Faker 1.9: The Best Faker Data Generator... Yet

François Zaninotto
François ZaninottoNovember 14, 2019

Faker is an open-source PHP library generating fake data. Developers use it to populate databases with large amounts of plausible data, generate test sets, and much more.

Today, more than one year after the previous release, I have the immense pleasure to announce the immediate release of Faker 1.9. It brings almost 100 changes, including new locales, better test data, bug fixes, and enhancements. Check out the changelog for a list of all the changes.

Faker has become a very, very popular library, widely used across many open-source and commercial projects. GitHub shows 22,000+ stars. They even pretends that Faker is used by 438,934 repositories at the time of writing, by this number is too incredible so I prefer thinking that someone at GitHub has plugged the Faker number generator to the "used by" indicator. I've read that some people consider Faker as the 4th most popular PHP project. This makes me super proud, and also a bit scared - that's a huge responsibility!


Faker has been around for more than 7 years. The library hasn't broken compatibility in a major way since PHP 5.3. It has kept the same initial design. These days, this design makes the core developers (there are 3 of us now) the limiting factor to the development of the library, as we have to vet all proposed changed to a given locale - even if we don't understand the language. Faker needs a better design that gives more freedom to other developers in the community to publish, whenever they want, specialized providers or locales. Faker needs to build up on modern PHP syntax and capabilities.

Today marks the beginning of the work on Faker 2.0. We've decided to break backwards compatibility, and to rethink the fundamentals in order to offer the best possible API for an extensible fake data generator. The only limit... should be your imagination. If you want to participate, come and discuss with us on GitHub.

Thanks a lot to all the 425 contributors who helped build the richest dataset for test data in the open-source community. In particular, I would like to thank these 25 people, whose names were generated by Faker, because who doesn't like people created by an AI?

  • Alexander Hammes
  • Lafayette Nicolas
  • Miss Susanna Streich
  • Nellie Vandervort
  • Mrs. America Kemmer
  • Juanita Hand III
  • Pat Wunsch
  • Annalise Rutherford
  • Sonya Hegmann
  • Reuben Homenick
  • Brisa Spinka DVM
  • Sebastian Williamson
  • Dr. Markus Huel
  • Carmella Jones
  • Eulalia Kuhic
  • Zora Pfannerstill Jr.
  • Mr. Harmon Anderson Sr.
  • Soledad Grady
  • Clifton Huels
  • Jalen Kshlerin
  • Name Gislason
  • Kiana Bednar
  • Lorenzo Hoeger
  • Prof. Gust Bradtke
  • Ms. Bianka Bradtke

My special thanks go to Pim Jansen and Anreas Möller, who joined the Faker core team this year. Together, we'll bring you an even better Faker!

Cover image: thispersondoesnotexist.com.

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