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Overriding the Interpreter

You can usually specify the PHP interpreter on the first line of your PHP script. Then you can execute the PHP script directly on the command-line. The following example Hello World program uses that feature:

#!/usr/local/bin/php -q

<?php
echo "Hello World!\n";
?>

But I found that on some web hosting servers, both PHP 4 and PHP 5 are installed. Usually, /usr/local/bin/php points to PHP 4. My scripts require PHP 5. To change the default location of the PHP 5 interpreter on the first line of the script means I will break the script when I use it on a server where PHP 5 is installed at the default location. The best way, I found, around this problem is to override the first line by specifying the right interpreter on the command-line, as shown below:

  /usr/local/bin/php5 HelloWorld.php

Even though the default interpreter is specified on the first line in HelloWorld.php, it is ignored by the executing interpreter on the command-line. Now, I can execute the same script on all servers, once I figure out where PHP 5 is installed.

Chieh Cheng
Wed, 13 Feb 2008 01:35:39 +0000

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