Property indicating novelty of Yii2 ActiveRecord.

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1.0.0 2019-07-04 13:46 UTC

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Last update: 2024-02-04 23:29:10 UTC


Property indicating novelty of Yii2 ActiveRecord

yii2-novelty is a behavior that adds a property with the name 'novelty' to an ActiveRecord in the Yii2 PHP framework. This property has one of the following three values:

  • 'new' in case the record is created since the user visited the site previously;
  • 'updated' in case the record is updated since the user visited the site previously;
  • null in other cases.

The class NoveltyBehavior extends om Yii's TimestampBehavior. The value of novelty is based on the attribute values of TimestampBehavior, usually called 'created_at' and 'updated_at', and on the time the user visited the site previously. The previous visit time is stored in two cookies.


Install yii2-novelty in the usual way with Composer. Add the following to the require section of your composer.json file:

"sjaakp/yii2-novelty": "*"

or run:

composer require sjaakp/yii2-novelty

You can manually install yii2-novelty by downloading the source in ZIP-format.

Using NoveltyBehavior

Add NoveltyBehavior to your ActiveRecord like this:


use sjaakp\novelty\NoveltyBehavior;

class MyRecord extends ActiveRecord
    public function behaviors( ) {
	    return [
	            'class' => NoveltyBehavior::class,
	            // ... options ...
	        // ... more behaviors ...

NoveltyBehavior extends on yii\behaviors\TimestampBehavior, so you shouldn't use them together.

After adding NoveltyBehavior the ActiveRecord has an extra property 'novelty', which can be read like any other property, f.i. with:

$novelty = $record->novelty;

It is a read-only property, so it cannot be written to.


In most cases, NoveltyBehavior will work out of the box. The following options are available for finetuning. All are optional.

  • noveltyAttribute string Name of the read-only attribute. Default: 'novelty'.
  • visitCookie string Name of the cookie storing the previous visit time. Default: 'visit'.
  • visitStamina integer Expiration time of the visit-cookie in seconds. Default: 31536000 (one year).
  • cacheCookie string Name of the cookie caching the previous visit time. Default: 'visit-cache'.
  • cacheStamina integer Expiration time of the cache-cookie in seconds. Default: 1800 (30 minutes).
  • format null|string PHP date() format of the TimestampBehavior attributes. If null, this will be set with the right values for value is null, or for value set to new Expression('NOW()'), i.e. virtually all use cases. Only in really exotic cases might this be set to anything else than null. Default: null.
  • noveltyValues array Possible values assigned to novelty. Default: see source.

NoveltyBehavior also inherits all the options of yii\behaviors\TimestampBehavior.