Originally designed in 1994 by Rasmus Lerdorf, PHP has been evolving since. PHP is a general purpose programming language at server-side used for the purpose of scripting that is primarily designed to develop websites. Initially, it meant Personal Home Page which has now been changed to Hypertext Preprocessor.
The leading social networking sites such as Facebook and reputed organizations such as Harvard University are both based on PHP which makes PHP popular and increases its credibility.
This is so because the websites developed using PHP can easily be improved, maintained and updated from time to time. Everything has its pros and cons, therefore PHP also has some advantages and disadvantages which has been discussed later in the article.
Advantages of PHP
The reason behind the popularity of PHP is its several advantages. PHP is most suited for the purpose of web development. The advantages of PHP are discussed briefly below:
- Cross Platform.
All the PHP based applications can run on various types of platforms.PHP is supported by majority of Operating Systems, some of which includes Solaris, UNIX, Windows and Linux. The mentioned platforms can be used to write codes in PHP and also view web pages or run the PHP based applications.
PHP easily interfaces with MySQL and Apache both. An effortless integration of PHP can be done with various other technologies like Java and there is no requirement of re-development. Therefore, saving both time and money, giving it an important advantage.
- Easy database connection.
A programming language like PHP is widely used on the internet and needs to connect to the database very often. Therefore, having a feature that could help PHP to connect to database easily is mandatory. Several websites such as the ecommerce websites, require good database management system.
PHP has a built-in module that helps it in connecting with database easily. Therefore, PHP has a great demand in the field of web development where a data driven website needs to be developed. PHP significantly reduces the time needed in developing the web application that needs an efficient database management system.
- Easy to use.
PHP is widely used because it is easy to use. In contrast with other programming languages that are complex, PHP is simple, fluent, clean and organized, hence it is a boon for the new users. PHP has a well-organized syntax which is logical at the same time.
PHP does not require any intensive studying or manual to use it. Command functions of PHP are easily understood as the user can easily figure out from the name of the commands itself what it does. A person who is new to PHP can still code because the syntax is somewhat similar to C.
A person who is new to PHP can still code because the syntax is somewhat similar to C. Hence, if a person who knows C can easily code in PHP. Hence, it is easier to create and optimize the application using PHP.
Speed is the primary need of web development. There are people who face the challenge of slow internet connection and slow data speed. Furthermore, a fast loading website is always preferred by people across the globe.When compared to other programming languages, PHP is found to be the fastest programming language.
In normal circumstances, it takes a lot of time to connect to the database, when you attempt to fetch certain data from the database. It takes a lot of time in connecting to the database, then executing the statement and finally getting the data. PHP performs these set of tasks faster than other scripting languages. PHP is faster in both connecting to the database and in using other important applications.
The high speed of PHP gives it an advantage over other scripting languages and gives it an application in important administrations such as the server administration and mail functionalities.
- Open source.
One of the important advantages of PHP is that it is Open Source. Therefore, PHP is readily available and is entirely free. In contrast to other scripting languages used for web development which requires the user to pay for the support files, PHP is open to everyone, anytime and anywhere.
A beginner in PHP need not worry about the support as PHP is maintained and developed by a large group of PHP developers which helps in creating support community of PHP that helps people in PHP implementation and manipulation.
Disadvantages of PHP
Every programming language has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Similarly PHP has its own set of disadvantages too, which are discussed below:
The websites must be as secure as possible so that the owner of the website and the users of the website both are safe and protected. PHP is available absolutely free i.e. it is open source in nature. On the one hand it is an advantage to PHP and on the other hand poses a threat too to the website developed using PHP.
- Poor Error Handling.
It is widely believed by the developers that PHP has a poor quality of handling errors. PHP lacks debugging tools, which are needed to search for errors and warnings. PHP has less number of debugging tools when compared to other programming languages.
Therefore, through the article, you can conclude that PHP has way more advantages when compared to disadvantages. Therefore, considering the number of Advantages and Disadvantages of PHP, it can be inferred that PHP is a good language to use for web development. No doubt, PHP’s popularity is due to its several advantages which include efficiency and speed. Even Top PHP Development Companies can testify of these.