To integrate a SQL database in a PHP application, you can use PDO to write code regardless of the RDBMS, or use a specific function for each RDBMS such as mysqli_* for MariaDB/MySQL.

⚠️ SQL queries are vulnerable to SQL injections. Always use prepared statements to avoid them.

Using PDO

$db = new PDO("dbms_name:host=hostname;charset=UTF8;dbname=db_name", "user","password");
$res = $db->query("SELECT * FROM USER");
$result = $res->fetchAll();

➑️ DBMS names could be mysql, pgsql...

If you are having a hard time debugging errors, you can enable PDO exceptions by adding a 4th argument:


➑️ Edit: this is now the default mode since PHP 8.0.

Instead of query(...) use prepare() for prepared statements:

$stmt = $db->prepare("[...] WHERE user=:user AND password=:password;");
// safely pass parameters
$stmt->bindValue(':user' , "some_username", PDO::PARAM_STR);
$stmt->bindValue(':password', "some_password" , PDO::PARAM_STR);

MariaDB / MySQL

You will use mysqli functions. To create a non-prepared statement:

// connect
$connexion = mysqli_connect("host","user","passwd","db_name");
// execute and get the result
$res = mysqli_query($connexion, "SELECT * FROM USER");

OR to create a prepared statement, using ? for parameters:

$stmt = mysqli_prepare($connexion, "[...] WHERE user=? AND password=?;");
// safely pass parameters
mysqli_stmt_bind_param($stmt, "ss", array("some_username", "some_password"));
// execute
// get the result
$res = mysqli_stmt_get_result($stmt);

πŸ‘‰ The code is similar to the one for PDO. The second argument of bind_param is the type of each argument (s=string).

To exploit the results:

// 1️⃣ if there is only one line
$row = $res->fetch_assoc() ?? null;

// 2️⃣ otherwise, iterate results
while($row = mysqli_fetch_assoc($res)){}

// close

There are some functions you may use:

$nr = mysqli_num_rows($res);
$id = mysqli_insert_id($connexion);
$sql_request = addslashes($sql_request);
$sql_request = mysqli_escape_string($connexion, $sql_request);