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Eloquent: Getting Started

Introduction

Laravel includes Eloquent, an object-relational mapper (ORM) that makes it enjoyable to interact with your database. When using Eloquent, each database table has a corresponding "Model" that is used to interact with that table. In addition to retrieving records from the database table, Eloquent models allow you to insert, update, and delete records from the table as well.

{tip} Before getting started, be sure to configure a database connection in your application's config/database.php configuration file. For more information on configuring your database, check out the database configuration documentation.

Generating Model Classes

To get started, let's create an Eloquent model. Models typically live in the app\Models directory and extend the Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model class. You may use the make:model Artisan command to generate a new model:

php artisan make:model Flight

If you would like to generate a database migration when you generate the model, you may use the --migration or -m option:

php artisan make:model Flight --migration

You may generate various other types of classes when generating a model, such as factories, seeders, and controllers. In addition, these options may be combined to create multiple classes at once:

# Generate a model and a FlightFactory class...
php artisan make:model Flight --factory
php artisan make:model Flight -f

# Generate a model and a FlightSeeder class...
php artisan make:model Flight --seed
php artisan make:model Flight -s

# Generate a model and a FlightController class...
php artisan make:model Flight --controller
php artisan make:model Flight -c

# Generate a model and a migration, factory, seeder, and controller...
php artisan make:model Flight -mfsc

# Shortcut to generate a model, migration, factory, seeder, and controller...
php artisan make:model Flight --all

# Generate a pivot model...
php artisan make:model Member --pivot

Eloquent Model Conventions

Models generated by the make:model command will be placed in the app/Models directory. Let's examine a basic model class and discuss some of Eloquent's key conventions:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class Flight extends Model
{
    //
}

Table Names

After glancing at the example above, you may have noticed that we did not tell Eloquent which database table corresponds to our Flight model. By convention, the "snake case", plural name of the class will be used as the table name unless another name is explicitly specified. So, in this case, Eloquent will assume the Flight model stores records in the flights table, while an AirTrafficController model would store records in an air_traffic_controllers table.

If your model's corresponding database table does not fit this convention, you may manually specify the model's table name by defining a table property on the model:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * The table associated with the model.
     *
     * @var string
     */
    protected $table = 'my_flights';
}

Primary Keys

Eloquent will also assume that each model's corresponding database table has a primary key column named id. If necessary, you may define a protected $primaryKey property on your model to specify a different column that serves as your model's primary key:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * The primary key associated with the table.
     *
     * @var string
     */
    protected $primaryKey = 'flight_id';
}

In addition, Eloquent assumes that the primary key is an incrementing integer value, which means that Eloquent will automatically cast the primary key to an integer. If you wish to use a non-incrementing or a non-numeric primary key you must define a public $incrementing property on your model that is set to false:

<?php

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * Indicates if the model's ID is auto-incrementing.
     *
     * @var bool
     */
    public $incrementing = false;
}

If your model's primary key is not an integer, you should define a protected $keyType property on your model. This property should have a value of string:

<?php

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * The data type of the auto-incrementing ID.
     *
     * @var string
     */
    protected $keyType = 'string';
}

"Composite" Primary Keys

Eloquent requires each model to have at least one uniquely identifying "ID" that can serve as its primary key. "Composite" primary keys are not supported by Eloquent models. However, you are free to add additional multi-column, unique indexes to your database tables in addition to the table's uniquely identifying primary key.

Timestamps

By default, Eloquent expects created_at and updated_at columns to exist on your model's corresponding database table. Eloquent will automatically set these column's values when models are created or updated. If you do not want these columns to be automatically managed by Eloquent, you should define a $timestamps property on your model with a value of false:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * Indicates if the model should be timestamped.
     *
     * @var bool
     */
    public $timestamps = false;
}

If you need to customize the format of your model's timestamps, set the $dateFormat property on your model. This property determines how date attributes are stored in the database as well as their format when the model is serialized to an array or JSON:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * The storage format of the model's date columns.
     *
     * @var string
     */
    protected $dateFormat = 'U';
}

If you need to customize the names of the columns used to store the timestamps, you may define CREATED_AT and UPDATED_AT constants on your model:

<?php

class Flight extends Model
{
    const CREATED_AT = 'creation_date';
    const UPDATED_AT = 'updated_date';
}

Database Connections

By default, all Eloquent models will use the default database connection that is configured for your application. If you would like to specify a different connection that should be used when interacting with a particular model, you should define a $connection property on the model:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * The database connection that should be used by the model.
     *
     * @var string
     */
    protected $connection = 'sqlite';
}

Default Attribute Values

By default, a newly instantiated model instance will not contain any attribute values. If you would like to define the default values for some of your model's attributes, you may define an $attributes property on your model:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * The model's default values for attributes.
     *
     * @var array
     */
    protected $attributes = [
        'delayed' => false,
    ];
}

Retrieving Models

Once you have created a model and its associated database table, you are ready to start retrieving data from your database. You can think of each Eloquent model as a powerful query builder allowing you to fluently query the database table associated with the model. The model's all method will retrieve all of the records from the model's associated database table:

use App\Models\Flight;

foreach (Flight::all() as $flight) {
    echo $flight->name;
}

Building Queries

The Eloquent all method will return all of the results in the model's table. However, since each Eloquent model serves as a query builder, you may add additional constraints to queries and then invoke the get method to retrieve the results:

$flights = Flight::where('active', 1)
               ->orderBy('name')
               ->take(10)
               ->get();

{tip} Since Eloquent models are query builders, you should review all of the methods provided by Laravel's query builder. You may use any of these methods when writing your Eloquent queries.

Refreshing Models

If you already have an instance of an Eloquent model that was retrieved from the database, you can "refresh" the model using the fresh and refresh methods. The fresh method will re-retrieve the model from the database. The existing model instance will not be affected:

$flight = Flight::where('number', 'FR 900')->first();

$freshFlight = $flight->fresh();

The refresh method will re-hydrate the existing model using fresh data from the database. In addition, all of its loaded relationships will be refreshed as well:

$flight = Flight::where('number', 'FR 900')->first();

$flight->number = 'FR 456';

$flight->refresh();

$flight->number; // "FR 900"

Collections

As we have seen, Eloquent methods like all and get retrieve multiple records from the database. However, these methods don't return a plain PHP array. Instead, an instance of Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Collection is returned.

The Eloquent Collection class extends Laravel's base Illuminate\Support\Collection class, which provides a variety of helpful methods for interacting with data collections. For example, the reject method may be used to remove models from a collection based on the results of an invoked closure:

$flights = Flight::where('destination', 'Paris')->get();

$flights = $flights->reject(function ($flight) {
    return $flight->cancelled;
});

In addition to the methods provided by Laravel's base collection class, the Eloquent collection class provides a few extra methods that are specifically intended for interacting with collections of Eloquent models.

Since all of Laravel's collections implement PHP's iterable interfaces, you may loop over collections as if they were an array:

foreach ($flights as $flight) {
    echo $flight->name;
}

Chunking Results

Your application may run out of memory if you attempt to load tens of thousands of Eloquent records via the all or get methods. Instead of using these methods, the chunk method may be used to process large numbers of models more efficiently.

The chunk method will retrieve a subset of Eloquent models, passing them to a closure for processing. Since only the current chunk of Eloquent models is retrieved at a time, the chunk method will provide significantly reduced memory usage when working with a large number of models:

use App\Models\Flight;

Flight::chunk(200, function ($flights) {
    foreach ($flights as $flight) {
        //
    }
});

The first argument passed to the chunk method is the number of records you wish to receive per "chunk". The closure passed as the second argument will be invoked for each chunk that is retrieved from the database. A database query will be executed to retrieve each chunk of records passed to the closure.

If you are filtering the results of the chunk method based on a column that you will also be updating while iterating over the results, you should use the chunkById method. Using the chunk method in these scenarios could lead to unexpected and inconsistent results. Internally, the chunkById method will always retrieve models with an id column greater than the last model in the previous chunk:

Flight::where('departed', true)
    ->chunkById(200, function ($flights) {
        $flights->each->update(['departed' => false]);
    }, $column = 'id');

Streaming Results Lazily

The lazy method works similarly to the chunk method in the sense that, behind the scenes, it executes the query in chunks. However, instead of passing each chunk directly into a callback as is, the lazy method returns a flattened LazyCollection of Eloquent models, which lets you interact with the results as a single stream:

use App\Models\Flight;

foreach (Flight::lazy() as $flight) {
    //
}

If you are filtering the results of the lazy method based on a column that you will also be updating while iterating over the results, you should use the lazyById method. Internally, the lazyById method will always retrieve models with an id column greater than the last model in the previous chunk:

Flight::where('departed', true)
    ->lazyById(200, $column = 'id')
    ->each->update(['departed' => false]);

Cursors

Similar to the lazy method, the cursor method may be used to significantly reduce your application's memory consumption when iterating through tens of thousands of Eloquent model records.

The cursor method will only execute a single database query; however, the individual Eloquent models will not be hydrated until they are actually iterated over. Therefore, only one Eloquent model is kept in memory at any given time while iterating over the cursor.

{note} Since the cursor method only ever holds a single Eloquent model in memory at a time, it cannot eager load relationships. If you need to eager load relationships, consider using the lazy method instead.

Internally, the cursor method uses PHP generators to implement this functionality:

use App\Models\Flight;

foreach (Flight::where('destination', 'Zurich')->cursor() as $flight) {
    //
}

The cursor returns an Illuminate\Support\LazyCollection instance. Lazy collections allow you to use many of the collection methods available on typical Laravel collections while only loading a single model into memory at a time:

use App\Models\User;

$users = User::cursor()->filter(function ($user) {
    return $user->id > 500;
});

foreach ($users as $user) {
    echo $user->id;
}

Although the cursor method uses far less memory than a regular query (by only holding a single Eloquent model in memory at a time), it will still eventually run out of memory. This is due to PHP's PDO driver internally caching all raw query results in its buffer. If you're dealing with a very large number of Eloquent records, consider using the lazy method instead.

Advanced Subqueries

Subquery Selects

Eloquent also offers advanced subquery support, which allows you to pull information from related tables in a single query. For example, let's imagine that we have a table of flight destinations and a table of flights to destinations. The flights table contains an arrived_at column which indicates when the flight arrived at the destination.

Using the subquery functionality available to the query builder's select and addSelect methods, we can select all of the destinations and the name of the flight that most recently arrived at that destination using a single query:

use App\Models\Destination;
use App\Models\Flight;

return Destination::addSelect(['last_flight' => Flight::select('name')
    ->whereColumn('destination_id', 'destinations.id')
    ->orderByDesc('arrived_at')
    ->limit(1)
])->get();

Subquery Ordering

In addition, the query builder's orderBy function supports subqueries. Continuing to use our flight example, we may use this functionality to sort all destinations based on when the last flight arrived at that destination. Again, this may be done while executing a single database query:

return Destination::orderByDesc(
    Flight::select('arrived_at')
        ->whereColumn('destination_id', 'destinations.id')
        ->orderByDesc('arrived_at')
        ->limit(1)
)->get();

Retrieving Single Models / Aggregates

In addition to retrieving all of the records matching a given query, you may also retrieve single records using the find, first, or firstWhere methods. Instead of returning a collection of models, these methods return a single model instance:

use App\Models\Flight;

// Retrieve a model by its primary key...
$flight = Flight::find(1);

// Retrieve the first model matching the query constraints...
$flight = Flight::where('active', 1)->first();

// Alternative to retrieving the first model matching the query constraints...
$flight = Flight::firstWhere('active', 1);

Sometimes you may wish to retrieve the first result of a query or perform some other action if no results are found. The firstOr method will return the first result matching the query or, if no results are found, execute the given closure. The value returned by the closure will be considered the result of the firstOr method:

$model = Flight::where('legs', '>', 3)->firstOr(function () {
    // ...
});

Not Found Exceptions

Sometimes you may wish to throw an exception if a model is not found. This is particularly useful in routes or controllers. The findOrFail and firstOrFail methods will retrieve the first result of the query; however, if no result is found, an Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\ModelNotFoundException will be thrown:

$flight = Flight::findOrFail(1);

$flight = Flight::where('legs', '>', 3)->firstOrFail();

If the ModelNotFoundException is not caught, a 404 HTTP response is automatically sent back to the client:

use App\Models\Flight;

Route::get('/api/flights/{id}', function ($id) {
    return Flight::findOrFail($id);
});

Retrieving Or Creating Models

The firstOrCreate method will attempt to locate a database record using the given column / value pairs. If the model can not be found in the database, a record will be inserted with the attributes resulting from merging the first array argument with the optional second array argument:

The firstOrNew method, like firstOrCreate, will attempt to locate a record in the database matching the given attributes. However, if a model is not found, a new model instance will be returned. Note that the model returned by firstOrNew has not yet been persisted to the database. You will need to manually call the save method to persist it:

use App\Models\Flight;

// Retrieve flight by name or create it if it doesn't exist...
$flight = Flight::firstOrCreate([
    'name' => 'London to Paris'
]);

// Retrieve flight by name or create it with the name, delayed, and arrival_time attributes...
$flight = Flight::firstOrCreate(
    ['name' => 'London to Paris'],
    ['delayed' => 1, 'arrival_time' => '11:30']
);

// Retrieve flight by name or instantiate a new Flight instance...
$flight = Flight::firstOrNew([
    'name' => 'London to Paris'
]);

// Retrieve flight by name or instantiate with the name, delayed, and arrival_time attributes...
$flight = Flight::firstOrNew(
    ['name' => 'Tokyo to Sydney'],
    ['delayed' => 1, 'arrival_time' => '11:30']
);

Retrieving Aggregates

When interacting with Eloquent models, you may also use the count, sum, max, and other aggregate methods provided by the Laravel query builder. As you might expect, these methods return a scalar value instead of an Eloquent model instance:

$count = Flight::where('active', 1)->count();

$max = Flight::where('active', 1)->max('price');

Inserting & Updating Models

Inserts

Of course, when using Eloquent, we don't only need to retrieve models from the database. We also need to insert new records. Thankfully, Eloquent makes it simple. To insert a new record into the database, you should instantiate a new model instance and set attributes on the model. Then, call the save method on the model instance:

<?php

namespace App\Http\Controllers;

use App\Http\Controllers\Controller;
use App\Models\Flight;
use Illuminate\Http\Request;

class FlightController extends Controller
{
    /**
     * Store a new flight in the database.
     *
     * @param  \Illuminate\Http\Request  $request
     * @return \Illuminate\Http\Response
     */
    public function store(Request $request)
    {
        // Validate the request...

        $flight = new Flight;

        $flight->name = $request->name;

        $flight->save();
    }
}

In this example, we assign the name field from the incoming HTTP request to the name attribute of the App\Models\Flight model instance. When we call the save method, a record will be inserted into the database. The model's created_at and updated_at timestamps will automatically be set when the save method is called, so there is no need to set them manually.

Alternatively, you may use the create method to "save" a new model using a single PHP statement. The inserted model instance will be returned to you by the create method:

use App\Models\Flight;

$flight = Flight::create([
    'name' => 'London to Paris',
]);

However, before using the create method, you will need to specify either a fillable or guarded property on your model class. These properties are required because all Eloquent models are protected against mass assignment vulnerabilities by default. To learn more about mass assignment, please consult the mass assignment documentation.

Updates

The save method may also be used to update models that already exist in the database. To update a model, you should retrieve it and set any attributes you wish to update. Then, you should call the model's save method. Again, the updated_at timestamp will automatically be updated, so there is no need to manually set its value:

use App\Models\Flight;

$flight = Flight::find(1);

$flight->name = 'Paris to London';

$flight->save();

Mass Updates

Updates can also be performed against models that match a given query. In this example, all flights that are active and have a destination of San Diego will be marked as delayed:

Flight::where('active', 1)
      ->where('destination', 'San Diego')
      ->update(['delayed' => 1]);

The update method expects an array of column and value pairs representing the columns that should be updated.

{note} When issuing a mass update via Eloquent, the saving, saved, updating, and updated model events will not be fired for the updated models. This is because the models are never actually retrieved when issuing a mass update.

Examining Attribute Changes

Eloquent provides the isDirty, isClean, and wasChanged methods to examine the internal state of your model and determine how its attributes have changed from when the model was originally retrieved.

The isDirty method determines if any of the model's attributes have been changed since the model was retrieved. You may pass a specific attribute name to the isDirty method to determine if a particular attribute is dirty. The isClean will determine if an attribute has remained unchanged since the model was retrieved. This method also accepts an optional attribute argument:

use App\Models\User;

$user = User::create([
    'first_name' => 'Taylor',
    'last_name' => 'Otwell',
    'title' => 'Developer',
]);

$user->title = 'Painter';

$user->isDirty(); // true
$user->isDirty('title'); // true
$user->isDirty('first_name'); // false

$user->isClean(); // false
$user->isClean('title'); // false
$user->isClean('first_name'); // true

$user->save();

$user->isDirty(); // false
$user->isClean(); // true

The wasChanged method determines if any attributes were changed when the model was last saved within the current request cycle. If needed, you may pass an attribute name to see if a particular attribute was changed:

$user = User::create([
    'first_name' => 'Taylor',
    'last_name' => 'Otwell',
    'title' => 'Developer',
]);

$user->title = 'Painter';

$user->save();

$user->wasChanged(); // true
$user->wasChanged('title'); // true
$user->wasChanged('first_name'); // false

The getOriginal method returns an array containing the original attributes of the model regardless of any changes to the model since it was retrieved. If needed, you may pass a specific attribute name to get the original value of a particular attribute:

$user = User::find(1);

$user->name; // John
$user->email; // [email protected]

$user->name = "Jack";
$user->name; // Jack

$user->getOriginal('name'); // John
$user->getOriginal(); // Array of original attributes...

Mass Assignment

You may use the create method to "save" a new model using a single PHP statement. The inserted model instance will be returned to you by the method:

use App\Models\Flight;

$flight = Flight::create([
    'name' => 'London to Paris',
]);

However, before using the create method, you will need to specify either a fillable or guarded property on your model class. These properties are required because all Eloquent models are protected against mass assignment vulnerabilities by default.

A mass assignment vulnerability occurs when a user passes an unexpected HTTP request field and that field changes a column in your database that you did not expect. For example, a malicious user might send an is_admin parameter through an HTTP request, which is then passed to your model's create method, allowing the user to escalate themselves to an administrator.

So, to get started, you should define which model attributes you want to make mass assignable. You may do this using the $fillable property on the model. For example, let's make the name attribute of our Flight model mass assignable:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class Flight extends Model
{
    /**
     * The attributes that are mass assignable.
     *
     * @var array
     */
    protected $fillable = ['name'];
}

Once you have specified which attributes are mass assignable, you may use the create method to insert a new record in the database. The create method returns the newly created model instance:

$flight = Flight::create(['name' => 'London to Paris']);

If you already have a model instance, you may use the fill method to populate it with an array of attributes:

$flight->fill(['name' => 'Amsterdam to Frankfurt']);

Mass Assignment & JSON Columns

When assigning JSON columns, each column's mass assignable key must be specified in your model's $fillable array. For security, Laravel does not support updating nested JSON attributes when using the guarded property:

/**
 * The attributes that are mass assignable.
 *
 * @var array
 */
protected $fillable = [
    'options->enabled',
];

Allowing Mass Assignment

If you would like to make all of your attributes mass assignable, you may define your model's $guarded property as an empty array. If you choose to unguard your model, you should take special care to always hand-craft the arrays passed to Eloquent's fill, create, and update methods:

/**
 * The attributes that aren't mass assignable.
 *
 * @var array
 */
protected $guarded = [];

Upserts

Occasionally, you may need to update an existing model or create a new model if no matching model exists. Like the firstOrCreate method, the updateOrCreate method persists the model, so there's no need to manually call the save method.

In the example below, if a flight exists with a departure location of Oakland and a destination location of San Diego, its price and discounted columns will be updated. If no such flight exists, a new flight will be created which has the attributes resulting from merging the first argument array with the second argument array:

$flight = Flight::updateOrCreate(
    ['departure' => 'Oakland', 'destination' => 'San Diego'],
    ['price' => 99, 'discounted' => 1]
);

If you would like to perform multiple "upserts" in a single query, then you should use the upsert method instead. The method's first argument consists of the values to insert or update, while the second argument lists the column(s) that uniquely identify records within the associated table. The method's third and final argument is an array of the columns that should be updated if a matching record already exists in the database. The upsert method will automatically set the created_at and updated_at timestamps if timestamps are enabled on the model:

Flight::upsert([
    ['departure' => 'Oakland', 'destination' => 'San Diego', 'price' => 99],
    ['departure' => 'Chicago', 'destination' => 'New York', 'price' => 150]
], ['departure', 'destination'], ['price']);

{note} All databases systems except SQL Server require the columns in the second argument provided to the upsert method to have a "primary" or "unique" index.

Deleting Models

To delete a model, you may call the delete method on the model instance:

use App\Models\Flight;

$flight = Flight::find(1);

$flight->delete();

You may call the truncate method to delete all of the model's associated database records. The truncate operation will also reset any auto-incrementing IDs on the model's associated table:

Flight::truncate();

Deleting An Existing Model By Its Primary Key

In the example above, we are retrieving the model from the database before calling the delete method. However, if you know the primary key of the model, you may delete the model without explicitly retrieving it by calling the destroy method. In addition to accepting the single primary key, the destroy method will accept multiple primary keys, an array of primary keys, or a collection of primary keys:

Flight::destroy(1);

Flight::destroy(1, 2, 3);

Flight::destroy([1, 2, 3]);

Flight::destroy(collect([1, 2, 3]));

{note} The destroy method loads each model individually and calls the delete method so that the deleting and deleted events are properly dispatched for each model.

Deleting Models Using Queries

Of course, you may build an Eloquent query to delete all models matching your query's criteria. In this example, we will delete all flights that are marked as inactive. Like mass updates, mass deletes will not dispatch model events for the models that are deleted:

$deletedRows = Flight::where('active', 0)->delete();

{note} When executing a mass delete statement via Eloquent, the deleting and deleted model events will not be dispatched for the deleted models. This is because the models are never actually retrieved when executing the delete statement.

Soft Deleting

In addition to actually removing records from your database, Eloquent can also "soft delete" models. When models are soft deleted, they are not actually removed from your database. Instead, a deleted_at attribute is set on the model indicating the date and time at which the model was "deleted". To enable soft deletes for a model, add the Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\SoftDeletes trait to the model:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;
use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\SoftDeletes;

class Flight extends Model
{
    use SoftDeletes;
}

{tip} The SoftDeletes trait will automatically cast the deleted_at attribute to a DateTime / Carbon instance for you.

You should also add the deleted_at column to your database table. The Laravel schema builder contains a helper method to create this column:

use Illuminate\Database\Schema\Blueprint;
use Illuminate\Support\Facades\Schema;

Schema::table('flights', function (Blueprint $table) {
    $table->softDeletes();
});

Schema::table('flights', function (Blueprint $table) {
    $table->dropSoftDeletes();
});

Now, when you call the delete method on the model, the deleted_at column will be set to the current date and time. However, the model's database record will be left in the table. When querying a model that uses soft deletes, the soft deleted models will automatically be excluded from all query results.

To determine if a given model instance has been soft deleted, you may use the trashed method:

if ($flight->trashed()) {
    //
}

Restoring Soft Deleted Models

Sometimes you may wish to "un-delete" a soft deleted model. To restore a soft deleted model, you may call the restore method on a model instance. The restore method will set the model's deleted_at column to null:

$flight->restore();

You may also use the restore method in a query to restore multiple models. Again, like other "mass" operations, this will not dispatch any model events for the models that are restored:

Flight::withTrashed()
        ->where('airline_id', 1)
        ->restore();

The restore method may also be used when building relationship queries:

$flight->history()->restore();

Permanently Deleting Models

Sometimes you may need to truly remove a model from your database. You may use the forceDelete method to permanently remove a soft deleted model from the database table:

$flight->forceDelete();

You may also use the forceDelete method when building Eloquent relationship queries:

$flight->history()->forceDelete();

Querying Soft Deleted Models

Including Soft Deleted Models

As noted above, soft deleted models will automatically be excluded from query results. However, you may force soft deleted models to be included in a query's results by calling the withTrashed method on the query:

use App\Models\Flight;

$flights = Flight::withTrashed()
                ->where('account_id', 1)
                ->get();

The withTrashed method may also be called when building a relationship query:

$flight->history()->withTrashed()->get();

Retrieving Only Soft Deleted Models

The onlyTrashed method will retrieve only soft deleted models:

$flights = Flight::onlyTrashed()
                ->where('airline_id', 1)
                ->get();

Replicating Models

You may create an unsaved copy of an existing model instance using the replicate method. This method is particularly useful when you have model instances that share many of the same attributes:

use App\Models\Address;

$shipping = Address::create([
    'type' => 'shipping',
    'line_1' => '123 Example Street',
    'city' => 'Victorville',
    'state' => 'CA',
    'postcode' => '90001',
]);

$billing = $shipping->replicate()->fill([
    'type' => 'billing'
]);

$billing->save();

Query Scopes

Global Scopes

Global scopes allow you to add constraints to all queries for a given model. Laravel's own soft delete functionality utilizes global scopes to only retrieve "non-deleted" models from the database. Writing your own global scopes can provide a convenient, easy way to make sure every query for a given model receives certain constraints.

Writing Global Scopes

Writing a global scope is simple. First, define a class that implements the Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Scope interface. Laravel does not have a conventional location that you should place scope classes, so you are free to place this class in any directory that you wish.

The Scope interface requires you to implement one method: apply. The apply method may add where constraints or other types of clauses to the query as needed:

<?php

namespace App\Scopes;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder;
use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;
use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Scope;

class AncientScope implements Scope
{
    /**
     * Apply the scope to a given Eloquent query builder.
     *
     * @param  \Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder  $builder
     * @param  \Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model  $model
     * @return void
     */
    public function apply(Builder $builder, Model $model)
    {
        $builder->where('created_at', '<', now()->subYears(2000));
    }
}

{tip} If your global scope is adding columns to the select clause of the query, you should use the addSelect method instead of select. This will prevent the unintentional replacement of the query's existing select clause.

Applying Global Scopes

To assign a global scope to a model, you should override the model's booted method and invoke the model's addGlobalScope method. The addGlobalScope method accepts an instance of your scope as its only argument:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use App\Scopes\AncientScope;
use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class User extends Model
{
    /**
     * The "booted" method of the model.
     *
     * @return void
     */
    protected static function booted()
    {
        static::addGlobalScope(new AncientScope);
    }
}

After adding the scope in the example above to the App\Models\User model, a call to the User::all() method will execute the following SQL query:

select * from `users` where `created_at` < 0021-02-18 00:00:00

Anonymous Global Scopes

Eloquent also allows you to define global scopes using closures, which is particularly useful for simple scopes that do not warrant a separate class of their own. When defining a global scope using a closure, you should provide a scope name of your own choosing as the first argument to the addGlobalScope method:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder;
use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class User extends Model
{
    /**
     * The "booted" method of the model.
     *
     * @return void
     */
    protected static function booted()
    {
        static::addGlobalScope('ancient', function (Builder $builder) {
            $builder->where('created_at', '<', now()->subYears(2000));
        });
    }
}

Removing Global Scopes

If you would like to remove a global scope for a given query, you may use the withoutGlobalScope method. This method accepts the class name of the global scope as its only argument:

User::withoutGlobalScope(AncientScope::class)->get();

Or, if you defined the global scope using a closure, you should pass the string name that you assigned to the global scope:

User::withoutGlobalScope('ancient')->get();

If you would like to remove several or even all of the query's global scopes, you may use the withoutGlobalScopes method:

// Remove all of the global scopes...
User::withoutGlobalScopes()->get();

// Remove some of the global scopes...
User::withoutGlobalScopes([
    FirstScope::class, SecondScope::class
])->get();

Local Scopes

Local scopes allow you to define common sets of query constraints that you may easily re-use throughout your application. For example, you may need to frequently retrieve all users that are considered "popular". To define a scope, prefix an Eloquent model method with scope.

Scopes should always return a query builder instance:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class User extends Model
{
    /**
     * Scope a query to only include popular users.
     *
     * @param  \Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder  $query
     * @return \Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder
     */
    public function scopePopular($query)
    {
        return $query->where('votes', '>', 100);
    }

    /**
     * Scope a query to only include active users.
     *
     * @param  \Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder  $query
     * @return \Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder
     */
    public function scopeActive($query)
    {
        return $query->where('active', 1);
    }
}

Utilizing A Local Scope

Once the scope has been defined, you may call the scope methods when querying the model. However, you should not include the scope prefix when calling the method. You can even chain calls to various scopes:

use App\Models\User;

$users = User::popular()->active()->orderBy('created_at')->get();

Combining multiple Eloquent model scopes via an or query operator may require the use of closures to achieve the correct logical grouping:

$users = User::popular()->orWhere(function (Builder $query) {
    $query->active();
})->get();

However, since this can be cumbersome, Laravel provides a "higher order" orWhere method that allows you to fluently chain scopes together without the use of closures:

$users = App\Models\User::popular()->orWhere->active()->get();

Dynamic Scopes

Sometimes you may wish to define a scope that accepts parameters. To get started, just add your additional parameters to your scope method's signature. Scope parameters should be defined after the $query parameter:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class User extends Model
{
    /**
     * Scope a query to only include users of a given type.
     *
     * @param  \Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder  $query
     * @param  mixed  $type
     * @return \Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Builder
     */
    public function scopeOfType($query, $type)
    {
        return $query->where('type', $type);
    }
}

Once the expected arguments have been added to your scope method's signature, you may pass the arguments when calling the scope:

$users = User::ofType('admin')->get();

Comparing Models

Sometimes you may need to determine if two models are the "same" or not. The is and isNot methods may be used to quickly verify two models have the same primary key, table, and database connection or not:

if ($post->is($anotherPost)) {
    //
}

if ($post->isNot($anotherPost)) {
    //
}

The is and isNot methods are also available when using the belongsTo, hasOne, morphTo, and morphOne relationships. This method is particularly helpful when you would like to compare a related model without issuing a query to retrieve that model:

if ($post->author()->is($user)) {
    //
}

Events

{tip} Want to broadcast your Eloquent events directly to your client-side application? Check out Laravel's model event broadcasting.

Eloquent models dispatch several events, allowing you to hook into the following moments in a model's lifecycle: retrieved, creating, created, updating, updated, saving, saved, deleting, deleted, restoring, restored, and replicating.

The retrieved event will dispatch when an existing model is retrieved from the database. When a new model is saved for the first time, the creating and created events will dispatch. The updating / updated events will dispatch when an existing model is modified and the save method is called. The saving / saved events will dispatch when a model is created or updated - even if the model's attributes have not been changed. Event names ending with -ing are dispatched before any changes to the model are persisted, while events ending with -ed are dispatched after the changes to the model are persisted.

To start listening to model events, define a $dispatchesEvents property on your Eloquent model. This property maps various points of the Eloquent model's lifecycle to your own event classes. Each model event class should expect to receive an instance of the affected model via its constructor:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use App\Events\UserDeleted;
use App\Events\UserSaved;
use Illuminate\Foundation\Auth\User as Authenticatable;

class User extends Authenticatable
{
    use Notifiable;

    /**
     * The event map for the model.
     *
     * @var array
     */
    protected $dispatchesEvents = [
        'saved' => UserSaved::class,
        'deleted' => UserDeleted::class,
    ];
}

After defining and mapping your Eloquent events, you may use event listeners to handle the events.

{note} When issuing a mass update or delete query via Eloquent, the saved, updated, deleting, and deleted model events will not be dispatched for the affected models. This is because the models are never actually retrieved when performing mass updates or deletes.

Using Closures

Instead of using custom event classes, you may register closures that execute when various model events are dispatched. Typically, you should register these closures in the booted method of your model:

<?php

namespace App\Models;

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Model;

class User extends Model
{
    /**
     * The "booted" method of the model.
     *
     * @return void
     */
    protected static function booted()
    {
        static::created(function ($user) {
            //
        });
    }
}

If needed, you may utilize queueable anonymous event listeners when registering model events. This will instruct Laravel to execute the model event listener in the background using your application's queue:

use function Illuminate\Events\queueable;

static::created(queueable(function ($user) {
    //
}));

Observers

Defining Observers

If you are listening for many events on a given model, you may use observers to group all of your listeners into a single class. Observer classes have method names which reflect the Eloquent events you wish to listen for. Each of these methods receives the affected model as their only argument. The make:observer Artisan command is the easiest way to create a new observer class:

php artisan make:observer UserObserver --model=User

This command will place the new observer in your App/Observers directory. If this directory does not exist, Artisan will create it for you. Your fresh observer will look like the following:

<?php

namespace App\Observers;

use App\Models\User;

class UserObserver
{
    /**
     * Handle the User "created" event.
     *
     * @param  \App\Models\User  $user
     * @return void
     */
    public function created(User $user)
    {
        //
    }

    /**
     * Handle the User "updated" event.
     *
     * @param  \App\Models\User  $user
     * @return void
     */
    public function updated(User $user)
    {
        //
    }

    /**
     * Handle the User "deleted" event.
     *
     * @param  \App\Models\User  $user
     * @return void
     */
    public function deleted(User $user)
    {
        //
    }

    /**
     * Handle the User "forceDeleted" event.
     *
     * @param  \App\Models\User  $user
     * @return void
     */
    public function forceDeleted(User $user)
    {
        //
    }
}

To register an observer, you need to call the observe method on the model you wish to observe. You may register observers in the boot method of your application's App\Providers\EventServiceProvider service provider:

use App\Models\User;
use App\Observers\UserObserver;

/**
 * Register any events for your application.
 *
 * @return void
 */
public function boot()
{
    User::observe(UserObserver::class);
}

{tip} There are additional events an observer can listen to, such as saving and retrieved. These events are described within the events documentation.

Observers & Database Transactions

When models are being created within a database transaction, you may want to instruct an observer to only execute its event handlers after the database transaction is committed. You may accomplish this by defining an $afterCommit property on the observer. If a database transaction is not in progress, the event handlers will execute immediately:

<?php

namespace App\Observers;

use App\Models\User;

class UserObserver
{
    /**
     * Handle events after all transactions are committed.
     *
     * @var bool
     */
    public $afterCommit = true;

    /**
     * Handle the User "created" event.
     *
     * @param  \App\Models\User  $user
     * @return void
     */
    public function created(User $user)
    {
        //
    }
}

Muting Events

You may occasionally need to temporarily "mute" all events fired by a model. You may achieve this using the withoutEvents method. The withoutEvents method accepts a closure as its only argument. Any code executed within this closure will not dispatch model events. For example, the following example will fetch and delete an App\Models\User instance without dispatching any model events. Any value returned by the closure will be returned by the withoutEvents method:

use App\Models\User;

$user = User::withoutEvents(function () use () {
    User::findOrFail(1)->delete();

    return User::find(2);
});

Saving A Single Model Without Events

Sometimes you may wish to "save" a given model without dispatching any events. You may accomplish this using the saveQuietly method:

$user = User::findOrFail(1);

$user->name = 'Victoria Faith';

$user->saveQuietly();