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 Pre-processor, that 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”.

Why use PHP?

You have obviously heard of a number of programming languages out there; you may be wondering why we would want to use PHP as our poison for web programming. Below are some of the compelling reasons.

  • PHP is open-source and free.
  • Short learning curve compared to other languages such as JSP, ASP etc.
  • Large community document
  • Most web hosting servers support PHP by default unlike other languages such as ASP that need IIS. This makes PHP a cost-effective choice.
  • PHP is regularly updated to keep abreast with the latest technology trends.
  • Another benefit that you get with PHP is that it’s a server-side scripting language; this means you only need to install it on the server and client computers requesting for resources from the server do not need to have PHP installed; only a web browser would be enough.
  • PHP has inbuilt support for working hand in hand with MySQL; this doesn’t mean you can’t use PHP with other database management systems. You can still use PHP with
    • Postgres
    • Oracle
    • MS SQL Server
    • ODBC etc.
  • PHP is cross-platform; this means you can deploy your application on a number of different operating systems such as Windows, Linux, Mac OS etc.


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