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Director is the first step in the "execution pipeline". It parses the URL, matching it to one of a number of patterns, and determines the controller, action and any argument to be used. It then runs the controller, which will finally run the viewer and/or perform processing steps.

Best Practices

  • Checking for an Ajax-Request: Use Director::is_ajax() instead of checking for $_REQUEST['ajax'].


The Director class has a number of methods to facilitate 301 and 302 HTTP redirection.

  • Director::redirect("action-name"): If there's no slash in the URL passed to redirect, then it is assumed that you want to go to a different action on the current controller.
  • Director::redirect("relative/url"): If there is a slash in the URL, it's taken to be a normal URL. Relative URLs will are assumed to be relative to the site-root; so Director::redirect("home/") will work no matter what the current URL is.
  • Director::redirect(""): Of course, you can pass redirect() absolute URL s too.
  • Director::redirectPerm("any-url"): redirectPerm takes the same arguments as redirect, but it will send a 301 (permanent) instead of a 302 (temporary) header. It improves search rankings, so this should be used whenever the following two conditions are true:
    • Nothing happens server-side prior to the redirection
    • The redirection will always occur
  • Director::redirectBack(): This will return you to the previous page. There's no permanent version of redirectBack().

Custom Rewrite Rules

You can influence the way URLs are resolved one of 2 ways

  1. Adding rules to Director in <yourproject>/_config.php (See Default Rewrite Rules below for examples)
  2. Adding rules in your extended Controller class via the $url_handlers static variable

See controller for examples and explanations on how the rules get processed for both 1 and 2 above.

  • Static redirect for specific URL
Director::addRules(100, array(
'myPermanentRedirect' => 'redirect:'

Default Rewrite Rules

SilverStripe comes with certain rewrite rules (e.g. for admin/assets).

  • [sapphire/_config.php]
  • [cms/_config.php]

API Documentation


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