PHP is a popular programming language for development of web applications. It’s been widely used by the developers for web apps development because of the unmatchable benefits it offers like high level of efficiency to build reliable apps in less time, compatibility with various OS systems, large community support to help for efficient development, extensions it supports for completely customized development and many more. The so-called, hypertext processor has been around for a quite a long time from now and during this period right from the existence of this miraculous programming language, there are only few evidences where this has been used to develop scalable apps. Yes, in many scenarios, under heavy workloads, the PHP based applications are seen to buckle down. However, it is not that one cannot develop scalable applications with PHP. One can certainly do it, but, for that one will need to opt for cloud scaling and use NoSQL backend while developing PHP applications.
Before going deep into this, let’s first know about PHP’s runtime environment. Apache Web Server is the most commonly used PHP runtime environment. Here the web server will run separate sub processes for concurrent requests. Hence, when a traditional RDBMS is used, it will result in unpooled database connections because DB connection pooling requires shared memory space.
This concurrency model has great impact on scalability of PHP when using traditional RDBMS. Yes, it’s possible to open number of concurrent connections to the DBMS, but this will have negative impact on the number of concurrent requests. Here the database connection would be open for a longer period of time even when the application is not interacting with database at that point of time and moreover no other process would be able to share the same connection because connection pooling is not possible here. Hence, there will be many or number of active connections running on your web or database server when running a PHP application. Therefore PHP applications will create more load on database due to the constraints of the concurrency model and hence are considered less scalable for complex needs.
With PHP and RDBMS put together, one can easily leverage the major features of an application with the help of developers that too at lesser costs and in a smaller amount of time. PHP applications in order to get scalable have to be backed up with efficient RDBMS support. PHP web apps with a backend database like Oracle cannot be scaled cost effectively for better performance. However, there is better solution to this problem. One can go for implementing cloud technology and NoSQL in PHP application development process for creation of highly scalable apps cost effectively.
The cloud technology gives the ability to spin up enough servers, while the NoSQL database system makes it easily possible to fragment the data effectively. If we use a conventional database management system that can automatically shard the data and balance connections to each node, then PHP applications can be scaled for complex needs as well.
Its better not to have number of unpooled connections to the systems, instead go for balancing this with the database servers. More are web servers, the lesser will be the impact of lack of connection pooling on DB client systems. More will be the database nodes, lesser will be the impact on server nodes. Move to NoSQL and cloud technology is a winning factor to make PHP applications scalable while taking into consideration the existing runtime of the platform.
For those who want to develop scalable applications in PHP would however require the help of experts who have experience and a better idea of doing this for custom needs. Grey Matter India is a Chicago based leading software development company offering reliable and cost effective services for PHP application development. The PHP experts of the firm are well-versed with scalable application development process and hence, can help businesses that require to develop scalable enterprise applications for their custom needs.