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    August 9, 2010

PHP OCI8 1.4.3 is Available on PECL

Christopher Jones
Senior Principal Product Manager

I've just posted the PHP OCI8 1.4.2 and OCI8 1.4.3 extensions on PECL. The change notes are here. PHP OCI8 is the recommended database driver for using Oracle Database in the PHP scripting language.

Why the two releases so close in time? The OCI8 extension is one of the few extensions that has a dual identity, being in both the PHP bundle and in the PECL repository. OCI8 1.4.2 contains the same code as in the recent PHP 5.3.3 release. The PECL bundle was made for anyone who wants a PHP 5.5.3-identical version of OCI8 when installing via PECL.

PECL OCI8 1.4.3 has one extra fix (bug #51610) that came too late in the PHP 5.3.3 release cycle and was deferred. It has now been merged to PHP's source code system and will also be in a subsequent PHP distribution e.g. PHP 5.3.4 or later. The bug impacts Oracle users who run PHP OCI8 1.3+ using Oracle client libraries and who use PHP as a command line scripting language. It causes a time delay at PHP process termination. Sites invoking PHP via a web server are unlikely to have noticed any issue. The "problem" had existed for several years but suddenly became "hot" - perhaps when users started to upgrade to PHP 5.3 which was the first full PHP release to include the affected code. I was surprised how many people are using PHP for command line processing. The OCI8 fix requires an Oracle client library patch for Oracle bug 9891199 before it will have an effect on PHP. There are several alternative PHP fixes postulated in bug #51610 that don't require an Oracle library patch, but they have limitations (no DRCP support; potential memory leak in far edge cases) and haven't been tested.

The OCI8 extension can be installed on PHP 4.3.9 onwards. The PHP community would strongly suggest that anyone still using PHP 4 should upgrade to PHP 5 for overall stability and security reasons. PHP 5.2 or PHP 5.3 are preferred.

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Comments ( 1 )
  • Tim Strehle Monday, August 9, 2010
    Thanks for the releases, it's great that #51610 has been fixed! Command line PHP is absolutely vital for our application and I wonder why so few people are using it :-) PHP code reuse for daemons and batch processing makes a lot of sense to us. We've been bitten quite a few times by PHP bugs that get little attention because they're relevant to long-running scripts only (#47038, #46889, #29838) but I'm grateful that the PHP community fixed them all. CLI related notes from my blog: http://www.strehle.de/tim/weblog/archives/2005/06/09/502 http://www.strehle.de/tim/weblog/archives/2004/12/16/435
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