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Last updated: Tue, 19 Sep 2006

XLI. Firebird/InterBase Functions


Firebird/InterBase is a relational database offering many ANSI SQL-92 features that runs on Linux, Windows, and a variety of Unix platforms. Firebird/InterBase offers excellent concurrency, high performance, and powerful language support for stored procedures and triggers. It has been used in production systems, under a variety of names since 1981.

InterBase is the name of the closed-source variant of this RDBMS that was developed by Borland/Inprise. More information about InterBase is available at http://www.borland.com/interbase/.

Firebird is a commercially independent project of C and C++ programmers, technical advisors and supporters developing and enhancing a multi-platform relational database management system based on the source code released by Inprise Corp (now known as Borland Software Corp) under the InterBase Public License v.1.0 on 25 July, 2000. More information about Firebird is available at http://www.firebirdsql.org/.

Note: This extension supports InterBase versions 5 and up and all versions of Firebird. Support for InterBase version 5.x will be dropped in PHP 5.

This database uses a single quote (') character for escaping, a behavior similar to the Sybase database, add to your php.ini the following directive:

magic_quotes_sybase = On


To enable InterBase support configure PHP --with-interbase[=DIR], where DIR is the InterBase base install directory, which defaults to /usr/interbase.

Note to Win32 Users: In order to enable this module on a Windows environment, you must copy gds32.dll from the DLL folder of the PHP/Win32 binary package to the SYSTEM32 folder of your windows machine. (Ex: C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32 or C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32). In case you installed the InterBase database server on the same machine PHP is running on, you will have this DLL already. Therefore you don't need to copy gds32.dll from the DLL folder.

Runtime Configuration

The behaviour of these functions is affected by settings in php.ini.

Table 1. InterBase configuration options

ibase.default_dbNULLPHP_INI_SYSTEMAvailable since PHP 5.0.0.
ibase.default_charsetNULLPHP_INI_ALLAvailable since PHP 5.0.0.
ibase.timestampformat"%Y-%m-%d %H:%M:%S"PHP_INI_ALL 
For further details and definitions of the PHP_INI_* constants, see the Appendix G.

Here's a short explanation of the configuration directives.

ibase.allow_persistent boolean

Whether to allow persistent connections to Firebird/InterBase.

ibase.max_persistent integer

The maximum number of persistent Firebird/InterBase connections per process. New connections created with ibase_pconnect() will be non-persistent if this number would be exceeded.

ibase.max_links integer

The maximum number of Firebird/InterBase connections per process, including persistent connections.

ibase.default_db string

The default database to connect to when ibase_[p]connect() is called without specifying a database name. If this value is set and SQL safe mode is enabled, no other connections than to this database will be allowed.

ibase.default_user string

The user name to use when connecting to a database if no user name is specified.

ibase.default_password string

The password to use when connecting to a database if no password is specified.

ibase.default_charset string

The character set to use when connecting to a database if no character set is specified.

ibase.timestampformat string

ibase.dateformat string

ibase.timeformat string

These directives are used to set the date and time formats that are used when returning dates and times from a result set, or when binding arguments to date and time parameters.

Predefined Constants

The constants below are defined by this extension, and will only be available when the extension has either been compiled into PHP or dynamically loaded at runtime.

The following constants can be passed to ibase_trans() to specify transaction behaviour.

Table 2. Firebird/InterBase transaction flags

IBASE_DEFAULT The default transaction settings are to be used. This default is determined by the client library, which defines it as IBASE_WRITE|IBASE_CONCURRENCY|IBASE_WAIT in most cases.
IBASE_READStarts a read-only transaction.
IBASE_WRITEStarts a read-write transaction.
IBASE_CONSISTENCYStarts a transaction with the isolation level set to 'consistency', which means the transaction cannot read from tables that are being modified by other concurrent transactions.
IBASE_CONCURRENCYStarts a transaction with the isolation level set to 'concurrency' (or 'snapshot'), which means the transaction has access to all tables, but cannot see changes that were committed by other transactions after the transaction was started.
IBASE_COMMITTEDStarts a transaction with the isolation level set to 'read committed'. This flag should be combined with either IBASE_REC_VERSION or IBASE_REC_NO_VERSION. This isolation level allows access to changes that were committed after the transaction was started. If IBASE_REC_NO_VERSION was specified, only the latest version of a row can be read. If IBASE_REC_VERSION was specified, a row can even be read when a modification to it is pending in a concurrent transaction.
IBASE_WAITIndicated that a transaction should wait and retry when a conflict occurs.
IBASE_NOWAITIndicated that a transaction should fail immediately when a conflict occurs.

The following constants can be passed to ibase_fetch_row(), ibase_fetch_assoc() or ibase_fetch_object() to specify fetch behaviour.

Table 3. Firebird/InterBase fetch flags

IBASE_FETCH_BLOBSAlso available as IBASE_TEXTfor backward compatibility. Causes BLOB contents to be fetched inline, instead of being fetched as BLOB identifiers.
IBASE_FETCH_ARRAYSCauses arrays to be fetched inline. Otherwise, array identifiers are returned. Array identifiers can only be used as arguments to INSERT operations, as no functions to handle array identifiers are currently available.
IBASE_UNIXTIMECauses date and time fields not to be returned as strings, but as UNIX timestamps (the number of seconds since the epoch, which is 1-Jan-1970 0:00 UTC). Might be problematic if used with dates before 1970 on some systems.

The following constants are used to pass requests and options to the service API functions (ibase_server_info(), ibase_db_info(), ibase_backup(), ibase_restore() and ibase_maintain_db()). Please refer to the Firebird/InterBase manuals for the meaning of these options.








Options to ibase_backup()








Options to ibase_restore()

























Options to ibase_maintain_db()






Options to ibase_db_info()









Options to ibase_server_info()

Table of Contents
ibase_add_user --  Add a user to a security database (only for IB6 or later)
ibase_affected_rows --  Return the number of rows that were affected by the previous query
ibase_backup --  Initiates a backup task in the service manager and returns immediately
ibase_blob_add --  Add data into a newly created blob
ibase_blob_cancel --  Cancel creating blob
ibase_blob_close --  Close blob
ibase_blob_create --  Create a new blob for adding data
ibase_blob_echo --  Output blob contents to browser
ibase_blob_get --  Get len bytes data from open blob
ibase_blob_import --  Create blob, copy file in it, and close it
ibase_blob_info --  Return blob length and other useful info
ibase_blob_open --  Open blob for retrieving data parts
ibase_close --  Close a connection to an InterBase database
ibase_commit_ret -- Commit a transaction without closing it
ibase_commit -- Commit a transaction
ibase_connect --  Open a connection to an InterBase database
ibase_db_info --  Request statistics about a database
ibase_delete_user --  Delete a user from a security database (only for IB6 or later)
ibase_drop_db --  Drops a database
ibase_errcode --  Return an error code
ibase_errmsg --  Return error messages
ibase_execute -- Execute a previously prepared query
ibase_fetch_assoc --  Fetch a result row from a query as an associative array
ibase_fetch_object -- Get an object from a InterBase database
ibase_fetch_row -- Fetch a row from an InterBase database
ibase_field_info --  Get information about a field
ibase_free_event_handler --  Cancels a registered event handler
ibase_free_query --  Free memory allocated by a prepared query
ibase_free_result -- Free a result set
ibase_gen_id --  Increments the named generator and returns its new value
ibase_maintain_db --  Execute a maintenance command on the database server
ibase_modify_user --  Modify a user to a security database (only for IB6 or later)
ibase_name_result --  Assigns a name to a result set
ibase_num_fields --  Get the number of fields in a result set
ibase_num_params --  Return the number of parameters in a prepared query
ibase_param_info --  Return information about a parameter in a prepared query
ibase_pconnect --  Open a persistent connection to an InterBase database
ibase_prepare --  Prepare a query for later binding of parameter placeholders and execution
ibase_query -- Execute a query on an InterBase database
ibase_restore --  Initiates a restore task in the service manager and returns immediately
ibase_rollback_ret -- Roll back a transaction without closing it
ibase_rollback -- Roll back a transaction
ibase_server_info --  Request information about a database server
ibase_service_attach --  Connect to the service manager
ibase_service_detach --  Disconnect from the service manager
ibase_set_event_handler --  Register a callback function to be called when events are posted
ibase_timefmt --  Sets the format of timestamp, date and time type columns returned from queries
ibase_trans -- Begin a transaction
ibase_wait_event --  Wait for an event to be posted by the database

Last updated: Tue, 19 Sep 2006