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Shiny new Directory Structure

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Well hey guys! Symfony 3 is around the corner, ah, or maybe even released if you're watching this later! Hello from the past!

Anyways, it's time to talk about all the new cool shiny stuff. But first, I have a confession: Symfony 3 doesn't have any new features. Not even 1... and this is amazing. Seriously, Symfony is paving the way towards a new paradigm of upgrading. I'll talk about upgrading later. But in a nut shell, it means that you'll be able to upgrade to Symfony 3 without rewriting your code and breaking everything.

Introducing, Symfony 2.8!

When Symfony 3 is released, Symfony 2.8 will be released at the same time and both versions will have the same features. That means that if you upgrade to 2.8, you'll get all the good new stuff. So what's new in Symfony 3? Nothing! But there are a lot of new great features in 2.8, and I'll tell you about them.

The New Directory Structure

But wait! There is one thing that's new specifically in Symfony 3: the new Symfony 3 directory structure. You can see it in my editor. If you're an experienced user, it's not a big change.


First, the app/cache and app/logs directories have been moved to a new var/ directory. The bootstrap.php.cache file also got moved here from app/.


Second, we all know and love app/console. Well, that's now bin/console:


As a result, the app/ directory is now just configuration code: stuff that we can actually modify. All the things we don't normally need to worry about editing - like the cache and console file - are out of the way. This gives app/ a new focus.

PhpStorm Symfony Plugin

If you're using PhpStorm with the Symfony plugin, you'll need to change a couple of settings so that it knows to look in the var/ directory for a few cache files. You may not need to do this in the future - but double-check it.

How can I Upgrade to the New Structure

So, how can we upgrade our project from the old structure to this one? And do we need to change our project?

Actually, no: this new structure has always been possible. In fact, open up AppKernel. The only reason the new structure works is because the getCacheDir() and getLogDir() methods have been overridden:

52 lines | app/AppKernel.php
// ... lines 1 - 5
class AppKernel extends Kernel
// ... lines 8 - 36
public function getCacheDir()
return dirname(__DIR__).'/var/cache/'.$this->environment;
public function getLogDir()
return dirname(__DIR__).'/var/logs';
// ... lines 46 - 50

If you don't override these, they default to using cache/ and logs/ in this directory: app/.

So in your project, if you override these then... boom! You're using the new directory structure. Well, you'll also want to move the console file and a few other things. I'll talk about upgrading later.

And if you don't want to use the new directory structure... then boom! Don't use it. You're free to organize things however you want. Just be aware that the Symfony documentation will be reference things like the bin/console and var/cache and you'll need to translate to what that means in your app.

New Tests Paths

There are two other tiny changes: the tests directory has been moved out of AppBundle into the root of the project:

// ... lines 1 - 2
namespace Tests\AppBundle\Controller;
// ... lines 4 - 6
class DefaultControllerTest extends WebTestCase
// ... lines 9 - 17

And phpunit.xml.dist also now lives in the root directory. That means no more phpunit -c app: just run phpunit:


and it'll find the configuration file automatically.

That's it for the new directory structure, you can start using it right now, or leave your project alone.