A key/value database store using flat files for PHP

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v1.9.0 2015-03-25 16:58 UTC


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A key/value database store using flat files for PHP.

Features include:

  • Memory efficient
  • File locking
  • Caching
  • Gzip compression
  • Easy to use

For full documentation please visit


The easiest way to install Flintstone is via composer. Run the following command to install it.

php composer.phar require fire015/flintstone
require 'vendor/autoload.php';

use Flintstone\Flintstone;

$users = Flintstone::load('users', array('dir' => '/path/to/database/dir/'));


  • Any flavour of PHP 5.3+ should do
  • [optional] PHPUnit to execute the test suite

Data types

Flintstone can store the following data types:

  • Strings
  • Integers
  • Floats
  • Arrays


Name Type Default Value Description
dir string null the directory where the database files are stored
ext string .dat the database file extension to use
gzip boolean false use gzip to compress the database
cache boolean true store get() results in memory
formatter object SerializeFormatter the formatter class used to encode/decode data
swap_memory_limit integer 1048576 amount of memory to use before writing to a temporary file

Usage examples

// Set options
$options = array('dir' => '/path/to/database/dir/');

// Load the databases
$users = Flintstone::load('users', $options);
$settings = Flintstone::load('settings', $options);

// Set keys
$users->set('bob', array('email' => '', 'password' => '123456'));
$users->set('joe', array('email' => '', 'password' => 'test'));
$settings->set('site_offline', 1);
$settings->set('site_back', '3 days');

// Retrieve keys
$user = $users->get('bob');
echo 'Bob, your email is ' . $user['email'];

$offline = $settings->get('site_offline');
if ($offline == 1) {
    echo 'Sorry, the website is offline<br />';
    echo 'We will be back in ' . $settings->get('site_back');

// Retrieve all key names
$keys = $users->getKeys(); // returns array('bob', 'joe', ...)

foreach ($keys as $username) {
    $user = $users->get($username);
    echo $username.', your email is ' . $user['email'];
    echo $username.', your password is ' . $user['password'];

// Delete a key

// Flush the database

Changing the formatter

By default Flintstone will encode/decode data using PHP's serialize functions, however you can override this with your own class if you prefer.

Just make sure it implements Flintstone\Formatter\FormatterInterface and then you can provide it as the formatter option.

If you wish to use JSON as the formatter, Flintstone already ships with this as per the example below:

require 'vendor/autoload.php';

use Flintstone\Flintstone;
use Flintstone\Formatter\JsonFormatter;

$users = Flintstone::load('users', array(
    'dir' => __DIR__,
    'formatter' => new JsonFormatter()

Who is using Flintstone?