dojo - Smarty - PHP - Synchronizing client- and server-side validation

The following architecture with Smarty and dojo allows you to the client and server synchronized for validation for RIA/PHP applications.

Each input has 4 characteristics defined in a (PHP) .ini file -


V_input_name = regExp (usually includes length)
L_input_name = max length
R_input_name = true or false (required or not)
T_input_name = type of input data in database, used to support documentation

Each input also has 3 characteristics defined in a Smarty .conf file, and there is a .conf file for every language (.ini be under languages)


E_input_name = error message
I_input_name = invalid message
P_input_name = prompt message

Smarty constructs the input tags like so:


<input type="text" dojoType="dijit.form.ValidationTextBox"
    name="input_name" id="input_name"
    length="{#L_input_name#}" />

There is a simple javascript validation that accepts an array of inputs and tests if they are valid with input_name.isValid(), displaying input_name.errorMessage if not, and cancelling the submit.

On the server side, there is a loop that tests the inputs against the same strings:


foreach ($aInput as $k => $v)
  if (isset($aIni['V_'.$k]))
    if (isset($aIni['R_'.$k])
    if (($aIni['R_'.$k]=='true') && ($sInput=='')) /* Test for required */
      return false;
    if (!filter($aIni['V_'.$k],$v))  /* flter ensures data complies with regexp */
        return false;

This allows the client-side code to help the user enter valid data, and allows the server-side code to protect the server by disallowing or discarding data that isn’t valid.

Please note that page-level validation, where the required state and content of data may vary based on other inputs must be reflected at both the client and server side.