PHP / MySQL Tutorial
MySQL is currently the most popular open source database server in existence. On top of that,
it is very commonly used in conjunction with PHP scripts to create powerful and dynamic server-side applications.
MySQL has been criticized in the past for not supporting all the features of
other popular and more expensive DataBase Management Systems. However, MySQL continues to improve
with each release (currently version 5), and it has become widely popular with individuals and businesses of many different sizes.
What is a Database?
A database is a structure that comes in two flavors: a flat database and a relational
database. A relational database is much more oriented to the human mind and is often preferred
over the gabble-de-gook flat database that are just stored on hard drives like a text file. MySQL is a relational database.
In a relational structured database there are tables that store
data. The columns define which kinds of information will be stored in the table. An individual column must be created for each type of data you wish to store (i.e. Age, Weight, Height).
On the other hand, a row contains the actual values for these specified columns. Each row will have 1 value for each and every column. For example a table with columns (Name, Age, Weight-lbs) could have a row with the values (Bob, 65, 165). If all this relational database talk is too confusing, don't despair. We will talk about and show a few examples in the coming lessons.
Why Use a Database?
Databases are most useful when it comes to storing information that fits into
logical categories. For example, say that you wanted to store information of all
the employees in a company. With a database you can group different parts of your business into separate tables to help store your information logically. Example tables might be: Employees, Supervisors, and Customers. Each table would then contain columns specific to these three areas. To help store information related to each employee, the Employees table might have the following columns: Hire, Date, Position, Age, and Salary.
Before you begin this tutorial you should have a basic knowledge of the information
covered in our PHP and
This tutorial focuses heavily on using MySQL in a PHP environment. It is aimed
at teaching those who have web hosts with PHP and MySQL already installed. If you are unsure, please contact your web host.
Download Tizag.com's MySQL Book
If you would rather download the PDF of this tutorial, check out our
MySQL eBook from the Tizag.com store.
You may also be interested in getting the PHP eBook
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