Errror-reporting in php

The error_reporting() function sets the error_reporting directive at runtime. PHP has many levels of errors, using this function sets that level for the duration (runtime) of your script. If the optional level is not set, error_reporting() will just return the current error reporting level. Some examples are given hereafter:

// Turn off all error reporting

// Report simple running errors
error_reporting(E_ERROR | E_WARNING | E_PARSE);

PHP-Developers appreciate the 

// Reporting E_NOTICE can be good too (to report uninitialized variables or catch variable name misspellings ...)
error_reporting(E_ERROR | E_WARNING | E_PARSE | E_NOTICE);

// Report all errors except E_NOTICE
// This is the default value set in php.ini
error_reporting(E_ALL ^ E_NOTICE);

// Report all PHP errors

PHP-Developers appreciate SimpleTest, a PHP unit test and web test framework. The most recent version is 1.0.1 released 2008-04-08, available at SourceForge. JAVA-Developers are  familiar with JUnit, originally written by Erich Gamma and Kent Beck. SimpleTest Interfaces are similar to JUnit.

Amazon S3 php source code

The basic php file provided by Amazon AWS in 2006 and updated in 2007 to manage S3 accounts requires the PEAR modules Crypt_HMAC and HTTP_Request.

Today there are several php open source toolkits available which are well documented, easy to set up and offering extended features :

  • undesigned S3 php class :  a standalone Amazon S3 REST implementation for PHP 5.2.x (using CURL), that supports large file uploads and doesn’t require PEAR. The latest version is 0.4.0 published on july 20, 2009. The developer is Donovan Schonknecht, a web/mobile application developer based in Cape Town, South Africa. The sourcecode is available at the Google Code website.
  • Tarzan : a fast, powerful PHP toolkit for building web applications with Amazon Web Services. The latest version is 2.0.5 released on august 14, 2009. The developer is Ryan Parman. The sourcecode is available at the Google Code website. User Metadata is managed if the HTTP header has the prefix x-amz-meta- (example: header : x-amz-meta-city value: Luxembourg).
  • CloudFusion : a rebranded version of Tarzan to better reflect the beyond-Amazon evolution of the product. Tarzan 2.5 will be CloudFusion 2.5 and will come with a refreshed website, documentation, examples, and other goodies. The sourcecode is available at the Google Code website.
  • Amazon GS3 : a stream wrapper to get and send files to Amazon S3, developed by Cesar D. Rodas from Paraguay.

A list of some Amazon S3 php code examples is shown hereafter :

PHP foreach loop

A foreach loop can be used in PHP  with an array instead of a counter. If an array contains 5 pieces of data, then the foreach loop would execute 5 times.

A foreach loop is phrased like this: foreach (array as value) { what to do; }

Here is an example of a foreach loop:

$a = array(1, 2, 3, 4, 5);
foreach ($a as $b)
echo $b;
echo (‘<br/>’);

Amazon® Product Advertising API with signed requests

By August 15, 2009, all calls to the Amazon® Product Advertising API must be signed to authenticate the request. Ulrich Mierendorff developped a simple function in PHP that lets you make authenticated requests with only a few lines of code. He is also the author of “Antialiased filled Arcs/Ellipses” for PHP and of the rounded css boxes.

Other PHP example for Amazon signed requests have been posted by Mark on his blog “Every Good Path” and by Horacix on his blog “Inside Things“.

Amazon’s guidelines for signing requests are available on the AWS website.

The following error messages are sent:

  • the timestamp is old : Request has expired

Destroy, delete, unlink files : access denied

Sometimes there are files on a hosted server which can not be deleted by FTP even if you are logged in as the domain administrator. This happens for example when you upload a file using PHP. These files will be marked as being owned by the Apache (or Fast-CGI) user. So when you log into the FTP or the Plesk or Confixx desktop with your own user id, you can’t delete or change the files PHP has uploaded as they are owned by another user.

The only way to delete or change these files is to do it by a PHP script. In PHP you delete files by calling the unlink function.

To delete the file test.txt we simply run a PHP script that is located in the same directory.

$myFile = “test.txt”;

I had this problem a few days ago when I tried to delete an old wordpress installation on a server and it was not possible to delete the uploads folder cretaed by the wordpress application.

eBay API

Today, I registered for an eBay Development account. The eBay Developers Homepage provides support, documentation, code samples, API keys, affiliate programs, forum, sandbox, tools, release notes and system announcements.

A sandbox key and a production key can be generated on the personal account page. There are different API’s available : shopping, merchandising, feedback, trading, client alerts, large merchant services, platform notification, research. The developer center is segmented in Windows, Java, php, Javascript, Flash and other. The eBay community codebase contains several open-source projects.

I started using the shopping API (view guide) which is optimized for response size, speed and usability. This API allows to search for eBay items, products and reviews, user info, and popular items and searches. You are able to retrieve public eBay data in a buyer-friendly view, for easy consumption by buyer-focused applications. The call reference (version 613) of the eBay shopping API is available on the following link. The call “FindItemsAdvanced” is the most useful and enables you to search for items on eBay based on many possible input fields and filters. Detailed informations are available here.