A powerful PHP Router for PSR7 messages inspired by the Laravel API


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A simple PHP router built on AltoRouter but inspired by the Laravel API.


composer require rareloop/router


Creating Routes


Creating a route is done using the map function:

use Rareloop\Router\Router;

$router = new Router;

// Creates a route that matches the uri `/posts/list` both GET 
// and POST requests. 
$router->map(['GET', 'POST'], 'posts/list', function () {
    return 'Hello World';

map() takes 3 parameters:

  • methods (array): list of matching request methods, valid values:
    • GET
    • POST
    • PUT
    • PATCH
    • DELETE
  • uri (string): The URI to match against
  • action (function|string): Either a closure or a Controller string

Route Parameters

Parameters can be defined on routes using the {keyName} syntax. When a route matches that contains parameters, an instance of the RouteParams object is passed to the action.

$router->map(['GET'], 'posts/{id}', function(RouteParams $params) {
    return $params->id;

If you need to add constraints to a parameter you can pass a regular expression pattern to the where() function of the defined Route:

$router->map(['GET'], 'posts/{id}/comments/{commentKey}', function(RouteParams $params) {
    return $params->id;
})->where('id', '[0-9]+')->where('commentKey', '[a-zA-Z]+');

// or

$router->map(['GET'], 'posts/{id}/comments/{commentKey}', function(RouteParams $params) {
    return $params->id;
    'id', '[0-9]+',
    'commentKey', '[a-zA-Z]+',

Optional route Parameters

Sometimes your route parameters needs to be optional, in this case you can add a ? after the parameter name:

$router->map(['GET'], 'posts/{id?}', function(RouteParams $params) {
    if (isset($params->id)) {
        // Param provided
    } else {
        // Param not provided

Named Routes

Routes can be named so that their URL can be generated programatically:

$router->map(['GET'], 'posts/all', function () {})->name('posts.index');

$url = $router->url('posts.index');

If the route requires parameters you can be pass an associative array as a second parameter:

$router->map(['GET'], 'posts/{id}', function () {})->name('posts.show');

$url = $router->url('posts.show', ['id' => 123]);

If a passed in parameter fails the regex constraint applied, a RouteParamFailedConstraintException will be thrown.

HTTP Verb Shortcuts

Typically you only need to allow one HTTP verb for a route, for these cases the following shortcuts can be used:

$router->get('test/route', function () {});
$router->post('test/route', function () {});
$router->put('test/route', function () {});
$router->patch('test/route', function () {});
$router->delete('test/route', function () {});
$router->options('test/route', function () {});

Setting the basepath

The router assumes you're working from the route of a domain. If this is not the case you can set the base path:

$router->map(['GET'], 'route/uri', function () {}); // `/base/path/route/uri`


If you'd rather use a class to group related route actions together you can pass a Controller String to map() instead of a closure. The string takes the format {name of class}@{name of method}. It is important that you use the complete namespace with the class name.


// TestController.php
namespace \MyNamespace;

class TestController
    public function testMethod()
        return 'Hello World';

// routes.php
$router->map(['GET'], 'route/uri', '\MyNamespace\TestController@testMethod');

Creating Groups

It is common to group similar routes behind a common prefix. This can be achieved using Route Groups:

$router->group('prefix', function ($group) {
    $group->map(['GET'], 'route1', function () {}); // `/prefix/route1`
    $group->map(['GET'], 'route2', function () {}); // `/prefix/route2§`


PSR-15/7 Middleware can be added to both routes and groups.

Adding Middleware to a route

At it's simplest, adding Middleware to a route can be done by passing an object to the middleware() function:

$middleware = new AddHeaderMiddleware('X-Key1', 'abc');

$router->get('route/uri', '\MyNamespace\TestController@testMethod')->middleware($middleware);

Multiple middleware can be added by passing more params to the middleware() function:

$header = new AddHeaderMiddleware('X-Key1', 'abc');
$auth = new AuthMiddleware();

$router->get('route/uri', '\MyNamespace\TestController@testMethod')->middleware($header, $auth);

Or alternatively, you can also pass an array of middleware:

$header = new AddHeaderMiddleware('X-Key1', 'abc');
$auth = new AuthMiddleware();

$router->get('route/uri', '\MyNamespace\TestController@testMethod')->middleware([$header, $auth]);

Adding Middleware to a group

Middleware can also be added to a group. To do so you need to pass an array as the first parameter of the group() function instead of a string.

$header = new AddHeaderMiddleware('X-Key1', 'abc');

$router->group(['prefix' => 'my-prefix', 'middleware' => $header]), function ($group) {
    $group->map(['GET'], 'route1', function () {}); // `/my-prefix/route1`
    $group->map(['GET'], 'route2', function () {}); // `/my-prefix/route2§`

You can also pass an array of middleware if you need more than one:

$header = new AddHeaderMiddleware('X-Key1', 'abc');
$auth = new AuthMiddleware();

$router->group(['prefix' => 'my-prefix', 'middleware' => [$header, $auth]]), function ($group) {
    $group->map(['GET'], 'route1', function () {}); // `/my-prefix/route1`
    $group->map(['GET'], 'route2', function () {}); // `/my-prefix/route2§`

Defining Middleware on Controllers

You can also apply Middleware on a Controller class too. In order to do this your Controller must extend the Rareloop\Router\Controller base class.

Middleware is added by calling the middleware() function in your Controller's __constructor().

use Rareloop\Router\Controller;

class MyController extends Controller
    public function __construct()
        // Add one at a time
        $this->middleware(new AddHeaderMiddleware('X-Key1', 'abc'));
        $this->middleware(new AuthMiddleware());

        // Add multiple with one method call
            new AddHeaderMiddleware('X-Key1', 'abc',
            new AuthMiddleware(),

By default all Middleware added via a Controller will affect all methods on that class. To limit what methods Middleware applies to you can use only() and except():

use Rareloop\Router\Controller;

class MyController extends Controller
    public function __construct()
        // Only apply to `send()` method
        $this->middleware(new AddHeaderMiddleware('X-Key1', 'abc'))->only('send');

        // Apply to all methods except `show()` method
        $this->middleware(new AuthMiddleware())->except('show');

        // Multiple methods can be provided in an array to both methods
        $this->middleware(new AuthMiddleware())->except(['send', 'show']);

Matching Routes to Requests

Once you have routes defined, you can attempt to match your current request against them using the match() function. match() accepts an instance of Symfony's Request and returns an instance of Symfony's Response:

$request = Request::createFromGlobals();
$response = $router->match($request);

Return values

If you return an instance of Response from your closure it will be sent back un-touched. If however you return something else, it will be wrapped in an instance of Response with your return value as the content.

Responsable objects

If you return an object from your closure that implements the Responsable interface, it's toResponse() object will be automatically called for you.

class MyObject implements Responsable
    public function toResponse(RequestInterface $request) : ResponseInterface
        return new TextResponse('Hello World!');

$router->get('test/route', function () {
    return new MyObject();


If no route matches the request, a Response object will be returned with it's status code set to 404;

Accessing current route

The currently matched Route can be retrieved by calling:

$route = $router->currentRoute();

If no route matches or match() has not been called, null will be returned.

You can also access the name of the currently matched Route by calling:

$name = $router->currentRouteName();

If no route matches or match() has not been called or the matched route has no name, null will be returned.

Using with a Dependency Injection Container

The router can also be used with a PSR-11 compatible Container of your choosing. This allows you to type hint dependencies in your route closures or Controller methods.

To make use of a container, simply pass it as a parameter to the Router's constructor:

use MyNamespace\Container;
use Rareloop\Router\Router;

$container = new Container();
$router = new Router($container);

After which, your route closures and Controller methods will be automatically type hinted:

$container = new Container();

$testServiceInstance = new TestService();
$container->set(TestService::class, $testServiceInstance);

$router = new Router($container);

$router->get('/my/route', function (TestService $service) {
    // $service is now the same object as $testServiceInstance