Download Php In Windows

PHP Install on XP Pro IIS 5.1 - phpinfo( ) results incorrect
Testing Date: 05.15.09
For several days now I, as a newbie, have been unsure if I had installed PHP correctly, or not. No matter what I did phpinfo( ) reported 'Configuratin File Path' as: “C:WINDOWS”. I was left to wonder what was wrong.
To help resolve the phpinfo() “issue”, I conducted a series of tests using two scripts:
The first is “test-php-ini-loaded.php”; it is stored in c:inetpubwwwroot, and has the following code:
= php_ini_loaded_file();
if (
$inipath) {
'Loaded php.ini: ' . $inipath;
} else {
'A php.ini file is not loaded';

The second script is simply calls phpinfo( ). It is named test.php, is stored in “c:inetpubwwroot”, and has the following code:
<?php phpinfo( ); ?>

My Dev Environment:
1. Windows XP Pro SP3
2. IIS 5.1 / MMC 3.0
3. PHP – phpMyAdmin not yet installed
4. (plus MySQL 5.1, etc.)
5. Install location is on my local E: drive
The Tests:
Test 1:
a. PHPRC environment variable and IniFilePath Registry left in place and active
b. Verified no other copies of php.ini exist on the system other than in my E:PHP folder
c. Renamed php.ini to hold-php.ini
d. Stopped and started IIS (“net stop iisadmin” and “net start w3svc”)
e. Ran “test-php-ini-loaded.php” to check whether my php.ini is loaded. It is not.
f. Ran 'test.php'. “Loaded Configuration File” was empty, while “Configuration File (php.ini) Path” showed: C:WINDOWS.
Test 2:
a. Moved php.ini from E:PHP to C:WINDOWS
b. Stopped and started IIS
c. Ran 'test-php-ini-loaded.php' to check if my php.ini is loaded. It is not, which surprised me.
d. Ran 'test.php'. My php.ini is apparently not loaded, or found, by phpinfo( ), even though “Configuration File (php.ini) Path” reports it as being in C:WINDOWS.
e. Note: Per PHP’s “The configuration file” note, PHP's search order includes: “Windows directory (C:windows or C:winnt) (for Windows), ..”; but it apparently doesn’t or php.ini would have been found and displayed at “Loaded Configuration File”.
Test 3:
a. Left the solo copy of my php.ini in C:WINDOWS
b. Disabled PHPRC environment variable by renaming it to “Ex-PHPRC and saving the settings (note: for this test I left the Registry entry for PHP IniFilePath intact)
c. Stopped and started IIS
d. Ran 'test-php-ini-loaded.php' to check whether my php.ini is loaded. Predictably it is not found.
e. Ran the 'test.php'. Again, my php.ini file is reported as not found in C:WINDOWS though “Configuration File (php.ini) Path” reports it as being there.
Test 4:
a. To be thorough and eliminate all possible sources of “mis-direction” I deleted the PHP IniFilePath Registry entry (after backing up the Registry). The PHPRC environment variable was left disabled.
b. Stopped and started IIS
c. Ran 'test-php-ini-loaded.php' to check whether my php.ini is loaded. Predictably it is not.
d. Ran 'test.php'. Again, no change. My php.ini file is not found “Configuration File (php.ini) Path” reports it as being there.
The first conclusion I came to is that, in the default download version of phpinfo( ), “Configuration File (php.ini) Path” is hard-wired to report C:WINDOWS whether php.ini is there or not. Further, that C:WINDOWS is not a default search location (at least not on XP).
However, given an otherwise “proper” setup, phpinfo() reporting C:WINDOWS as the value for “Configuration File (php.ini) Path” is merely misleading and is not actually harmful or indicative of a failed installation.
Thanks go to Peter Guy of who suggested the testing, and to Daniel Brown of for some initial guidance.
P.S. This note is not meant to take anything away from PHP. It is a fine tool. The sole purpose of the testing was to confirm that my installation of PHP was correct.

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