Response Component

Returning Responses

Part of the HTTP cycle is returning responses to clients. Phalcon\Http\Response is the Phalcon component designed to achieve this task. HTTP responses are usually composed by headers and body. The following is an example of basic usage:


use Phalcon\Http\Response;

// Obteniendo una instancia de respuesta
$response = new Response();

// Establecer el código de estado
$response->setStatusCode(404, 'Not Found');

// Establecer el contenido de la respuesta
$response->setContent("Lo sentimos, la página no existe");

// Enviar la respuesta al cliente

If you are using the full MVC stack there is no need to create responses manually. However, if you need to return a response directly from a controller’s action follow this example:


use Phalcon\Http\Response;
use Phalcon\Mvc\Controller;

class FeedController extends Controller
    public function getAction()
        // Obtener una instancia de respuesta
        $response = new Response();

        $feed = // ... Cargar aquí el feed

        // Establecer el contenido de la respuesta

        // Devolver la respuesta
        return $response;

Trabajando con Cabeceras

Headers are an important part of the HTTP response. It contains useful information about the response state like the HTTP status, type of response and much more.

You can set headers in the following way:


// Establecer encabezados por su nombre
$response->setHeader('Content-Type', 'application/pdf');
$response->setHeader('Content-Disposition', "attachment; filename='downloaded.pdf'");

// Establecer una cabecera en crudo
$response->setRawHeader('HTTP/1.1 200 OK');

A Phalcon\Http\Response\Headers bag internally manages headers. This class retrieves the headers before sending it to client:


// Obtener la bolsa de cabeceras
$headers = $response->getHeaders();

// Obtener una cabecera por su nombre
$contentType = $headers->get('Content-Type');

Making Redirections

With Phalcon\Http\Response you can also execute HTTP redirections:


// Redirect to the default URI

// Redirect to the local base URI

// Redirect to an external URL
$response->redirect('', true);

// Redirect specifying the HTTP status code
$response->redirect('', true, 301);

All internal URIs are generated using the service (by default [Phalcon\Url](api/Phalcon_Url)). This example demonstrates how you can redirect using a route you have defined in your application:


// Redireccionar basado en una ruta con nombre
return $response->redirect(
        'for'        => 'index-lang',
        'lang'       => 'jp',
        'controller' => 'index',

Even if there is a view associated with the current action, it will not be rendered since redirect disables the view.

HTTP Cache

One of the easiest ways to improve the performance in your applications and reduce the traffic is using HTTP Cache. Most modern browsers support HTTP caching and is one of the reasons why many websites are currently fast.

HTTP Cache can be altered in the following header values sent by the application when serving a page for the first time:

  • Expires: con este encabezado, la aplicación puede establecer una fecha en el futuro o en el pasado que indique al navegador cuándo debe caducar la página.
  • Cache-Control: este encabezado permite especificar cuánto tiempo una página debe considerarse como fresca en el navegador.
  • Last-Modified: este encabezado le dice al navegador cuál fue la última vez que se actualizó el sitio, evitando que la página se vuelva a cargar.
  • ETag: un etag es un identificador único que se debe ser creado incluyendo el tiempo de modificación de la página actual.

Setting an Expiration Time

The expiration date is one of the easiest and most effective ways to cache a page in the client (browser). Starting from the current date we add the amount of time the page will be stored in the browser cache. Until this date expires no new content will be requested from the server:


$expiryDate = new DateTime();

$expiryDate->modify('+2 months');


The Response component automatically shows the date in GMT timezone as expected in an Expires header.

If we set this value to a date in the past the browser will always refresh the requested page:


$expiryDate = new DateTime();

$expiryDate->modify('-10 minutes');


Browsers rely on the client’s clock to assess if this date has passed or not. The client clock can be modified to make pages expire and this may represent a limitation for this cache mechanism.


This header provides a safer way to cache the pages served. We simply must specify a time in seconds telling the browser how long it must keep the page in its cache:


// Comenzando desde ahora, almacenar en cache esta página por un día
$response->setHeader('Cache-Control', 'max-age=86400');

The opposite effect (avoid page caching) is achieved in this way:


// Nunca almacenar en cache la página entregada
$response->setHeader('Cache-Control', 'private, max-age=0, must-revalidate');


An entity-tag or E-tag is a unique identifier that helps the browser realize if the page has changed or not between two requests. The identifier must be calculated taking into account that this must change if the previously served content has changed:


// Calculate the E-Tag based on the modification time of the latest news
$mostRecentDate = News::maximum(
        'column' => 'created_at',

$eTag = md5($mostRecentDate);

// Send an E-Tag header
$response->setHeader('E-Tag', $eTag);