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Up and Running with the Fastest PHP Framework on PHP7 in 5 Mins

You may remember our past infatuation with Phalcon, the fastest PHP framework.

In this post, we’ll go through the process of getting it up and running in 5 minutes on one of our Homestead Improved instances. If you’re not interested in why or what Phalcon is, just skip ahead to “Setting it up”.

Phalcon PHP logo

Recap

If you’re not familiar with it, Phalcon is a PHP framework written in Zephir, a language mid-way between C and PHP that helps in developing PHP extensions without having to know C. It’s a golden middle ground which lets PHP developers develop highly optimized modules for their programming language environment without the overhead of learning a completely new language, because Zephir compiles into C, which is what PHP extensions are made of.

Originally, Phalcon was an extension written in pure C – which made it incredibly fast. However, this also introduced massive overhead in fixing bugs or inspecting what’s going on under the hood when something doesn’t work the way it should. It also took ages to add new features, since developing in C is so much more difficult. In version 2, Phalcon was rewritten in Zephir, but as PHP 7 was looming on the horizon and announced a dramatic departure from the extension API of PHP 5+, Zephir could not compile code to PHP 7 compatible extensions and was left behind in PHP 5 land.

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