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Introduction to PHP Extensions

Talk video

Talk presentation

In this presentation, we take a first look at writing PHP extensions. Using step-by-step examples, we'll take a function written in PHP and convert them into a loadable extension using C. We'll then test both versions and compare the results. After seeing the size and scope of the benefits that can be realized with only a few minor changes, you'll want to try it out for yourself. You'll also understand why we start with simple things, and not try to rewrite all of Symfony in C.


  • what PHP extensions are, and which different types there are;
  • why you might want to write a PHP extension;
  • how you write your first PHP extension, with practical tips and tricks.
Derick Rethans
Author of Xdebug
  • He has contributed to the PHP project in numerous forms (Date/Time Extension, Xdebug, PHP 4.4/7.4 Release Manager, etc)
  • He is a frequent lecturer at conferences, the author of php|architect's Guide to Date and Time Programming, and the co-author of PHP 5 Power Programming
  • Derick is also the host of the weekly-ish PHP Internals News podcast
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