Concept of Seeders in CodeIgniter 4 Tutorial

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Database Seeding is a concept to seed dummy data or test data into database for application testing. It’s interesting topic to see and implement. This is newly added feature in CodeIgniter 4. Inside this article we will a complete concept of seeders in CodeIgniter 4.

We will also see the use of faker library with database seeders in codeigniter 4. Inside this seeding tutorial of codeigniter 4 we will cover each sections into well defined manner.

Learn More –

Note*: For this article, CodeIgniter v4.1 setup has been installed. May be when you are seeing, version will be updated. CodeIgniter 4.x still is in development mode.

Let’s get started.


Download & Install CodeIgniter 4 Setup

We need to download & install CodeIgniter 4 application setup to system. To set application we have multiple options to proceed.

Here are the following ways to download and install CodeIgniter 4 –

  • Manual Download
  • Composer Installation
  • Clone Github repository of CodeIgniter 4

Complete introduction of CodeIgniter 4 basics – Click here to go. After going through this article you can easily download & install setup.

Here is the command to install via composer –

$ composer create-project codeigniter4/appstarter codeigniter-4

Assuming you have successfully installed application into your local system.


Settings Environment Variables

When we install CodeIgniter 4, we have env file at root. To use the environment variables means using variables at global scope we need to do env to .env

Open project in terminal

$ cp env .env

Above command will create a copy of env file to .env file. Now we are ready to use environment variables.

CodeIgniter starts up in production mode by default. Let’s do it in development mode. So that while working if we get any error then error will show up.

# CI_ENVIRONMENT = production

// Do it to 

CI_ENVIRONMENT = development

Create Database & Tables To Application

To create a database, either we can create via Manual tool of PhpMyadmin or by means of a mysql command.

CREATE DATABASE codeigniter4_app;

Successfully, we have created a database.

Next, we need to create few tables inside database.

CREATE TABLE users (
     id int(5) unsigned NOT NULL AUTO_INCREMENT,
     name varchar(100) NOT NULL,
     email varchar(100) NOT NULL,
     updated_at datetime DEFAULT NULL,
     created_at datetime DEFAULT CURRENT_TIMESTAMP,
     PRIMARY KEY (id),
     UNIQUE KEY email (email)
) ENGINE=InnoDB DEFAULT CHARSET=utf8;

CREATE TABLE products (
     id int(5) unsigned NOT NULL AUTO_INCREMENT,
     name varchar(100) NOT NULL,
     description text,
     amount int(5) unsigned NOT NULL,
     status int(5) NOT NULL DEFAULT '1',
     updated_at datetime DEFAULT NULL,
     created_at datetime DEFAULT CURRENT_TIMESTAMP,
     PRIMARY KEY (id)
) ENGINE=InnoDB DEFAULT CHARSET=utf8;

Database Connectivity to Application

Open .env file from project root. Search for DATABASE. You should see the connection environment variables.

Let’s set the value for those to connect with database.

 
#--------------------------------------------------------------------
# DATABASE
#-------------------------------------------------------------------- 
 database.default.hostname = localhost
 database.default.database = codeigniter4_app
 database.default.username = root
 database.default.password = root
 database.default.DBDriver = MySQLi
   

Now, database successfully connected with application.


Create Seeders

In CodeIgniter 4, we have php spark commands available to work with seeders, migrations etc. Seeders are the php files which help us to create test data or fake data into tables and manage that.

Open codeigniter 4 application into terminal and type

$ php spark

We will use two command from list one for Create & other for data seed.

Preparing Seeder Files

$ php spark make:seeder User --suffix

$ php spark make:seeder Product --suffix

When we create seeder file, it will be stored inside /app/Database/Seeds folder.

Files created for seeders as –

  • UserSeeder.php for users table
  • ProductSeeder.php for products table

Seeder File: UserSeeder.php

Write the following code into it.

<?php

namespace App\Database\Seeds;

use CodeIgniter\Database\Seeder;
use Faker\Factory;

class UserSeeder extends Seeder
{
    public function run()
    {
        for ($i = 0; $i < 10; $i++) { 
			//to add 10 users. Change limit as desired
            $this->db->table('users')->insert($this->generateUsers());
        }
    }

    private function generateUsers(): array
    {
        $faker = Factory::create();
        return [
            'name' => $faker->name(),
            'email' => $faker->email
        ];
    }
}

Seeder File: ProductSeeder.php

Write the following code into it.

<?php

namespace App\Database\Seeds;

use CodeIgniter\Database\Seeder;
use Faker\Factory;

class ProductSeeder extends Seeder
{
    public function run()
    {
        for ($i = 0; $i < 10; $i++) { 
			//to add 10 products. Change limit as desired
            $this->db->table('products')->insert($this->generateProducts());
        }
    }

    private function generateProducts(): array
    {
        $faker = Factory::create();
        return [
            'name' => $faker->name,
			'description' => $faker->sentence(6),
			'amount' => $faker->numberBetween(50, 200),
			'status' => $faker->randomElement([1, 0])
        ];
    }
}

Successfully, we have created and updated seeder files. Faker library is a default package included in CodeIgniter 4. Here we are using faker library to generate fake data.

use Faker\Factory;

$faker = Factory::create();

//.. then use the instance of $faker

Next, we need to seed data into database tables. Back to terminal.


Seed data into database table

Run these spark commands to seed data into respective tables.

$ php spark db:seed UserSeeder

$ php spark db:seed ProductSeeder

These two commands will seed data into users table and products table.

Database Tables

Table: users

Table: products

We hope this article helped you to learn about Concept of Seeders in CodeIgniter 4 Tutorial in a very detailed way.

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