Chapter 18. LAMP

Just writing a couple of lines of HTML code is not enough for most web sites; dynamic content is what people want today. Well, web-site visitors don’t usually want as much as web designers are eager give them, but the designers are in control, so dynamic content is what we are going to talk about in this chapter.

Linux is — you guessed it — an excellent platform for serving dynamic content. A bazillion web sites serving dynamic content are already running on Linux today; this is one of the foremost application areas where Linux excels.

Dynamic content can be achieved by two entirely different ways of programming: server-side programming and client-side programming. JavaScript and Java applets are the most common ways of getting interactive HTML pages with client-side programming.

But because of the limitations of JavaScript and Java, most people use server-side programs. You can use server-side programs in many different flavors with many different software packages, but one combination has become ubiquitous for implementing these techniques. This combination is so common nowadays that it even has received a phony acronym: LAMP, which is short for Linux-Apache-MySQL-PHP. We have been talking about the Apache web server already, and this whole book is about Linux, so what we have left to talk about here are the latter two packages — MySQL and PHP — as well as how the four go together.

In order to get a working LAMP installation, you will need to have Apache set up ...

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