PHP Script to Show Visitor’s IP Address

Old Globe

Sometimes you want to get the visitor’s IP address (e.g to show it to him or for logging purposes). This simple snippet does the job:


Also, if you have REGISTER_GLOBALS turned on on your server, you can use the shorter version:

$ip = @$REMOTE_ADDR;

Then you can easily use the variable called $ip for your needs.
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Top Online IDEs to Test Your PHP Code

Sometimes you don’t have an Apache server on your PC and you don’t want to go through the hassle of uploading your PHP script to your web hosting space just to test if your tweaks inside the code work. Sometimes you just need to paste the code inside the IDE (Integrated Development Environment) and see the result, including potential errors and suggestions to fix them. Also, the ability to work with languages other than PHP is a plus.

1. CodeRun Studio

Full featured programming IDE. Supports a C#/.NET, PHP, Javascript, HTML and CSS. You can work with projects and multiple files simultaniuously. You can also upload your existing project and edit it online. You are also given a link to share your projects online.
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2. Codepad

Plain and simple. Supports about 13 programming languages including C/C++, Perl, Ruby and more. After pasting a code the user is given an unique URL that can be shared with other people, so they can see the result too. You can make the code private if you are concerned about privacy. No registration required.


The functionality is close to Codepad. Supports more than 40 programming languages. There is an optional registration if you want to manage your submitted scripts.

Convert Text to Barcode Image

Thanks to a skilled PHP programmer, the internet has a ready made PHP script that takes a text string and returns an image representation in barcode format.

Here’s the complete script:

=1 to enable

        NOTE: You must have GD-1.8 or higher compiled into PHP
        in order to use PNG and JPEG. GIF images only work with
        GD-1.5 and lower. (

        ANOTHER NOTE: If you actually intend to print the barcodes 
        and scan them with a scanner, I highly recommend choosing 
        JPEG with a quality of 100. Most browsers can't seem to print 
        a PNG without mangling it beyond recognition. 




// Startup code

if(isset($_GET["text"])) $text=$_GET["text"];
if(isset($_GET["format"])) $format=$_GET["format"];
if(isset($_GET["quality"])) $quality=$_GET["quality"];
if(isset($_GET["width"])) $width=$_GET["width"];
if(isset($_GET["height"])) $height=$_GET["height"];
if(isset($_GET["type"])) $type=$_GET["type"];
if(isset($_GET["barcode"])) $barcode=$_GET["barcode"];

if (!isset ($text)) $text = 1;
if (!isset ($type)) $type = 1;
if (empty ($quality)) $quality = 100;
if (empty ($width)) $width = 160;
if (empty ($height)) $height = 80;
if (!empty ($format)) $format = strtoupper ($format);
        else $format="PNG";

switch ($type)
                $type = 1;
        case 1:
                Barcode39 ($barcode, $width, $height, $quality, $format, $text);

// Generate a Code 3 of 9 barcode
function Barcode39 ($barcode, $width, $height, $quality, $format, $text)
        switch ($format)
                        $format = "JPEG";
                case "JPEG": 
                        header ("Content-type: image/jpeg");
                case "PNG":
                        header ("Content-type: image/png");
                case "GIF":
                        header ("Content-type: image/gif");

        $im = ImageCreate ($width, $height)
    or die ("Cannot Initialize new GD image stream");
        $White = ImageColorAllocate ($im, 255, 255, 255);
        $Black = ImageColorAllocate ($im, 0, 0, 0);
        //ImageColorTransparent ($im, $White);
        ImageInterLace ($im, 1);

        $NarrowRatio = 20;
        $WideRatio = 55;
        $QuietRatio = 35;

        $nChars = (strlen($barcode)+2) * ((6 * $NarrowRatio) + (3 * $WideRatio) + ($QuietRatio));
        $Pixels = $width / $nChars;
        $NarrowBar = (int)(20 * $Pixels);
        $WideBar = (int)(55 * $Pixels);
        $QuietBar = (int)(35 * $Pixels);

        $ActualWidth = (($NarrowBar * 6) + ($WideBar*3) + $QuietBar) * (strlen ($barcode)+2);
        if (($NarrowBar == 0) || ($NarrowBar == $WideBar) || ($NarrowBar == $QuietBar) || ($WideBar == 0) || ($WideBar == $QuietBar) || ($QuietBar == 0))
                ImageString ($im, 1, 0, 0, "Image is too small!", $Black);
                OutputImage ($im, $format, $quality);
        $CurrentBarX = (int)(($width - $ActualWidth) / 2);
        $Color = $White;
        $BarcodeFull = "*".strtoupper ($barcode)."*";
        settype ($BarcodeFull, "string");
        $FontNum = 3;
        $FontHeight = ImageFontHeight ($FontNum);
        $FontWidth = ImageFontWidth ($FontNum);
        if ($text != 0)
                $CenterLoc = (int)(($width-1) / 2) - (int)(($FontWidth * strlen($BarcodeFull)) / 2);
                ImageString ($im, $FontNum, $CenterLoc, $height-$FontHeight, "$BarcodeFull", $Black);

        for ($i=0; $i<strlen($BarcodeFull); $i++)
                $StripeCode = Code39 ($BarcodeFull[$i]);

                for ($n=0; $n 

How to kill PHP (on purpose)

1. Stack overflow (e.g calling a function inside itself).

function a()
{ a(); }


First you define a function called a() and the function’s sole purpose is to call itself again, causing an infinite loop. Then you just call the function.

2. Excessive Memory Allocation Using str_repeat

str_repeat("a", 10000000000);

The above code will cause PHP to use too much memory (which will cause the process to close), if the correct memory or script runtime limits are not properly configured.

3. Kill the Apache Process with PHP Script

shell_exec("killall -11 httpd");

This simple code will kill (end) all running Apache processes, except the Daemon (which runs as Root). All other Apache processes run under the same user, which means that one of them with the harmful script, mentioned above can easily kill the rest. The best way to ensure Apache’s protection in this case is to disable execution commands such as exec() or shell_exec() using the disable_functions() directive.

Easy PHP Debugging

Spotting errors inside PHP is a difficult task. Especially if you try to understand the default messages, given by the PHP interpreter. If you want to effectively debug your PHP script, you can use the following code:


This code will show all errors, notices and warnings generated during the script’s run. It’s very useful for PHP developers.

Also, if you are passing variables via POST or GET requests and you are wondering if the correct variables are transmitted to the script, you can show the full contents of these two request types, by using the simple PHP snippet:


If you need more information, you can check the PHP’s error reporting article.

Connect to a MySQL Database

This is the very basic step, needed to work with MySQL databases. Before trying to do any actions on the database itself, such as: creating tables, querying rows, dropping tables or else, you have to make your PHP script connect to the MySQL database.

$host = "mysql_host";
$user = "mysql_user";
$pass = "mysql_password";
$db = "mysql_databasename";

$connect = mysql_connect($host, $user, $pass) or die(mysql_error());
$dbselect = mysql_select_db($db) or die(mysql_error());

$host – Your database hostname. The default is “localhost” but some hosts use a separate servers for the databases and files.
$user – The MySQL username. You need to create one through a web-based SQL interface if none exists (e.g through phpMyAdmin)
$pass – The login password associated with the above username.
$db – The name of the database you want to select. You are required to select one that your PHP script will work with later on.

Of course, for performance improvement, it is recommended that you close your database connections when you don’t need them anymore. You can use the following script:

$close = mysql_close($connect) or die(mysql_error());