Igbinary is a drop in replacement for the standard php serializer. Instead of time and space consuming textual representation, igbinary stores php data structures in compact binary form. Savings are significant when using memcached or similar memory based storages for serialized data. About 50% reduction in storage requirement can be expected. Specific number depends on your data.
Unserialization performance is at least on par with the standard PHP serializer.
Serialization performance depends on the
igbinary.compact_strings option which enables
duplicate string tracking. String are inserted to a hash table which adds some
overhead. In usual scenarios this does not have much significance since usage
pattern is "serialize rarely, unserialize often". With "compact_strings"
option igbinary is usually a bit slower than the standard serializer. Without
it, a bit faster.
- Supports same data types as the standard PHP serializer: null, bool, int, float, string, array and objects.
- Serializable -interface
- Data portability between platforms (32/64bit, endianess)
- Tested on Linux amd64, Linux ARM, Mac OSX x86, HP-UX PA-RISC and NetBSD sparc64
- Hooks up to the APCu in-memory key-value store as a serialization handler. (For older PHP releases, this also hooks up to APC opcode cache(APC 3.1.7+)
- Compatible with PHP 5.2 – 5.6, 7.0 – 7.2
Storing complex PHP data structures like arrays of associative arrays with the standard PHP serializer is not very space efficient. The main reasons in order of significance are (at least in our applications):
- Array keys are repeated redundantly.
- Numerical values are plain text.
- Human readability adds some overhead.
Igbinary uses two specific strategies to minimize the size of the serialized output.
Repetitive strings are stored only once. Collections of objects benefit significantly from this. See the
Numerical values are stored in the smallest primitive data type available: 123 =
int8_t, 1234 =
int16_t, 123456 =
int32_t... and so on.
( Well, it is not human readable ;)
How to use
Add the following lines to your php.ini:
; Load igbinary extension extension=igbinary.so ; Use igbinary as session serializer session.serialize_handler=igbinary ; Enable or disable compacting of duplicate strings ; The default is On. igbinary.compact_strings=On ; Use igbinary as serializer in APC cache (3.1.7 or later) ;apc.serializer=igbinary
.. and in your php code replace serialize and unserialize function calls
Note: Sometimes phpize must be substituted with phpize5. In such cases the following option must be given to configure script: "--with-php-config=.../php-config5"
- With GCC:
./configure CFLAGS="-O2 -g" --enable-igbinary
- With ICC (Intel C Compiler)
./configure CFLAGS=" -no-prec-div -O3 -xO -unroll2 -g" CC=icc --enable-igbinary
- With clang:
./configure CC=clang CFLAGS="-O0 -g" --enable-igbinary
- With GCC:
igbinary.sois installed to the default extension directory
To run APCu test cases
# go to modules directory cd modules # ... and create symlink to apcu extension # it will be loaded during test suite /opt/lib/php/extensions/no-debug-non-zts-20121212/apcu.so
A similar approach should work for APC.
Installing on Windows
If you are a contributor to/packager of igbinary, see WINDOWS.md
Bugs & Contributions
Mailing list for bug reports and other development discussion can be found at http://groups.google.com/group/igbinary
File bug reports at https://github.com/igbinary/igbinary/issues
The preferred ways for contributions are pull requests and email patches (in git format). Feel free to fork at http://github.com/igbinary/igbinary
Utilizing in other extensions
Igbinary can be called from other extensions fairly easily. Igbinary installs
its header file to ext/igbinary/igbinary.h. There are just two straightforward
igbinary_unserialize. Look at igbinary.h for
prototypes and usage.
PHP_ADD_EXTENSION_DEP(yourextension, igbinary) to your config.m4 in case
someone wants to compile both of them statically into php.
Where does the name "igbinary" come from? There was once a similar project called fbinary but it has disappeared from the Internet a long time ago. Its architecture wasn't particularly clean either. IG is an abbreviation for a Finnish social networking site IRC-Galleria (http://irc-galleria.net/)