Package that makes Symfony works on AWS Lambda with Bref

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1.0.1 2024-02-20 14:08 UTC

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Last update: 2024-04-20 14:31:08 UTC


Bref runtime to run Symfony on AWS Lambda.

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composer req bref/symfony-bridge


You only need to do one small change to quickly setup Symfony to work with Bref.

// src/Kernel.php

namespace App;

+ use Bref\SymfonyBridge\BrefKernel;
use Symfony\Bundle\FrameworkBundle\Kernel\MicroKernelTrait;
use Symfony\Component\Config\Loader\LoaderInterface;
use Symfony\Component\Config\Resource\FileResource;
use Symfony\Component\DependencyInjection\ContainerBuilder;
-use Symfony\Component\HttpKernel\Kernel as BaseKernel;
use Symfony\Component\Routing\RouteCollectionBuilder;

- class Kernel extends BaseKernel
+ class Kernel extends BrefKernel
    // ...

Now you are up and running.

Optimize first request

The first HTTP request that hits your application after you deployed a new version will use a cold cache directory. Symfony now spends time building thc cache. It may take everything between 1-20 seconds depending on the complexity of the application.

Technically this happens whenever your application run on a new Lambda. That could be when you get a lot more traffic so AWS increases the resources or when AWS just decides to kill the lambda function (or server) that you are currently on. It is normal that this happens at least a handful of times every day.

To optimize the first request, one must deploy the application with a warm cache. In a simple application it means that the deploy script should include cache:warmup to look something like this:

# Install dependencies
composer install --classmap-authoritative --no-dev --no-scripts

# Warmup the cache
bin/console cache:clear --env=prod

# Disable use of Dotenv component
echo "<?php return [];" > .env.local.php

serverless deploy

Optimize cache

When running Symfony on Lambda you should avoid writing to the filesystem. If you prewarm the cache before deploy you are mostly fine. But you should also make sure you never write to a filesystem cache like cache.system or use a pool like:

                adapter: cache.adapter.filesystem

If you don't write to such cache pool you can optimize your setup by not copy the var/cache/pools directory. The change below will make sure to symlink the pools directory.

// src/Kernel.php

class Kernel extends BrefKernel
    // ...

+    protected function getWritableCacheDirectories(): array
+    {
+        return [];
+    }

Handling requests in a kept-alive process without FPM

Note: this is an advanced topic. Don't bother with this unless you know what you are doing.

To handle HTTP requests via the Symfony Kernel, without using PHP-FPM, by keeping the process alive:

# serverless.yml

-        handler: public/index.php
+        handler: App\Kernel
            # Switch from PHP-FPM to the "function" runtime:
-            - ${bref:layer.php-80-fpm}
+            - ${bref:layer.php-80}
            # The Symfony process will restart every 100 requests
            BREF_LOOP_MAX: 100

The App\Kernel will be retrieved via Symfony Runtime from public/index.php. If you don't have a public/index.php, read the next sections.

Class handlers

To handle other events (e.g. SQS messages with Symfony Messenger) via a class name:

# serverless.yml

-        handler: bin/consumer.php
+        handler: App\Service\MyService
            - ${bref:layer.php-80}

The service will be retrieved via Symfony Runtime from the Symfony Kernel returned by public/index.php.

Note: the service must be configured as public (public: true) in the Symfony configuration.

Custom bootstrap file

If you do not have a public/index.php file, you can create a file that returns the kernel (or any PSR-11 container):


require_once dirname(__DIR__).'/vendor/autoload_runtime.php';

return function (array $context) {
    return new App\Kernel($context['APP_ENV'], (bool) $context['APP_DEBUG']);

And configure it in serverless.yml:

# serverless.yml
        handler: kernel.php:App\Service\MyService