PHP

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PHP is a general-purpose server-side scripting language to produce dynamic web pages.

Installation

USE flags

The most important USE flags of the PHP package, the SAPI (Server API) USE flags, are apache2, cgi, and fpm. Alongside these flags, there is an elaborate list of flags to enable various features of the PHP interpreter:

USE flags for dev-lang/php The PHP language runtime engine

acl Add support for Access Control Lists
apache2 Add Apache2 support
argon2 Enable password hashing algorithm from app-crypt/argon2
bcmath Add support for libbcmath
bzip2 Use the bzlib compression library
calendar Add support for calendars (not using mcal!)
cdb Add support for the CDB database engine from the author of qmail
cjk Add support for Multi-byte character languages (Chinese, Japanese, Korean)
cli Enable CLI SAPI
coverage Include gcov symbols for test coverage and lcov reports. Only useful for extension developers, and requires GCC.
ctype Enable ctype functions
curl Add support for client-side URL transfer library
embed Enable embed SAPI
enchant Add supports Enchant spelling library.
exif Add support for reading EXIF headers from JPEG and TIFF images
fileinfo Add fileinfo extension support
filter Add filter extension support
firebird Add support for the Firebird relational database
flatfile Add dbm support for flat files
fpm Enable the FastCGI Process Manager SAPI
ftp Add FTP (File Transfer Protocol) support
gd Adds support for gd (bundled with PHP)
gmp Add support for dev-libs/gmp (GNU MP library)
hash Enable the hash extension
imap Add support for IMAP (Internet Mail Application Protocol)
inifile Add dbm support for .ini files
intl Enables the intl extension for extended internalization support
iodbc Add support for iODBC library
json Enable JSON support
ldap Add LDAP support (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol)
ldap-sasl Add SASL support for the PHP LDAP extension
libedit Use the libedit library (replacement for readline)
lmdb Enable support for dev-db/lmdb db backend
mysql Add mySQL Database support
mysqli Add support for the improved mySQL libraries
oci8-instant-client Use dev-db/oracle-instantclient-basic as Oracle provider instead of requiring a full Oracle server install
opcache Enables built-in opcode cache, replacing pecl-apc et al.
pcntl Add support for process creation functions
pdo Enable the bundled PDO extensions
phar Enables the phar extension to provide phar archive support
phpdbg Enable the PHP Debug Command Line SAPI (like gdb for php)
posix Add support for POSIX-compatible functions
readline Enable support for libreadline, a GNU line-editing library that almost everyone wants
recode Enable support for the GNU recode library
session-mm Include dev-libs/mm support for session storage
sharedmem Add support for shared memory use
simplexml Support for SimpleXML
soap Add support for SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol)
sodium Enable support for crypto through dev-libs/libsodium
spell Add dictionary support
sqlite Add support for sqlite - embedded sql database
sysvipc Support for System V-compatible inter-process communication
tidy Add support for HTML Tidy
tokenizer Add support for the PHP file parser
tokyocabinet Enable support for dev-db/tokyocabinet db backend
wddx Add support for Web Distributed Data eXchange
webp Enable webp support for GD in php-7.x
xmlreader Enable XMLReader support
xmlrpc Support for xml-rpc library
xmlwriter Enable XMLWriter support
xpm Add support for XPM graphics format
xslt Enable the XSL extension
zip-encryption Enable ZIP file encryption from dev-libs/libzip

The ebuild installs a modified "production" version of php.ini that has tighter security settings and default paths adjusted for Gentoo systems. Both upstream "production" and "development" php.ini files are installed to /usr/share/doc/php-*.

Extensions

To install extensions, first decide which versions of PHP to compile the extensions for. This is done by setting the PHP_TARGETS variable:

FILE /etc/portage/make.conf
PHP_TARGETS="php5-6"

More than one version can be defined; just add in the additional versions separated by a space. Note that the php slot is named "5.6" and the corresponding PHP_TARGETS value is php5-6. This is due to current restrictions on USE names.

Emerge

After making the above USE flag configurations it is necessary to update the system so the changes take effect:

root #emerge --ask --update --changed-use --deep @world

Running multiple versions of PHP

One of the great advantages of using Gentoo for PHP development is the version slotting. It is very simple to swap between multiple versions of PHP as well as run multiple versions simultaneously. This is all done with the eselect command provided by the app-eselect/eselect-php package which should get emerged in automatically by installing PHP.

For example, selecting different versions of PHP can allow a system to run PHP 7.0 for the cli SAPI but PHP 5.6 for the system's web server. It also allows system administrators or application developers to quickly test an application on different versions of PHP.

To list the available versions for the cli SAPI module use the following syntax:

root #eselect php list cli
 [1]   php5.5 
 [2]   php5.6 *   
 [3]   php7.0

The * (asterisk) marks current active version for the selected module. To check the other SAPIs simply replace cli with fpm,cgi or apache2 modules.

To swap versions, use:

root #eselect php set cli 3

The number 3 in this example corresponds to the number in the output of the list sub-command used above. PHP version 7.0 is now used for the command-line:

root #php -v
PHP 7.0.10-pl0-gentoo (cli) (built: Aug 23 2016 12:38:44) ( NTS )

Configuration

The PHP configuration is at /etc/php, which contains one subdirectory for each Server API (SAPI) and for each PHP version. For instance, configuration files for the PHP-5.6 apache2 SAPI are installed in /etc/php/apache2-php5.6.

Web servers

To use PHP in a server-side fashion, a web server needs to be installed and configured to use PHP. A number of popular web servers are briefly touched upon next.

Nginx

Simply emerge nginx to install it:

root #emerge --ask www-servers/nginx
Important
If custom NGINX_MODULES_HTTP values are set in make.conf, make sure that the fastcgi module is enabled.

Once Nginx has been installed, modify the server section of /etc/nginx/nginx.conf to look something like this:

FILE /etc/nginx/nginx.confPart of the nginx configuration to enable PHP through FastCGI
server {
                listen 127.0.0.1;
                server_name localhost;
 
                access_log /var/log/nginx/localhost.access_log main;
                error_log /var/log/nginx/localhost.error_log info;
 
                root /var/www/localhost/htdocs;
 
                location ~ \.php$ {
                        try_files $uri $uri/ =404;
                        fastcgi_split_path_info ^(.+\.php)(/.+)$;
                        fastcgi_pass 127.0.0.1:9000;
                        include fastcgi.conf;
                }
        }

Now start the related services to have a working site. The php-fpm init script starts the PHP FastCGI Process Manager. FastCGI allows web servers to offload the PHP calculations to this process manager.

When running OpenRC as the service manager:

root #rc-service nginx start
root #rc-service php-fpm start

For systemd:

root #systemctl start nginx
root #systemctl start php-fpm@7.2
Note
The version number after the php-fpm service name will change based on the available version of PHP. Adjust as appropriate.

lighttpd

Warning
Do not enable the php USE flag for www-servers/lighttpd. It could actually break the build.

Make sure that lighttpd is built with support for fastcgi and that the php USE flag is disabled:

FILE /etc/portage/package.use
www-servers/lighttpd fastcgi -php

Lighttpd ships with a default FastCGI config file, but unfortunately, it is written to work with the old PHP FCGI SAPI only, instead of a general FCGI setup. Since the php USE flag has been disabled, it will not be included, and rightly so. However it does provide a good foundation for a configuration file that can be used with FPM.

Edit /etc/lighttpd/mod_fastcgi.conf to look something like this:

FILE /etc/lighttpd/mod_fastcgi.confEnable FastCGI on lighttpd
server.modules += ("mod_fastcgi")
fastcgi.server = ( ".php" =>
  ( "localhost" =>
    (
      "host" => "127.0.0.1",
      "port" => "9000"
    )
  )
)

Note the host and port parts.

Since Gentoo ships with a working php-fpm.ini file, located in /etc/php/fpm-php5/php-fpm.ini, and init script, starting the services is all that is needed:

root #/etc/init.d/php-fpm start
root #/etc/init.d/lighttpd start

Apache (mod_php)

To configure Apache to load the PHP5 module (mod_php), add -D PHP to APACHE2_OPTS variable in /etc/conf.d/apache2. Users might remember that previously, the PHP version had to be added as well (like -D PHP5). However, since app-eselect/eselect-php version 0.8.1, the variable is changed to just -D PHP to allow future major versions to be easily integrated.

FILE /etc/conf.d/apache2Configure Apache to load mod_php
## (settings for PHP5 and above)
APACHE2_OPTS="-D PHP"

Make sure that PHP is built with the apache2 USE flag.

If for some reason the system is missing the PHP module integration file /etc/apache2/modules.d/70_mod_php.conf, currently provided by app-eselect/eselect-php when installed with apache2 USE flag set, manually insert it. Its current content is displayed below.

FILE /etc/apache2/modules.d/70_mod_php.conf
<IfDefine PHP>
	# The mod_php.so symlink is controlled by
	# eselect-php. However, the module name changed from
	# php5_module to php7_module so we can't blindly load whatever
	# is there. Instead we let eselect-php manage a small
	# configuration file that loads the appropriate module.
	#
	# This is relative to ServerRoot (see httpd.conf).
	Include ../../../var/lib/eselect-php/mod_php.conf
 
	# Tell apache that mod_php should handle PHP files.
	#
	# NOTE: Avoiding AddHandler/AddType for security (bug
	# #538822). Please read the related news item!
	<FilesMatch "\.(php|php[57]|phtml)$">
		SetHandler application/x-httpd-php
	</FilesMatch>
 
	# PHP source files which are meant to be displayed as
	# syntax-highlighted source code.
	<FilesMatch "\.phps$">
		SetHandler application/x-httpd-php-source
	</FilesMatch>
 
	DirectoryIndex index.php index.phtml
</IfDefine>

Although multiple PHP versions can be installed on a system, Apache can only use a single PHP version with mod_php. Support for multiple PHP versions on Apache is available using fpm. The eselect php command is used to switch between active mod PHP versions.

See also