How could learning Yii become easier?

On a semi-regular base, forum-users mention how the Yii documentation could be improved and how Yii is generally difficult to learn.

I’m curious, how exactly could things be improved? What did you guys struggle with when you started out with Yii?

IMO, it’s not only Yii but framework in general that is difficult to learn.

Generally we have to have a patience to continue reading through documentation until we finally come to a point where we can clearly see the whole structure of the framework. It took me about 6 months to break through. The initial climb was the steepest.

When I started learning Yii several years ago, advanced members in this forum used to say to the beginners that they must read the guide. "Read through the guide, at least twice." "90% of your questions will be answered by reading the guide." "API reference may look tasteless at first glance, but it really is a book of treasure." and so on.

Have things changed since then? No, I don’t think so.

The biggest problem is that not enough people use it and not enough people write about it.

Take laravel for example. If you want to find out how to do xxx for laravel, you just google it. You’ll find the answer very quickly, probably on stackoverflow, official laravel forums, laracasts forums, github, or even a random blog post. Do the same thing on yii and there’s a good chance you won’t even find anything.

One example I ran into myself is how to implement JWT auth. Here’s a full example for laravel, but no such tutorial exists for yii2.


Right, I should have emphasized the “full tutorial” point. Sure there are packages out there, but they don’t guide you through. You need to look at it deeply and then do a bunch of other further research to really understand it.

Whereas the laravel guide walks you through the entire thing - what jwt is, how does it work, how to set it up in laravel, etc. That’s the difference.

That pretty much sums it up.

Laravel is winning the documentation war hands down.

We have a lot of great people using and contributing to this project, but we don’t have any / many that can write really good end to end tutorials.

If anyone knows of a way to attract that type of people, it would help a lot.

Sadly, most of us are struggling to understand things and get our projects done…


I personally seem to find something missing from the documentation. Perhaps I am lacking the php knowledge or I struggle to understand the nature of the problem and can’t find the part of the docs that would help. For one thing I have mostly worked on business sites and my mind goes numb when all the examples are of blogs.

I found this tutorial:

It was like having someone there who understood the stuff sitting there while digesting the contents of the yii documentation and it helped me a lot.

I have Larry Ullman’s “The Yii Book” version 2, which is basically self-published. But the problem is that he doesn’t really have time to finish it. He’s close, I think, but it’s been about 2 years. The issue for me is that I don’t understand how I can convert my huge procedural website to an OOP based site. I totally understand the Cat and Dog paradigms, but I have trouble re-thinking my site since I don’t deal with simplistic stuff like that. I’ve heard a lot of complaints about OOP tutorials in general being too simplistic. We need to move past “Hello, World”. It would be nice to see a real-world site with less-simplistic code. If I could see that and have an explanation as to what the code is doing and why it was done a particular way, that would be extremely helpful. One well-done concrete example is worth a million words of “documentation”.

I can agree with softarc on this. I was really frustrated with yii2 when I started learning the framework especially since i use mongoDB and not sql so there is far less docs for it. I read the docs a few times and it didn’t really make sense until one day it just clicked. I also refer to the docs almost everyday I program with Yii2 and have read them probably 50 times by now. I have defiantly ran out of results on google looking for Yii2 answers but that will happen with any framework.

Once you learn Yii you can make almost anything with it. I have made multiple very complex web applications with Yii2. If you are wanting to write in PHP Yii2 is defiantly worth learning if you can stick with it until it all makes sense.

If there is a better example than a blog you can think of i can help make part of it if someone will host it. Most websites are basic pages with text and I’d assume that’s why the norm is showing how to make a blog system.

Hey gays, are You making yokes? Mony Payton circus???

I was asking code snipet on JQuery. It is just copy 5-10 lines of code and 2 lines of coment. Nobody help. Patriks coment…While is Youtube best source for lernong Yii? What you can produce if you don’t understand master/child form? Please, be honest! People asking for it but not answere. Yii and Guide2.0 are excelent, but example and forum are very bad. My intention isn’t to insult anybody, just developer must respect mr. Qiang work. You use Yii free of charge, you have obligation to return something!!!

This is what you asked

You also claimed this:

Softark pointed you to jQuery (and how to insert jQuery script in Yii).

Here you can find some jQuery examples:

To me it seems that you need to gain some basic understanding about the difference between desktop and web applications. That has about nothing to do with Yii.


i was trying to help You gays!!! I will solve my problem before or later.

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Best wishes for all You!


i think Yii is pretty simple once you understand the new programming structure.

  1. MVC - what use model view controller?

  2. namespaces

  3. components and classes

It’ll be really good if someone could make tuts+. I’d have loved it when I was learning yii.

I think the fastest way to learn a framework is to do a tutorial while you have someone around to ask for ‘tip help’ a lot of this stuff is just knowing the function name and the path.

Like this namespace thing. At first i was like… what the… now it’s like ‘How’d I ever do anything just lazy loading everything’ + now I know where actually the code comes from to fix a problem.

auzadventure, while don’t YOU write your expirience. It is excellence. Not somebody else!!! That is problem in this forum.


For us Yii2 is too easy to use that we barely had the need to search in Google. That is probably what has made Yii less famous than other frameworks. Less questions means less presence online and then…less famous. A recent benchmark between symfony and Yii2 demonstrates than Yii accepts a 300% more requests per second than Symfony.

Although the most disappointment part for us is the Extensions collection, that is not filtered, ordered and updated with all the available extensions. Maybe because the authors of extensions does not publish them in Yii official website.

We love Yii2.


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Its really a very useful post especially for new users. keep it up. all the best.

For me it’s all about examples. The Yii doc is very good, I only learned to appreciate it after I learned and worked with yii a lot. And the best way to get it was by following the blog tutorial ( and do all the examples and build a little application.

I still remember the "OMG! feeling" when I discovered how powerful a framework was. Coming from simply hardcoding php and repeating myself all the time.

Yes, I remember that the Larry Ullman’s tutorial and the Blog tutorial helped me a lot to understand Yii 1.1 when I was a sheer beginner.

We all need the same kind of tutorials for Yii 2.0.