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Core Components

CakePHP has a number of built-in components. They provide out of the box functionality for several commonly used tasks.

Access Control Lists

The Acl component provides an easy to use interface for database and ini based access control lists.


The auth component provides an easy to use authentication system using a variety of authentication processes, such as controller callbacks, Acl, or Object callbacks.


The cookie component behaves in a similar fashion to the SessionComponent in that it provides a wrapper for PHP’s native cookie support.


An interface that can be used to send emails using one of several mail transfer agents including php’s mail() and smtp.

Request Handling

The request handler allows you to introspect further into the requests of your visitors and inform your application about the content types and requested information.

Security Component

The security component allows you to set tighter security and use and manage HTTP authentication.


The session component provides a storage independent wrapper to PHP’s sessions.

To learn more about each component see the menu on the left, or learn more about creating your own components.

All core components now can be configured in the $components array of a controller.

class AppController extends Controller {

    var $components = array(
        'Auth' => array(
            'loginAction' => array('controller' => 'users', 'action' => 'signOn'),
            'fields' => array('username' => 'email', 'password' => 'password'),
        'Email' => array(
            'from' => '[email protected]',
            'sendAs' => 'html',

You can override the settings in the controller’s beforeFilter()

class MembersController extends AppController {

    function beforeFilter() {
        $this->Email->from = '[email protected]';