PHP for Dummies
PHP for dummies is a small tutorial for the absolute beginners how to start with PHP. This article covers more topic from installation to PHP basics.
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Step 1 - PHP for dummies - What is PHP
PHP for Dummies
PHP is a widely-used general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for Web development and can be embedded into HTML. PHP is similar to Perl and C and is one of the most popular web programing language.
The history of PHP begins in 1995 and the first main version PHP3 was released in 1998. The actual version is PHP5 and PHP6 is on the way as well. However a lot of web-server still use PHP4 which is supported only until end of 2007.
You can run PHP on various operating systems as: Windows, Linux, Unix, Mac OS
And PHP supports a lot of web server as well: Apache, Microsoft IIS, Personal Web Server, omniHTTPd,...
How PHP works
You can use PHP if you want to create web pages with dynamic content. For example if you want to display a welcome message depending on the time. You can not do this with a simple HTML as if you navigate to a html site the web-server just send the content of the page to your browser without any modification.
However if you create a PHP site and navigates to it your web-server will first forward the file to the PHP interpreter. Then the page / code will be analyzed and depending of the code a pure html output will be send to your browser. Of course your web server needs to be configured correctly to handle PHP scripts.
In the next step I will show you an easy PHP installation method.
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