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PHP & MySQL Web Hosting
PHP & MySQL Web Hosting
When you go on the Internet nowadays, you rarely see sites that are static anymore. Most sites are highly interactive and seem to make use of databases a lot, which made me wonder.
What kinds of database-scripting language combinations do webmasters usually use on their sites? A look back on research I did on these two subjects made me realize that there seemed to be quite a number of possible combinations.
But just like the ‘peanut butter and jelly’ combo comes to many a child’s mind when asked what they wanted on their sandwich, so too does the ‘PHP and MySQL’ combo to many a webmaster when asked about scripting and database preference.
Of course like the sandwich, it may not really be to everyone’s liking, but a Google search on this particular combo yielded quite a number (6,320,000 at last try) of returns, as opposed to say…Perl-MySQL (4,460,000)? Or PHP-MSAccess (1,880,000)? Or ColdFusion-MySQL (582,000)? Or how about ASP-MS Access (2,810,000) or even ASP.NET-MS Access (508,000)? So I asked myself, was there something to all these numbers? Maybe.
But what exactly is PHP?
PHP stands for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor and is a general purpose and open source scripting language that can be embedded in HTML and used widely in Web development. The latest release is PHP 5 and if you look through its key features, you’ll see that it has a MySQL extension named MySQLi for developers using MySQL 4.1 and later, proof of how closely it is associated with MySQL.
Some of PHP’s common applications are discussed in the following articles:
- WebMonkey — Site Navigation with PHP, by Brad Bugler and
- WebMonkey — Generating Images on the Fly, by Paul Adams
How about MySQL?
MySQL is the most popular open source relational database management system that relies on structured query language (SQL) and is developed, distributed and supported by MySQL AB. Its latest production release is MySQL 4.0, although there’s also MySQL 5.0 for previewing and testing new features.
There’s an article on its website that focused on ‘Building a Database-Driven Web Site Using PHP and MySQL,’ by Kevin Yank, offering additional proof of its seeming love affair with PHP.
And because both are open source, an added value of choosing a PHP-MySQL combo for your site is the sheer number of tutorials and free scripts available on the Web.
Examples of online tutorials are at:
- FREE Webmaster Help.com — PHP/MySQL Tutorial
- ‘Binary Data + MySQL+ PHP How to Store Images Directly in the SQL Database,’ by Florian Dittmerand
- WebMonkey — Threaded Discussion With PHP/MySQL, by Brad Bulger’
Ready-made scripts meanwhile are available at the following sites:
And for those who don’t want to bother learning, or searching for ready-made scripts to suit their needs? There’s also an automatic PHP/MySQL code generator available online (for a price of course) via the Backend Wizard. I have not tried this service though so I’m not quite sure if it’s a good idea, but, you never know.