What Do You Mean by Server Side Scripting in PHP?


Scott Campbell

Server-side scripting in PHP refers to the process of executing scripts on the server before sending the HTML response to the client’s browser. This allows for dynamic and interactive web pages that can be personalized based on user input or database queries. In this article, we’ll delve deeper into server-side scripting in PHP and explore its key concepts and benefits.

What is Server-Side Scripting?

Server-side scripting is a method used by web developers to create websites that generate dynamic content. Unlike client-side scripting, which relies on JavaScript and runs directly in the browser, server-side scripting executes on the web server before delivering the final HTML output to the user’s browser.

Why Use PHP for Server-Side Scripting?

PHP (Hypertext Preprocessor) is a widely used open-source scripting language specifically designed for server-side development. It seamlessly integrates with HTML and provides powerful tools for creating dynamic websites.

Benefits of PHP Server-Side Scripting:

  • Efficiency: PHP scripts are executed on the server, reducing the workload on client devices.
  • Database Integration: PHP allows easy integration with databases, enabling dynamic content generation.
  • Code Reusability: With functions and classes, PHP promotes modular coding and code reuse.
  • Cross-Platform Compatibility: PHP runs on various platforms like Windows, Linux, macOS, etc., making it highly versatile.

The Process of Server-Side Scripting in PHP

To understand how server-side scripting in PHP works, let’s break down the process into simple steps:

  1. The user requests a webpage by entering a URL into their browser.
  2. The request is sent to the web server, which locates the requested PHP file.
  3. The PHP file is processed by the server’s PHP engine, executing any embedded PHP code.
  4. PHP interacts with databases or performs calculations based on user input or other data sources.
  5. The server generates a final HTML page that includes the processed PHP code and any relevant data.
  6. The HTML response is sent back to the user’s browser and displayed as a fully-rendered webpage.

Examples of Server-Side Scripting in PHP

Let’s look at a couple of examples to understand how server-side scripting works in PHP:

Example 1:



In this example, we retrieve user input from an HTML form using the `$_POST` superglobal. The server-side script processes the input and displays a personalized greeting.

Example 2:



Here, we have an array of fruits. The server-side script uses a loop to iterate over each item and generates an unordered list (

    ) with each fruit as a list item (

  • ). This dynamic content is then sent to the client’s browser for display.


    Server-side scripting in PHP offers powerful capabilities for creating dynamic web pages. By executing scripts on the server, developers can generate personalized content, interact with databases, and perform complex calculations.

    With its seamless integration with HTML and extensive feature set, PHP remains one of the most popular choices for server-side scripting.

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