PHP is a powerful, free, open-source web scripting and programming language.
It is widely used in the web development industry as a result of its speed, stability and cross-platform compatibility.
This means that PHP can run on a Linux Production server, a Windows Development server and on a MAC testing server. For the purpose of these lessons you will need the WAMP/MAMP testing server installed on your system. If you are taking this course as part of the Web Development Masterclass, you might recall that we did this early in the course. In the next lesson we will talk more about making the necessary preparations for hosting your PHP Scripts.
Let's take a look at how PHP works through an illustration.
Say for example we were visiting a webpage from our home computer that contained some PHP code.
Our request travels through the web to the web server hosting the website and all its files.
In order to process our request, the web server requires various components to execute the PHP script.
Note that in this diagram we illustrate the database as a MySQL database. This is a popular type of database that is commonly used with PHP. We will explore MySQL databases and database queries in the next section of this course.