Know Whether the url was Rewrittern or Not

A simple function to detect if the current page address was rewritten by mod_rewrite:

function urlWasRewritten() {
$virtualScriptName=reset(explode("?", $_SERVER['REQUEST_URI']));
return !($realScriptName==$virtualScriptName);

Now, How to use this function?
Here is the code for that

echo 'Url Rewritten !';
echo 'Url Not Rewritten !';


curl Time Out Problem and Solution

If you want cURL to timeout in less than one second, you can use CURLOPT_TIMEOUT_MS, although there is a bug/”feature”  on “Unix-like systems” that causes libcurl to timeout immediately if the value is < 1000 ms with the error “cURL Error (28): Timeout was reached”.  The explanation for this behavior is:

“If libcurl is built to use the standard system name resolver, that portion of the transfer will still use full-second resolution for timeouts with a minimum timeout allowed of one second.”

What this means to PHP developers is “You can use this function without testing it first, because you can’t tell if libcurl is using the standard system name resolver (but you can be pretty sure it is)”

The problem is that on (Li|U)nix, when libcurl uses the standard name resolver, a SIGALRM is raised during name resolution which libcurl thinks is the timeout alarm.

The solution is to disable signals using CURLOPT_NOSIGNAL.  Here’s an example script that requests itself causing a 10-second delay so you can test timeouts:

if (!isset($_GET['foo'])) {
// Client
$ch = curl_init('http://localhost/test/test_timeout.php?foo=bar');
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, true);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_NOSIGNAL, 1);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_TIMEOUT_MS, 200);
$data = curl_exec($ch);
$curl_errno = curl_errno($ch);
$curl_error = curl_error($ch);

if ($curl_errno > 0) {
echo "cURL Error ($curl_errno): $curl_error\n";
} else {
echo "Data received: $data\n";
} else {
// Server
echo "Done.";

Lets Begin curl Scripting

cURL is a library which allows you to connect and communicate to many different types of servers with many different types of protocols. Using cURL you can:

  • Implement payment gateways’ payment notification scripts.
  • Download and upload files from remote servers.
  • Login to other websites and access members only sections.

PHP cURL library is definitely the odd man out. Unlike other PHP libraries where a whole plethora of functions is made available, PHP cURL wraps up major parts of its functionality in just four functions.

A typical PHP cURL usage follows the following sequence of steps.

curl_init – Initializes the session and returns a cURL handle which can be passed to other cURL functions.

curl_opt – This is the main work horse of cURL library. This function is called multiple times and specifies what we want the cURL library to do.

curl_exec – Executes a cURL session.

curl_close – Closes the current cURL session.

Below are some examples which should make the working of cURL more clearer.

Download file or web page using PHP cURL

The below piece of PHP code uses cURL to download Google’s RSS feed.

//Initialize the cURL session
$ch = curl_init();
//Set the URL of the page or file to download.
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_URL, ' output=rss');
//Ask cURL to return the contents in a variable instead of simply echoing them to the browser.
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, 1);
//Execute the cURL session
$contents = curl_exec ($ch);
//Close cURL session
curl_close ($ch);

As you can see, curl_setopt is the pivot around which the main cURL functionality revolves. cURL functioning is controlled by way of passing predefined options and values to this function.

The above code uses two such options.

  • CURLOPT_URL: Use it to specify the URL which you want to process. This could be the URL of the file you want to download or it could be the URL of the script to which you want to post some data.
  • CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER: Setting this option to 1 will cause the curl_exec function to return the contents instead of echoing them to the browser.

Download file or web page using PHP cURL and save it to file

The below PHP code is a slight variation of the above code. It not only downloads the contents of the specified URL but also saves it to a file.

//Initialize the cURL session
$ch = curl_init();
//Set the URL of the page or file to download.
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_URL, ' output=rss');
//Create a new file
$fp = fopen('rss.xml', 'w');
//Ask cURL to write the contents to a file
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_FILE, $fp);
//Execute the cURL session
curl_exec ($ch);
//Close cURL session and file
curl_close ($ch);

Here we have used another of the cURL options, CURLOPT_FILE. Obtain a file handler by creating a new file or opening an existing one and then pass this file handler to the curl_set_opt function.

cURL will now write the contents to a file as it downloads a web page or file.

Send Files via FTP using php

Sending files to a server via FTP is an essential ability of any web developer or designer. Of course, we all use glossy FTP clients like WS_FTP and FireFTP, but what about FTP automation? You can use PHP to FTP files from one server to another. Let me show you how

$server = "server name";
$ftp_user_name = "username";
$ftp_user_pass = "password";
$connection = ftp_connect($server);
$login = ftp_login($connection, $ftp_user_name, $ftp_user_pass);
if (!$connection || !$login) { die('Connection attempt failed!'); }
$upload = ftp_put($connection, $dest, $source, $mode);
if (!$upload) { echo 'FTP upload failed!'; }

Obviously, the first task is to connect to the other server. Once the connection is created, you pass the login credentials. Once you’re logged in, you can use the ftp_put() function to send the file. That’s it!
What would you use this for? Well, you could set up a cron to create a database backup and send it to an offsite server.

Send text message using php

Kids these days, I tell ya. All they care about is the technology. The video games. The bottled water. Oh, and the texting, always the texting. Back in my day, all we had was…OK, I had all of these things too. But I still don’t get the volume of texts that I hear my younger female cousins send. Thousands and thousands of them each month. WTF are all of these texts for? Here’s a thought:

omg did you hear?
no wut
omg i can’t believe you didn’t hear
lol tell me!
jenny and mark were holding hands
omfg does john no?
ok i made it up, ur so lame

Riveting. Jokes aside, text messaging can be an extremely useful way to get out of calling that person you hate calling communicate quickly and efficiently. Many websites are now offering text message notifications instead of email notifications, which can be nice in the case of time-sensitive information. After a bit of research, I found out how easy it was so send text messages using PHP, so that I can integrate text messaging into my apps! Let me show you how!

The Methodology

Unbeknownst to me, sending text messages can be as easy as sendmail, because you can send your text to an email address and it will be delivered. There are two pieces of information you must know: the phone number and the carrier’s text message email domain. Needing to know the recipient’s carrier is not ideal, but necessary.

Phone companies have internal lookups for phone carriers but developers like you and I don’t get access to them, so knowing the carrier is a must. To send a text message, you email{phoneNumber}@{carrierDomain}.


PHP’s provided method for sending emails is the mail function. Its usage is quite simple:

bool mail ( string $to , string $subject , string $message [, string $additional_headers [, string $additional_parameters ]] )

Using the mail function and the text message email format, sending a text message is as easy as:

// Call Gary

mail("", "", "You have a message!", "From: Root Node \r\n");

Note that no subject line is provided, and more importantly, a FROM header is within the last parameter so that the recipient knows where the text message has been sent from.

Who knew it was that easy? I always assumed text messaging had its own protocol and all that magic. Apparently not! Spend a few minutes playing around with text messaging yourself; it’s one of those things that’s both neat to do and useful!