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How to change configuration settings

Running PHP as Apache module

When using PHP as an Apache module, you can also change the configuration settings using directives in Apache configuration files (e.g. httpd.conf) and .htaccess files (You will need "AllowOverride Options" or "AllowOverride All" privileges)

With PHP 4.0, there are several Apache directives that allow you to change the PHP configuration from within the Apache configuration files. For a listing of which directives are PHP_INI_ALL, PHP_INI_PERDIR, or PHP_INI_SYSTEM, have a look at the table found within the ini_set() documentation.

Note: With PHP 3.0, there are Apache directives that correspond to each configuration setting in the php3.ini name, except the name is prefixed by "php3_".

php_value name value

Sets the value of the specified directive. Can be used only with PHP_INI_ALL and PHP_INI_PERDIR type directives. To clear a previously set value use none as the value.

Note: Don't use php_value to set boolean values. php_flag (see below) should be used instead.

php_flag name on|off

Used to set a Boolean configuration directive. Can be used only with PHP_INI_ALL and PHP_INI_PERDIR type directives.

php_admin_value name value

Sets the value of the specified directive. This can NOT be used in .htaccess files. Any directive type set with php_admin_value can not be overridden by .htaccess or virtualhost directives. To clear a previously set value use none as the value.

php_admin_flag name on|off

Used to set a Boolean configuration directive. This can NOT be used in .htaccess files. Any directive type set with php_admin_flag can not be overridden by .htaccess or virtualhost directives.

Example 4-2. Apache configuration example

<IfModule mod_php4.c>
  php_value include_path ".:/usr/local/lib/php"
  php_admin_flag safe_mode on
</IfModule>
<IfModule mod_php3.c>
  php3_include_path ".:/usr/local/lib/php"
  php3_safe_mode on
 </IfModule>

Caution

PHP constants do not exist outside of PHP. For example, in httpd.conf you can not use PHP constants such as E_ALL or E_NOTICE to set the error_reporting directive as they will have no meaning and will evaluate to 0. Use the associated bitmask values instead. These constants can be used in php.ini

Changing PHP configuration via the Windows registry

When running PHP on Windows, the configuration values can be modified on per-directory basis using the Windows registry. The configuration values are stored in the registry key HKLM\SOFTWARE\PHP\Per Directory Values, in the sub-keys corresponding to the path names. For example, configuration values for the directory c:\inetpub\wwwroot would be stored in the key HKLM\SOFTWARE\PHP\Per Directory Values\c\inetpub\wwwroot. The settings for the directory would be active for any script running from this directory or any subdirectory of it. The values under the key should have the name of PHP configuration directive and the string value. PHP constants in the values would not be parsed.

Other interfaces to PHP

Regardless of the interface to PHP you can change certain values at runtime of your scripts through ini_set(). The following table provides an overview at which level a directive can be set/changed.

Table 4-1. Definition of PHP_INI_* constants

ConstantValueMeaning
PHP_INI_USER1Entry can be set in user scripts
PHP_INI_PERDIR2 Entry can be set in php.ini, .htaccess or httpd.conf
PHP_INI_SYSTEM4 Entry can be set in php.ini or httpd.conf
PHP_INI_ALL7Entry can be set anywhere

You can view the settings of the configuration values in the output of phpinfo(). You can also access the values of individual configuration directives using ini_get() or get_cfg_var().

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