phpZenfolio is written in PHP and utilises functionality supplied with PHP 5.2
and later and optionally PEAR.

From a PHP perspective, the only requirement is PHP 5.2 compiled with GD and
optionally, curl support enabled.

If you wish to use a database for caching, you will also need the following
PEAR packages:

Please consult the above links for details on installing the PEAR modules.


Copy the files from the installation package into a folder on your server.
They need to be readable by your web server. You can put them into an include
folder defined in your php.ini file, if you like, though it’s not required.


In order to use phpZenfolio, you will need to instantiate a new instance of the
phpZenfolio object and then call the methods you need. phpZenfolio implements
all methods and arguments as documented in the Zenfolio API. Accordingly, when
calling a Zenfolio method, you will need to ensure that you pass the parameters
exactly as they are documented in the Zenfolio API documentation.

Remember: ALL function names and arguments ARE case sensitive and the order
is important.

To make things easy for developers, phpZenfolio also provides several of it’s
own methods. These methods are: login(), enableCache(), clearCache(), upload(), setProxy(), imageUrl() and setAdapter(). All phpZenfolio
methods, and its constructor, take their arguments either as an associative
array or as a list of param=value strings, unless otherwise documented.
These methods are documented in more detail later in this document.

To use phpZenfolio, all you have to do is include the file in your PHP scripts
and create an instance. For example:

$f = new phpZenfolio(... arguments go here ...);

The constructor takes two arguments, one obligatory and one optional:

  • AppName - Required

    This is the name, version and URL of the application you have built using
    phpZenfolio. There is no required format, but something like:

       "My Cool App/1.0 ("

    … would be very useful and will allow Zenfolio to identify your
    application in the event of a problem.

  • APIVer - Optional
    Default: 1.6

    Use this to set the endpoint you wish to use. The default is 1.6 as this
    is the latest endpoint provided by Zenfolio.

As the constructor is a phpZenfolio specific method, it can be instantiated
using one of the following methods:

Arguments as strings:

$f = new phpZenfolio("AppName=My Cool App/1.0 (", "APIVer=1.6");

Arguments as an associative array:

$f = new phpZenfolio( array(
	"AppName" => "My Cool App/1.0 (",
	"APIVer" => "1.6")

Naturally, you can predefine the array before instantiating the object and just
pass the array variable.

With the instance instantiated, you can now interact with the Zenfolio API
using Zenfolio’s native methods exactly as they’re documented. Arguments to all
Zenfolio native methods must be provided in the order they are documented in
the API documentation. For example, use the following to get all recent sets
that are of the PhotoSetType ‘Gallery’:

$f->GetRecentSets('Gallery', 0, 3);

Note the method’s capitalisation and the arguments, these are as they are
documented in the GetRecentSets() method

Some of the Zenfolio API methods, like CreatePhotoSet(), require an object to
be passed as one of the arguments. The object can be passed either as an
associative array:

$photoSetUpdater = array(
   "Title" => "PhotoSet Title",
   "Caption" => "PhotoSet Caption via API",
   "Keywords" => array("Keyword1", "keyword2"),
   "Categories" => array(),
   "CustomReference" => "testing/test-photoset"
$f->CreatePhotoSet(12345, 'Gallery', $photoSetUpdater );

… or as a standard class object:

$photoSetUpdater = new stdClass();
$photoSetUpdater->Title = "PhotoSet Title";
$photoSetUpdater->Caption = "PhotoSet Caption via Object"|;
$photoSetUpdater->Keywords = array("Keyword1", "keyword2");
$photoSetUpdater->Categories = array();
$photoSetUpdater->CustomReference = "testing/test-photoset";
$f->CreatePhotoSet(12345, 'Gallery', $photoSetUpdater );

All data returned by the method call is returned as the API documents it with
the exception being objects are actually returned as arrays by phpZenfolio. In
the event of an error, phpZenfolio will throw one of two exceptions:
PhpZenfolioException in the event of a problem detected by phpZenfolio or
HttpRequestException in the event of a problem detected by the code used to
communicate with the API. Your application will need to catch these exceptions.


Many of the Zenfolio API methods are open to all users, whether they have
Zenfolio accounts or not, however anything private or related to modification
requires authentication.

The Zenfolio API provides two methods of authentication: Plain-Text and
Challenge-Response. Both are equally good with the slightly more secure method
being the Challenge-Response method as your password never travels across the

phpZenfolio allows you to use the API methods as documented, however to make
things easy, a single login() method exists to allow you to authentication
using either of these authentication methods:

  • Challenge-Response (default):

      $f->login("Username=<username>", "Password=<password>");
  • Plain-Text:

      $f->login("Username=<username>", "Password=<password>", "Plaintext=TRUE");

The Plain-Text method uses HTTPS/SSL for the authentication step to ensure your
username and password are encrypted when transmitted to Zenfolio.


Caching can be very important to a project as it can drastically improve the
performance of your application.

phpZenfolio has caching functionality that can cache data to a database or
files, you just need to enable it.

It is recommended that caching is enabled immediately after a new phpZenfolio
instance is created, and before any other phpZenfolio methods are called.

To enable caching, use the enableCache() function.

The enableCache() method takes 4 arguments:

  • type - Required
    This is “db” for database or “fs” for filesystem.

  • dsn - Required for type=db
    This a PEAR::MDB2 DSN connection string, for example:


    phpZenfolio uses the MDB2 PEAR module to interact with the database if you
    use database based caching. phpZenfolio does NOT supply the necessary
    PEAR modules. If you with to use a database for caching, you will need to
    download and install PEAR, the MDB2 PEAR module and the corresponding
    database driver yourself. See MDB2 Manual for

  • cache_dir - Required for type=fs

    This is the folder/directory that the web server has write access to. This
    directory must already exist.

    Use absolute paths for best results as relative paths may have unexpected
    behaviour. They’ll usually work, you’ll just want to test them.

    You may not want to allow the world to view the files that are created
    during caching. If you want to hide this information, either make sure
    that your permissions are set correctly, or prevent the webserver from
    displaying *.cache files.

    In Apache, you can specify this in the configuration files or in a
    .htaccess file with the following directives:

       <FilesMatch "\.cache$">
          Deny from all

    Alternatively, you can specify a directory that is outside of the web
    server’s document root.

  • cache_expire - Optional
    Default: 3600

    This is the maximum age of each cache entry in seconds.

  • table - Optional
    Default: phpzenfolio_cache

    This is the database table name that will be used for storing the cached
    data. This is only applicable for database (db) caching and will be
    ignored if included for filesystem (fs) caching.

    If the table does not exist, phpZenfolio will attempt to create it.

Each of the caching methods can be enabled as follows:

Filesystem based cache:

$f->enableCache("type=fs", "cache_dir=/tmp", "cache_expire=86400" );

Database based cache:

$f->enableCache("type=db", "dsn=mysql://USERNAME:PASSWORD_database", "cache_expire=86400");

If you have caching enabled, and you make changes, it’s a good idea to call clearCache() to refresh the cache so your changes are reflected immediately.


Uploading is very easy. You can either upload an image from your local system
using the phpZenfolio supplied upload() method, or from a location on the web
using the API’s CreatePhotoFromUrl() method.

  • Upload Local File:

    To upload from your local filesystem using the phpZenfolio upload()
    method, you will need to have logged into Zenfolio via the API and have
    the PhotoSetId or it’s UploadUrl as returned by the API.

    Then it’s just a matter of calling the method with the various optional

    • Upload using the PhotoSetId:

           $f->upload("PhotoSetId=123456", "File=/path/to/image.jpg");
    • Upload using the UploadUrl:


    At this time, the only supported options you can pass at the time of
    uploading are a “filename” the “modified” parameter which takes a RFC2822
    formatted date string…

           "modified=Thu, 14 Jan 2010 13:08:07 +0200");

    If you don’t specify a filename, the original filename is used.

  • Upload from the web:

    Uploading to Zenfolio using a URL is done purely by the Zenfolio CreatePhotoFromUrl() API method:

       $f->CreatePhotoFromUrl( 12344, "", null );

    You can find full details on the options this method accepts in the CreatePhotoFromUrl
    method documentation.

    Unfortunately, there is no way to pass things like the photo title etc at
    the time of upload. You will need to set these later using the UpdatePhoto() method.

Replacing Photos

In order to replace a photo, you will need to upload a new photo and then
replace the old photo with the new using the Zenfolio ReplacePhoto() API method.

Other Notes

  • By default, phpZenfolio will attempt to use Curl to communicate with the
    Zenfolio API endpoint if it’s available. If not, it’ll revert to using
    sockets based communication using fsockopen(). If you wish to force the
    use of sockets, you can do so using the phpZenfolio supplied setAdapter() right after instantiating your instance:

       $f = new phpZenfolio("AppName=<value>");

    Valid arguments are “curl” (default) and “socket”.

  • phpZenfolio implements Zenfolio objects as arrays. This makes
    implementation and usage easier.

  • Some people will need to use phpZenfolio from behind a proxy server. You
    can use the setProxy() method to set the appropriate proxy settings.

    For example:

       $f = new phpZenfolio("AppName=<value>");
       $f->setProxy("server=<proxy_server>", "port=<value>");

    All your calls will then pass through the specified proxy on the specified

    If your proxy server requires a username and password, then add those
    options to the setProxy() method arguments too.

    For example:

       $f = new phpZenfolio("AppName=<value>");

    Note: Proxy support is currently only available when using the default “curl” adapter.

  • To make it easy to obtain the direct URL to an image, phpZenfolio supplies
    a imageURL() method that takes the Photo object as returned by methods
    like LoadPhoto() and LoadPhotoSetPhotos() and an integer for the
    desired photo size where the integer is one of those documented.

    For example:

       $f = new phpZenfolio("AppName=<value>");
       $photos = $f->LoadPhotoSetPhotos(<photosetID>, <startingIndex>, <numberOfPhotos>);
       foreach ($photos as $photo) {
         echo '<img src="',phpZenfolio::imageUrl($photo, 1),'" />';
  • If phpZenfolio encounters an error, or Zenfolio returns a “failure”
    response, an exception will be thrown and your application will stop
    executing. If there is a problem with communicating with the endpoint, a
    HttpRequestException will be thrown. If an error is detected elsewhere, a
    PhpZenfolioException will be thrown.

    It is recommended that you configure your application to catch exceptions
    from phpZenfolio.


phpZenfolio comes with 3 examples to help get you on your way.

  • example-popular.php illustrates how to obtain the 100 most popular
    galleries and display their title image linking to each individual gallery.

  • example-login.php illustrates how to login and display the images in
    your first photoset or collection.

  • example-user.php illustrates how to display the first 100 public photos
    of the user’s the first public photoset found.

And that’s all folks.

Keep up to date on developments and enhancements to phpZenfolio at