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PHP 4 End of Life Announcement 125

Posted by Zonk
from the sniffle dept.
perbert writes "The PHP development team has announced that support for PHP 4 will continue until the end of this year only. After 2007-12-31 there will be no more releases of PHP 4.4. Critical security fixes will be made available on a case-by-case basis until 2008-08-08. For documentation on migration for PHP 4 to PHP 5, there is a migration guide. There is additional information available in the PHP 5.0 to PHP 5.1 and PHP 5.1 to PHP 5.2 migration guides as well."
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PHP 4 End of Life Announcement

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  • Thank God (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Daengbo (523424) <daengboNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Saturday July 14, 2007 @03:00AM (#19857221) Homepage Journal
    I hope that everyone has moved beyond PHP 4.X by this point. 5.X is more secure and capable.
    • Re:Thank God (Score:5, Informative)

      by Arancaytar (966377) <arancaytar.ilyaran@gmail.com> on Saturday July 14, 2007 @03:22AM (#19857327) Homepage
      You'd be surprised how many shared web-hosts are still out there running ancient and unpatched PHP versions. Partly out of laziness and partly out of an unwillingness to make their customers work on their equally ancient applications. register_globals being enabled can be one of the least security concerns there.

      See also http://gophp5.org/ [gophp5.org]
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by flight_master (867426)
        I am the owner of a shared hosting provider, and partially I need to rebuke your statement.
        Sure, most of our systems do run on the latest LAMP stack (Apache 2, MySQL 5, PHP 5), however we still have some systems runnning PHP4, as clients insist on using old software like phpBB (for example) that doesn't run at all on version 5. Not to mention, those of us who use cPanel need to wait for them to get the entire system stable before we can upgrade.

        This combines well for us though - we announced that PHP4 s
        • Re:Thank God (Score:5, Informative)

          by NeoThermic (732100) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @11:28AM (#19859597) Homepage Journal
          For those using phpBB2, as long as you're not using an obscure PHP5 config, it will work fine. We just don't officially support it as phpBB2 was written for PHP3 and PHP4 only (since those were the only versions out when it was released). Or, get them to move over to phpBB3, which not only supports PHP4 and PHP5, but will actually run on PHP6-dev versions. (Although if you're running -dev on a live server...)

          NeoThermic
          • Congratulations on providing competent hosting then! :)

            I know that PHP5 is (fortunately) getting increasing support from hosts. I myself switched to a different one for exactly this reason and would never consider a host that doesn't have PHP5.

            However, unless the statistics are skewed or outdated, they still show PHP5 adoption well below 50%...
        • by ctr2sprt (574731)

          Yep, I work for a hosting company, and I wish to emphasize your point that a lot of customers are running old apps held together by spit and baling wire that won't work on PHP5. And if we tell those customers to get with the program and fix their shit, they will just go find someone who will give them PHP4.

          Another problem is that RHEL3 and RHEL4 - which are still, by a wide margin, the most common versions out there - don't support PHP5. They support it in the sense that RPMs exist and you can install t

    • You would think.

      I work for a company that hosts several major, big name websites; millions of hits a day. There has been a massive resistance to move from PHP4 to PHP5 for several reasons, one of them being that nobody in management wants to spend the time necessary to test ALL of the code under PHP5 and those in charge of the servers don't want to spend the time upgrading the machines. It would not surprise me if we were still on PHP4 a year from now. After all, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

      Hopefully,
    • by rhizome (115711)
      I hope that everyone has moved beyond PHP 4.X by this point.

      Someone forgot to tell Redhat. They only make PHP5 available for Release 5, which is very much in the minority of their installation base.

      • Tiger shipped with PHP4 installed, and there is basically one guy, Mark Linyage, who is packaging a PHP5 installer for Tiger.

        Unfortunately, he refuses to support older versions of Mac OS, and for various reasons I'm still working with Panther on my laptop and some of our servers, so I have been struggling mightily to get PHP5 to compile and install.

        I wish Apple would provide some support for these 'freebies' they include with the OS, but their attitude seems to be "if we didn't invent it, it's not our probl
  • by detain (687995) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @03:44AM (#19857435) Homepage
    While I can completely understand the need for this to occur, I can see this causing alot of problems for many small businesses, personal webpages, and hosting companies. PHP5 is definitly worthwhile switching to from PHP4, but there are so many poorly coded sites out there that wont run properly under PHP5, and this at some point is going to cause a nightmare for various hosting companies.

    Your typical small business or personal webpage will frequently use PHP, and have little knowledge of how to fix their code to get it working, or how to upgrade their 3rd party software to a PHP5 Compatible version. At the same time hosting companies who will reach a point where they need to upgrade to PHP5 in order to keep their systems as secure as possible (because PHP4 security fixs might not be coming out) will be faced with many angry customers who are unwilling to spend time or money to change a site that they see as working previously.

    I can completely understand why a company might need to stop supporting an old version of their product at some point when newer ones are freely available, I just am not looking forward to all the headaches its going to cause. I can hear the phones of angry customers threatening to kill me because i "broke their site" now.

    Oh well, hopefully all PHP5 code will wind up working just fine in PHP6 when it comes out.
    • by timmarhy (659436)
      "there are so many poorly coded sites out there that wont run properly under PHP5, and this at some point is going to cause a nightmare for various hosting companies."

      cry me a river? upgrading pains are a part of the IT industry, people need to either accept this or get out.

      • Translation (Score:3, Informative)

        by a16 (783096)

        cry me a river? upgrading pains are a part of the IT industry, people need to either accept this or get out.

        Maybe so, but let me translate what you just said slightly:

        cry me a river? upgrading pains are a part of the IT industry, my customers need to either accept this or go to a host that hasn't upgraded yet, and stop paying me money.

        I'm guessing you aren't running a business...

        I work for a reasonably large hosting company that held off until a few months ago to announce that we're going to PHP5 in a few weeks. Before this point, we'd had a steady trickle of 1-2 customers a month asking when we are going to PHP5. Since the announcement, we've had up to 4-5 customers a week complaining that they will leave if we dare upgrade, they can't stand companies that change things for

        • I'm sure some people won't like it. Most businesses don't like spending money, even if they know it's for their own benefit in the long-term. If they've got code that they have no means of supporting that's bad management, I mean how can a business rely on something that they have no means of updating or fixing if it goes wrong?

          If a small business owner got an employee who knew a bit about electrical wiring to come in and wire their physical place of business, and then a few years later a safety regulator c
          • If they've got code that they have no means of supporting that's bad management, I mean how can a business rely on something that they have no means of updating or fixing if it goes wrong?
            afaict the typical scenario is that a small buisness cannot afford to have a proper software engineer on staff even if they can find one so things are either written by an employee who happens to have some skill in the area or by a contractor. Either way those commisioning the site will not have the skill to judge if the r
            • by chez69 (135760)
              the cost of your network getting broken into and having customer credit card numbers leaked is much larger then hiring some intern to move your software to a secure environment.

              We had some guy from a local college in my last job do that. he'd come in and maintain the braindead cold fusion apps every other quarter.
        • I really do believe their will be massive demand for a PHP 4 only reliable host rolling their own security updates, after end of life. I know a reasonable percentage of our client base that would likely consider them...
          Such a company would likely charge a premium rate over a normal host. In which case, does it not make sense for the client to get a hired gun to come in and migrate the code for PHP 5? It shouldn't be hard, we are talking about small businesses here.
        • by chez69 (135760)
          dude, just drop the dumbasses that insist on old versions of PHP. Offer to help them move, but if the clowns won't move, your going to pissing money away when your server gets pwned by some stupdid script kiddy.

          do what most businesses do, drop the customers that you lose money on.
    • by fyoder (857358)

      I can hear the phones of angry customers threatening to kill me because i "broke their site" now.

      Run two versions of apache, one for most sites with php5 (many php apps that worked on php4 will work on php5), and one for the minority of 'legacy' sites using php4. I believe the trick is to have them listen on different ip addresses.

      • You could just use FastCGI to use as many different PHP versions as you want, with the same webserver on the same port and IP.
      • by detain (687995)
        That wont solve the problem, actually we already run PHP4 and PHP5. The basic problem here is that support for PHP4 is ending. That means that at some point there wont be all the security updates for PHP4 that are still coming out for PHP5.

        So running PHP4 and PHP5 at the same time still will be just as much of a security risk as running PHP4 by itself.
        • by BVis (267028)
          So sandbox all your customers who won't do the work to upgrade to php5 off on discrete servers (or use virtualization to accomplish the same thing). Make sure your customers understand (or at the very least are given information regarding) the fact that their security is affected by php4 no longer being maintained, and let them make the decision. Do your due diligence as far as security is concerned (code audits if you're able) but, ultimately, you can lead a horse to water, but you can't keep him from ge
    • by Tablizer (95088)
      Couldn't hosting sites offer both versions? In theory, the customer could set a switch somewhere to select between them. Or, put a flag file in the folder(s) where the scripts are to indicate which interpreter to use. For example, if there is a "use_php_4.flg" file, then the 4 intertpreter is used.
  • I have a large (ahem... LARGE) codebase written in PHP4 that's running CentOS 4. Supposedly, CentOS will be updated until 2010. But how could they keep this promise if the underlying packages are no longer supported?

    Guess I'll have to see what PHP5 will do to my software, thinking I could put this off for another couple years.

    (sigh)
    • by timmarhy (659436)
      it's possible centos will put their own security patches into their php4 packages. they've done similar stuff before.
    • I know lots of places still installing CentOS 4.

      yum updates for Centos 4 will not upgrade your php.

      Is php that full of holes that they can't continue to support it?
    • Same issue here. Really I think this is a problem with PHP more than with CentOS. The Cent folks try very hard to make sure that updates don't break your stuff and they are very good at that. One of the main reason I use it.

      The PHP folks dug themselves a hole by making a language that's so fundamentally broken as to require breaking everything with an upgrade.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        The PHP folks dug themselves a hole by making a language that's so fundamentally broken as to require breaking everything with an upgrade.
        My PHP 4 code works fine with PHP 5. Many of the items in PHP 4 that break in PHP 5 are carryovers from PHP3 that were depreciated in PHP 4. Stop writing PHP 3 code and other depreciated PHP 4 code and you'll have less issues when migrating (never mind that you've had three years to convert your code and still have another year left).
  • by ls671 (1122017)

    Sorry, all I have done in PHP was modify or patch other programs so I do not know much about it.

    But in Java/J2EE, I still run applications that were developed (and even compiled sometimes) in java 1.0 on the java 5 platform without any changes or security issues. I see some "backward incompatible changes" in the PHP migration info.

    With the java/J2EE/jsp programs I have running here and there, I sure do enjoy the care the maintainers of a language take to insure backward compatibility even if it is some

    • by gazbo (517111)
      Because PHP 5 isn't just a few new libraries, constructs and bug fixes - it's a different object model, and as the other reply said, some misfeatures are deprecated for security reasons.

      PHP 5 is an upgrade to PHP 4 in the same way that C++ is an upgrade to C.

    • by panaceaa (205396) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @05:24AM (#19857831) Homepage Journal
      PHP began as a hacky side project of a lone developer (Rasmus Lerdorf). I'm not wholly aware of the details, but my understanding is that Rasmus was a Perl coder and wanted to generate minorly dynamic web pages by putting Perl-like code inside of his HTML. As the capabilities of his technology grew, he released it as an open source project, and due to its extreme ease of use it quickly turned into a popular web development language.

      The reason PHP5 could not continue backward compatability is because of its roots: It was designed to be EASY. In the first few releases, there wasn't serious thought put into making a proper software development language. But as web pages became more complex, soft typing, lack of proper scope, and lack of OOP patterns made developing complex PHP applications a world of horror. In addition, concepts like putting all query parameters into the scope of the program, which made developing simple applications easy, created a difficult situation for those trying to make complex applications secure. So to remove these security problems, and to remain relevant by providing richer programming constructs like classes, PHP had to break backwards compatibility.

      And while Java is mostly backwards compatible, the technologies for developing Java on the web have changed dramatically. Originally, JSP developers would put Java code right in their HTML! Today this is highly frowned upon (though backward compatible). So developers switched to JSP tags, such as the JSP Standard Tag Library, which coincidentally enough aren't backward compatible between versions. If you're running a Java app server, you'll definitely run into problems when upgrading WebSphere, WebLogic or Tomcat, due to updated tag libraries and other JARs being incompatible with their previous versions. These problems aren't as bad as porting your average PHP app from PHP4 to PHP5, but upgrading versions not a straight-forward process with either programming language.

      Stepping back, PHP is in a pretty similar spot to Visual Basic. VB.NET is wholely incompatible with VB6. Microsoft has announced a dropping of support for VB6. However, half of VB developers still program in VB6. Many VB programmers don't understand VB.NET's features, and hence are quite reluctant to move to VB.NET (and they're probably angry, too). And most existing VB6 code would nearly require a complete rewrite to get running in VB.NET. What might just happen is that Microsoft and PHP will have to continue supporting their legacy versions or simply lose beginning programmers as customers. Microsoft will probably continue to end-of-life VB6, but I believe they will release a language highly similar to VB6 that's easier to move over to. It will be interesting to see whether PHP follows a similar path or just leaves its developers to either learn PHP5 or move to another webby language, like Python.
      • by ls671 (1122017)

        Thanks for your insightful reply!

        I would just wish to point out that, regardig jar files and Tag Libraries, the golden rule is to not put them in your global server scope. Put all your jar files and Tag Libraries in application specific scopes.

        I run application servers with applications that use different versions of the jar files and different versions of the Tag Librairies without problems. So I do not really understand what upgrading my application server or the JVM has to do with the versions of th

      • by 1110110001 (569602) <slashdot-0904.nedt@at> on Saturday July 14, 2007 @08:05AM (#19858549)
        PHP5 could not continue backward compatability, PHP had to break backwards compatibility, ...

        I keep reading this and am wondering if you ever ported code from PHP4 to PHP5. I did it with a bigger project and the only problem I had was, that someone had uses StdClass without creating an empty instance first. Took about a day to fix that. It's nothing like VB6 vs. VB.NET.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by mrdaveb (239909)

        PHP3 to PHP4 was also a big jump. But if you actually look at the backwards incompatibility list [php.net] between PHP4 and PHP5, it is a very short list of very minor tweaks. I can say with a very good level of confidence that they aren't going affect me at all! OK, I can say this because I already switched, but you see my point.

        There have been big steps forward 'under the hood' and with the new object orientation and better scoping... but this is basically all new stuff. Nothing widely used has been removed. I th

      • by massysett (910130)
        or move to another webby language, like Python.

        How good is Python as a web language? Python is very easy to use and structured, while PHP is yucky. Does PHP have some strong points that make it particularly suitable for Web development vs. Python?

        I ask because it seems to me that anyone who has an informed opinion about PHP says it has serious shortcomings. I wonder if PHP is like Windows: acknowledged to be technically inferior, but widely used because it has a huge adoption rate.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by sgtrock (191182)

          If you're interested in Python Web development, you'll find a host of network and Web specific frameworks. I suggest checking out Twisted [twistedmatrix.com], Zope [zope.org], Plone [plone.org], and Django [djangoproject.com] for examples. You may also find some other goodies when you explore the Python Cheese Shop [python.org].

          Of course, no mention of Python can pass by without someone bringing up Ruby on Rails, so I'll just do that right now. :) However, I have no experience with it whatsoever, so I'll withhold any opinion.

        • Does PHP have some strong points that make it particularly suitable for Web development vs. Python?

          PHP is an absolutely horrible language. (I won't reiterate all the ways in which it's a horrible language, because I'm pressed for time, and you've probably heard it all anyway.) But its one killer feature is convenience - and that's why it's become so popular. The basic features of PHP can be quickly learned by anybody with half a brain, and deploying PHP apps is usually just a matter of putting the files into Apache's web doc directory. I've never worked with Python, so I don't know what it's like... but

          • I made this mistake myself, and it must be stressed that this man speaks the truth!

            I discovered Django just a little while ago and I have now made it my goal over the next year to scrape from my mind every single painful memory of Python. Thank God my clients' web hosts all had the vision to use PHP 5.

            Another thing to keep in mind with that "convenience" you mention is how most web hosts are indeed incredibly lazy - particularly the ones costing below $10 a month. This means if I am developing a web site fo
        • How good is Python as a web language? Python is very easy to use and structured, while PHP is yucky. Does PHP have some strong points that make it particularly suitable for Web development vs. Python?

          Yes, PHP is a piece of junk language to be sure, however it is ubiquitous, convenient, and works ok for simple web pages. It is also understood by web design software (like dreamweaver) and is doable by web design people who aren't hardcore programmers (I guess that was its whole point).

          That said, one approach

          • Python has several excellent templating systems. The problem is that there are so many templating systems (and HTTP frameworks, and object-relational mappers) to choose from, someone trying to figure out where to start with Python web development is likely to become frustrated and choose Rails instead. Genshi [edgewall.org] has proven very effective for me. Genshi does an excellent job of reporting template errors (your concern with Cheetah). Version 0.4 even supports embedding clean python syntax (via

            <?python ..

        • I ask because it seems to me that anyone who has an informed opinion about PHP says it has serious shortcomings. I wonder if PHP is like Windows: acknowledged to be technically inferior, but widely used because it has a huge adoption rate.

          Personally I think (and this will almost certainly be considered trolling) that those who hate PHP and claim it cannot be used for complex projects are simply poor programmers....or perhaps, more accurately, unimaginative programmers. The kind of people who have to do
      • But as web pages became more complex, soft typing, lack of proper scope, and lack of OOP patterns made developing complex PHP applications a world of horror.

        I have yet to see a good example of an OOP framework noticably improving code maintenence over a procedural equivalent for the type of apps where PHP is usually used.

        That being said, a lot of the incompatibility between 4 and 5 is a revising and cleaning up of the PHP OOP model to better reflect Java's approach to OO, and tuning for heavier OO use. Si
      • by lems1 (163074)
        I couldn't agree more.

        This makes me feel that's time to take the plunge and re-write my apps in Perl. Perl will always be around and it works flawless on webapps (as it has worked for a very long time).

        Moving from PHP4 to a more robust and secure PHP5 is necessary. (though IMHO very stupid)

        The right thing would've been, of course, to write something that's simple to use, but also very secure, from scratch (Python, Perl, etc come to mind). With the availability of an almost infinite possibilities brought by
      • by oliderid (710055)
        I'm currently developping a PHP5 driven web service (front-end web site). It is certainly a huge improvment over PHP4. You 've got absract, extends, and so on. Great

        But I just spent two hours trying to do a dumb thing like an array/collection of objects
        inside a class :
        a dumb thing like in c#
        String[] myobjects;

        All I got was this fatal error:
        "Object of class stdClass could not be converted to string"
        I had to go backward and use a messy hash table instead.
        I'm sure it is possible(I hope so), but I didn't have e
    • by RAMMS+EIN (578166)
      ``java 1.0 on the java 5 platform without any changes or security issues.''

      Unfortunately, PHP and security issues can only be put in the same sentence when "many" is also present.
    • by Tony Hoyle (11698)
      Java does have upgrade issues just the same - I worked on one project that was written on java 1.3 and simply couldn't be ported because there were too many changes (different parameters to many functions, plus the killer was some stuff didn't appear to work at all in the 1.4 variant when the client was behind MS Proxy server.. never fathomed that one). Luckily you can run your own private JRE without affecting everything else on the machine (we tended to say one machine == 1 application though as is commo
      • by ls671 (1122017)

        Hi Tony,

        I would need more details about your case because there was not a single method that was removed in java 1.4. All methods suported in 1.3 are supported in 1.4 and they do take the same number of parameters. In 1.4, like in any updates, new methods and classes are ADDED. But the old 1.3,1.2,1.1,1.0 methods and classes are still supported. Based on that, I don't understand how what you described could occur.

        As far as the MS proxy problems, it was probably the more sophisticated HTTP/1.1 handling

    • by shish (588640)

      I still run applications that were developed (and even compiled sometimes) in java 1.0 on the java 5 platform
      ... how is this relevant? The story is about dropping support for the old runtime. You can still run php4 code under php5, just like you can run java 1 code in java 5...
  • I just wish it wasn't PHP..
  • PHP 4 has been around for forever, and PHP 5 is so much more powerful with the new object model. I've been driving myself mad trying to ensure PHP 4 compatibility for one of my projects, and not being able to use basic OOP features like class constants and public/private/protected variables can drive you batty. It's good that someone at Zend Corp has finally stepped up to the plate and gave PHP 4 its long-deserved kick in the pants. And PHP 5 isn't that hard to migrate to, you can compile it from source and
    • I only wish PHP4 had reserved some FORWARD-compatibility, like allowing words like "public", "private" and "protected" even if they wouldn't mean anything at the time. Same goes with constructors and destructors.
  • finally! (Score:5, Informative)

    by Spliffster (755587) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @07:48AM (#19858485) Homepage Journal
    This is a great move I think. php 5 has been out for years, superior and pretty backward compatible to php 4. Many problems in the past with 4.3/4.4 and 5.0/5.1 releases have happend due to the backward compatibility of php 5. I hope this will ease development and result in a robuster solution.

    Becasue php5 is already in the wild for years and there is still more than a year of security updates available, I think there should be time enough for migration to php5. I is also not too hard to migrate, I have done this in the last 1-2 years on many sites. There are some really annoying changes in php 5 but the php guys have documented it well [1].

    Using the "Migrating from PHP 4 to PHP 5"[2] Documentation was very helpfull and it turned out to be pretty easy (except for scripts/applications which were already ported from php 3 and still were using php 4 backward compatibility "features").

    1) http://www.php.net/manual/en/migration5.incompatib le.php [php.net]
    2) http://www.php.net/manual/en/migration5.php#migrat ion5.changes [php.net]
  • by yelvington (8169) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @08:48AM (#19858761) Homepage
    Coinciding with this announcement is the launch of a campaign to switch major PHP-based Web applications to PHP5-only support. The GoPHP5.org [gophp5.org] website has details.

    Projects supporting this move have pledged that by Feb. 5, 2008, they will no longer accept PHP4-specific changes in their codebase and that all future upgrades will assume PHP5 availability.

    This doesn't mean they are rewriting all their code to OOP-style, or that they will end legacy version support for security patches, et cetera. What it means is that the developers are liberated from having to code around PHP4's limitations and can take advantage of PHP5 features for all future enhancements.

    Often something that might require hundreds of lines of code in PHP4 can be done with just a few in PHP5. The SimpleXML parser is probably the best example.

    Application teams already on board for this switch include Drupal, phpMyAdmin, Typo3, Symphony, Gallery, DeskPRO, and many others. Several major projects not yet committed are known to be preparing to do so.

    This is most important to hosting companies as a signal that robust PHP5 support is a requirement going forward.
    • by Tablizer (95088)
      Often something that might require hundreds of lines of code in PHP4 can be done with just a few in PHP5. The SimpleXML parser is probably the best example.

      What keeps somebody from porting it over to 4?
           
    • by mcalwell (669361)

      Often something that might require hundreds of lines of code in PHP4 can be done with just a few in PHP5. The SimpleXML parser is probably the best example.
      Can you think of anything else?
      • Often something that might require hundreds of lines of code in PHP4 can be done with just a few in PHP5. The SimpleXML parser is probably the best example.

        Can you think of anything else?

        • Exceptions. Any larger, serious PHP application needs error codes and/or exceptions. In Gallery 2 we emulate exceptions by means that are compatible with PHP 4 and PHP 5 and we'll be able to save tons of code by moving to real exceptions.
        • Or PHP 6 compatibility. We won't be able to move forward, making the application compatible with PHP 6, unless we break compatibility with PHP 4. With the first release of PHP 6 seeing the light around the end of 2007, the move to PHP 5 comes at the right time.
        • Enablin
  • I have a few sites hosted through HostGator running php 4.4.4 as an Apache module. Recently they "upgraded" to phpsuexec 4.4.4 which runs as cgi. They are touting it as more secure and reliable bla bla bla.

    Well it broke http authentication on a few pages which ruined my day.

    Changelist here http://forums.hostgator.com/showthread.php?s=1f606 f88e85e97402645b68bd0dc1be8&t=8822 [hostgator.com]

    Maybe it would have been better to upgrade to PHP5.
  • A good PHPer should write codes that works in both PHP4 and PHP5.
    It's not hard. Normally code which runs good in STRICT error reporting mode of PHP4 can run under PHP5 without changes.
    I have been doing this for three years. My local development evironment is the lastest PHP5.2x+ Mysql6.x beta + apache 2.2
    but my deploy evironment is still in PHP4.x. My code works fine all the time;
    • by shish (588640)

      A good PHPer should write codes that works in both PHP4 and PHP5.
      What if a good PHPer wants to take advantage of all the new and useful feautures of PHP5?
    • by Loki_1929 (550940)
      That's great; so in 1998, you were writing code that worked on versions of PHP that were two generations beyond what was publicly available?

      It's easy to write code that works under PHP5 now. Write code that you will guarantee will work under PHP7 in 2010 without significant modification.

  • by Loki_1929 (550940)
    I have a client with several hundred websites, many of which were done in the late 90s and early 00's on PHP3. Many of them break in PHP4 in some way or another unless you enable all the insecure compatibility stuff. Moving to PHP5 breaks most of them in very bad ways. The cost of updating several hundred websites, each written by different developer(s), sometimes changed by different people over a period of years, developed mostly by overseas contractors working for nothing, and most originally developed f

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