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Exploring the 7 PHP Frameworks using Symfony Components

By Reuben Walker, 13 April, 2022
Illustration of code languages with laptop representative of Symfony PHP platforms.

Looking for PHP Frameworks built with Symfony?

This article will explore them and provide their relevant details.

It’s an "easier to digest" version of the information on the Symfony site. It's more documentation than a documentary with some added information from the frameworks themselves. It also includes some comments from us. Where we found them, we have linked them to third-party reviews or comparisons.

In any event, I hope it will prove helpful to you and your search for a framework solution.

While not as extensive as our CMS or eCommerce articles, there are a good number of frameworks.

If you know of good items for curation on social media about them, please share those with us.

The frameworks include:

So, let's start exploring the Symfony frameworks. Technically, the platforms covered in this article aren't of Symfony but built with its components to various extents.


The exception is Symfony. Of course, it is a framework itself and a library of components. And the framework uses all of the components.

This website has much more information on the framework, so explore it to your heart’s content. I would recommend our Tools, Resources, and Links page in particular.

Symfony itself says, “Symfony is a set of PHP Components, a Web Application framework, a Philosophy, and a Community — all working together in harmony.

Symfony Framework

The leading PHP framework to create websites and web applications. Built on top of the Symfony Components.

Symfony Components

A set of decoupled and reusable components on which the best PHP applications are built, such as Drupal, Prestashop, and Laravel.

Symfony Community

A passionate group of over 600,000 developers from more than 120 countries, all committed to helping PHP surpass the impossible.

Symfony Philosophy

Embracing and promoting professionalism, best practices, standardization, and interoperability of applications.

Symfony Project stats

+3,000 contributors

+600,000 Symfony developers

+200,000,000 monthly downloads

The framework notes, “Symfony is an Open Source PHP Web applications development framework. It was originally conceived by the interactive agency SensioLabs for the development of websites for its own customers. Symfony was published by the agency in 2005 under MIT Open Source license and today it is among the leading frameworks available for PHP development.”

Its community resources include:



Laravel logo

Laravel is a fantastic solution where applicable. And it’s pretty popular, especially in the United States. Yet, while many people like to compare Laravel and Symfony as equals, it’s more like apples and oranges.

I like to equate Laravel with WordPress and Symfony with Drupal.

The first two give you everything possible whether you need it or not. And they are easier to use and get something built quickly. But on the other hand, Laravel and WordPress are not easy to scale.

While Symfony and Drupal are more enterprise-oriented and allow you to build almost anything. And they are much more scalable and flexible. But of course, as you will see below, Laravel is largely built with Symfony.

Reach Studio has a good comparison article of the two frameworks.

Laravel claims to be “The PHP Framework for Web Artisans. Laravel is a web application framework with expressive, elegant syntax. We’ve already laid the foundation — freeing you to create without sweating the small things.”

Symfony notes, “Laravel is a web application framework with expressive, elegant syntax. We believe development must be an enjoyable, creative experience to be truly fulfilling. Laravel attempts to take the pain out of development by easing common tasks used in the majority of web projects, such as authentication, routing, sessions, and caching.”

Symfony Components Used by Laravel

Its resources include:



Laravel notes, “In the years since releasing Lumen, PHP has made a variety of wonderful performance improvements. For this reason, along with the availability of Laravel Octane, we no longer recommend that you begin new projects with Lumen. Instead, we recommend always beginning new projects with Laravel.”

So there.

Symfony notes, “Lumen is a micro-framework based on the same foundation as Laravel and built for developing micro-services.”

Symfony Components Used by Lumen



Neo Flow says, “Flow is a web application platform enabling developers to create excellent web solutions. It gives you fast results. It is a reliable foundation for complex applications. And it is backed by one of the biggest PHP communities.”

While not new Robin Poppinberg has this review of Flow.

Symfony notes, “Flow is a PHP web application framework focused on Domain-Driven Design and clean code. Based on strong conventions and best practices, it allows you to rapidly create powerful web applications.”

Symfony Components Used by Flow

Its community links include:



Yii says, “Yes, it is! Yii is a fast, secure, and efficient PHP framework. Flexible yet pragmatic. Works right out of the box. Has reasonable defaults.”

It’s had a Chinese origin and mostly has Russian maintainers, so make what you will of that from a cybersecurity perspective. Personally, I'd trust it about as far as I could kick it. Six feet.

Altamira has this glowing review.

Symfony notes, “Yii is a high-performance PHP framework best for developing Web 2.0 applications. Yii comes with rich features: MVC, DAO/ActiveRecord, I18N/L10N, caching, authentication and role-based access control, scaffolding, testing, etc. It can reduce your development time significantly.”

Symfony Components Used by Yii

Its community links include:



CakePHP struggles to write complete sentences and notes, it’s ”A recipe to succeed. Prototype faster, Validate faster, Grow consistently.

  • Build Quickly
  • No Configuration
  • Friendly License
  • Batteries Included
  • Clean MVC Conventions
  • Secure”

CakeDC does a better job of exploring the framework and includes example projects.

Symfony notes, “CakePHP makes building web applications simpler and faster while requiring less code. A modern PHP 7 framework offering a flexible database access layer and a powerful scaffolding system that makes building both small and complex systems simpler, easier and, of course, tastier.”

Symfony Components Used by this Project

Its community links include:



Mezzio Logo

Update: 5/24/22. Mezzio is the Laminas middleware runtime -- previously known as Expressive in the Zend framework. They have added more Symfony components than are indicated below.

Ok, we are reaching the bottom of the barrel in terms of Symfony integration now. This barely qualifies, so we won’t go into it.

Symfony does note, “Zend Expressive builds on Zend-stratigility to provide a minimalist PSR-7 middleware framework for PHP. With Expressive, you can build middleware applications such as APIs, Websites, Single Page Applications, and more.”

Symfony Components Used by this Project

Official website


As you can see, there are not many PHP frameworks built on Symfony as compared to eCommerce platforms or CMSs.

Yet, the ones that are still account for millions of websites. And some are passionately supported by large developer communities. They range from uber-popular frameworks to those less so. They are open-source and, other than Yii, from open societies.

So it’s a best practice to be able to use several of them.

If we used one other than Symfony, it would be Laravel or Cake.

We hope you enjoyed the article, and please share it if you did.

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