man php4 (Commandes) - PHP Command Line Interface 'CLI'


php - PHP Command Line Interface 'CLI'


php [options] [ -f ] file [[--] args...]

php [options] -r code [[--] args...]

php [options] -- [ args...]


PHP is a widely-used general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for Web development and can be embedded into HTML. This is the command line interface that enables you to the following:

You can parse and execute files by using parameter -f followed by the name of the file to be executed.

Using parameter -r you can directly execute PHP code simply as you would do inside a .php file when using the eval() function.

If none of -r or -f is present but a single parameter is given then this parameter is taken as the filename to parse and execute (same as with -f). If no parameter is present then the standard input is read and executed.


Run interactively
-c path|file
Look for php.ini file in the directory path or use the specified file
No php.ini file will be used
-d foo[=bar]
Define INI entry foo with value bar
Generate extended information for debugger/profiler
-f file
Parse and execute file
This help
PHP information and configuration
Syntax check only (lint)
Show compiled in modules
-r code
Run PHP code without using script tags '<?..?>'
Display colour syntax highlighted source
Version number
Display source with stripped comments and whitespace
-z file
Load Zend extension file
Arguments passed to script. Use '--' args when first argument starts with '-' or script is read from stdin


The configuration file for the CLI version of PHP.
The configuration file for the CGI version of PHP.
The configuration file for the version of PHP that apache uses.
The configuration file for the version of PHP that apache2 uses.


php -r 'echo "Hello World\n";'
This command simply writes the text "Hello World" to standard out.
php -r 'print_r(gd_info());'
This shows the configuration of your gd extension. You can use this to easily check which imag formats you can use. If you have any dynamic modules you may want to use the same ini file that php uses when executed from your webserver. There are more extensions which have such a function. For dba use: php -r 'print_r(dba_handlers(1));'


You can use a shebang line to automatically invoke php from scripts. Only the CLI version of PHP will ignore such a first line as shown below:



// your script



For a more or less complete description of PHP look here:

A nice introduction to PHP by Stig Bakken can be found here:


You can view the list of known bugs or report any new bug you found here:


The PHP Group: Thies C. Arntzen, Stig Bakken, Andi Gutmans, Rasmus Lerdorf, Sam Ruby, Sascha Schumann, Zeev Suraski, Jim Winstead, Andrei Zmievski.

Additional work for the CLI sapi was done by Edin Kadribasic and Marcus Boerger.

A List of active developers can be found here:

And last but not least PHP was developed with the help of a huge amount of contributors all around the world.


This manpage describes php, version 4.4.2-1build1.


Copyright © 1997-2006 The PHP Group

This source file is subject to version 3.01 of the PHP license, that is bundled with this package in the file LICENSE, and is available through the world-wide-web at the following url:

If you did not receive a copy of the PHP license and are unable to obtain it through the world-wide-web, please send a note to so we can mail you a copy immediately.