Hi guys, I have been working on a site and have managed to add a login script. I made an "status" script myself which tells people if a user is online or not.

I did that by using database(easiest way I could think of), when person logs in it changes the value in the table "user" in column "onoffstatus" to "Online" and when they click logout it changes it to "offline".

My problem is that if they close window or navigate away from it without clicking logout, it still says "Online". How can I fix it? I have been looking at timeouts and sessions a lot, and can't find what I am looking for.

Somethings to note:
I am using a free site host, and cannot access php.ini
I have tried to use .htaccess but don't know what to do...

I hope you guys can help me. Thanks.

The easiest way to do this would be to set a column "lastactivity" to the current time every time the user loads any of your pages (just build it into your authentication script). You can then classify someone as "online" if they have been active in the past 5 mins.

Hope that's close enough to what you're after.

commented: Thanks for your help +1

Thank you, I will try that.

EDIT: Well, I looked up time, and it is harder then I thought. Is it possible for you to show how the code can be used?
I have used:
$today = getdate();
print_r ($today):

It prints an array, which I do not know how to use. Also how would I check if they have been inactive for more then 5 mins and then change their logout status?


Thank you, I will try that now.

Gah!! It does not work. I have looked at the link and tried both of them, I am currently trying to use the simpler one:

$the_time = time() + (1*60);
if($_SESSION['timestamp'] < $the_time)
$_SESSION['timestamp'] = time();
echo "More time added "; //to see if it works
mysql_query("UPDATE user SET onoffstatus = 'Offline' WHERE username = '$userfinal'");
session_unset();   #Session_unset and Session_destroy
session_destroy();#Will remove all sessions.
header("location:index.php");#This code will send you back to the index page
echo "<font color=white>";
echo $the_time;
echo "   ";
echo $_SESSION['timestamp'];
echo "</font>";

The last part is to see if the values change(the do) and the "More time" is shown also, but when I wait about 2 min(with page open in background) and then go back to it and click a link, I am still logged in. I also tried closing window and going back after 2 mins and nothing...

Any help, or is there a way to do it with javascript...onunload execute logout? or window close...?


	if (! session_id()) {

	if (! isset($_SESSION['timestamp'])) {
		$_SESSION['timestamp'] = time();
	if (time() - $_SESSION['timestamp']  < 60)	{
		$_SESSION['timestamp'] = time();
		echo "More time added "; //to see if it works
	else {
		mysql_query("UPDATE user SET onoffstatus = 'Offline' WHERE username = '$userfinal'");
		session_unset();               # Session_unset and Session_destroy
		session_destroy();             # Will remove all sessions.
		header("location: index.php"); # This code will send you back to the index page
commented: Thank you, very much. +1

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! It has worked, but I have one little concern =D

This only logs you out if you go to the page after the time has elapsed, so it only refreshes the values in the table after some "connection". I was wondering if it is possible to use AJAX to have a timer that keeps checking every minute to see if they are online. Is it possible to do that even if they are not on the page?

If you don't understand my problem:
I am trying to change the value in a table after a period of time EVEN IF the user isn't on the page... is that possible? I hope you understand.

Just realized, I meant even if the user isn't on the website. Like if they have navigated away from the site, or closed their browser.

Sorry for double post.

Use a cron job to set users offline after a certain amount of time.

Just have it run every 5-10 minutes and that will solve the problem without having to rely on javascript to do it (which is not a good thing to do).

I am using a free webhost and don't know if they have cron on it, is there a code to check it or should I just go to help and support?

Its best to check with help and support.

Yes! It is available. I never noticed it before -_-

I don't know how to use it, is it possible for you to help me out a bit? Please and thank you.

Do I just run the code that was previously posted? I am guessing so...right?


Yes, it has a cpanel, it only asks me to put the file name to run, and when to run it. Its quite simple, but I don't know if I need to run the code posted or a new code. Will the code know which user to put in the variable $userfinal? I don't know if it will work...


You will have to modify the code and maybe your database.

Pretty much you will need to use humbugs' solution.

In the cron file you will need to select all users that have not been active for lets say 10 minutes. Then run an update query for each user returned to set their status to 'offline'.

commented: Thank you for helping! +1

Alright, I will try that, thank you.

Sorry for not getting back to you about my idea. What I meant was, you store the timestamp for each user's last activity in the database. Then any time you want to check if someone is "active" you grab the timestamp and make the comparison.

You can also get a list of "active" user by doing (psuedocode) "SELECT * FROM user_activity WHERE timestamp>TIME()-60*5"

All you need to do for this is update the user's "last activity" timestamp every time they request a page, and you'll be laughing.

If you want it to be more accurate you can use AJAX to send a request to the server every 4 mins to tell the server that the user still has the webpage open in his/her browser.

Hope that helped. (I'm not saying the other way won't work either..)

commented: Thank you! +1

Thanks! I was wondering about the comparison code :D

For each user you want to check, you would do something like this:
1. Get the timestamp for this user from the database SELECT last_activity FROM user_activity WHERE id=$id 2. Compare this value with the timestamp for 5 mins ago within PHP if ($last_activity > $now-60*5) { echo "online" } I couldn't be bothered looking up the PHP code for getting timestamps, or translating to and from MySQL timestamps, but you can do that :P

Thank you! I haven't been able to get to the coding yet, since I am very busy with other stuff but this certainly will help!