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The Bookworm Turns - PHP

PHP comes with a different API for different database types -whcih usually means a code rewrite every time your databaseadministrator decides to experiment with something new. But fear not -help is at hand, in the unlikely form of ADODB, a powerful databaseabstraction library for PHP applications.

  1. PHP Application Development With ADODB (part 1)
  2. A Little Insulation
  3. The Bookworm Turns
  4. Anatomy Class
  5. Different Strokes
  6. Getting It All
  7. Playing The Field
  8. Strange Relationships
  9. Hitting The Limit
  10. Coming Soon, To A Screen Near You
By: icarus, (c) Melonfire
Rating: starstarstarstarstar / 8
July 24, 2002

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Before we get into the code, you might want to take a quick look at the database table I'll be using throughout this article. Here it is:

mysql> SELECT * FROM library; +----+-------------------+----------------+ | id | title | author | +----+-------------------+----------------+ | 14 | Mystic River | Dennis Lehane | | 15 | For Kicks | Dick Francis | | 16 | XML and PHP | Vikram Vaswani | | 17 | Where Eagles Dare | Jack Higgins | +----+-------------------+----------------+
As you might have guessed, the "library" table contains a list of all the books currently taking up shelf space in my living room. Each record within the table is identified by a unique number (the geek term for this is "foreign key", but you can forget that one immediately).

Now, let's suppose I want to display a list of my favourite books on my personal Web site. Everything I need is stored in the table above; all yours truly has to do is write a script to pull it out and massage it into a readable format. Since PHP comes with out-of-the-box support for MySQL, accomplishing this is almost as simple as it sounds.

<?php // uncomment this to see plaintext output in your browser // header("Content-Type: text/plain"); // open connection to database $connection = mysql_connect("localhost", "john", "doe") or die ("Unable to connect!"); // select database mysql_select_db("db278") or die ("Unable to select database!"); // execute query $query = "SELECT * FROM library"; $result = mysql_query($query) or die ("Error in query: $query. " . mysql_error()); // iterate through rows and print column data // in the form TITLE - AUTHOR while ($row = mysql_fetch_row($result)) { echo "$row[1] - $row[2]\n"; } // get and print number of rows in resultset echo "\n[" . mysql_num_rows($result) . " rows returned]\n"; // close database connection mysql_close($connection); ?>
Here's what the output looks like:

Mystic River - Dennis Lehane For Kicks - Dick FrancisXML and PHP - Vikram VaswaniWhere Eagles Dare - Jack Higgins[4 rows returned]
The process here is fairly straightforward: connect to the database, execute a query, retrieve the result and iterate through it. The example above uses the mysql_fetch_row() function to retrieve each row as an integer-indexed array, with the array indices corresponding to the column numbers in the resultset; however, it's just as easy to retrieve each row as an associative array (whose keys correspond to the column names) with mysql_fetch_assoc(), or an object (whose properties correspond to the column names) with mysql_fetch_object().

The problem with this script? Since I've used MySQL-specific functions to interact with the database, it's going to crash and burn the second I switch my data over to PostgreSQL or Oracle. Which is where the database abstraction layer comes in.

>>> More PHP Articles          >>> More By icarus, (c) Melonfire

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