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Which Websites Require PHP And MySQL

by Beda Omacka

If you have ever searched for web hosting service you have probably noticed that some companies offer not only hosting for static html pages but also provide PHP support. Most of the web hosts which come with PHP support also offer access to the MySQL database. There are websites which need them and websites which can be run without them. This article explains which types of websites need these features.

PHP and MySQL support is required if you are going to run any CMS -- content management system. These systems make possible to run a website without editing the HTML code. Site owner only has to install the CMS script or use a web hosting company which comes with preinstalled scripts. When is the script installed the site content is added from the admin area. Webmaster fills in fields like page title and page content and the script will using PHP language store these data in the MySQL database. When people visit the website the PHP is used again to load the data from MySQL and create the page for the visitor. Examples ofcontent management system are joomla, mambo or wordress blog.

Another type of website which requires PHP and MySQL support is forum. All registered usernames, passwords and posts are stored in the database. Using PHP and MySQL is the best way how to allow people to add messages to your website and edit them if necessary. There are many free forum scripts like PhpBB, Simple Machines Forum or PunBB.

If you are not going to run big discussion with your visitors but still want to give them the opportunity to write a message on your website then the best solution is a guestbook. There are some guestbooks which don't need MySQL. They are powered by PHP and store the data in a file. This way of storing data is not recommended for security reasons but it is quite popular solution for newbies because these guestbooks doesn't require any installation. Webmaster only link to the PHP file and guestbook is ready to use. On the other hand there are PHP and MySQL driven guestbooks which work in the similar way like previously mentioned scripts. This solution is considered more safe but needs at least small knowledge of PHP scripts installation.

Very popular are contact forms. If the webmaster don't want to reveal his email address in order to avoid the spam in his mailbox he can use so called mailform. These scripts are written in PHP but don't need MySQL support. Contact form works with the data filled by the visitor and sends them to the selected email address.

You don't need to be PHP expert to enjoy such scripts. All scripts mentioned above can be downloaded for free from many websites. Search for something like "free php scripts" or "php scripts library" in google and you will find a lot of them.

There are many other ways how to use PHP and MySQL and it is not possible to mention all of them in a single article. But the overview above should help you to understand what you can do if you can use these features.

Sunday, Nov 22nd, 2009