Application scaffolding is a technique that allows a developer to define and create a basic application that can create, retrieve, update and delete objects. Scaffolding in CakePHP also allows developers to define how objects are related to each other, and to create and break those links.

All that’s needed to create a scaffold is a model and its controller. Once you set the $scaffold variable in the controller, you’re up and running.

CakePHP’s scaffolding is pretty cool. It allows you to get a basic CRUD application up and going in minutes. So cool that you’ll want to use it in production apps. Now, we think its cool too, but please realize that scaffolding is… well… just scaffolding. It’s a loose structure you throw up real quick during the beginning of a project in order to get started. It isn’t meant to be completely flexible, it’s meant as a temporary way to get up and going. If you find yourself really wanting to customize your logic and your views, its time to pull your scaffolding down in order to write some code. CakePHP’s Bake console, covered in the next section, is a great next step: it generates all the code that would produce the same result as the most current scaffold.

Scaffolding is a great way of getting the early parts of developing a web application started. Early database schemas are subject to change, which is perfectly normal in the early part of the design process. This has a downside: a web developer hates creating forms that never will see real use. To reduce the strain on the developer, scaffolding has been included in CakePHP. Scaffolding analyzes your database tables and creates standard lists with add, delete and edit buttons, standard forms for editing and standard views for inspecting a single item in the database.

To add scaffolding to your application, in the controller, add the $scaffold variable:


class CategoriesController extends AppController {
    var $scaffold;


Assuming you’ve created even the most basic Category model class file (in /app/models/category.php), you’re ready to go. Visit to see your new scaffold.

Creating methods in controllers that are scaffolded can cause unwanted results. For example, if you create an index() method in a scaffolded controller, your index method will be rendered rather than the scaffolding functionality.

Scaffolding is knowledgeable about model associations, so if your Category model belongsTo a User, you’ll see related User IDs in the Category listings. While scaffolding „knows“ about model associations, you will not see any related records in the scaffold views until you manually add the association code to the model. For example, if Group hasMany User and User belongsTo Group, you have to manually add the following code in your User and Group models. Before you add the following code, the view displays an empty select input for Group in the New User form. After you add the following code, the view displays a select input populated with IDs or names from the Group table in the New User form.

// In group.php
var $hasMany = 'User';
// In user.php
var $belongsTo = 'Group';

If you’d rather see something besides an ID (like the user’s first name), you can set the $displayField variable in the model. Let’s set the $displayField variable in our User class so that users related to categories will be shown by first name rather than just an ID in scaffolding. This feature makes scaffolding more readable in many instances.


class User extends AppModel {
    var $name = 'User';
    var $displayField = 'first_name';


Erstellen eines einfachen Administrations-Backends mit Scaffolding

Wenn Sie in Ihrer Anwendung das Admin-Routing in der Datei app/config/core.php mit Configure::write('Routing.prefixes', array('admin')); konfiguriert haben, dann können Sie mit Scaffolding ein Gerüst für ein Admin-Interface generieren.

Sobald Sie das Admin-Routing aktiviert haben, weisen Sie auf die $scaffold-Variable Ihr Admin-Präfix zu.

var $scaffold = 'admin';

Sie können nun im Adminbereich auf folgende Scaffolding-Aktionen zugreifen:

Dies ist eine einfache Möglichkeit, eine einfache Schnittstelle zum Backend schnell zu erstellen. Bitte beachten Sie, dass „Admin“- und „Nicht-Admin“-Methoden NICHT zur gleichen Zeit als Scaffold-Gerüst zur Verfügung stehen. Wie beim normalen Scaffolding können Sie einzelne Methoden überschreiben und Sie sie mit Ihren eigenen ersetzen.

function admin_view($id = null) {
  //benutzerdefinierter Code hier

Sobald Sie eine Scaffolding-Aktion nachgebildet und ersetzt haben, müssen Sie auch einen View für die Aktion nachbilden und zur Verfügung stellen.

Customizing Scaffold Views

If you’re looking for something a little different in your scaffolded views, you can create templates. We still don’t recommend using this technique for production applications, but such a customization may be useful during prototyping iterations.

Customization is done by creating view templates:

Custom scaffolding views for a specific controller
(PostsController in this example) should be placed like so:


Custom scaffolding views for all controllers should be placed like so: