Using Route Registrars in your Laravel application

Tutorials

July 19th, 2022

RouteRegistrars.jpg

Recently I came across a unique approach to loading routes into Laravel applications, and I wanted to share this with you. It allows you to create Route Registrars classes you register your routes within. I saw this in a package currently being developed by Ollie Read, and it caught my attention as a clean and exciting way to register routes.

The changes required to your standard Laravel application are relatively simple. We make a few changes to the Route Service Provider - and remove the web and API route files. The first thing we do is create a new trait/concern that we can add to our app/Providers/RouteServiceProvider called MapRouteRegistrars. Add the following code to this new trait/concern.

1declare(strict_types=1);
2 
3namespace App\Routing\Concerns;
4 
5use App\Routing\Contracts\RouteRegistrar;
6use Illuminate\Contracts\Routing\Registrar;
7use RuntimeException;
8 
9trait MapRouteRegistrars
10{
11 protected function mapRoutes(Registrar $router, array $registrars): void
12 {
13 foreach ($registrars as $registrar) {
14 if (! class_exists($registrar) || ! is_subclass_of($registrar, RouteRegistrar::class)) {
15 throw new RuntimeException(sprintf(
16 'Cannot map routes \'%s\', it is not a valid routes class',
17 $registrar
18 ));
19 }
20 
21 (new $registrar)->map($router);
22 }
23 }
24}

As you can see, we also need to create an interface/contract to use and ensure all of our Registrars implement it. Create this under app/Routing/Contracts/RouteRegistrar and add the following code.

1declare(strict_types=1);
2 
3namespace App\Routing\Contracts;
4 
5use Illuminate\Contracts\Routing\Registrar;
6 
7interface RouteRegistrar
8{
9 public function map(Registrar $registrar): void;
10}

Now that we have the trait and interface in place, we can look at the changes we need to make to the default Route Service Provider.

1declare(strict_types=1);
2 
3namespace App\Providers;
4 
5use App\Routing\Concerns\MapsRouteRegistrars;
6use Illuminate\Contracts\Routing\Registrar;
7use Illuminate\Foundation\Support\Providers\RouteServiceProvider as ServiceProvider;
8 
9class RouteServiceProvider extends ServiceProvider
10{
11 use MapsRouteRegistrars;
12 
13 protected array $registrars = [];
14 
15 public function boot(): void
16 {
17 $this->routes(function (Registrar $router) {
18 $this->mapRoutes($router, $this->registrars);
19 });
20 }
21}

From the above code, you can see that we have added a new property to our route service provider. This property is where the application's route registrars are registered and loaded inside the boot method.

Now that we have got our application ready to use route registrars instead of route files, let's create a default one for our application. This approach would work exceptionally well in a domain-driven design or modular system - allowing each domain or module to register its routes. For this example, we will keep this simple so that you can understand the approach. Create a new route registrar in app/Routing/Registrars/DefaultRegistrar.php and add the following code.

1declare(strict_types=1);
2 
3namespace App\Routing\Registrars;
4 
5use App\Routing\Contracts\RouteRegistrar;
6 
7class DefaultRegistrar implements RouteRegistrar
8{
9 public function map(Registrar $registrar): void
10 {
11 $registrar->view('/', 'welcome');
12 }
13}

Now that our default registrar is created, we can register this inside our Route Service Provider, ensuring it is loaded.

1declare(strict_types=1);
2 
3namespace App\Providers;
4 
5use App\Routing\Concerns\MapsRouteRegistrars;
6use App\Routing\Registrars\DefaultRegistrar;
7use Illuminate\Contracts\Routing\Registrar;
8use Illuminate\Foundation\Support\Providers\RouteServiceProvider as ServiceProvider;
9 
10class RouteServiceProvider extends ServiceProvider
11{
12 use MapsRouteRegistrars;
13 
14 protected array $registrars = [
15 DefaultRegistrar::class,
16 ];
17 
18 public function boot(): void
19 {
20 $this->routes(function (Registrar $router) {
21 $this->mapRoutes($router, $this->registrars);
22 });
23 }
24}

Now, if you visit /, you will be loaded with the welcome view, which means that everything is all hooked up correctly. I can imagine a great way that I might utilize this in an application of mine, where I have static marketing routes, blog routes, admin routes, and more. As an example, I would imagine the route service provider looking like the following:

1declare(strict_types=1);
2 
3namespace App\Providers;
4 
5use App\Routing\Concerns\MapsRouteRegistrars;
6use App\Routing\Registrars\AdminRegistrar;
7use App\Routing\Registrars\BlogRegistrar;
8use App\Routing\Registrars\MarketingRegistrar;
9use Illuminate\Contracts\Routing\Registrar;
10use Illuminate\Foundation\Support\Providers\RouteServiceProvider as ServiceProvider;
11 
12class RouteServiceProvider extends ServiceProvider
13{
14 use MapsRouteRegistrars;
15 
16 protected array $registrars = [
17 MarketingRegistrar::class, // Marketing Routes
18 BlogRegistrar::class, // Blog Routes
19 AdminRegistrar::class, // Admin Routes
20 ];
21 
22 public function boot(): void
23 {
24 $this->routes(function (Registrar $router) {
25 $this->mapRoutes($router, $this->registrars);
26 });
27 }
28}

Splitting our routes like this is a great way to move from a standard PHP routes file to a class-based routing system allowing for better encapsulation with your application or domain.

What other ways have you found to help you manage a growing application? Especially from a routing perspective, they can get a little unruly after a while. Let us know on Twitter.

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