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What is Smarty? Easy-to-understand explanation of basic knowledge and specific merits


PHP is a scripting language that is often used when developing websites and building applications, but it has the characteristic that it can be embedded in the basic language HTML required when building websites.
Another big advantage is that you can create websites smoothly while linking with databases such as MySQL and PostgreSQL. This time, we will introduce in detail ” Smarty
“, which is useful for such PHP coding, from basic information to specific merits.


table of contents

  • 1. What is Smarty?
  • 2. What is a template engine in the first place?
  • 3. What can you do with Smarty?
  • 4. What are the features of Smarty?
  • 5. How to install Smarty
  • 6. What are the benefits of Smarty in system development?

What is Smarty?


Source: PHP Template Engine | Smarty

Smarty is a type of template engine released in the early 2000s. It is still used on many systems as a template engine using the scripting language “PHP”. Even in the present age of Reiwa, small updates are repeated, and you can see how popular it is. Since the format may change depending on the version, it is essential to check the version before using it.


What is a template engine in the first place?

Before introducing the basic information of Smarty, let’s introduce the “template engine”.

A template engine is a tool that can manage “contents that describe functions (PHP)” and “contents that are displayed on the screen (HTML & CSS, etc.)” separately. PHP that can be embedded in HTML has a big advantage in that it is easy to handle even for beginners, but the problem is that files with a mixture of PHP and HTML are difficult to read because the two rules are written together. The more pages you have, the more time it takes to make corrections, and maintenance and maintenance are not complete.

To avoid such a situation, the template engine was born. Since the processing content and display content can be created separately, different designs can be reflected on the PC / smartphone site. Since the processing contents can be summarized, it can be said that it is a big merit that it is easy to use. It is also a nice point that system maintenance and maintenance can be done smoothly.

Besides Smarty, PHP template engines include “Twig” and “Blade”. Some template engines have a limited development environment depending on the type, so when using it, make sure that it is compatible with the development environment and that development has not stopped.


What can you do with Smarty?

By using Smarty, “separation of PHP written in HTML” becomes possible. The separate templates make it easier for programmers and designers (coders) to work. If you manage them in the same file, batting may occur, and if a correction occurs, it may be difficult for both parties to proceed. However, if you adopt Smarty, you can develop each with a separate file.

However, the above are “features of the template engine itself” including Smarty, and are not unique to Smarty. As mentioned at the beginning, Smarty has a good reputation among template engines, but what is the reason for its popularity? Below, we will introduce the features of Smarty.


What are the features of Smarty?

● Fast processing speed

A major feature of Smarty is that it excels in terms of operating speed. The reason is largely related to template compilation. Compiling is a program that converts a human-written program into words that machines can understand. This compilation is done only once when the first request comes in, so you don’t have to parse the template every time. Only when changes are made to the template will the compilation be re-executed for efficiency.


● Easy to expand functions

Smarty can not only insert values but also conditional branching by if statements, functions, loop processing, etc. If you’re new to PHP and don’t know all the features, you can just create it with HTML and simple variables. One of the features is that there are custom functions that can be used in variable modifiers and templates.


● A wide variety of plug-ins are available

There are many types of Smarty plugins, such as template function plugins, modifier plugins, and block function plugins. The standard plugins are in the directory “plugins /” directly under SMARTY_DIR. You can also run the plugin at your time.


How to install Smarty

First of all, before downloading, let’s check if it is a WEB server that can run PHP5.2 or later. After that, access the official Smarty site introduced at the beginning and click “Download” at the top of the site.

After unzipping the downloaded zip folder, check if there is a “libs” folder in it. There is no problem using the libs file name as it is, but rename it to “smarty” so that you can easily find the storage location, and upload it to the WEB server.

After renaming and downloading, move on to creating the required folders.

Smarty requires directories for “templates”, “templates_c”, “configs”, and “cache”. After preparing that folder, set the permissions for templates and configs to 755 or 705 and the templates_c and cache to 707. After creating the folder, create an index. up. After that, upload index.php for operation test to the same hierarchy and check if it works in the browser.


What are the benefits of Smarty in system development?

Smarty, which is useful for building websites, is used everywhere, especially in IT companies. Here, we will introduce the advantages of Smarty in system development based on the sites and systems that introduced Smarty.


● Template engine most suitable for mail-order site operation

At the overseas online shop “Multilingual Cart”, you can build an EC site that supports multiple languages ​​and currencies. A major feature of this service is that it uses Smarty’s template system. With knowledge of HTML and CSS, you can create a multilingual shop with your design. A wealth of customization such as design changes according to each language, text editing considering the search order, and changes in display information is attractive.

The “CS-Cart Marketplace Version”, which was created based on the “CS-Cart” that has been installed more than 35,000 times worldwide, has all the functions for managing products, customers, and orders, including seller management. Since it is composed of an orthodox combination of “PHP + MySQL + Smarty”, it is also a big point that it can be operated on most rental servers.


● You can create a design with a high degree of freedom

The EC site construction service “MakeShop” operated by GMO Makeshop Co., Ltd. provides a function that allows you to edit excellent designs with a high degree of freedom. This function, called creator mode, is characterized by the fact that it has its tag that uses Smarty. By using tags, it is very customizable and supports responsive web design. Due to the wide editable range, the Mobile-First Index (MFI) can be strengthened, and tags required for site analysis and numerical measurement can be freely added. This is the best function for long-term site operation.


● Realize a system with excellent work efficiency

Smarty is indispensable for creating an efficient order management system. The order management system introduced by Chancery Co., Ltd. is characterized by adopting Smarty so that Web production and system development can proceed smoothly. To reduce typos, Jquery is inserted to realize a system that can collectively manage ordering data and organization information.

This time, we introduced in detail the basic information, introduction method, and merits of Smarty. As mentioned earlier, Smarty is often used in the field of system development as well, and it can be used for various purposes depending on how it is used. Smarty will be especially useful in cases where you want to share work between programmers and designers, or if you want to introduce a template engine with excellent processing speed and expandability.

If you ever want to know about similar things, check out the Facebook page Maga Techs



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