Error Handling

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Exception Handlers
    1. Logging
      1. Specifying Exceptions to Not Log
  3. Exception Renderers
    1. HTTP Responses
      1. Response Formats
  4. Error Handlers
    1. Specifying Errors to Log
    2. Specifying Errors to Throw


If you've ever written a PHP page and had some sort of error or unhandled exception, you've probably seen a blank white page in your browser. Obviously, this is not useful for end users, nor is it helpful for developers when trying to track down the problem. Opulence's Debug library makes it possible to handle errors and exceptions and create useful HTTP responses from them.

Exception Handlers

The exception handler is your last line of defense for unhandled exceptions. Opulence provides Opulence\Debug\Exceptions\Handlers\ExceptionHandler as an exception handler. It has two methods:


ExceptionHandler accepts a PSR-3 logger to actually log any errors. We recommend the excellent Monolog logger.

use Monolog\Handler\ErrorLogHandler;
use Monolog\Logger;
use Opulence\Debug\Exceptions\Handlers\ExceptionHandler;
use Project\Application\Debug\CustomExceptionRenderer;

$logger = new Logger('app');
$logger->pushHandler(new ErrorLogHandler());
$renderer = new CustomExceptionRenderer();
$exceptionHandler = new ExceptionHandler($logger, $renderer);
// Make sure to actually register this handler with PHP
Specifying Exceptions to Not Log

ExceptionHandler accepts an array of classes to not log when handled:

$exceptionHandler = new ExceptionHandler($logger, $renderer, [HttpException::class]);

Now, whenever an unhandled HttpException occurs, it will be handled by the ExceptionHandler, but not logged. All other exceptions will be logged by $logger.

Exception Renderers

When an exception is handled, you probably want to render some sort of output explaining what happened. Depending on the environment you're in, you may even want to include technical details to help track down the issue. This is where exception renderers come in handy. They must implement Opulence\Debug\Exceptions\Handlers\IExceptionRenderer, which has a single method render(). This accepts the Exception or Throwable and renders some sort of response with it.

HTTP Responses

To compile an HTTP response from an exception, you have two choices:

  1. Opulence\Debug\Exceptions\Handlers\Http\ExceptionRenderer
  2. Opulence\Framework\Debug\Exceptions\Handlers\Http\ExceptionRenderer

The first one is useful if you're using the Debug library without using the whole Opulence framework. It can display one page with information about the exception when in the development environment. It'll display another when in the production environment. To override the page templates, simply extend ExceptionRenderer and override getDevelopmentEnvironmentContent() and/or getProductionEnvironmentContent().

The second renderer is useful if you're using the entire Opulence framework. It'll look for Fortune templates for the errors before resorting to the page templates described above. For example, if an HttpException is thrown with a 404 status code, this renderer will look for a template in your resources/views/errors/html directory named 404.fortune.php.

Note: Non-HTTP exceptions will look for a 500.fortune.php template file.

Two variables will be injected into your Fortune template:

  1. $__exception
    • The exception object being rendered
  2. $__inDevelopmentEnvironment
    • Whether or not we are in the development environment
Response Formats

If a user is requesting JSON, it'd be nice to return a formatted JSON response when errors occur. Opulence provides Fortune templates for JSON errors in the skeleton project under the resources/views/errors/json directory.

Even if you're using the standalone Debug library, Opulence will format your response to match the requested content type.

Note: If the user is not requesting JSON, then the appropriate template under resources/views/errors/html will be used.

Error Handlers

The error handler handles any errors PHP might throw, such as E_PARSE or E_ERROR. It even handles fatal errors. Error handlers have two methods:

  1. handle()
    • Converts the error into an exception, which is handled by the exception handler
  2. handleShutdown()
    • Handles any errors after script execution finishes
  3. register()
    • Registers the handler with PHP

Opulence\Debug\Errors\Handlers\ErrorHandler is the default error handler.

Specifying Errors to Log

By default, errors are not logged, although they might be if they're thrown as exceptions. To actually log certain levels of errors, pass in the bitwise value indicating the levels to log:

use Monolog\Handler\ErrorLogHandler;
use Monolog\Logger;
use Opulence\Debug\Errors\Handlers\ErrorHandler;

$logger = new Logger('app');
$logger->pushHandler(new ErrorLogHandler());
// Assume the exception handler has already been set
$errorHandler = new ErrorHandler(

Now, E_PARSE and E_ERROR error levels will be logged.

Specifying Errors to Throw

Errors can be re-thrown as an \ErrorException. This allows them to be handled by the ExceptionHandler. To specify which levels of errors to re-throw as exceptions, pass in the bitwise value indicating the levels to throw:

$errorHandler = new ErrorHandler(

Now, all errors except E_NOTICE will be thrown as exceptions.

Note: All errors besides E_DEPRECATED and E_USER_DEPRECATED are thrown as an \ErrorException.