Laravel vs Yii: Which one to choose for web app development?

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Table of Content

Laravel vs Yii: Which one to choose for web app development?

Laravel and Yii: Usefulness of PHP frameworks for the web development process

Laravel PHP framework

Artisan

Eloquent

Extensive database support

Blade template engine

PHP-Unit

Libraries

Laravel service container

Laravel Homestead

Laravel Valet

Strong security features

Extensive documentation

Yii Framework

Extensive database support

Standardized architecture and methods

Composer PHP dependency manager

Gii extension for automatic code generation

Support for third-party templating engines

Yii widgets

Security features and methods

Yii Skeleton

Well-written documentation

When Does It Make Sense to Use Yii over Laravel?

Conclusion

PHP claimed the title of most used back-end programming language for web development last year. It is fast, flexible, offers a wide range of web development tools, and yet, it is simple to use. This is one of the reasons why approximately 79% of the websites are built using the PHP programming language.

A large array of PHP frameworks like Laravel, Yii, Symfony, and more are available in the market that helps you create complex web applications as well as speed up the development process. And these are the most used frameworks. So obviously, the developers and business owners compare Laravel vs Yii more often to deduce which one from Yii and Laravel is more beneficial for your web project. Similarly, in this article, we will go over a few pointers that will help you gain a better understanding to make your decision of choosing one over the other frameworks for your web development project.

Laravel and Yii: Usefulness of PHP frameworks for the web development process

Laravel is an open-source framework that uses a model view controller (an MVC architecture) development pattern and so does Yii. Using them would not only accelerate the entire development process but also raise its level. However, the differences are seen majorly in their approach to web development.

On one hand, Laravel guides the PHP developers with a set of rules that enable them to code less and that too without any mess but with expressive syntax. And on the other hand, it also offers them enough freedom to create or edit any complicated functionalities to an existing solution.

Many companies out there prefer to use PHP based framework laravel just because it allows them to develop a website or a web app with complex and diverse features. It is indeed a leading PHP framework in The Entire Web, Top 1M Sites, Top 100K Sites, and in Top 10K Sites.

Yii has the advantage of its ready-to-use features which help web developers with rapid development and simple data manipulation. This framework is implemented around the world to create web apps that need quick standardized solutions or minimum business logic. Both frameworks, thanks to their benefits, are widely used in various industries worldwide.

Laravel PHP framework

Laravel is indeed one of the most popular and widely used PHP frameworks in the market. It is currently available in the latest 8.78 version released on January 4, 2022. A survey by JetBrains suggests that almost 67% of PHP developers use laravel for their web development projects. It renders them a set of powerful tools which strengthen their development capabilities. Next in Laravel vs Yii, we are going to discuss a few features of Laravel that influence web developers to prefer it over other PHP frameworks.

Artisan

It is a command-line interface tool that would allow the developers to automate all types of routine tasks. It will also help you build models and controllers quickly as well as configure several development-related tasks. Artisan tools are used to execute various types of development commands too.

Eloquent

It is an Object Relational Mapping System. The developers use it to interact simply and effectively with the database of an existing application. Apart from that, if you are using the built-in Eloquent ORM system then you can easily connect your PHp project with other ORM systems like Doctrine 2.

Extensive database support

The Laravel framework supports various types of databases including PostgreSQL, SQL Server, MySQL, SQLite, and more. It also helps the software developers integrate, mitigate or run these databases with relative ease.

Blade template engine

The blade is one of the most powerful templating engines. It comes by default with the Laravel PHp framework and it works in an MVC pattern with a view layer which is very simple yet enjoyable when used. The primary function of the Blade template engine is to compile and cache views before making any changes to them. This helps in eliminating any kind of overload in a web application.

PHP-Unit

This is used to conduct integrated unit tests for the existing apps or developed PHP solutions.

Libraries

The Laravel PHP package manager offers more than 15000 packages with a wide range of functionalities like views, routes, configuration, controllers, and more to alleviate the level of your software development work.

Laravel service container

It is a container that Laravel developers use to make sure that their web application works smoothly. It keeps their bindings together which allows the web developers to configure all class dependencies and services quickly. Using a service container, they can perform fast development along with quick dependency injections.

Laravel Homestead

Homestead is a virtual development environment provided by laravel. It is installed automatically as well as configures the webserver and other server-related softwares that exists in the developer’s system. They don’t need any type of lengthy infrastructure preparations to start building web applications.

Laravel Valet

It is another version of the laravel development environment for Mac users with the support of WordPress, Slim, Symfony, Zend, and CakePHP 3.

Strong security features

Laravel uses the latest technology trends to help web developers build and imply some robust security features like email verification, authentication, authorization, hashing, protection against CSRF attacks and SQL injection, encryption and password resets.

Extensive documentation

The Laravel framework provides very thorough documentation which is again supplemented by a video tutorial library called Laracast. More than 1500 videos are available in this library that teaches you how to work with or use this PHP framework. More importantly, Laravel.io has the support of a community with over 45000 users who are ready to help whenever a development-related challenge arises in laravel.

Yii Framework

This high-performance PHP framework was initially launched in 2008. And with time, the developers of the Yii (Yes, It Is!) framework have made successive upgrades with several releases by the year 2021. The latest version of this Yii framework is 2.0.43 which was launched in August 2021. For now, the creators of Yii are working on the third release. They say that it is a fast, secure, and efficient PHP framework. Flexible yet pragmatic. Works right out of the box. Has reasonable defaults.

The most awaited feature from its upcoming releases is the division of the framework into several useful packages. You just have to opt for the package that you want to execute for your project and run frequent updates. Apart from that, the upcoming version of Yii is expected to follow PSR standards which helps the Yii developers to improve the quality of their code as well as provide better compatibility with third-party libraries.

Referring to the study of JetBrains, Yii is the fifth most used PHP framework, and almost 6% of PHP developers use them for their web development project which is way lower than the Laravel numbers. So in this case of Laravel vs Yii, it’s a clean win for laravel. However, we will go through some of the most effective features of this PHP framework that tempt web developers to pick it for their project.

Extensive database support

Yii supports databases such as Oracle, MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQLite, and more. If Yii developers are working in MongoDB or Microsoft Bi then they can easily connect them using third-party packages.

Standardized architecture and methods

Yii too is the MVC framework so it follows the same design patterns and common coding practices. It helps you with managing your code in a clear structure that is also simple to maintain.

Composer PHP dependency manager

Any app needs some dependency packages to run. This manager will help you install and manage PHP dependencies.

Gii extension for automatic code generation

This extension will help the developers to create forms, CRUD operations, models, modules, and more quickly as it will automatically create the code for you. It is very beneficial for non-tech personnel. It also helps in accelerating the development process.

Support for third-party templating engines

Yii doesn’t have any built-in or by default template engine like laravel. But you can integrate it with Smarty, Twig, or other solutions to use one.

Yii widgets

Yii comes in with some in-built widgets that allow the developers to reuse some selected functions to display the content of the web application in different forms.

Security features and methods

The security methods and features implemented by Yii include encryption, authorization, authentication, XSS, Bcrypt password hashing, cross-site scripting attacks protection, and SQL injection.

Yii Skeleton

The best thing about Yii is that it not only provides some ready-to-use functionalities but also offers a ready-to-use app template. You can use these templates to build different types of applications by making simple tweaks or modifications. The base structure of your project is included in these templates with various configurations. It is used to build REST API apps, applications with divided back-end and front-end functionalities, and more right from the scratch.

Well-written documentation

Like Laravel, Yii also renders many online tutorials. And it’s not just that, the creators of the Yii framework also provide live support through Slack. Apart from that, being one of the most used PHP frameworks, Yii also has large community support where developers are ready to share tips or offer guidance on how to work with Yii most effectively.

When Does It Make Sense to Use Yii over Laravel?

There is no doubt that from Yii and Laravel, the latter is the best PHP framework. Most of the companies including the ones from Fortune 500 prefer to use it to build their web applications. Laravel provides everything you need to develop secure, reliable, well-tested, effective, and robust web applications for any business in any industry vertical. So ideally the frameworks are said to be used at best when they can fulfill all your requirements. You can use laravel for almost any of your web projects but there will be times when you must choose Yii over it. Here, we will talk about it.

One of the top arguments for choosing Yii over Laravel is that it can significantly automate the web development process because it offers standard yet out-of-the-box features. As we already discussed, the Gii extension in Yii enables you to automatically create the code.

You can leverage the Yii widgets to compose ready-made interfaces in a few seconds. You can also rearrange them for later use. The extensive skinning and theming mechanism of the framework help you change the appearance of your website very easily. That is one of the reasons why Yii is mostly used in the development of web applications that would have dashboards or admin panels.

The advanced caching system available with Yii has helped it a lot in gaining mass popularity. So Yii has proved to be very helpful in web apps with high traffic flow like an eCommerce platform or forums. Apart from that, the performance rate of Yii is far better than the Laravel framework. So if you want to develop real-time apps like social networking sites where the data processing speed of an application is considered a critical factor of efficiency.

Conclusion

You must pick the right technology stack for the development of a web application. Many frameworks are available out there which could help you alleviate the level and increase the speed of your development process and Laravel and Yii are one of them.

You can use laravel to create apps with any kind of complexity and for any kind of business. And using Yii, you can create real-time web apps with high traffic flow and apps that have dashboards and admin panels. So what are your business requirements?

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Sidharth

Professional Blogger. Android dev. Audiophile.

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