Personal Home Pages or PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor language for creating HTML content –normally runs as a server-side scripting language –command line scripting possible –client-side GUI applications using PHP- GTK generates other formats –PDF, GIF, JPEG, PNG, Flash
PHP free, open source technology extensive libraries of PHP code modules runs on all major operating systems runs with all major web servers (Apache, IIS, iPlanet) good database integration –MySQL, Oracle, ODBC databases, PostgreSQL, Sybase
PHP/Web Server Architecture web server layer –handles http requests –passes data to PHP via SAPI TSRM Thread-Safe Resource Management PHP language core PHP API (available to core and PHP extensions) Zend parsing engine –runtime compiler –executer
PHP/Web Server Architecture web server (Apache, IIS, etc..) Server Abstraction API (SAPI) TSRM Zend Engine PHP Core PHP extensions TSRM PHP API
input client HTML page PHP page PHP Zend parsing engine web server data http request output HTML http response PHP and http
form processing example Ice Cream Parlour Flavour : vanilla chocolate Scoops :
form processing example Ice Cream Response Thank you for your order
self processing PHP page METHOD=POST> Enter your Name:
control of http response PHP sets standard headers by default –response status line –date, document length –other headers added by web server header () function allows other headers to be set –header (content-type: text/plain); header must be used before any html generated (including leading tag)
cookies $_COOKIE array used for input setcookie () function sets cookie headers in the http response must be used before html content
simple hit counter … etc … This page has been viewed times.
PHP has strong text processing functionality –comprehensive string manipulation –strong regular expressions inherited or imported from Perl full set of filehandling functions for file I/O XML data files can be created/manipulated programmatically using text processing approaches
PHP and XML DOM –DOM processing from PHP 4.3 –DOM extension part of PHP 5 core XSLT –libxslt extension in PHP 5 –A separate XSLT extension available from Sablotron C library (different API)
events-based XML programming PHP has an event-based XML parser based on libxml2 library –SAX parser –replaces old non-SAX Expat library parser calls handler functions as events occur you write the event handler functions
PHP strengths free, open-source product –flexible –extensible easy to implement –builds onto most browsers on most platforms –familiar, flexible and powerful syntax with occasional weirdness thrown in good database connectivity –technology of choice for low-end web-DB system
PHP weaknesses XML support –some non-standard features still in PHP5 slow because of runtime compilation then execution –derives from CGI script origins limited separation of coding from HTML –no equivalent of JSP custom tags –some open source versions emerging see http://trac.php-tools.net/ extensibility limited by cumbersome C-based architecture –this is improving with later versions
PHP web application frameworks Frameworks are now emerging for PHP Cake –Next lecture… –growing developer community, growing functionality –http://www.cakephp.org/ Symfony –Very recent but stems from older projects –established development community –http://www.symfony-project.com/http://www.symfony-project.com/ Zend Framework –growing community of developers –http://framework.zend.com/
Active Server Pages (ASP) Microsoft-based server-side processing technology ASP provides a server-side scripting environment. This includes: Read information from an HTTP request. Customize an HTTP response. Interact with Databases. Support complex middleware.
A user makes an http request for an ASP page. The.asp extension tells the Web server that the page contains server script (executable code) that it should process before returning the page to the browser. The server passes the ASP to the scripting engine The scripting engine executes ASP commands as it encounters them After execution of the server scripts, all code is stripped out of the page. The pure HTML page is sent in the http response.
ASP Built-in Objects Request Response Session Application Server ObjectContext
ASP Built-in Objects Request –Retrieves the values that the browser passes to the server during an HTTP request. Response –Controls what information is sent to a browser in the HTTP response message.
ASP Built-in Objects Session –Used to manage and store information about a particular user session. Application –Used to manage and store information about the Web application.
ASP Built-in Objects Server –Provides access to resources that reside on a server. ObjectContext –Used to commit or abort a transaction managed by Microsoft Transaction Server (MTS) for ASP pages that run in a transaction.
Request Object Collections ClientCertificate Cookies Form QueryString ServerVariables
Form Collection The Form collection contains the values of each standard HTML control that has a NAME attribute. When a user submits a form with the POST method, you can read the values of the controls by using the Form collection. The Form collection of the Request object can be used to extract information from the body of an HTTP request message.
Form Collection Name: Favourite Flavour: Mint Vanilla Coffee
Form Collection icecream.asp Request.Form("name") Request.Form("flavour") or <% For Each Item in Request.Form 'code to display Item here Next %>
ASP on Alternative Platforms Chili!ASP by Chili!Soft (Expensive to buy!) Windows –IIS, Apache, Netscape Enterprise & FastTrack, OReilly WebSite Pro Solaris –Apache, Netscape Enterprise & FastTrack Linux: Apache IBM AIX: Apache, Netscape Enterprise & FastTrack, IBM HTTP Server, Lotus Domino Go HP UX –Apache, Netscape Enterprise
ASP on Alternative Platforms Instant ASP (iASP) by Halcyon Software cheaper written in Java as a Servelet, so runs with Apache/Tomcat and many other servers allows mix of ASP and JSP –better range of functionality –may run slow for high volume applications
ASP Strengths implements M-V-C code embedded in the HTML –separation of concerns no compiling - stays resident in memory no complex interfacing - method calls suitable for high-end web applications standard components –re-use –eases programming effort
ASP weaknesses difficult to port between platforms steep learning curve for full functionality –less suitable for low-end web apps multiplicity of.NET languages –diffuse coding options –can leave legacy problems
Technology for building dynamic web applications provides powerful markup reducing need for programming skills designed for RAD: abstracts many low- level tasks e.g. connection to a database
ColdFusion runs on all major platforms compatible with all major browsers runs in CGI mode or as an embedded process runs on Apache, IIS, iPlanet ColdFusion applications are portable across platforms with very minor differences
History of ColdFusion developed by Allaire software –first version 1995 - only 30 language elements –strongly tag-based, supplemented by functions Allaire merged with Macromedia in 2001 –MacroMedia ColdFusion –ColdFusion MX ColdFusion MX 6.1 (2004) –80 tags, 255 functions
use and availability Widely used for medium to large scale web apps Large developer community Not free, not open source –ColdFusion MX Standard £929 Windows, Linux –ColdFusion MX Enterprise £4289 Windows, Linux, Solaris, HP-UX, AIX –30-day free trial version (limited functionality)
client HTML page CFML template ColdFusion Application Server web server entity data http request input output HTML http response
ColdFusion templates CFML tags embedded in HTML –Can produce pure CFML pages Tag Syntax – content –or trailing / optional –Attributes are literals or expressions –Tags controlled by attributes and/or content
Example 1 Writing output x = #x# y = #y# x * y = #xy#
Example 2 Todays date is #DateFormat (Now (),dd/mm/yy)# CFML tag closing CFML tag
web application a group of templates forming a cohesive application –maintain state –utilise constants –multi-threading –error and exception handling –security controlled through application template
Application.cfm template reserved template name template placed in root directory of the web application –executed before every request may be supplemented by OnRequestEnd.cfm template –executed after every web request
processing Application templates ColdFusion template requested ColdFusion searches template directory for an Application.cfm template –ColdFusion processes Application.cfm template then requested template –OnRequestEnd.cfm template processed if it exists
template request process client Server myTemplate application template onREquestEnd request response
function of Application.cfm maintains state –create Application, Client and Session variables set application constants –data-source names, source directories, style elements handle errors provide security services –user authentication –entitlements
strengths tag-oriented programming for web developers –good support for custom tags and extensions full functionality to support medium to high end web systems supports MVC strong support for thread-safe transactions excellent database connectivity implemented on all major platforms
weaknesses expensive compared with other technologies not open source highly redundant syntax –leads to inconsistent development idiosyncratic language structure –limited code re-use on or from other platforms non-standard and limited XML support