CLI tool for PHP data transfer objects generation.

0.2.3 2021-03-26 08:18 UTC

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Last update: 2021-07-17 20:15:49 UTC


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CLI tool for PHP Data Transfer Objects generation.

This utility gives an ability to generate PHP 7.4 DTO classes based on json pattern (schema).


Install the package via composer:

composer require --dev codebot/phpdto 0.2.*

Please consider that the minimum PHP version required by this package is 7.4.


vendor/bin/phpdto init

The current working directory is the directory from where you are invoking phpdto command.

This command will initialize the phpdto and create phpdto.json configuration file and phpdto_patterns directory in your current working directory.


phpdto.json configuration file contains following variables:

PHP_DTO_PATTERNS_DIR - the directory, where you must store json schemas for DTOs.

PHP_DTO_NAMESPACE - the namespace for DTO classes.

PHP_DTO_CLASS_POSTFIX - postfix of DTO classes, e.g. Item (without postfix), ItemDto (postfix is "Dto").

These variables are stored as environment variables.


To generate DTO class you must create a pattern, which is a json file that contains information about generated class.

DTO Pattern

An example of DTO pattern:

    "class": "item",
    "namespace_postfix": "",
    "rules": {
        "id": "int",
        "count": "nullable|int",
        "name": "string",
        "description": "nullable|string",
        "is_active": "bool"


The class name that will be combined with PHP_DTO_CLASS_POSTFIX specified in phpdto.json config file.

So, if the class name is "item" and the class postfix config value is "Dto", then the generated class name will be "ItemDto".


The postfix of the generated DTO class namespace that will be combined with PHP_DTO_NAMESPACE specified in phpdto.json config file.

So, if the namespace postfix is "\User" and the default DTO namespace is "App\Dto", then the generated class namespace will be App\Dto\User.

You can leave namespace postfix empty.


This object contains information about DTO class properties and methods. Keys will be casted to class properties. Values contain information about getters return types.

"description" : "nullable|string" - due to this pair $_description property will be added to DTO class with appropriate private ?string $_description property and getDescription(): ?string method, that expects return type "string" and allows nullable.

Generating DTO

Given you have already created pattern as json file named item.json in the phpdto_patterns folder.

Run vendor/bin/phpdto -f=item to have your DTO class generated. It will be stored under namespace specified in the phpdto.json config file combined with namespace postfix specified in your pattern.

Given your are generating DTO class from the pattern shown in "DTO Pattern" section, then you will have following class generated.


namespace App\Dto;

class ItemDto extends \PhpDto\Dto
	use \PhpDto\DtoSerialize;

	private int $_id;
	private ?int $_count;
	private string $_name;
	private ?string $_description;
	private bool $_isActive;

	public function __construct( array $item )
		$this->_id = $item['id'];
		$this->_count = $item['count'];
		$this->_name = $item['name'];
		$this->_description = $item['description'];
		$this->_isActive = $item['is_active'];

	public function getId(): int
		return $this->_id;

	public function getCount(): ?int
        return $this->_count;

	public function getName(): string
		return $this->_name;

	public function getDescription(): ?string
		return $this->_description;

	public function getIsActive(): bool
		return $this->_isActive;
How to use

There are 2 mapper methods:

static function mapArray(array $items, bool $shouldSerialize = false): array

static function mapSingle(array $item, bool $shouldSerialize = false): mixed

Use mapArray when you need to map multidimensional array, otherwise use mapSingle.

Mapping example:

Given you have following $itemData array that contains all data related to item that is not necessary to pass another layer (usually it's a view).

$itemData = [
    'id' => 1,
    'name' => 'Dummy Item',
    'description' => 'Some dummy description.',
    'count' => 10,
    'is_active' => true,
    'meta' => [
        'meta_title' => 'Dummy meta title',
        'meta_description' => 'Dummy meta description',
    'tags' => 'TagOne, TagTwo, TagThree'

$item = ItemDto::mapSingle( $itemData );

// Now you are able to access DTO properties via getters


Due to the mapper above we build our DTO that contains data we need.

$itemData = [
        'id' => 1,
            'name' => 'Dummy Item',
            'description' => 'Some dummy description.',
            'count' => 10,
            'is_available' => true, 
            'meta' => [
                'meta_title' => 'Dummy meta title',
                'meta_description' => 'Dummy meta description',
            'tags' => 'TagOne, TagTwo, TagThree'
    // more items

$items = ItemDto::mapArray( $itemData ); // array of instance of ItemDto class

foreach( $items as $item )
    // ... 


Sometimes you may want to have DTOs as objects that you could pass in AJAX response or whatever you need for.

Second parameter of mapper methods is a flag that decides if data should be serialized.

ItemDto::mapSingle( $itemData, true ) - this will return you the DTO as a serialized object:

  "id": 1
  "name": "Dummy Item"
  "description": "Some dummy description."
  "count": 10
  "isActive": true

Same is true for mapArray method.

DTO Faker

You can generate fake data for your DTOs easily using PhpDto\Services\DtoFaker class.

$fakeData = DtoFaker::fakeSingle( ItemDto::class ); // array that contains fake data for ItemDto
$item = ItemDto::mapSingle( $fakeData );

Now your item looks like this:

    "id": 993
    "count": 340
    "name": "2R9ifLLxfG965wikJWrr"
    "description": "MluADBj2rwmAjBC6ZyH4"
    "isActive": false

All of the values are randomly generated, even the boolean value for isActive field.

You can fake multidimensional array via DtoFaker::fakeArray method.

In the example below we want to fake data for 10 items.

$fakeData = DtoFaker::fakeArray( ItemDto::class, 10 );
$items = ItemDto::mapArray( $fakeData );

Second parameter of the Dto::fakeArray method is the count of generated items.

Dto::fakeSingle and Dto::fakeArray methods are using PHP Reflection API to get information about properties and getters.

Alternatively you can use Dto::fakeSingeFromPattern and Dto::fakeArrayFromPattern methods. You must pass them full path to your json pattern: