Workflow Source

The Workflow Source is a Yii2 component dedicated to read the persistent representation of a workflow and provide on demand to the SimpleWorkflowBehavior, its memory representation in terms of PHP objects.

The main Workflow Source component included in the SimpleWorkflow package is raoul2000\workflow\source\file\WorkflowFileSource. It is designed to process workflow definition stored in a file as a regular PHP Array, a PHP class definition or a Graphml file ( for a detail description, refer to Workflow File Source Component).

Note that it is possible that in the future, other workflow source component are provided like for instance a WorkflowDbSource that would read from a database.

About Workflow Objects

The SimpleWorkflow manipulates objects to manage workflows. There are 3 basic types of objects that you will meet sooner or later. They are all part of the raoul2000\workflow\base namespace:

  • Status : implements a status in a workflow
  • Transition : implemented a directed transition between 2 statuses
  • Workflow : implement a collection of statuses and transitions

The main purpose of a Workflow Source component is to turn a workflow definition into a set of Status, Transition and Workflow objects.

Component registration

When the SimpleWorkflowBehavior is initialized, it tries to get a reference to the Workflow Source Component to use. By default this component is assumed to have the id workflowSource. If no such component is available, the SimpleWorkflowBehavior will create one, with the type raoul2000\workflow\source\file\WorkflowFileSource (default) and registers it in the Yii2 application, so to make it available to other instances of SimpleWorkflowBehavior.

This implies that, unless specified otherwise, by default, all SimpleWorkflowBehavior are sharing the same Workflow Source component.

If you're not familiar with "application Component", please refer to the "Definitive Guide to Yii2"

To summarize :

  • workflowSource : default Id of the workflow source component used by the SimpleWorkflowBehavior
  • \raoul2000\workflow\source\file\WorkflowFileSource : default workflow source component type

If for instance you want to use another Workflow Source Component instead of the default one, you must configure it like you would do for any other Yii2 component and use the expected default Id.

$config = [
    // ....
    'components' => [
        'workflowSource' => [
          'class' => '\my\own\component\SuperCoolWorkflowSource',
   // ...

With this configuration, all SimpleWorkflowBehavior are going to use your SuperCoolWorkflowSource to get Status, Transition and Workflow objects.

Another option is to mix Workflow Source Components and for instance use the default one with all models except for a particular one. To achieve this, simply configure your custom Workflow Source Component under a custom Id. Let's see that on an example:

Let's assume that you have developed a super cool workflow source component, able to read workflow definition from a satellite data stream, live from deep outer space (if you did so, pull requests are welcome !!). You want to use this source only for the SpaceShip model in your app, leaving all other models with the default source (PHP class).

To do so, first declare your workflow source as a Yii2 component :

$config = [
    // ....
    'components' => [
        // declare your source component under a custom id
        'mySpaceSource' => [
          'class' => '\my\own\component\AlienWorkflowSource',
   // ...

And then use the component mySpaceSource as Workflow source for the SpaceShip model only :

namespace app\models;
class SpaceShip extends \yii\db\ActiveRecord
    public function behaviors()
        return [
                'class' => \raoul2000\workflow\base\SimpleWorkflowBehavior::className(),
                // SpaceShip will use a specific Workflow Source Component
                // All other models are using the default one
                'source' => 'mySpaceSource'

Implementing Your Own Workflow source

You can create your own Workflow Source Component by implementing the \raoul2000\workflow\source\IWorkflowSource interface.