Introduction to PHP

What is PHP?

PHP is a server-side scripting language that is used to develop Static websites or Dynamic websites or Web applications. PHP stands for Hypertext Preprocessor, which earlier stood for Personal Home Pages.

PHP scripts can only be interpreted on a server that has PHP installed.

The client computers accessing the PHP scripts require a web browser only.

A PHP file contains PHP tags and ends with the extension “.php”.

Guide to Install PHP on Windows 10

What are PHP Developers?

PHP developers use PHP, a widely-used scripting language, to build websites, programs and applications that computers follow to perform functions. PHP developers are responsible for writing, troubleshooting, testing and maintaining the source code for computer programs. This code must be well documented, reusable and able to be altered to fit changing needs.

What is Scripting Language?

A Scripting language is used to write scripts. These contain a series of commands that are interpreted one by one at runtime, unlike programming languages that are compiled first before running.

Nowadays, scripts are generally associated with web development where they are widely used to make dynamic web applications. Scripting languages can be divided into two categories:

Server Side Scripting Languages:

  • Server-side scripting is a method of designing websites so that the process or user request is run on the originating server. Server-side scripts provide an interface to the user and are used to limit access to proprietary data and help keep control of the script source code.

Client-Side Scripting Languages:

  • The client-side scripting used to run scripts is usually a browser. The processing takes place on the end-users computer. These are sent from the server by server-side scripts.

Why use PHP?

You might have heard of a number of programming languages so why would we want to use PHP. Here are some of the compelling reasons:

  • Easy to learn
  • PHP is open-source and free
  • Interactive Features
  • Top-Notch Online Documentation
  • Most web hosting servers support PHP by default
  • Compatible With Databases
  • PHP is cross-platform

What is a PHP Framework?

A framework is an abstraction in which software providing generic functionality can be selectively changed by additional reusable user-written code. These frameworks make swift development a reality. The PHP frameworks provide well-organized and reusable code which can help you grow over time as web applications running on frameworks are easily scalable. So if you are a beginner or an expert developer, PHP frameworks will always assist you in completing your project efficiently and swiftly.

The general idea behind the workings of a PHP framework is referred to as the Model View Controller (MVC). MVC is an architectural pattern in programming that isolates business logic from the UI, allowing one to be modified separately from the other (also known as separation of concerns). With MVC, Model refers to data, View refers to the presentation layer and Controller to the application or business logic. Basically, MVC breaks up the development process of an application, so you can work on individual elements while others are unaffected. Essentially, this makes coding in PHP faster and less complicated.

Some of the best PHP Frameworks:


  • Laravel is one of the most popular, open-source PHP frameworks. Laravel offers a vast ecosystem, which brings instant hosting and deployment platform, along with screencast tutorials hosted by the official Laravel website.

  • The framework also features Homestead, a Vagrant box (prepackaged development environment) which assists in hassle-free development. Other features include a strong encryption package(s), overloading capabilities using dynamic methods and tons of out of box functionality. It is easy, to begin with, Laravel due to the availability of extensive documentation. For developers who want to build B2B or enterprise websites that will evolve with changing web trends, Laravel is the way to go.
    Install Laravel


  • CodeIgniter is a PHP framework suitable for developing dynamic websites. It is well known for its small footprint and hassle-free installation with minimalistic configuration prerequisites. It is ideal for shared hosting accounts and offers simple solutions and has an extensive library of video tutorials, forums, a user guide and wiki available for support.
  • Multiple other features of CodeIgniter include simple security, encryption steps, easy error handling, and negligible PHP adoption struggle. The framework is very well documented and Compared with other frameworks, CodeIgniter is considerably faster. Since it also offers solid performance, it’s a good choice when you want to develop lightweight applications to run on modest servers.
    Install CodeIgniter


  • Symfony is an extensive PHP framework, and it is the sole framework that follows the standards of PHP and web completely. Symphony is the first choice for many developers due to the availability of reusable libraries and components using which you can complete a variety of tasks such as authentication, templating, object configuration and much more.
  • Symfony is also highly flexible and can integrate with bigger projects like Drupal. Symfony and Laravel have many common and unique features, which makes it difficult to say which of these frameworks is better. Symfony comes out as the perfect choice among PHP frameworks when it comes to large-scale enterprise assignments. Moreover, the Symfony ecosystem is massive and is supported by a highly active programming community. However, while Laravel focuses more on simplicity and delivering value, even for developers who are not advanced, Symfony targets advanced developers and is a bit harder to start with. In addition, the Symfony security mechanism.
    Guide to Install Symfony


  • CakePHP is a great choice for beginners to advanced PHP developers. It’s based on the same principles that Ruby on Rails is designed around, and it’s heavily focused on rapid development – making it a great framework to be used for rapid application development. Its rapidly growing support system, simplicity, and scalability make CakePHP one of the most popular PHP frameworks available today.
  • It makes a good choice for commercial applications due to security features that include SQL injection prevention, input validation, cross-site request forgery (CSRF) protection, and cross-site scripting (XSS) protection. Some key features include a modern framework, fast builds, proper class inheritance, validation, and security. In addition, CakePHP provides great documentation, many support portals, and premium support through Cake Development Corporation.
    Guide to Install CakePHP

Yii & Yii 2

  • Yii stands for Yes, it is! – is simple and evolutionary. It’s a high-performance, component-based PHP framework for developing modern web applications. Yii is suitable for all kinds of web apps and has an easy installation process. Furthermore, its robust security features make the framework suitable for highly secure endeavors such as e-commerce projects, portals, CMS, forums, and many others. It boasts excellent speed and performance, it’s highly extensible, and it lets developers avoid the complexity of writing repetitive SQL statements, as they can model the database data in terms of objects. Yii is extremely extensible, and you can customize nearly every piece of the core’s code.
  • Yii 2 is an object-oriented framework and the successor of one of the oldest PHP frameworks, Yii. Yii 2 is just right for large-scale website development as it can be easily integrated with jQuery and AJAX features. The lazy loading technique of Yii2 makes it faster than other frameworks in the mix. It comes with an extremely powerful class code generator known as Gii.
    Guide to Install Yii2


  • Zend is a completely object-oriented framework, and the fact that it uses features such as interfaces and inheritance makes it extendable. It was built on the agile methodology, which helps you to deliver high-quality applications to enterprise clients. Zend offers high customizability and stands with PHP’s top practices, which is highly beneficial for developers who wish to incorporate project-specific functions.
  • Due to its concentration in enterprise applications, it comes with a surplus of components for tasks such as authentication, services, forms and much more. But even though it comes with many tools that make the life of a developer fairly easy, it is still not ideal for rapid application development. Some key features include MVC components, simple cloud API, data encryption, and session management. It can integrate with external libraries, and you can use only the components you want. The Zend framework comes with extremely good documentation and has a large community base.
    Install Zend
Introduction to PHP
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