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Generate OpenAPI schema doc from expressive routes

0.9.1 2019-01-04 00:05 UTC


Generate OpenAPI doc skeleton from expressive routes.

RouteOpenApiDoc uses application's router configuration to generate OpenAPI skeleton. The skeleton includes placeholders to write description for paths and their parameters, and references to schemas for REST style resources that are inferred from path segments. Besides being displayed in viewers like swagger-ui, these schemas can be used for validatingrequestBody in your middleware pipeline.

Other API documentation libraries focus on parsing annotations. While docblock annotations may be useful for MVC-style frameworks, where routing table and Controller/Actions are in separate locations making the connection between the two difficult to keep track of without extra hints, middleware-style frameworks, especially the PSR-15 compatible ones have the routing and handlers in one place, making extra docblocks for API documentation generators to parse redundant. Or, they try to generate code based on existing API specification, which behaves too CRUD-y, and may not be compatible with existing codebase.


In your router configuration function, get an instance of OpenApiWriter service. Add instance of Application or RouteCollector (if defining routes in multiple configurations using path segregated piplines, that has the routes needing to be documented, and call writeSpec.

use RouteApiDoc\RouterStrategy\RouterStrategyInterface;

return function (Application $app, MiddlewareFactory $factory, ContainerInterface $container) : void {
    // your API resources and handlers
    $app->get('/api/resources/:resource_id', []);
    $app->post('/api/resources', []);
    $apiWriter = $container->get(OpenApiWriter::class);

This will produce a json file api_doc.json in the output directory configured as described next.

If you made changes to the generated file, as you most likely will since this is just a skeleton, and rerun the writer, changes will be merged.

By default, each guessed resource will be written to its own json schema file. If prefer to have all schemas as part of one single document, pass true as a parameter of writeSpec().

Since the generation of documents is a development task, and will slow down requests, it is recommended to have the above lines conditional only for development mode.

Base path

If you are adding multiple route containers using $apiWriter->addRouteCollector() or $apiWriter->addApplication(), chances are you are using path segregated pipelines technique to organize your routes. In this case, you will need to let the api writer know about the pipeline basepath because is not exposed by expressive to the route collection. Specify it as a second parameter of the add functions. Base path will also become a tag for all the routes starting from that path.


Configuration is read from openapi_writer key of your application config. It is expected to have these options:

    'router_strategy' => RouteApiDoc\RouterStrategy\ZendRouterStrategy::class
    'output_directory' => __DIR__ . '/spec'
  • router_strategy - name of strategy that knows how to interpret the syntax of your chosen route matching library. (So far only Zend Router is supported. FastRoute will be coming next)
  • output_directory - directory path where schema files will be written