news_char_limit', 500)),
       array('config.add', array('news_user_info', 1)),
       array('config.add', array('news_post_buttons', 1)),

       array('module.add', array(
           'acp',
           'ACP_CAT_DOT_MODS',
           'ACP_NEWSPAGE_TITLE'
       )),
       array('module.add', array(
           'acp',
           'ACP_NEWSPAGE_TITLE',
           array(
               'module_basename'    => '\nickvergessen\newspage\acp\main_module',
               'modes'                => array('config_newspage'),
           ),
       )),

       array('config.add', array('newspage_mod_version', '1.0.0')),
   );
}

More information about these data update tools can be found in Tools.

Dependencies and finishing up migrations

Now there are only two things your migration file still needs. The first thing is a check, which allows phpBB to see whether the migration is already installed, although it did not run yet (f.e. when updating from a 3.0 MOD to a 3.1 Extension).

The easiest way for this to check, could be the version of the MOD, but when you add columns to tables, you can also check whether they exist:

public function effectively_installed()
{
   return isset($this->config['newspage_mod_version']) && version_compare($this->config['newspage_mod_version'], '1.0.0', '>=');
}

As the migration files can have almost any name, phpBB might be unable to sort your migration files correctly. To avoid this problem, you can define a set of dependencies which must be installed before your migration can be installed. phpBB will try to install them, before installing your migration. If they can not be found or installed, your installation will fail as well. For the 1.0.0 migration I will only require phpBB’s 3.1.0-a1 migration:

static public function depends_on()
{
   return array('\phpbb\db\migration\data\v310\alpha1');
}

All further Newspage migrations can now require Newspage’s first migration file, and thus all will be also dependent on phpBB’s 3.1.0-a1 migration.

A complete file could look like this:

<?php
// ext/nickvergessen/newspage/migrations/v10x/release_1_0_0.php
/**
 *
 * @package migration
 * @copyright (c) 2013 phpBB Group
 * @license http://opensource.org/licenses/gpl-license.php GNU Public License v2
 *
 */

namespace nickvergessen\newspage\migrations\v10x;

class release_1_0_0 extends \phpbb\db\migration\migration
{
   public function effectively_installed()
   {
       return isset($this->config['newspage_mod_version']) && version_compare($this->config['newspage_mod_version'], '1.0.0', '>=');
   }

   static public function depends_on()
   {
       return array('phpbb_db_migration_data_310_dev');
   }

   public function update_data()
   {
       return array(
           array('config.add', array('news_number', 5)),
           array('config.add', array('news_forums', '0')),
           array('config.add', array('news_char_limit', 500)),
           array('config.add', array('news_user_info', 1)),
           array('config.add', array('news_post_buttons', 1)),

           array('module.add', array(
               'acp',
               'ACP_CAT_DOT_MODS',
               'ACP_NEWSPAGE_TITLE'
           )),
           array('module.add', array(
               'acp',
               'ACP_NEWSPAGE_TITLE',
               array(
                   'module_basename'    => '\nickvergessen\newspage\acp\main_module',
                   'modes'                => array('config_newspage'),
               ),
           )),

           array('config.add', array('newspage_mod_version', '1.0.0')),
       );
   }
}

Include extension’s language files

As the language files in your extension are not detected by $user->add_lang() any more, you need to use the $user->add_lang_ext() method. This method takes two arguments, the first one is the fullname of the extension (including the vendor) and the second one is the file name or array of file names. So in order to load the Newspage language file we call:

$user->add_lang_ext('nickvergessen/newspage', 'newspage');

to load the language file phpBB/ext/nickvergessen/newspage/language/en/newspage.php

File edits - Don’t edit! Use Events and Listeners!

As for the Newspage Modification, the only thing that is now missing from completion is the link in the header section, so you can start browsing the Newspage.

In order to do this, the template variable used to be defined in the page_header() function of phpBB along with an edit in the overall_header.html template. But this is not phpBB 3.0, so we don’t use file edits anymore and instead employ events instead. With events you can hook into several places and execute your code, without editing them.

php Events

So instead of adding

$template->assign_vars(array(
   'U_NEWSPAGE'    => append_sid($phpbb_root_path . 'app.' . $phpEx, 'controller=newspage/'),
));

to the page_header(), we put that into an event listener, which is then called everytime page_header() itself is called.

So we add the event/main_listener.php file to our extension, which implements a Symfony class:

<?php
// ext/nickvergessen/newspage/event/main_listener.php

/**
 *
 * @package NV Newspage Extension
 * @copyright (c) 2013 nickvergessen
 * @license http://opensource.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.php GNU General Public License v2
 *
 */

/**
 * @ignore
 */

if (!defined('IN_PHPBB'))
{
   exit;
}

namespace nickvergessen\newspage\event;

/**
 * Event listener
 */
use Symfony\Component\EventDispatcher\EventSubscriberInterface;

class main_listener implements EventSubscriberInterface
{
   /**
    * Instead of using "global $user;" in the function, we use dependencies again.
    */
   public function __construct(\phpbb\controller\helper $helper, \phpbb\template\template $template, \phpbb\user $user)
   {
       $this->helper = $helper;
       $this->template = $template;
       $this->user = $user;
   }
}

In the getSubscribedEvents() method we tell the system which events we want to subscribe our new custom functions to. In our case we want to subscribe to two events: the core.page_header event and the core.user_setup event (a full list of events can be found here):

static public function getSubscribedEvents()
{
    return array(
        'core.user_setup'    => 'load_language_on_setup',
        'core.page_header'   => 'add_page_header_link',
    );
}

Now we add the two functions which are called with each event:

public function load_language_on_setup($event)
{
    $lang_set_ext = $event['lang_set_ext'];
    $lang_set_ext[] = array(
        'ext_name' => 'nickvergessen/newspage',
        'lang_set' => 'newspage',
    );
    $event['lang_set_ext'] = $lang_set_ext;
}

public function add_page_header_link($event)
{
    // I use a second language file here, so I only load the strings global which are required globally.
    // This includes the name of the link, aswell as the ACP module names.
    $this->user->add_lang_ext('nickvergessen/newspage', 'newspage_global');

    $this->template->assign_vars(array(
        'U_NEWSPAGE'    => $this->helper->route('newspage_base_controller'),
    ));
}

As a last step we need to register the event listener to the system. This is done using the event.listener tag in the config/service.yml:

# ext/nickvergessen/newspage/config/service.yml
nickvergessen.newspage.listener:
    class: nickvergessen\newspage\event\main_listener
    arguments:
        - '@controller.helper'
        - '@template'
        - '@user'
    tags:
        - { name: event.listener }

After this is added, your listener gets called and we are done with the php-editing.

Again like with the controllers, you can have multiple listeners in the event/ directory, as well as subscribe to multiple events with one listener.

Template Event

Now the only thing left is adding the code to the html output. For templates you need one file per template event.

The filename includes the event name. In order to add the Newspage link next to the FAQ link, we need to use the 'overall_header_navigation_prepend' event (a full list of events can be found here).

So we add the styles/prosilver/template/event/overall_header_navigation_prepend_listener.html to our extensions directory and add our html code into it.

<li class="icon-newspage"><a href="{U_NEWSPAGE}">{L_NEWSPAGE}</a></li>

And that’s it. No file edits required for the template files as well.

Adding Events

There are already numerous events available. However, if your extension needs to make use of an event which is not yet in the phpBB code, you can request the event be added to the core by creating a ticket in the phpBB Bug Tracker and we will endeavour to include it in the next release.

Basics finished!

And that’s it, the 3.0 Modification was successfully converted into a 3.1 Extension.

Compatibility

In some cases the compatibility of functions and classes could not be kept, while increasing their power for 3.1. You can see a list of these in the Wiki-Article about PhpBB3.1