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PDO() or mysqli()?



8:10 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I know this may be a can of worms but I got to ask.

In my process of learning and expanding on PHP, I have gone through three very helpful books. But when it came to database instructions, two of them guided me using mysqli() and one using PDO(). Don't get me wrong, I love learning new stuff. But this is just annoying. I guess I would like to get an overall opinion of the following:

How will I know which one to use?
Which is easier to migrate?
Which can be referred to more as "standard"?
What are the benefits of either/each one?
and of course,
Why must life be so complicated?


12:17 am on Jun 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Databases are fairly interchangeable. So don't worry about it too much.

I could be wrong, but I think the standard is mysql (not mysqli).

Sorry to complicate matters further. :)

If I were learning from scratch, I would just get started on a project. Learning from books doesn't work unless you have a project to make the lessons stick in your mind. So if you don't have a host yet, just pick a host and use whatever database they have. It will probably be mysql.

Have fun.


1:27 pm on Jun 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator coopster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

If you already have your own consistent interface for accessing databases in PHP then considering PDO may end up being more work for you. Remember that "PDO provides a data-access abstraction layer, which means that, regardless of which database you're using, you use the same functions to issue queries and fetch data. PDO does not provide a database abstraction..."

Many developers write their own abstraction class which mimics that which you see in PDO. For example, I wrote one before PDO had support for the mysqli functions which I use (the "i" in mysqli stands for "improved" and is the preferred API for MySQL >= version 4.1; see mysqli overview for details [php.net])


12:35 pm on Jun 8, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Without going through the hassle of writing my own abstraction class, would PDO still be a good thing to learn up on? Especially when the server administrator informs you that they use.. let's say Postgresql instead of mysql? Which they kindly forgot to inform me of.


5:30 pm on Jun 8, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator coopster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Knowledge is one thing, application another. I love to learn and have learned and tinkered with PDO but I don't use it. If it is what your server admin says you are going to be using I imagine it would be a good thing to learn and apply. Just some more food for thought!

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