Every php process has a relatively short lifespan that lasts as long as the HTTP request or the invokation of the command line program. At the beginning of this lifespan, Nextcloud initializes its services. At the same time, any additional apps might want to register their services to Nextcloud as well. This event is called the bootstrapping and this chapter shall shed some light on how to hook into this with an app.

The Application class

The Application class is the main entry point of an app. This class is optional but highly recommended if your app needs to register any services or run some code for every request.

Nextcloud will try to autoload the class from the namespace \OCA\<App namespace>\AppInfo\Application, like \OCA\MyApp\AppInfo\Application, where MyApp would be the name of your app. The file will therefore have the location myapp/lib/AppInfo/Application.php.



namespace OCA\MyApp\AppInfo;

use OCP\AppFramework\App;

class Application extends App {

    public function __construct() {
        \OCP\Util::connectHook('OC_User', 'pre_deleteUser', 'OCA\MyApp\Hooks\User', 'deleteUser');


The class must extend OCP\AppFramework\App and may optionally implement \OCP\AppFramework\Bootstrap\IBootstrap:



namespace OCA\MyApp\AppInfo;

use OCA\MyApp\Listeners\UserDeletedListener;
use OCA\MyApp\Notifications\Notifier;
use OCP\AppFramework\App;
use OCP\AppFramework\Bootstrap\IBootstrap;
use OCP\Notification\IManager;
use OCP\User\Events;

class Application extends App implements IBootstrap {

    public function register(IRegistrationContext $context): void {
        // ... registration logic goes here ...

        // Register the composer autoloader for packages shipped by this app, if applicable
        include_once __DIR__ . '/../../vendor/autoload.php'


    public function boot(IBootContext $context): void {
        // ... boot logic goes here ...

        /** @var IManager $manager */
        $manager = $context->getAppContainer()->query(IManager::class)


Note that the context’s of the methods register and boot have different interfaces and thus have different capabilities appropriate for their stage.

Bootstrapping process

To give a better overview of when each of the bootstrapping stages are reached and how they app can interact with them, this section explains the changes done for Nextcloud 20.

Nextcloud 20 and later

Nextcloud 20 is the first release with the interface \OCP\AppFramework\Bootstrap\IBootstrap. This interface can be implemented by your app’s Application class to signal that it wants to act on the bootstrapping stages. The major difference between this and the old process is that the boostrapping is not performed in sequence, but apps register and boot interleaved. This should ensure that an app that ``boot``s can rely on all other apps’ registration to be finished.

The overall process is as follows:

  1. In each installed and enabled app that has an Application class that also implements IBootstrap, the register method will be called. This method receives a context argument via which the app can prime the dependency injection container and register other services lazily, e.g. by calling $context->registerService(...). The emphasis is on lazyness. At this very early stage of the process lifetime, no other apps nor all of the server components are ready. Therefore the app must not try to use anything except the API provided by the context. That shall ensure that all apps can safely run their registration logic before any services are queried (instantiated) from the DI container or related code is run.
  2. Nextcloud will load groups of certain apps early, e.g. filesystem or session apps, and other later. For that purpose, their optional app.php (deprecated) will be included. As app.php is deprecated, apps should try not to rely on this step.
  3. Nextcloud will query the app’s Application class (again), no matter whether it implements IBootstrap or not.
  4. Nextcloud will invoke the boot method of every Application instance that implements IBootstrap. At this stage you may assume that all registrations via IBootstrap::register have completed.

Nextcloud 19 and older

Nextcloud will load groups of certain apps early, like filesystem or session apps, and other later. For this their optional app.php (deprecated) will be included. The Application class is only queried for some requests, so there is no guarantee that its contstructor will be invoked.

app.php (deprecated)

Nextcloud will require_once every installed and enabled app’s appinfo/app.php file if it exists. The app can use this file to run registrations of autoloaders, services, event listeners and similar.

To leverage the advantages of object-oriented programming, it’s recommended to put the logic into an Application class and query an instance like



// Register the composer autoloader for packages shipped by this app, if applicable
@include_once __DIR__ . '/../vendor/autoload.php'

$app = \OC::$server->query(\OCA\MyApp\AppInfo\Application::class);