Installing Postgres PDO driver on cPanel

cPanel offers two options for installing PDO – using EasyApache which can enable PDO and MySQL’s PDO driver or installing everything via PECL. Unfortunately, under PHP 5.3, the PECL installers don’t work, so if you need any other PDO drivers, you’re in a hole.

Luckily, you can install it manually.

Download the PDO driver from the PECL website. Extract the archive and CD into the directory.

tar -xzf PDO-PGSQL-1.0.2.tgz
cd PDO-PSQL-1.0.2/

Once this is done, run the standard commands for building a PHP extension.

make install

Once this is done, you can add the extension to php.ini.

cd /usr/local/lib/
vim php.ini

Finally, restart Apache and the Postgres driver should show up in your phpinfo() output.

Installing Mongo PHP driver on CentOS 6 cPanel

Once again, the PECL installer. In order to get the Mongo driver for PHP working, you need to install it manually.

mkdir mongo
cd mongo
unzip master
cd mongodb-mongo-php-driver-df8b217
make install

Add the extension to your php.ini file.

Restart Apache, and Mongo should appear inf your phpinfo() output.

PHPUnit and PEAR packages break on Mountain Lion

If you have recently upgraded to Mac OS X Mountain Lion (10.8) you may find that PHPUnit and other PEAR packages no longer work. You may get errors similar to the following.

PHP Copy & Paste Detector

Warning: require(PHPCPD/Autoload.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /Users/chris/pear/bin/phpcpd on line 49

Fatal error: require(): Failed opening required 'PHPCPD/Autoload.php' (include_path='.:') in /Users/chris/pear/bin/phpcpd on line 49

PHP Mess Detector

Warning: require_once(PHP/PMD/TextUI/Command.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /Users/chris/pear/bin/phpmd on line 38

Fatal error: require_once(): Failed opening required 'PHP/PMD/TextUI/Command.php' (include_path='.:') in /Users/chris/pear/bin/phpmd on line 38

Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be an easy way to fix them, other then by reinstalling each package.

sudo pear install --force --alldeps phpunit/phpunit
sudo pear install --force --alldeps phpmd/PHP_PMD

The tools should then run as expected.

Install APD on CentOS 5

Here is how to install APD (Advanced PHP Debugger) on CentOS 5. Lets start by creating a directory for it to log files to.

cd /tmp
mkdir apd
chown apache:apache apd

We need to remove ioncube, or it will cause errors.

rpm -e php-ioncube-loader

Now we can install APD, via PECL.

pecl install apd

Add the following to php.ini.


My PHP binary was in a different location, so I had to alter the script too.

cd /usr/bin/
vim pprofp

Change /usr/local/bin to /usr/bin and save the file.

You also need to ensure PEAR is in your include path (/usr/share/pear) for the script to work.

Install memcached on CentOS 5

First step, you’ll need to add the EPEL repository to Yum.

Once you’ve done that, you can install all the YUM packages.

yum -y install memcached.x86_64 libmemcache.x86_64 libmemcache-devel.x86_64 zlib-devel.x86_64

Then add the memcache extension to PHP.

pecl install memcache

Add the extension to your PHP configuration.

Configure memcached appropriately.

vi /etc/sysconfig/memcached
add OPTIONS="-l"

Configure it as a service, and start.

chkconfig memcached on
service memcached start

Primary key ranges in Propel ORM

If you’re using Propel ORM, you may want to select a range of primary keys. According to the documentation, you should be able to do this using code similar to the following.

BookQuery::create()->filterById(array('min' => 1, 'max' => 100));

However, what you find you get is that will return books with the ID of 1 and 100, but nothing else.

That is because Propel does not support ranges on IDs. This has been noted on the Propel GitHub issue tracker and will be resolved at some point in the future, but until then you have two possibilities.

Firstly, if you’re only looking to specify one value in the range, you can pass a criteria constant to filter by that.

BookQuery::create()->filterById(30, \Criteria::GREATER_THAN)->find();

You can also use LESS_THAN in the same way. Or, if you need a range with both ends specified, you can resort to the where() method.

BookQuery::create()->where('id BETWEEN 1 AND 100')->find();

Though that method requires you to use the database column names, rather than the PHP names used in Propel (yours may be the same, but I often rename mine for legacy reasons).

Migrating away from register globals

If you are luckily enough to work in a Web 2.0 start up, you probably won’t have to deal with too much legacy code. But for the rest of us, we can often find ourselves working with code which can be even decades out of date.

One of the big issues in PHP has been the deprecation of register globals. Of course, this happened quite a long time ago, because the idea of register globals was just plain stupid, but recent versions of PHP (5.3 onwards), will now throw a deprecation error.

So, we need to find a way to turn register globals off.

The end solution is of course to refactor the code so it doesn’t use register globals at all. Anything short of this is going to be a security nightmare, it’s like a ticking time bomb sitting on your server. But until then, there is a way you can emulate it in your PHP code while you work to get rid of it, allowing you to turn the register global settings off.

All you need is something like this in your code.

foreach ($_REQUEST as $key => $val) {
	$$key = $val;

Install dev packages with Composer

Sometimes, you might install your dependencies via composer but find that the tests don’t work for it. You could get an error similar to the following.

PHP Fatal error:  Class 'Symfony\Component\Yaml\Yaml' not found in
/home/example/Gherkin/src/Behat/Gherkin/Keywords/CucumberKeywords.php on line 31

This could be because if you have just run composer install, it will only install the main packages, but some packages could be specified as dev only. You may find a “require-dev” section in the composer.json file.

If you do, you can install the packages using the following flag.

composer install --dev

This will install the development packages as well, which should allow you to run the tests.

Compiling APD on PHP 5.3

If you try and compile APD on PHP 5.3, you may get an error similar to the following.

error: 'struct _zend_compiler_globals' has no member named 'extended_info'make: *** [php_apd.lo] Error 1

This can be solved by modifying a few of the APD files. To do this, you need to download the APD archive file and uncompress it.

Then make the changes as detailed on the PHP bug tracker. Once this is done, it should install as normal.

sudo make install

APD should now be installed.