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Clients are the interface which bridges a user or external tool into the Zend_Tool_Framework system. Clients can come in all shapes and sizes: RPC endpoints, Command Line Interface, or even a web interface. Zend_Tool has implemented the command line interface as the default interface for interacting with the Zend_Tool_Framework system.

To implement a client, one would need to extend the following abstract class:

abstract class Zend_Tool_Framework_Client_Abstract
     * This method should be implemented by the client implementation to
     * construct and set custom loaders, request and response objects.
     * (not required, but suggested)
protected function _preInit();

     * This method should be implemented by the client implementation to parse
     * out and set up the request objects action, provider and parameter
     * information.
abstract protected function _preDispatch();

     * This method should be implemented by the client implementation to take
     * the output of the response object and return it (in an client specific
     * way) back to the Tooling Client.
     * (not required, but suggested)
abstract protected function _postDispatch();

As you can see, there 1 method is required to fulfill the needs of a client (two others suggested), the initialization, prehandling and post handling. For a more in depth study of how the command line client works, please see the source code.

Zend Framework