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Your Friendly Neighbourhood Spiderman - PHP

Tired of handcrafting configuration file manipulation tools for your Web application? Save yourself some time with patConfiguration, a PHP class designed to assist developers with reading, writing and maintaining application configuration files.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:
  1. Easy Application Configuration With patConfiguration
  2. Plug And Play
  3. Your Friendly Neighbourhood Spiderman
  4. Anatomy Class
  5. Version Control
  6. The Write Stuff
  7. Speaking Native
  8. Not Your Type
  9. When Time Is Money, Recycle!
  10. Cache Cow
  11. Link Zone
By: Vikram Vaswani, (c) Melonfire
Rating: starstarstarstarstar / 1
January 29, 2003

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Now that the hard sell is over and you're (hopefully) all set up with patConfiguration, let's take a simple example to see how it works.

Consider the following simple configuration file:


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> <configuration> <path name="mail"> <configValue name="from-name" type="string">Peter Parker</configValue> <configValue name="from-address" type="string">spider.man@roof.top.com</configValue> </path> </configuration>
The XML file above contains configuration data in a format that is understood by patConfiguration. As you can see, a patConfiguration-compliant configuration file must conform to the standard rules of XML markup, and must contain a <configuration> root element. Configuration values can be grouped together under this root element using <path> elements, with every variable-value pair represented by a <configValue> element.

Variable-value pairs are accessed by drilling down the tree of <path> elements until the desired node is reached. For example, to access the value of the email address

spider.man@roof.top.com
in the configuration file above, I would use the path

mail.from-address.
patConfiguration allows you to nest <path> elements to any depth - the following is a perfectly valid configuration file:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> <configuration> <path name="application"> <configValue name="name" type="string">SomeApp</configValue> <configValue name="version" type="string">2.3</configValue> <path name="window"> <configValue name="height" type="int">600</configValue> <configValue name="width" type="int">500</configValue> <path name="list"> <configValue name="maxItems" type="int">5</configValue> </path> </path> </path> </configuration>
You can even link the values in a configuration file with each other via the <getConfigValue> element - consider the following example, which uses the application name and version number to dynamically create a variable containing the window title:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> <configuration> <path name="application"> <configValue name="name" type="string">SomeApp</configValue> <configValue name="version" type="string">2.3</configValue> <path name="window"> <configValue name="height" type="int">600</configValue> <configValue name="width" type="int">500</configValue> <configValue name="title" type="string"> <getConfigValue path="application.name" /> <getConfigValue path="application.version" /> </configValue> </path> </path> </configuration>
The variable-value pairs in this configuration file can be read and manipulated by patConfiguration in the context of a PHP application. Let's look at that next.

 
 
>>> More PHP Articles          >>> More By Vikram Vaswani, (c) Melonfire
 

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