As we are preparing to release Alpha2 of phpBB Ascraeus 3.1 we merged another new feature. Ascraeus will ship with a new command line interface. This will become a useful utility for phpBB administrators who have access to a shell on the server they run phpBB on as well as extension developers. The command line interface was built using the Symfony Console Component. The component automatically creates a rich command line user experience with generated help pages and detailed explanations of all options and arguments.
For now the console’s functionality is limited to displaying, enabling and disabling extensions as well as clearing extension data and recalculating email hashes in the database. However with the console application framework in place it is now very easy to add new commands as part of our regular development process. This project had originally been proposed for this year’s Google Summer of Code on our Ideas Page on the Wiki. Other ideas for future functionality include editing of configuration, managing styles, users and groups or other administrative tasks currently accessible in the administration control panel.
Extension developers can add their own commands to the console by creating respective service definitions with a “console.command” tag, as seen in phpBB’s console.yml. We expect the command line interface to become a useful utility for system administrators running phpBB forums who wish to automate some of their administrative tasks.