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Hi guys,
I have decided to learn php, can some one help me to give a good start. Is it mandatory to know any language before i start learning Php. I have no knowledge in any programming langauge. Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance guys.

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Last Post by Novice-in-php
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I'd suggest you at least know a fair amount of HTML, Javascript and CSS before moving up to PHP. Search for tutorials online for each of these. W3Schools is usually a good place to start.

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MySQL is something you should really learn along side PHP as well if you will ever consider looking at writing database driven websites/applications.

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Hi guys,
I have decided to learn php, can some one help me to give a good start. Is it mandatory to know any language before i start learning Php. I have no knowledge in any programming langauge. Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance guys.

There are no prerequisites to learning PHP, per se. That's not to say there aren't any languages/technologies that go hand-in-hand with PHP. Even though PHP is categorized as a general purpose language it's still very much designed for web development. It does not replace client-side technologies such as HTML, CSS or JavaScript. You'll want to familiarize yourself with at least HTML and CSS in order to create and stylize web documents.

bobs mentioned MySQL. And I agree with him, though I would like to expand a little on that front. PHP's role is largely centered around data; retrieval, storage and manipulation to be specific. The vast majority of the time that data is going to be coming from a database. MySQL is one of a few commonly used RDBMS solutions (relational database management systems). It's easily the most popular amongst hobbyist developers and has an extraordinarily mature documentation and community. Thus support for it is ample.

There are alternatives though. PostgreSQL is the next big name in open source RDBMS solutions. The MySQL vs. PostgreSQL discussion is huge and outside the scope of this article. But I do want you to at least be aware of its existence. Also, there are other types of databases outside aside from relational databases. MongoDB is an excellent document-orientated DBMS.

I would encourage you to pick up a book on HTML/CSS and brief yourself on the two. They should come quickly as there's little to them. You could do this even alongside learning PHP. Starting with MySQL for your RDBMS-of-choice is respectable, and most resources you'll find online will assume that's what you're doing anyways. But it won't hurt to branch out and familiarize yourself with other DBMS systems once you're comfortable with the SQL language and MySQL as a solution.

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Just pointing out what's in my sig: http://www.phptherightway.com/

If you do start, start right! Don't use the MySQL extension, use the latest possible version of PHP. Learn OO, because most of the newer PHP features use it too.

Edited by pritaeas

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Throttle your languages. If you're new to programming, I'm assuming that you'll be new to markup too. Learning syntax for 5 markup / programming languages / structures (html, css, js, php, mysql) at the same time is madness. Start off with just HTML and CSS. A week may do you - HTML is dead easy after a while and CSS grows on you - like moss! You could avoid learning js for the moment, although you'll probably come across it for various 'prettiness' and interactive functionality.

Buy a book. Sounds old-fashioned, but I swear by them. Extremely useful as you can flick through, go to bits of interest, check related links in the Google-pages at the back! Online tutorials are ok, but not immersive as a rule. A really good book on PHP may cost around £25-40 GBP. These have the advantage of being peer-reviewed unlike faceless web tutorials, which can be set up by any old idiot.

Install a stack (Apache, pHp, MySQL). I use XAMPP, but there are a lot of alternatives.

Choose a good IDE. You could use Notepad if you really feel masochistic, but there are plenty of free alternatives like, Notepad++ , Aptana, Bluefish, SublimeText2, Eclipse - and others for non-Windows environments.

Get rid of him/her indoors. If you have a demanding/high-maintenance boyfriend/girlfriend, dump them, as this new hobby will take up all your waking hours. :)

Listen to others. Don't listen to others. You'll get great advice and you'll get shocking advice. Hopefully on Daniweb, you'll get good advice and if it's not, somebody with more experience will say so. Don't just take the first guy's answer as 'gospel'.

Agree with Pritaeas. If only I knew then what I know now. Do take the time to learn Object Orientated programming and the newer, suggested features of PHP and DB handling, like PDO and MySQLi.

Votes + Comments
Great advice. Love point 5 :)
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Guys thanks for your reply. I know HTMl, CSS. Not an expert but if psd is given I can develop a page. Before getting in to the actual discussion, I would like to ask few questions. Currently Im working as test engineer (Manual testing) for the past one year. Is testing a good field on the first place. Can I continue in the same field.? If so is there a separate foroum for testers. I would like to learn automation testing. I tried to do that in selenium but again for which I should know a programming language. So to be more precise im bit confused. It would be a great help if someone can help me to decide something.

Thanks

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If at all i choose development i will chosse php. That is the reason I posted the question here.
Thanks

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