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PHP Programming

PHP Usage in the Enterprise 325

Posted by michael
from the snorting-php dept.
acostin writes "Some open survey results were published about PHP usage in the enterprise on the InterAKT site. An alternative survey on the PHP open source mouvement can be found on Zend site. See how we've evaluated the PHP market size($$$), what people think about PHP as an alternative to Java and .NET, and what should be done in order to have your large clients adopt open source solutions."
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PHP Usage in the Enterprise

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  • Hack-away (Score:3, Funny)

    by mondainx (34102) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @01:48AM (#7010490) Homepage
    For those of you that hate M$ and dont want to learn Java, its perfect.
    • None of that complex object-oriented stuff, and best of all: you don't have to pay!

      Stupid bastards... they give it away.
    • Re:Hack-away (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jacksonyee (590218) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:11AM (#7010548) Homepage

      I know that you're somewhat joking, but I would have liked the market share questions from InterAKT to have included not just .NET, J2EE, or ColdFusion, but have also included other languages like Perl and Python (although Python is indeed the base language for Zope). There are still a very large amount of websites built in Perl these days, with Slashdot being one of the most famous. Zend's survey does a bit more to explore the languages that programmers "are familiar with," but does little to see how the competition for PHP is doing.

      PHP's great to use for me because it's simple, powerful, and readily available in cheap hosting environments. If Zope, ColdFusion, or J2EE had more availability or less cost, then I would try those as well, but there's something to be said for being able to sign up for a $9/month account and downloading Apache, PHP, and MySQL all without paying for anything other than bandwidth costs. You still can't really compare PHP to the enterprise level of .NET or JSP at this point though, since many features like persistent objects in shared memory really can't be done well in PHP, and I haven't heard anything else about PHP 5 other than further enhancements to the objects and reference systems. PHP-Accelerator gives a great boost to the speed, but I'd really like to see native compilation built into the distribution rather than downloaded separatedly.

      All in all though, PHP's a great language for quick development of small to medium sized websites. As the old caveat reads though, use the right tool for the job.

      • Re:Hack-away (Score:2, Informative)

        by acostin (229653)
        I know that you're somewhat joking, but I would have liked the market share questions from InterAKT to have included not just .NET, J2EE, or ColdFusion, but have also included other languages like Perl and Python (although Python is indeed the base language for Zope).

        We have indeed included comparision with Perl and Python (Zope) here [interakt.ro]
        It's in the "Why you've lost" section of the survey, as seen through the eyes of the PHP developer :)
        Alexandru
  • by ozric99 (162412) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @01:51AM (#7010497) Journal
    I work in a large, predominately MS, corp. I'd say that a good 80% of our boxes are running some variant of Windows - obviously there are the mainframes, and a fair few Solaris/legacy boxes dotted around. The PHBs here view php as something "geeky" that isn't suited for business. I'm sure they'd lap it up in a second if it were called MS Visual php Studio, however.

    What problems have people had in trying to migrate their applications to php, and how did you overcome them? How would you sell php to your boss? Bearing in mind most of our applications aren't simple database-driven (and I used that word hesitantly!) ones like Slashdot - hint: banking and insurance sector.

    • How would you sell php to your boss?

      Perhaps a good point to start would be asking: why was ASP chosen in the first place? And how would PHP provide a better solution?

      hint: banking and insurance sector

      I wouldn't expect financial companies to jump on the latest and greatest, though. If they have something that already works, I imagine it would be hard to make them change. Then again, if you can save them money.. :)
    • Regarding the migration. Does it actually provide any benefits? I'm not talking arguments like it being open source or cross platform etc. Does it provide REAL benefits for your situation? If it does, then that's the first step to selling to your boss. If you can justify it to yourself, then most of the reasons should translate into a pretty good reason for him to agree.

      If it saves you time that translates into money saved for him, as well as, more time for his work force to focus on other issues. If
    • by NightSpots (682462) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:45AM (#7010610) Homepage
      You're absolutely crazy if you want to use PHP for banking and insurance apps.

      It's security record is horrible.
      It's security model is a joke.
      It's object model is worthless compared to real OOP languages.
      It completely lacks exception handling, which makes rolling back partial transactions (etc) impossible in banking scenarios.
      It's developers regularly break POLA on minor version increments.
      It's database support is mediocre at best: third party classes are currently the best (but not only) DB interface PHP has.

      Stick with .NET or J2EE. They're clunky, .NET is expensive, J2EE is slow, but they're both leaps and bounds ahead of PHP.
      • J2EE is not slow (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Kunta Kinte (323399) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @03:36AM (#7010716) Journal
        Stick with .NET or J2EE. They're clunky, .NET is expensive, J2EE is slow, but they're both leaps and bounds ahead of PHP.

        I can understand why people think that Java is slow, taking that Java GUI widgets are usually slower than native widgets on the desktop. But J2EE is not inheritably slow.

        Though there are clunkly J2EE apps out there, I'd wager on a hunch, that the average J2EE app would out-perform a same sized PHP app. If we add a PHP accelerator to the mix, like Turck MMCache [turcksoft.com], then PHP may have a fighting chance.

        But remember, J2EE compiles the web application only *once* at startup, and can also ( and probably does ) optimize for the specific processor that it's running on. PHP, without an accelerator compiles on every hit, and PHP can't optimize for the specific processor unless you have a good sysadmin.

        • Though there are clunkly J2EE apps out there, I'd wager on a hunch, that the average J2EE app would out-perform a same sized PHP app.

          Not in my experience. I held 2 jobs -- one at Arzoo, and one at SST -- where Java just couldn't deliver good response times. That's not to say that Java is crap, just that speed & scalability are not the reasons to use it. I would use Java for banking or ecommerce -- wherever I needed to do guaranteed work with money. And I'd probably want Oracle on the backend for

      • It completely lacks exception handling


        That's not true, as you may see here [php.net].

    • by segment (695309) <sil@Nospam.politrix.org> on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:50AM (#7010625) Homepage Journal

      The PHBs here view php as something "geeky" that isn't suited for business. I'm sure they'd lap it up in a second if it were called MS Visual php Studio, however.

      One thing you should keep in mind about programs from MS is that although they are crap, they offer someone you can speak to on the phone 24/7 as opposed to us geeks chopping things up or finding a forum, or jumping on irc to fix things up or create something. Microsoft is pretty and CTO's, CEO's, CFP's etc., need to be able to understand a product somewhat. I've used PHP for some time, and from my perspective is, there are too many hands in the pot spoiling the food.

      Seems like every other month some new and improved programming language comes along and becomes the standard or some future standard. From a business point of view, I would rather go with what is established as opposed to what is promising. Promising isn't going to speak to a CTO through some task should his IT department walk out. Aside from that, standards already around are accompanied by people who get certified to perform these tasks. Now we know not all certs mean squat, but it's easier to find people who follow standards than those who follow promise.

      • One thing you should keep in mind about programs from MS is that although they are crap, they offer someone you can speak to on the phone 24/7 as opposed to us geeks chopping things up or....

        If you are willing to pay big money (just like with the wallet-sucking MS and Oracle "gold" support contracts), I am pretty sure you can find 24/7 support for open-source. Besides, MS support has never had a reputation for quality and fast turnaround. Anybody suggest some support vendors for PHP?

        Seems like every o

        • Anybody suggest some support vendors for PHP?

          See what I mean... Couldn't think of one company to offer support? That's the problem. Sure it's great and I know it is, but CTO's don't give a damn about what we think is great, they want to be wooed with shizzle like ROI, and TCO figures, asskissing shmoes who come into the office with the standard shirt and tie, laptop, and give a nice show, pass on the business cards, etc. Besides companies like feeling they can hold someone accountable should they need to

        • In my experience Microsoft support has been both fairly good and fairly cheap. The last incident we had with them cost $300 flat. It was a 10-11 hour call on an Exchange/Active Directory problem. They brought in about 5 or 6 people. Eventually I think we were talking to actual developers. Ultimately they solved the problem. Sure it took a long time, but it was a damned hard problem, otherwise we wouldn't have called them.
  • by gonerill (139660) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @01:53AM (#7010502) Homepage
    PHP usage in the enterprise

    that by the 23rd century they would have left PHP behind.

    Or maybe it just shows the durability of opens source software.
  • Love PHP! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by whereiswaldo (459052) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @01:54AM (#7010504) Journal
    I really enjoy using PHP for web development. I find that you can't beat scripting languages for ease of maintenance, quick turnaround time, and tweakability.

    One of the big reasons I chose PHP was the availability of "LAMP": Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP. I know these technologies have been around for years and will be around for many more years, so it's an easy sell to management. There's plenty of talk on the newgroups if you ever get stuck and PHP's online documentation with user comments is priceless. I think more documentation should follow this example.

    That aside, the pure performance and reliability of the above is excellent. These technologies were made to work together, and from what I hear the teams even collaborate to make sure their stuff stays working together. It really shows.

    Years ago I worked on ASP/SQL Server solutions and where you had to go with native code for high-performance with ASP, I find that with PHP it is high performance on its own.

    Great job to everyone who has helped put together these technology solutions. A shining example of the high quality that can come out of the collaborative efforts of many.
    • Re:Love PHP! (Score:2, Interesting)

      by prell (584580)
      PHP is decent, but its support of more linear, "c-like" code, is disconcerting. The object-oriented features are likewise minimized and somewhat poor. I would quickly use Python or Ruby in place of PHP, given the availability of sufficient support packages (eRuby, HTML templating, etc.). I do not really enjoy writing software in PHP.

      ASP is commendable for its exposure of certain classes to all "ASP-bridged languages," making available such interfaces as those that handle state data (such as sessions),
    • Re:Love PHP! (Score:2, Interesting)

      by GundyRage (611514)

      "LAMP": Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP

      Or in my case "LAMP": Linux, Apache, MONO, PostgreSQL.

      The truth is that it's sweet to have the right tool for the right job. Gotta love those options!

      G
  • by Henry V .009 (518000) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @01:55AM (#7010509) Journal
    PHP is a great tool, especially if you just plan to throw something together in no time flat. Start up MySQL with PHP and Apache and you have a rather full-featured system at an affordable price: $0. On the other hand, I have no idea on reliability figures for that mixture. Still, PHP is great to work with. Easiest interface in the world.

    (P.S. Lots of programmers in the Enterprise. Data and me were always slapping together code for that clunky thing. Cloaked Romulans? Yeah right--just software bugs in the sensory system. "Uh, Captain, they've gone cloaked again." "Damn! Those ships have that capability!?!" Works every time.)
  • I can't have been the only one to think, "Gee, wouldn't it be odd to see Worf trying to bang away at some php in the middle of a battle?"

    Guess it could be worse. If the Enterprise used PERL, the show wouldn't make any sense to anyone except the people who made it... oh, wait. Isn't that how it is right now under B&B?

    I'm so confused...
  • by Eponymous Cowboy (706996) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @01:56AM (#7010512)
    For both the Zend and InterAKT surveys, there are lots of raw numbers presented, but the interpretation is lacking. The commentaries on the InterAKT results are little more than "as you can see, such-and-such wedge of the pie is the largest," and there is no interpretation whatsoever on the Zend site.

    Of course, this is a cheap and easy way to conduct a survey (multiple-choice), but the results are almost meaningless if they can't be put into context. I would have preferred to have seen a hundred randomly-selected PHP developers interviewed, essay-style, about why they are using PHP, their thoughts on PHP versus other technologies, etc., and then have the results compiled into a journal-quality article supported by graphs and raw numbers. The important information isn't in those graphs; it cannot be enumerated and broken down into clean categories.

    Personally, I develop PHP sites because it's the fastest and simplest way I've found yet to publish dynamic web content. I've tried making sites with Java and .NET, and found both of them to be too far disconnected from the HTML that I'm trying to create. PHP provides an excellent blend of power, speed, simplicity, and directness.
  • In the upcoming episode of Enterprise, Captain Archer and Trip use PHP to reconfigure the ship's computer to stream hot hidden camera footage [maximonline.com] of T'pol to the captain's ready room.

    The beautiful power of PHP never fails to impress me.

  • by robogun (466062)
    All I can say, judging by the links in the spam I'm getting lately, is that the spammers have jumped all over PHP. Each and every last goddamn one of them is using it to process their form responses.
    • I hope you aren't click on links in spam!
      This just encourages them.
    • All I can say, judging by the links in the spam I'm getting lately, is that the spammers have jumped all over PHP.

      Probably they got tired of all those anti-spam activists exploiting the SQL-injection vulnerabilities in their .asp scripts.

  • huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by samantha (68231) * on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:04AM (#7010535) Homepage
    What do we think about PHP as compared to Java and .net? What do we think about an grape as compared to a basketball and an egg? These are 3 quite different things. A HTML-generation targeted scripting language compared to a compiled general purpose language as compared to a distributed object and language framework is a pretty disparate set of things to compare.
    • What do we think about PHP as compared to Java and .net? What do we think about an grape as compared to a basketball and an egg? These are 3 quite different things.

      Umm, these 3 platforms have significant overlap in the market they target, even if their niches aren't exactly equivalent.

      Take a random example. Lets say a CMS packages. You can get quite a few done in PHP, in J2EE, and .NET. The language your CMS choice uses does have significant effects on the package. The PHP solution may not scale well

    • These are 3 quite different things.

      That's the whole point of asking the question: the three are different "things", but they are all being used for the same applications. So, which of those three platforms is the "best" for web applications?

      Frankly, I think for most web applications, languages like PHP are far more effective tools than Java or .NET.
  • PHP is ok but... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by theolein (316044) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:10AM (#7010541) Journal
    The language as it has been in most of it's 4.x.x iteration has been just about fine. Good for quick slap em together websites and small applications. But...

    I have seen huge cumbersome application servers built around PHP that are a nightmare to maintain without having intimate familiarity with the code of the application server, such as Ampoliros or Ariadne, something which defeats the purpose of using such a large system in the first place. Such things really do work better with a OO by design language such as Java or ASP.Net (I assume, don't know .Net) where you can rely on the functionality of the objects without having to second guess the original developers.

    My guess is that PHP needs a better OO design (and no, PHP5 is not it, yet) and better seperation of logic and presentation for larger systems.

    But for smaller stuff, well it's hard to beat in terms of price and speed.
    • by Fastball (91927) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:30AM (#7010580) Journal
      When you've laid eyes on an Apache/AxKit driven site that uses XPathScript and XSLT, then we'll talk. You want completely unmaintainable content? First, you have XML files which somehow are supposed to respresent data. Nevermind that somebody is supposed to make some kind of heads or tails of these things. Second, you have either XPathScript (.xps) or XSLT (.xsl) which is somehow supposed to transform that XML into discernable HTML that a browser can use. In the case of XPathScript, you have an wacked hodgepodge of Perl and HTML. Nothing halfway understandable like an Embperl, Mason, or even Text::Template template or component. No, go look up XPathScript to see what I mean. XSLT stylesheets are no better.

      I want to believe in the XML's mission, but when I recently took up a migration of someone else's AxKit driven site, I haven't been able to get much sleep (it's 2:28am on a Friday night and I'm rebuilding a server to accomodate this goofy setup).

      • First, you have XML files which somehow are supposed to respresent data. . .(XPathScript grousing). . .XSLT stylesheets are no better.

        Depends on your situation - if you're a web programmer working with XSLT-savvy designers, then using AxKit and XSLT is awfully straighforward. The programmer and designer just need to agree on how the XML will be structured, then the programmer can worry about getting the data into the XML format, and the designer can worry about transforming the XML.

        Of course that doesn'
    • Amen, we went through the same experience on a carrier-scale app. Once the app reached a certain 'critical-mass' it just became fucking impossible to maintain.

      We trashed it, and started over with a Java-based webapp using Struts, and trust me, it is magnitudes better.



    • It's not so much the fault of the language. You can certainly write model view controllet apps with php. You can write well disgned OO code in php too. Nothing is preventing you from doing that.

      It's just that php apps start small and it's easy to just slap them together. If the app is allowed to grow in a haphazard way without a serious and thoughful refactoring then you get huge ugly messes.

      That being said PHP really should have a "strict" mode where it enforces type safety. They are going to make headwa
    • Re:PHP is ok but... (Score:2, Informative)

      by acostin (229653)
      As for maintainability,

      I have seen huge cumbersome application servers built around PHP that are a nightmare to maintain without having intimate familiarity with the code of the application server

      We have met the same problem indeed with PHP application, caused by the mix of application logic and presentation layer... PHP is good and very easy to setup and create a site, but maintaining a large PHP application can be *nightmare*.

      As we've met the same problems, we try to offer a free platform for a PHP
    • Smarty + PHP5 (Score:5, Informative)

      by TheInternet (35082) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @04:32AM (#7010807) Homepage Journal
      I have seen huge cumbersome application servers built around PHP that are a nightmare to maintain

      This problem doesn't discriminate by language. :) Perhaps it's more common in PHP because the barrier to entry is lower.

      My guess is that PHP needs a better OO design (and no, PHP5 is not it, yet)

      I think you could argue PHP5's OO design is good enough, or just as easily argue that it's not. I'm curious, though, what your main complaints wants with it are.

      better seperation of logic and presentation for larger systems

      I was looking for this for quite a while and then found Smarty [php.net]. At first, it seemed so simple that I disregarded it as being glorified search-and-replace templates. The temptation is to think "I can just do that by echo variables inline." But truth is, there's much more to it than that. After giving it a fair shake, I've discovered that it's an incredible useful, clever design. It's much more functional than it seems on the surface. It made PHP substantially more useful to me.

      Between PHP5 and Smarty, I think there's a pretty good basic core toolset to work with. I actually think Java tries too hard in certain areas -- too many features, too much syntax, too heavy-handed typing system, too much complication. But no question it has its merits.

      - Scott
  • Yahoo (Score:5, Informative)

    by AmVidia HQ (572086) <gfung.me@com> on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:10AM (#7010543) Homepage
    is the prime enterprise use example (although they still use legacy, prepritary web programming based on C, all their new developments are run on PHP and BSD, correct me if i'm wrong)

    I worked in a small shop, the web app isn't mission critical stuff like banking, but it wasn't "brainless dump data from Mysql". I was lucky that my boss was totally not picky about languages, as long as it gets the job done. But if I have anyone I work with that doubts the power and simplicity of PHP, Yahoo would be my example.

    And so far, developing on the so called LAMP platform, I love PHP and would use it for any and all web development. It can be used as a quick hack (an argument always used against PHP btw, that it's only good for a quick hack and not for professional use), OR you can code it like a pro with objects et al. I was not impressed by Mysql however, it is by no means stable (this is v 4.0.13), but that's another topic.

    My sig is my personal pet project using PHP
    • s the prime enterprise use example (although they still use legacy, prepritary web programming based on C, all their new developments are run on PHP and BSD, correct me if i'm wrong)

      Problem with using Yahoo and Amazon as case studies is that they any but typical applications. Very few people can, or should try to, identify with them.

      Yahoo, as you said puts a lot of their business logic in C code. Amazon probably does something similar. They have to, because it would be difficult for them to put the ma

  • by Black Art (3335) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:21AM (#7010564)
    Cold Fusion is also a web scripting language, but costs quite a bit.

    The last time I compared the two (admitedly a while ago) PHP had many more features and was the much better choice. (Even if they were priced the same, which they are not.)

    Even more telling is the amount of books available for each. There are seven Cold Fusion books still in print according to Amazon. (Most the same book for different versions of Cold Fusion.) A search for PHP gets 112 hits. (I am not certain how many are still in print. Much more than seven.)

    Comparing Java (a general purpose language) to PHP (a web scripting language) seems to be a bad comparison. Comparing it to .net (a proprietary collection of patent encumbered programs and methods) even more so.
    • Comparing Java (a general purpose language) to PHP (a web scripting language) seems to be a bad comparison.

      They're comparing it it J2EE/JSP, which is a ver y reasonable comparison.

      PS, the new Cold Fusion, CF MX, is technically J2EE I believe. They implement CF on J2EE App Server I've heard.

  • You'd think the Federation would have advanced beyond PHP.
  • Coolest language (Score:4, Informative)

    by linuxperformer (642564) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @02:33AM (#7010586)
    PHP is the coolest language for Web development today. It provides the features of Perl but designed to be a Web development language. PHP is my primary choice if the applications doesn't demand complicated business abstractions (Java scores in such situations). Using an accelerator like ionCube [ioncube.com] will be icing-on-the-cake.
  • In order to win a pitch with a PHP solution, a company should offer a good price and should have a very good proposal.

    To get a profitable PHP business, you have to sell either CMS's or Intranets.

    The obstacles to be surpassed are the fear of unknown technology, the compatibility between PHP solutions and existing ASP or Java applications. One should focus on the solution offered not on the technology when bidding for a project.


    This is about WEBSITES for Intranets. This isn't in the enterprise, this is
  • by b17bmbr (608864) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @03:02AM (#7010652)
    i used perl almost exclusively, then had a couple of projects and used php. it was a dream to use. nice syntax, powerful built in functions, not super verbose like java nor bizarre like perl. you can cruft together a few pages or create a huge site. been there, done both. however, remember PHP is a templating language. designed to be so. so, it is not necesarily an OOP language, yet is is OO in nature. for instance, create different .php files and piece together your pages. as for security, use good programming skills. duh. for instance, keep your connections in separate files. then just include("connection.php"); that will help.

    that being established, it will have trouble being accepted as an enterprise tool because it is not backed by a company. java backed by sun, .NET by what's that company, i forgot. linux didn't really enter mainstream until IBM ponied up a billion. no matter how great a tool, it just seems cheap, and to businesses, they just won't "risk" it. sad. the other problem that php has it that it is esy to put together a good site, and easy to learn and use. java and .net are not. so, it seems like BASIC. you can't use that for serious apps.
    • I'm not sure about this. Merriam-Webster uses PHP for their online dictionary; Yahoo uses PHP for their site and many other corporations are using PHP for thier web development.

      Additionally, PHP 5 has true OO support and ends up looking a lot like a hybrid C/C++/Java.

      I think one of the main reasons it hasn't been picked up in corporations is because of its lack of OO features (and possibly its inability to be compiled into a single app), although you do have plenty of good encoders and caches.

      I don't thi
      • haven't gotten to play with php5 yet. speed with php is really good. the database will slow you down far more than the php will. in fact, instead of using require_once, another good, though less secure thing is to use constant connections, rather than opening one every page. much faster. and if books are any indicator, php is certainly a hot language. maybe it's where java was in 1998?
  • by Skim123 (3322) <mitchellNO@SPAM4guysfromrolla.com> on Saturday September 20, 2003 @03:08AM (#7010665) Homepage
    A more appropriate question, as another poster mentioned, is what's better: PHP, classic ASP, or Cold Fusion? Those are stand-alone scripting technologies. ASP.NET and JSP are more platform-based, providing true OOP, an impressive set of base classes, and so on.

    If you are interested in the scripting language comparison, see Server-Side Scripting Shootout [lycos.com].

  • by Cyberax (705495) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @03:52AM (#7010744)
    .NET has COM+ for backend systems, Java has EJB, but PHP has nothing :( I can't use distributed transactions, transparent failover, declarative security and transaction demarcation in PHP.
  • by Anthony Boyd (242971) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @04:14AM (#7010772) Homepage

    When I joined the IT department at SST (a fabless chip manufacturer), they were 100% MS. I said I would be using PHP or they would be hiring someone else. They hired me, so I went hog-wild. I hired on the guy who built edrugtrader.com, the guy who built beerotopia, and one of the developers of Yube (which is/was a primarily Java shop). We've built up a massive intranet product in PHP. It's modular, with 196 files all interoperating nicely. Thanks to our Yube guy, it's object-oriented in the most-reused parts. It has areas for file management, posting news, creating new Web pages with a built-in GUI editor (thanks HTMLArea!), org charts, a task management system, a budgeting tool, employee evaluation systems, a signoff system with escalations & delegates, a form builder, and a lot more. On a day when we post earnings, the intranet can see just as much traffic as the public site. We've sustained over 100 requests/second in a few spots, and done just fine. I know that's not Yahoo-size numbers, but it's not "small" either, I don't think. If it is small, I know that edrugtrader sees many times more traffic and performs well. So no qualms there.

    The problems we've had with PHP were small in number and quickly resolved. First, 4.3.2 had a bug that resulted in blank pages displaying intermittently to our users. That sucked, but 4.3.3 fixed it. And way back about 3 years ago as we started the site, we had to increase the memory allotment for just about everything -- we had some big processes with hundreds of queries getting read into PHP arrays, and we hit the default memory limits pretty quick. Other than that, no problems. Development is quick, often easy, usually fun. If we need to go OOP, that's fine. If we need to do simple templating, that's fine too. And increasingly, we're using it outside of the Web. We have a dozen cron jobs now that are all PHP scripts. Some things, especially screen scraping and working with mailboxes, still need to be done in Perl. But lots of server management stuff -- filesystem work, data dumps, monitoring -- seems to be going along fine with PHP nowadays. I'm pretty happy to have bet my career on PHP so far.

  • My experience (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Alien Conspiracy (43638) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @05:59AM (#7010974) Homepage
    Having used both PHP and J2EE for major projects, I'd have to say that I prefer PHP because:

    1. It is more concise - java even _less_ compact than C++ with a good set of libraries - whereas PHP has loads of very forgiving high-level functions builtin.
    2. It is more lightwight - java is just _still_ too bloated and slow even after all these years of promises from Sun.
    3. The Java VM's for Linux really suck, they 'officially support' only RedHat and are unstable as hell running on Debian.

    That said I really miss the J2EE ability to cache persistent data between requests in memory simply by declaring a variable as static. It's the only feature I miss in PHP.

    As far as .NET goes, it never reached my radar since it is Windows-only.

    • That said I really miss the J2EE ability to cache persistent data between requests in memory simply by declaring a variable as static. It's the only feature I miss in PHP.


      Well, saying that makes the rest fo your coment worthless. Seems you have no clue what static means ...

      Why not using ordinary java objects instead of declaring one meber static to cash data? Uhh, ohm ... I guess its to "bloated" :-)

      angel'o'sphere
  • There are 75.000 PHP development companies in the world, totalling 150.000 professional developers. Each company creates 12 websites per year on average, and one website takes approximately 32 work days to be completed.

    The average price of a PHP dynamic website is USD 6.000, and a regular company receives USD 75.000 income from PHP development per year. By multiplying this with the number of companies in the world, we can estimate the size of the PHP software development market - USD 5.6 billions.


    Potenti
  • 400 years in the future I would think that the Enterprise would use something more advanced than PHP.

  • by Qbertino (265505) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @08:03AM (#7011212)
    I've done quite some web developement with lot's of stuff, including JSP, Zope/Python and PHP. I'Ve looked into CF and ASP.Crap and have heard all the MS Junkies doing verbal wee-wee in their pants over how so very sweet their new stuff is.
    After all these years I've had my perception of things confirmed day in and day out:
    The best existing webapp technology ever concieved to this very day is the Zope Application Server together with it's intergrated Object-Relational Database, it's PL Python and the SSI solution TAL (Template Attribute Language). It will take _everything__else_ in the industry something like 5 years at least to catch up.
    Apart from that, anything that strives to go the pure SSI approach with a separated DB eiher uses PHP or most certainly is crap. It's really that simple. I've evaluated CF (Nice dynamic flash with a poor mans PHP for 10000$. No thanks.) and ASP, finally moving into usable regions with .Net but still stomped to chunky kibbles by PHP and it's community. Both won't even come close.
    JSP is a nice substitute if you've got a Java Enviroment there allready. But then again, who would want one if you get allmost everthing (apart from maybe banking applications) ready or done faster in PHP.
    Bottom Line: If you've got a standalone Server for your project, use Zope and all the goodies that come with it. On the other hand, if Apache is a must, mod_php is present and/or you need a finished OSS solution *now* you use PHP. PHP has the largest dev-community, and for good reasons too.
    I really can't take CF or .Net zealots serious anymore.
  • You can't compare PHP and ASP.Net.

    PHP is not a true object-oriented programming environment. Take a look at the scope of class member functions and properties. In PHP, all variables in a class are accessible externally for both reading and writing, making it impossible to hide a class' implementation.

    On top of that, the PHP language is not strongly typed, and you don't even need to declare variables. PHP has no structured exception handling.

    Objects in PHP are language values. When performing operations
    • You can't compare PHP and ASP.Net.

      I don't see why not. They are both technologies designed to provide dynamic content via the web. Just because they require different methodologies, doesn't mean they are incomparable.

      PHP is not a true object-oriented programming environment.

      Where I work, we favor Microsoft technologies. I use ASP.NET and I love using it. But the object-oriented stuff gets in my way more than it helps me. OO is not the best paradigm for web development. HTTP is a stateless pro
  • by ubiquitin (28396) * on Saturday September 20, 2003 @08:13AM (#7011237) Homepage Journal
    Here's a presentation about what the following tech companies have publicly said about PHP:
    Macromedia, IBM, Oracle, Sun, Apple, Symantec, Novell, Microsoft, MySQL

    http://php.ist.unomaha.edu/presentations/secondc la ss.pdf

    I think the biggest news is that Oracle is putting the PHP module into their 9i Application Server.
  • This will probably go over like a lead brick, but this is interesting [microsoft.com]...
  • ...that Captian Kirk and Mr. Spock even had web server, let alone apache with php!! .. oh wait.. IN the enterprise.. not ON it!

    doh!
  • I'd be curious to know how PHP-GTK performs against JVM for client-side development.

    I've developed some decent applications using PHP, I LOVE IT!

    PHP is clean, straighforward, performs reasonably well, makes socket connections and multi-system communications a breeze, offers enough OO support to be useful, and doesn't mire one into the details of whether an "a" is an "a" or actually ord('a')...

    One of the most common complaints for PHP is error handling. I've found that where it's needed, just create a cl
  • by WoTG (610710) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @01:42PM (#7012612) Homepage Journal
    I've used PHP quite a lot lately. And it's great. On the whole it is every bit as good as the last versions of ColdFusion and ASP that I've used (admittedly those are a version or two old by now).

    To me, the biggest strength of PHP going forward is the huge number of people that are improving the PHP experience every day.

    1) New features? There are free extensions and modules for templating, database abstraction, compiled script caching, and more.
    2) Sample code. I'll bet that there are more free as in speech snippets and full applications of code available for PHP that any other web language.
    2) Community. There are lots of sites and other online resources where PHP developers can find help with debugging code when they need it.

    Once you toss in great cross-platform support - PHP runs on just about any web server of interest - and a good price ($0), PHP is very competitive.

    No, I wouldn't want a bank running on PHP, but for MANY other uses inside companies, PHP is good and getting better. I liken it somewhat to Linux a couple years ago with respect to corporate acceptance. The foundation is more or less built, what's left is some time to mature and gain credibility.
  • by Dr.Dubious DDQ (11968) on Saturday September 20, 2003 @06:28PM (#7013859) Homepage

    ...that so many people assume PHP is "only for web pages". The entire first report linked above seems predicated on the notion that "PHP is for companies to make money setting up websites for other people, and other uses are 'fringe' or irrelevant."

    PHP is definitely good for web-pages, but I've increasingly found it to be very useful for a lot of command-line programs and system administration, much as Perl is.

    PHP-GTK has also already been mentioned in other postings, and the increasing interoperability with Java means you can implement a variety of parts of your PHP projects in "native Java" if you want to...and that's not just "Java for web pages" code, either.

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