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By | November 2012
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PHP is a server-side scripting language.
What You Should Already Know
Before you continue you should have a basic understanding of the following: * HTML/XHTML
* JavaScript
If you want to study these subjects first, find the tutorials on our Home page.

What is PHP?
* PHP stands for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor
* PHP is a server-side scripting language, like ASP
* PHP scripts are executed on the server
* PHP supports many databases (MySQL, Informix, Oracle, Sybase, Solid, PostgreSQL, Generic ODBC, etc.) * PHP is an open source software
* PHP is free to download and use
What is a PHP File?
* PHP files can contain text, HTML tags and scripts
* PHP files are returned to the browser as plain HTML 
* PHP files have a file extension of ".php", ".php3", or ".phtml" What is MySQL?
* MySQL is a database server
* MySQL is ideal for both small and large applications
* MySQL supports standard SQL
* MySQL compiles on a number of platforms
* MySQL is free to download and use
PHP + MySQL
* PHP combined with MySQL are cross-platform (you can develop in Windows and serve on a Unix platform) Why PHP?
* PHP runs on different platforms (Windows, Linux, Unix, etc.) * PHP is compatible with almost all servers used today (Apache, IIS, etc.) * PHP is FREE to download from the official PHP resource: www.php.net * PHP is easy to learn and runs efficiently on the server side Where to Start?

To get access to a web server with PHP support, you can:
* Install Apache (or IIS) on your own server, install PHP, and MySQL * Or find a web hosting plan with PHP and MySQL support
Syntax
PHP code is executed on the server, and the plain HTML result is sent to the browser.

Basic PHP Syntax
A PHP scripting block always starts with <?php and ends with ?>. A PHP scripting block can be placed anywhere in the document. On servers with shorthand support enabled you can start a scripting block with <?...

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