codiverum/yii2-abstracttree Extension contains abstract classes to provide base for tree structured data


CodiVerum Yii2 Extension for hierarchy data

Extension contains abstract classes making it easy to implement tree-structured data in Yii2 Framework. It has what's needed in hierarchical data:

  • multiple root nodes
  • selecting parent, children, siblings, ancestors, descendants (also by distance); easy for programmer and also for DBMS.
  • modifying trees like adding nodes, removing nodes and moving nodes (with or without subtree); simple (it's based on id_parent value changes - all the work is done by AbstractNode class)

I have found other solutions implementing tree structured data (like nested sets) but I don't like using recursion or subqueries for frequent queries like selecting data. I created my own way (I haven't found that kind of solution).

I hope you'll find it useful and easy.

This is my first open-source work so I'll be glad to hear any suggestions. I'm sure this little library may be improved.

The basic design puts the data into two tables:

  1. node:

    id INT PRIMARY KEY auto_increment,
    id_parent_node INT DEFAULT NULL,
    node_level INT NOT NULL
  2. node_ancestor:

    id_node INT NOT NULL,
    id_ancestor_node INT NOT NULL,

Proper foreign keys are also set. Note that names may be easily customized (see migration section below)


The preferred way to install this extension is through composer.

Either run

php composer.phar require --prefer-dist codiverum/yii2-abstracttree "dev-master"

or add

"codiverum/yii2-abstracttree": "dev-master"

to the require section of your composer.json file.


Using this extension you can easily make:

  • customized migration
  • ready to use ActiveRecord classes


To make migration, you should create new migration:

yii migrate/create migration_name

Your migration should extend codiverum\abstracttree\migrations\AbstractTreeBaseMigration class, for example:

use codiverum\abstracttree\migrations\AbstractTreeBaseMigration;
use yii\db\Schema;

class m150505_194334_category_tree extends AbstractTreeBaseMigration {

    public function up() {
        $this->addForeignKey('fk_category_usercreated', 'category', 'id_user_created', '{{%user}}', 'id', 'SET NULL', 'CASCADE');

    public function getExtraNodeTableColumns() {
        return [
            'id_user_created' => Schema::TYPE_INTEGER,
            'name' => Schema::TYPE_STRING . '(128) NOT NULL',
            'description' => Schema::TYPE_TEXT,
            'created_at' => Schema::TYPE_INTEGER,
            'updated_at' => Schema::TYPE_INTEGER

    public function getNodeTableName() {
        return 'category';

Then apply migration using command:

yii migrate


Generate pivot table using Gii and you can leave it as is. After that you can use Gii to generate model for the main table or write it on you're own. Just make sure your class is extending AbstractNode class. If you did - you can delete relations created for default columns (not in getExtraNodeTablesColumns migration method) as they are already coverd in AbstractNode class. You may want to add to the description of your class (use your model class name instead of Category):

 * @property Category $parent
 * @property Category[] $ancestors
 * @property Category[] $descendants
 * @property Category[] $children
 * @property Category[] $siblings

For migration example above, Category class would look like this:

namespace common\models;

use codiverum\abstracttree\components\interfaces\TreeNodeInterface;
use codiverum\abstracttree\models\AbstractNode;
use Yii;
use yii\db\ActiveQuery;
use common\models\User;

 * This is the model class for table "category".
 * @property integer $id
 * @property integer $id_parent_category
 * @property integer $id_user_created
 * @property string $name
 * @property string $description
 * @property integer $created_at
 * @property integer $updated_at
 * @property User $userCreated
 * @property Category $parent
 * @property Category[] $ancestors
 * @property Category[] $descendants
 * @property Category[] $children
 * @property Category[] $siblings
class Category extends AbstractNode implements TreeNodeInterface {

    public function beforeSave($insert) {
        if ($insert) {
            $this->id_user_created = Yii::$app->user->id;
        return parent::beforeSave($insert);

     * @inheritdoc
    public static function tableName() {
        return 'category';

     * @inheritdoc
    public function rules() {
        return [
            [['id_parent_category', 'category_level', 'id_user_created', 'created_at', 'updated_at'], 'integer'],
            [['name', 'category_level'], 'required'],
            [['description'], 'string'],
            [['name'], 'string', 'max' => 128],
            [['name', 'id_parent_category'], 'unique', 'targetAttribute' => ['name', 'id_parent_category'], 'message' => 'The combination of Id Parent Category and Name has already been taken.']

     * @inheritdoc
    public function attributeLabels() {
        return [
            'id' => Yii::t('db', 'ID'),
            'id_parent_category' => Yii::t('db', 'Id Parent Category'),
            'id_user_created' => Yii::t('db', 'Id User Created'),
            'name' => Yii::t('db', 'Name'),
            'category_category_level' => Yii::t('db', 'Category Level'),
            'description' => Yii::t('db', 'Description'),
            'created_at' => Yii::t('db', 'Created At'),
            'updated_at' => Yii::t('db', 'Updated At'),
            '' => Yii::t('db', 'Parent'),
            'userCreated.display_name' => Yii::t('db', 'Author'),
            'category_level' => Yii::t('db', 'Level'),
            'parent' => Yii::t('db', 'Parent'),
            'userCreated' => Yii::t('db', 'Author'),

     * @return ActiveQuery
    public function getUserCreated() {
        return $this->hasOne(User::className(), ['id' => 'id_user_created']);


That's it.


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