Info: As KCFinder's documentation mentions, if your application (Yii in our case) session handling is using the PHP environment configuration - meaning no change in session handling at all, then no change is needed also on KCFinder side to be able to use this session and thus have this simple interface between your Yii webapp and KCFinder. If that's your case then you probably need not read the rest of this article but rather just make sure that before a user attempts to upload or browse your server a session variable is already set for him (or her) with his specific configuration already waiting for KCFinder there. What can this session interface be useful for? For example, for having per-user upload directory. You could have uploadURL variable established in the session variable to contain the user's id. When an upload or browse use case will occur, the client side will trigger the KCFinder completely decoupled from the Yii application. Yet, since you've already synced your user-specific-configuration with KCFinder via the session, KCFinder will pick it up and use it.
The Advanced PHP Cache is a PHP extension which primarily serves as an opcode cache for PHP. The basic idea is to save PHP from re-evaluating the PHP code to intermediate bytecode on each request. Installing and enabling APC already yields a significant performance benefit. However, APC is not a black box that will magically change all for the better. More over it is important to understand that APC needs memory to operate.
Most applications will have one or two sidebars and often you want to control the content that should appear in the sidebar based on the action. For example you will want to show something different on the homepage as opposed to some view page. While achieving this you generally also want to avoid putting the layout into each view, as that would mean if you wanted to change the layout (e.g. put the sidebar on the left instead of the right or do some funky layout which requires an additional div tag to be added) you'd have to go through every view, which does not achieve good code re-use. It is also bad practice to have lots of if statements in column2 layout just so that you can generate the sidebar correctly.