In-process PHP for NodeJS thru ph7
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node-ph7 - in-process PHP for NodeJS.

This cool extension allows you to run PHP code based off the 5.3.3 standart from inside nodejs. It has a very clean API and aims to be simple, yet useful. It still lacks some configuration, but it can do what is is supposed to already.


As with each npm module:

npm install ph7

But if you use github:

git clone ph7
npm install ./node-ph7


  • Run PHP script from string.
  • Run PHP script from file.
  • Configure $_SERVER, $_ENV, $_HEADER, $_COOKIES, $_GET, $_POST, $_SESSION, $GLOBALS and $argv
  • Bring in new super globals too!

Yet missing but to come very very soon:

  • Constant declaration

On my ToDo list:

  • Configure the engine to:
    • Buffer standart output (then accessible as object property)
    • Buffer error output (same as above)
    • Report all errors
    • Run without - plain php scripts!

How to use it

You should look at test.js and test.php - but here is the API for you :)

var ph7 = require("ph7"),
    // Create a new virtual maschine for PHP
    pVM = ph7.create();

// Concigure the variables you want to...
pVM.$_ENV['my_awesome_app_name']="Meep Meep!";
// This also works for the other super globals too:
pVM.$_COOKIE['is']="very tasty!";

// But that's not all... :)
// To create a new, normal, variable as you would know it in PHP, use $GLOBALS.
// To create a SUPER global (like $_GET), use the special $SGLOBALS array:
// And if you want, you can even use $argv.
pVM.$argv[] = "--help";

// Now, that is how you set THAT up. But how about we become a bit more explicit and communicate directly with ph7_vm_config?
pVM.config(ph7.PH7_VM_CONFIG_RECURSION_DEPTH, 100); // See: [ph7_vm_config(pVM,int,...)](

// How about a simple script to demonstrate the power?
var script = "<?php echo 'Hello, nodeWorld!\n';";
// Compile the script; that means, that the VM will be made ready with this script.
// Behind the scenes: The engine creates bytecode of the script and prepairs execution of that.
// Alternatively, you could do that too:
// pVM.compileFile(__dirname+"/myScript.php");

// Prepair the execution. This will save all the custom variables and the like into the virtual maschine - for real.

// Run it!
var exitCode = pVM();

As you just saw, if you call the virtual maschine as a function, it will execute and return the script's exit code. The content currently is streamed right to stdout. In a future update, you may turn that off by passing an object into the create() call. After that, you may use pVM.output to obtain the output that the VM delivers.

Binary distros...

To manage binary distirbutions, I simply createed a new package called 'ph7-darwin', which will work on OS X. So if you want ph7 to work on a new platform, you can build the native addon yourself. For that, do this:

npm -g install node-gyp
cd src
node-gyp rebuild

Note, that for this, you need python, make and a C/C++ compiler (GCC, Clang, ...). Once you finished building, you get a file at build/Release/ph7.node. Now, copy that .node file somewhere else, and create a new npm module. If you want a base to start on, use ph7-darwin - its just a js file that redirects the require call towards the native addon. Keep in mind that the configure.js script installs the binaries by using process.platform. Hence, you need to name your build something like ph7-win32. Then, just publish the new build, and you've successfuly contributed something. :) You may also let me know of your build so I can mention it later in this readme.

Some last words.

This project is based off ph7, and therefore their license is included in the ph7 subfolder. The version I am using is from their website.

Have fun with this! :)