Flash Messages

Flash messages are contained within a Zend\Expressive\Flash\FlashMessagesInterface implementation. That interface is defined as follows:

namespace Zend\Expressive\Flash;

use Zend\Expressive\Session\SessionInterface;

interface FlashMessagesInterface
     * Flash values scheduled for next request.
    public const FLASH_NEXT = self::class . '::FLASH_NEXT';

     * Create an instance from a session container.
     * Flash messages will be retrieved from and persisted to the session via
     * the `$sessionKey`.
    public static function createFromSession(
        SessionInterface $session,
        string $sessionKey = self::FLASH_NEXT
    ) : FlashMessagesInterface;

     * Set a flash value with the given key.
     * Flash values are accessible on the next "hop", where a hop is the
     * next time the session is accessed; you may pass an additional $hops
     * integer to allow access for more than one hop.
     * @param mixed $value
    public function flash(string $key, $value, int $hops = 1) : void;

     * Set a flash value with the given key, but allow access during this request.
     * Flash values are generally accessible only on subsequent requests;
     * using this method, you may make the value available during the current
     * request as well.
     * @param mixed $value
    public function flashNow(string $key, $value, int $hops = 1) : void;

     * Retrieve a flash value.
     * Will return a value only if a flash value was set in a previous request,
     * or if `flashNow()` was called in this request with the same `$key`.
     * WILL NOT return a value if set in the current request via `flash()`.
     * @param mixed $default Default value to return if no flash value exists.
     * @return mixed
    public function getFlash(string $key, $default = null);

     * Retrieve all flash values.
     * Will return all values was set in a previous request, or if `flashNow()`
     * was called in this request.
     * WILL NOT return values set in the current request via `flash()`.
     * @return array
    public function getFlashes() : array;

     * Clear all flash values.
     * Affects the next and subsequent requests.
    public function clearFlash() : void;

     * Prolongs any current flash messages for one more hop.
    public function prolongFlash() : void;

A default implementation is provided in the class Zend\Expressive\Flash\FlashMessages, but you may implement the interface yourself if you have special needs that fall outside this standard implementation.

The instance will generally be injected into your request under the attribute Zend\Expressive\Flash\FlashMessageMiddleware::FLASH_ATTRIBUTE, which evaluates to flash.


First, pull the flash messages from the request:

$flashMessages = $request->getAttribute(FlashMessageMiddleware::FLASH_ATTRIBUTE);

// or
$flashMessages = $request->getAttribute('flash');

To create a flash message for the next request:

$flashMessages->flash($messageName, $messageValue);

To retrieve a message you previously flashed:

$message = $flashMessages->getFlash($messageName);

To retrieve all messages you previously flashed:

$messages = $flashMessages->getFlashes();


Sometimes you may want a flash message to persist for longer than a single request. As an example, with a multi-page form, you may want to store messages until all pages have been filled.

zend-expressive-flash allows you to specify hops, indicating how many requests the flash message will persist for. The default value is 1, indicating a single hop. This value is provided when you call flash() as an optional third argument.

To have a message persist for three "hops", you might call flash() as follows:

$flashMessages->flash($messageName, $messageValue, 3);

Sometimes you may want to ensure all messages persist for one more hop. To do that:


If you want to clear all flash methods, no matter the number of hops:


Note, however, that this clears them for the next request, not the current one.

Accessing messages in the current request

When you create a flash message, it is available in the next request, but not the current request. If you want access to it in the current request as well, use the flashNow() method instead of flash():

$flashMessages->flashNow($messageName, $messageValue);

The signature of this method is the same as for flash(), and allows you to optionally provide a $hops value as well.

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