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PHP: Under The Hood. Steven Taylor. Evolution of PHP. PHP was created by Rasmus Lerdorf in 1994. It was initially server-side, traffic tracking script. PHP 2 (1995) Added database support, file uploads, regular expressions, etc.

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PHP: Under The Hood

Steven Taylor


Evolution of PHP

  • PHP was created by RasmusLerdorf in 1994. It was initially server-side, traffic tracking script.
  • PHP 2 (1995) Added database support, file uploads, regular expressions, etc.
  • PHP 3 (1998) ZeevSuraskiand AndiGutmanstransform PHP and re-engineered the parser.

PHP 4 (2000): The parser was dubbed the ZendEngine, and many security features were added.

  • PHP 5 (2004):
  • ZendEngine II, support for object oriented programming, robust XML support, Web Service interoperability, SQLite

Why Use PHP

  • Easy to UseCode is embedded into HTML.The PHP code is enclosed in special start and end tags that allow you to jump into and out of "PHP mode".
  • <html>   <head>       <title>Example</title>   </head>   <body><?php       echo "Hi, I'm a PHP script!";        ?>   </body></html>

Why Use PHP

  • 2. Cost BenefitsPHP is free. Open source code means that the entire PHP community will contribute towards bug fixes. There are several add-on libraries for PHP that are also free.

Why Use PHP

3. Cross Platform

Web Servers:

Apache, Microsoft IIS, Caudium, Netscape Enterprise ServerOperating Systems:

UNIX (HP-UX,OpenBSD,Solaris,Linux), Mac OSX, WindowsSupported Databases:

Adabas D, dBase,Empress, FilePro (read-only), Hyperwave,IBM DB2, Informix, Ingres, InterBase, FrontBase, mSQL, Direct MS-SQL, MySQL, ODBC, Oracle (OCI7 and OCI8), Ovrimos, PostgreSQL, SQLite, Solid, Sybase, Velocis,Unixdbm

explicit type conversion
Explicit Type Conversion

settype() function

$testString = “9.0”;

settype($testString, “integer”);


$someData = 1;

(String) $someData;



Control Structures







  • If…else…elseif
  • Switch

Exception Handling

  • Exceptions handling is facilitated courtesy of the Exception
  • Class

Example Exception Handling in PHP: function checkNum($number)  { if($number>1) { throw new Exception("Value must be 1 or below"); }return true;}try  {checkNum(2);}catch(Exception $e)  { echo 'Message: ' .$e->getMessage();}


“PHP Manual”. (This is the site for the official manual of the PHP language)

  •  Peter L. Kantor . “Hudson Valley Community College Web Site” .
  • Sebesta Robert W. Concepts OF Programming Languages . Tenth Edition . Boston:Pearson, 2010
  • Wellington,LukeThomson,Laura. PHP and MySQL Web Development. Second Edition. Developers Library. USA. Sams Publishing. 2003
  • Harris, Andy. PHP 5/MySQL Programming. for the absolute beginner. Canada. Premier
  • Gilmore, Jason. Beginning PHP and MySQL: From Novice to Professional. FourthEdition. Apress. 2010 
  • Habib, Irfan. “Integrating PHP and Perl”. Linux Journal. Volume 2007 Issue 154. Feb 2007
  • Fioretti, Marco. “Top Ten Tips for Getting Started with PHP”. Linux Journal. Volume 2006 Issue 145. May 2006
  • Knudsen, Craig. “PHP Version 4”. Linux Journal. Volume 1999 Issue 67es. November 1999