PHP Core Roundup #13

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The PHP Core team has been as productive as ever this past month, bringing forth a robust collection of updates that promise to shape the future of PHP. From RFCs that are sure to stir up lively debate, to ones that bring small, yet impactful changes, it has been a month filled with interesting developments. Here's what you need to know.

The PHP Foundation is a collective of PHP contributors, veterans, and companies that collaborate to ensure the long-term sustainability of the PHP programming language. The foundation currently supports six contributors focused on PHP's maintenance, debt reduction, and feature development. These contributors work closely with others on coding, documentation, and discussions.

Started over a year ago, the PHP Core Roundup series offers a summary of the latest developments, discussions, and news about PHP Core, contributed by both PHP Foundation members and other participants. This post is the thirteenth in the PHP Core Roundup series.

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The PHP development team released two new versions in May 2023: .

PHP 8.2.6

This release includes several bug fixes and improvements, notably in areas such as Core, Date, DOM, Exif, Intl, PCRE, Reflection, SPL, Standard, and Streams.

PHP 8.1.19

This release includes bug fixes across various components such as Core, DOM, Exif, Intl, PCRE, and Standard.

Recent RFCs and Mailing List Discussions

Changes and improvements to PHP are discussed, reported, and voted on by the PHP Foundation Team, the PHP development team, and contributors. Bug reports are made to the PHP issue tracker, changes are discussed in mailing lists, minor code changes are proposed as pull requests, and major changes are discussed in detail and voted on as PHP RFCs. Documentation and the website changes are also discussed and improved at their relevant Git repositories on GitHub.

Hundreds of awesome PHP contributors put their efforts into improvements to the PHP code base, documentation, and the website. Here is a summary of some changes made by the people behind PHP. Things marked with 💜 are done by the PHP Foundation team.

RFC Updates

Following are the RFCs and major pull-requests discussed, voted on, and implemented since our last update.

In Voting: Define proper semantics for range() function by Gina Peter Banyard 💜

This RFC proposes to adjust the semantics of the range() function in PHP to throw exceptions or at least warn when passing unusable arguments to range().

The range() function in PHP generates an array of values going from a start value to an end value. However, the current behavior of the function is complex and can lead to unexpected results. For example, if one of the boundary inputs is a string digit (e.g. "1"), both inputs will be interpreted as numbers. This RFC aims to address these issues and make the behavior of the range() function more predictable and consistent.

In Voting: mb_str_pad() by Niels Dossche

This RFC proposes the addition of a multibyte string pad function to the mbstring extension. This function would work similarly to the existing str_pad() function, but with support for multibyte strings. This is a welcome addition for developers working with multibyte strings, as it will make it easier to manipulate and format these strings in PHP.

Under Discussion: Nameof Operator by Robert Landers

This RFC proposes to add a global nameof() function, which would return the name of a variable, class, function, or method as a string. This could be useful in a variety of scenarios, such as debugging, logging, or creating more informative error messages.

Under Discussion: Marking Overridden Methods by Tim Düsterhus

This RFC proposes a way to explicitly mark methods that are intended to override methods from a parent class with a new #[\Override] attribute. If this attribute is added to a method, the engine shall validate that a method with the same name exists in a parent class or any of the implemented interfaces. If no such method exists a compile time error shall be emitted.

The similar concepts exist in Java, TypeScript, C++, C#, Swift, Kotlin, and other languages.

Under Discussion: Deprecate Functions with Overloaded Signatures by Máté Kocsis 💜

This RFC proposes to deprecate a number of functions that have overloaded signatures, meaning they behave differently based on the number or type of arguments passed to them. The goal is to make PHP's function signatures more consistent and predictable.

Under Discussion: Deprecations for PHP 8.3 by Gina Peter Banyard 💜, Christoph M. Becker, Máté Kocsis 💜, Tim Düsterhus, Go Kudo, Andreas Heigl

The aim is to clean up some of the older, less consistent parts of PHP to make the language more reliable and predictable. The following list provides a short overview of the functionality targeted for deprecation:

  • Passing negative $widths to mb_strimwidth()
  • The NumberFormatter::TYPE_CURRENCY constant
  • Unnecessary crypt() related constants
  • Global Mersenne Twister

Declined: PHP Technical Committee by Jakub Zelenka 💜 and Larry Garfield

This RFC proposed the creation of a PHP Technical Committee (TC) that would make decisions about technical aspects of the PHP language and its reference implementation. The TC would have been responsible for resolving technical conflicts between core developers. Despite the potential benefits, the community decided not to move forward with this proposal.

Notable Mailing List Discussions

Callable types via Interfaces

The proposal suggests that callable types should be allowed to be represented as interfaces, which would allow for more precise type hinting and better static analysis. The sentiment in the thread is generally positive, with many participants expressing support for the idea. However, some concerns were raised about potential complexity and the need for careful implementation to avoid breaking existing code.

Interface Properties

The discussion starter suggests making it possible to define properties in interfaces and argues that this feature would align well with the deprecation of dynamic properties and could replace the current practice of specifying these properties in doc blocks.

Larry Garfield pointed out that interface properties are already included in the Property Hooks RFC, which is expected to go to a vote soon.

David Gebler expressed his disagreement with the proposal, stating that interfaces in most languages don't support defining properties because they are generally seen as an implementation detail rather than a promise about supported behavior. He also mentioned that interfaces are essentially an alternative to multiple inheritance, and mandating fields as well as method signatures brings them very close to abstract classes. He also expressed concerns about multiple interfaces defining the same property, which could lead to conceptual confusion.

Some participants expressed support, noting that it could improve code clarity and reduce the need for doc blocks.

Merged PRs and Commits

This month, the PHP core team has been hard at work improving the PHP language. Here's a list of the commits made by the team, grouped by author:

Click here to expand
  • Tim Düsterhus
    • RFC: Make unserialize() emit a warning for trailing bytes in GH-9630
  • Dmitry Stogov
  • yang yuhan
  • ColinHDev
    • Fix negative indices on empty array not affecting next chosen index in GH-11157
  • Sara
    • Add configuration opcache.jit_max_trace_length in GH-11173
    • Cacheline demote to improve performance in GH-11101
  • Niels Dossche
    • Fix too wide OR and AND range inference in GH-11170
    • Fix GH-9068: Conditional jump or move depends on uninitialised value(s) in GH-10221
    • Fix GH-11175 and GH-11177: Stream socket timeout undefined behaviour in GH-11183
    • Fix GH-11178: Segmentation fault in spl_array_it_get_current_data (PHP 8.1.18) in GH-11182
    • Fix GH-11104: STDIN/STDOUT/STDERR is not available for CLI without a script in f6c0c60ef6
    • Implement NEON-accelerated version of BLOCKCONV for lowercasing and uppercasing strings in GH-11161
    • Fix GH-10031: [Stream] STREAM_NOTIFY_PROGRESS over HTTP emitted irregularly for last chunk of data in GH-10492
    • Fix GH-11141: Could not open input file: should be sent to stderr in GH-11163
    • Fix maximum argument count of pcntl_forkx() in GH-11199
    • Fix GH-11160: Few tests failed building with new libxml 2.11.0 in GH-11162
    • Fix GH-11180: hash_file() appears to be restricted to 3 arguments in GH-11198
    • Remove unnecessary NULL assignments after ecalloc in streams in GH-11209
    • Fix GH-8426: make test fail while soap extension build in GH-11211
    • Fix GH-10834: exif_read_data() cannot read smaller stream wrapper chunk sizes in GH-10924
    • Fix #97836 and #81705: Segfault / type confusion in concat_function in GH-10049
    • Fix GH-11274: POST/PATCH request via file_get_contents + stream_context_create switches to GET after a HTTP 308 redirect in GH-11275
    • Fix -Wstrict-prototypes warnings in fuzzer SAPI in GH-11277
    • Remove unused variable err in mb_send_mail() in GH-11285
    • Fix GH-11245 (In some specific cases SWITCH with one default statement will cause segfault) in GH-11251
    • Fix GH-11281: DateTimeZone::getName() does not include seconds in offset in GH-11282
    • Fix allocation loop in zend_shared_alloc_startup() in GH-11306
    • Fix GH-11288 and GH-11289 and GH-11290 and GH-9142: DOMExceptions and segfaults with replaceWith in GH-11299
    • Shrink libxml_doc_props struct in GH-11326
    • Fix GH-10234: Setting DOMAttr::textContent results in an empty attribute value in GH-10245
    • Fix GH-11338: SplFileInfo empty getBasename with more than one slash in GH-11340
    • Fix GH-11336: php still tries to unlock the shared memory ZendSem with opcache.file_cache_only=1 but it was never locked in GH-11341
    • Fix spec compliance error for DOMDocument::getElementsByTagNameNS in GH-11343
    • Fix DOMElement::append() and DOMElement::prepend() hierarchy checks in GH-11344
    • Remove unnecessary tree setting in dom_zvals_to_fragment() in GH-11345
    • Implement dom_get_doc_props_read_only() in GH-11345
    • Fix GH-11347: Memory leak when calling a static method inside an xpath query in GH-11350
  • Ilija Tovilo 💜
    • Add retry mechanism in run-tests.php in GH-10892
    • Downgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 for ASAN nightly for now in ef6bbaa1ec
    • Correctly copy lineno for zval asts in GH-11203
    • Fix use-of-uninitialized value in phar_object.c in GH-11202
    • Fix use-of-undefined in zend_fiber_object_gc of ex->call in GH-11208
    • Fix compilation for PHP 8.1 in 8f66b67ccf
    • Fix potential NULL pointer access in zend_fiber_object_gc in 0a04c008d0
    • Fix delayed early binding class redeclaration error in GH-11226
    • Fix -Wenum-int-mismatch warning in ext/json/php_json_encoder.h in ac41608797
    • Implement delayed early binding for classes without parents in 0600f513b3
    • Fix segfault in mb_strrpos/mb_strripos with ASCII encoding and negative offset in GH-11220
    • Fix string coercion for $a .= $a in GH-11296
    • Fix concat_function use-after-free on out-of-memory error in GH-11297
    • Fix access on NULL pointer in array_merge_recursive() in GH-11303
    • Fix preg_replace_callback_array() pattern validation in GH-11301
    • Fix exception handling in array_multisort() in GH-11302
    • Use zend_ast_apply in zend_eval_const_expr in GH-11261
    • Allow arbitrary expressions in static variable initializer in GH-9301
    • Use single allocation for indirect values in array_multisort in GH-11309
    • Fix zend_jit_stop_counter_handlers() performance issues with protect_memory=1 in GH-11323
    • Add tests for list() in assignment in array literals in 8ed66b4347
    • Revert "Use zend_ast_apply in zend_eval_const_expr (#11261)" in fbe6696d49
  • Nils
    • Remove unused macro PHP_FNV1_32A_INIT and PHP_FNV1A_64_INIT in GH-11114
  • David CARLIER
    • ext/pgsql: pg_cancel_query internal update in 84c185c8ba
    • ext/pgsql: pg_trace allow to refine its trace mode via 2 new constants in 7ec8ae12c4
    • ext/pgsql: pg_lo_read addressing the todo. in GH-11159
    • ext/pgsql adding PGSQL_ERRORS_SQLSTATE constant support in f31d253849
    • ext/pgsql: fix pg_trace test when trace mode is supported. in GH-11191
  • Bob Weinand
    • Fix GH-11189: Exceeding memory limit in zend_hash_do_resize leaves the array in an invalid state in 05bd1423ee
    • Fix GH-11222: foreach by-ref may jump over keys during a rehash in 975d28e278
  • Julien Quiaios
    • Add new test for array_fill() to cover the case when the parameter count is too large in GH-11184
  • Cédric Anne
    • Make SERVER_SOFTWARE compliant with RFC3875 in GH-11093
  • Calvin Buckley
    • http_response_code should warn if headers were already sent in GH-10744
  • Daniel Kesselberg
  • Jakub Zelenka 💜
    • Add myself as a standard CODEOWNER to not miss some changes in 5690e8baea
    • Fix GH-10461: Postpone FPM child freeing in event loop in 102953735c
    • Expose JSON internal function to escape string in e8a836eb39
    • Fix bug #64539: FPM status - query_string not properly JSON encoded in GH-11050
    • FPM: Fix memory leak for invalid primary script file handle in GH-11088
    • Fix FPM status json encoded value test in GH-11276
  • Florian Moser
  • Gina Peter Banyard 💜
    • Prevent unnecessary string duplication in assert() in GH-11031
    • ext/standard/array.c: use uint32_t instead of incorrect int type in 646f54b594
    • Fix assertion warning message when no description is provided in e35cd34bcd
    • Use uint32_t for variable storing ZEND_NUM_ARGS() in 80c8ca9c8f
    • FPM: refactor fpm_php_get_string_from_table() to better match usage in GH-11051
  • Máté Kocsis 💜
    • Narrow bool return types to true when possible in 85338569de
    • Add support for true standalone type when generating methodsynopsis in 281669aeb4
    • Narrow some more return types to true in 09dd3e3daf
  • Michael Voříšek
    • Fix gmp_long/gmp_ulong typedef warning on Windows x86 in GH-11112
    • Allow CTE on more CTE safe functions in GH-10771
  • Amedeo Baragiola
    • Fix compilation error on old GCC versions in GH-11212
  • Luc Vieillescazes
    • Keep the orig_path for xport stream in GH-11113
  • Randy Geraads
    • Added negative offset test for mb_strrpos in c5a623ba5e
  • Peter Kokot
    • Fix #9483: Fix autoconf warnings due to old libtool in GH-11207
  • Alex Dowad
    • Use shared, immutable array for return value of mb_list_encodings in 97e29bed9e
    • Take order of candidate encodings into account when guessing text encoding in 3ab10da758
    • Use pakutoma's encoding check functions for mb_detect_encoding even in non-strict mode in 7914b8cefd
    • Combine CJK encoding conversion code in a single source file in c717c79a09
    • Optimize conversion of SJIS-2004 text to Unicode in 73633bf1c3
    • Optimize conversion of CP932 text to Unicode in 175154dbcc
    • Move kana translation tables to mbfilter_cjk.c in 245daedb41
    • Test mb_strlen for all text encodings supported by mbstring in f337c92050
    • Fix problem with CP949 conversion when 0xC9 precedes byte lower than 0xA1 in 8e6be14372
    • Convert mbfilter_conv{,_r}_map_tbl to return bool in 18ca489347
  • Peter Chun-Sheng, Li
    • Fix GH-11099: Generating phar.php during cross-compile can't be done in GH-11243
  • Nikita Popov
    • Correctly handle multiple constants in typed declaration in c230aa9be3
  • LoongT4o
    • Fix the JIT buffer relocation failure at the corner case in GH-11266
  • Pierrick Charron
  • Ben Ramsey
  • Mikhail Galanin
    • ext/session: pass ini options to extra processes in tests in GH-11294
  • KoudelkaB
    • Access violation when ALLOC_FALLBACK fixed in 8946b7b141
  • Daniil Gentili
  • Kirill Nesmeyanov
    • Add string output escaping into zend dump (phpdbg + opcache debug) in GH-11337
  • divinity76
    • Fix return value in stub file for DOMNodeList::item in GH-11342
  • Yuya Hamada
    • Fix mb_strlen is wrong length for CP932 when 0x80 in c50172e812
  • James Lucas

This concludes the list of commits made by the PHP core team in the past month. We're grateful for their hard work and dedication to improving PHP.

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PHP Roundup is (except for this particular one) prepared by Ayesh Karunaratne from PHP.Watch, a source for PHP News, Articles, Upcoming Changes, and more.