10 Common Mistakes for PHP Developers to Avoid

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10 Common Mistakes for PHP Developers to Avoid

PHP (Hypertext Preprocessor) is a server-side coding language. It has been used across the globe to obtain world-class-level software or web solutions. However, many people also claim that PHP is now a dead language since the arrival of other advanced programming languages. Still, the usage statistics of PHP are eye-catching because of its simplicity, flexibility, and robust features.

Nevertheless, there are many PHP programmers who still make mistakes while coding. Though it doesn’t impact companies or businesses’ outlook hence, people still prefer to hire PHP developers on a good scale.

In case you’re confused about which common mistakes we are talking about, then keep on reading. Since we are about to reveal the top 10 common mistakes that PHP developers must avoid. Let’s get started!

Prior to moving further, let’s dig into the advantages of choosing PHP for web or mobile development solutions to accelerate business growth.

Advantages of PHP

  1. PHP is free and open-source, making it accessible for download anywhere and easily available for use with web applications.
  2. Applications developed with PHP can run on UNIX, Linux, and Windows operating systems.
  3. PHP-based applications can easily be loaded by connecting to the database. It is mainly used because it can load at a faster rate than other programming languages over slow Internet speeds.
  4. PHP is easy to use and requires less learning curve than C since it is straightforward and simple to use. Anyone familiar with C can easily work with PHP.
  5. For the development of web applications, PHP offers a way of reusing an equivalent code and preventing longer code and complex coding. Additionally, it helps to manage the codes.
  6. For data representation, PHP has a powerful library with various function modules.
  7. PHP’s integrated database connectivity modules aid in the development of content-based websites and web applications by reducing the trouble and time of connecting to databases.
  8. PHP’s popularity has given rise to a diverse community of developers, a group that may work for your company in the future.
  9. Since PHP is flexible, it’s possible to integrate it with many other programming languages in order to use the best technology to meet every requirement.

Now, if you’re also interested in learning PHP to build your career in IT, then connect with BootesNull to join PHP training in Chandigarh, Mohali.

List of 10 Mistakes PHP Developers Must Avoid

#1. Single quotes, double quotes

#2. The semicolon after a While

#3. NOT Using database caching

#4. Missing Semicolon Either After a Break or a Continue

#5. Not Using E_ALL Reporting

#6. Not Setting Time Limits On PHP Scripts

#7. Not Protecting Session ID’s

#8. Not Validating Cookie Data

#9. Not Escaping Entities

#10. Using Wrong Comparison Operators

Single Quotes, Double Quotes

The advantage of concatenating strings with double quotes is that everything is parsed neatly, so you don’t have to worry about escaping characters or using dot values. However, using single quotes has significant performance benefits, since the additional processing is relatively small.

# $howdy = ‘everyone’; 

# $foo = ‘hello $howdy’; 

# $bar = “hello $howdy”;

Semicolon After A While

Everything has a huge impact in coding hence, even little semicolons or while statements can cause havoc in a program, but they won’t even appear in PHP error logs. Fortunately, Codeutopia provides a representative example of this little error, demonstrating that these nasty errors don’t even get reported (even to E_ALL! ), as they quietly enter a loop. Simply omit the final; after the while statement, and your code is good to go.

$i = 0;

while($i < 20); {

  //some code here



Not Using Database Caching

It is strongly recommended to use some form of database caching in PHP script. Memcached has emerged as the most popular caching system, with mammoth websites like Facebook recommending it.

For PHP in production, the caching system, Memcached, is strongly recommended. It is free and can provide significant performance gains if used correctly.

Missing Semicolon Either After Break or Continue

Similarly to #2, you might not be able to track down a misused semicolon while it slips into the shadows. You can prevent this by using braces with PHP control structures (via CodeUtopia) if you’re using a semicolon after a “break” or “continue” in your code. This might force you to scratch your head.

Not Using E_ALL Reporting

You should definitely take advantage of PHP’s error reporting functionality, especially if you are not already using it. Error reporting saves a lot of time when debugging code, and speeds it up as well. 

Some PHP programmers use error reporting, but not all of them use it properly. E_ALL is a very strict type of error reporting, in which you ensure that every single error is reported. (That’s essential if you want to write great code.)

Turn off reporting options when done with programming or development, so that users won’t see a bunch of error messages on pages that otherwise appear fine.

Not Setting Time Limits on PHP Scripts

It’s often assumed that PHP scripts will finish in a timely manner when running. However, every good programmer knows that assumptions can lead to a program’s inefficiency. It’s hard to write a program that’s responsive when scripts do not run. 

A simple fix for this is to set a time limit on the script (set_time_limit). While it may seem trivial, it’s always smart to be prepared.

Not Protecting Session IDs

The most common PHP security mistake is not encrypting session IDs. Not encrypting session IDs is almost as dangerous as giving away usernames and passwords. A hacker could gain access to sensitive information by taking the session IDs. By adding sha1 to $userpass, you add an extra layer of security to the session. Sha1 isn’t a 100% effective method, but it gives users a nice layer of protection against malicious users.

MT Soft is an example of how to protect Session ID with sha1:

if ($_SESSION[‘SHA-256password’] == SHA-256($userpass)) { // do sensitive things here


Not Validating Cookie Data

Most people give cookies their complete trust without thinking twice about the seemingly harmless data they pass along to sites. The word “cookie” itself goes hand-in-hand with milk, nap time, and Santa Claus, for crying out loud. How could something so seemingly meaningless possibly be so harmful? The fact that cookie data is not validated before storing it in a database can expose your code to potentially harmful data. To validate a cookie, use htmlspecialchars() or mysql_real_escape_string().

Not Escaping Entities

It is imperative to sanitize all data before it is stored in any type of storage, including a database. PHP programmers generally trust data more than it is required, especially data generated by users.

In Source Rally, we learn how to escape entities correctly in things like forms. You can validate the data by using htmlentities() (or htmlspecialchars()) as follows:

Instead of using: – 

echo $_GET[‘username’];

validate data with: – 

echo htmlspecialchars($_GET[‘username’], ENT_QUOTES);

Using Wrong Comparison Operators

PHP programming involves comparison operators, but combining them in the same code is certain to break your code. As a German proverb says, the devil seems to be in the details. It is absolutely critical to be familiar with the syntax of often-misused operators like =, ==, !=, so you can speed up your programming and find fewer bugs.

Final Note

PHP is still a great choice for web development or mobile development. Businesses across the globe chose PHP to obtain robust software solutions even though there are many false rumors that PHP can no longer provide desired outcomes. However, the usage statistics straight away prove all the negative statements about PHP wrong.

hire Indian software developer

In fact, there are many people or newbies who wish to start their career in PHP as there is a high scope. If you’re a PHP programmer or wish to learn PHP in the future, then keep in mind the above-mentioned 10 common mistakes PHP developers must avoid.