PHPinfo, Tiny Code, Big Information

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PHPinfo, Tiny Code, Big InformationOne of the big selling points of WordPress is the fact that many, if not most, users will never need to learn a single line of code.  But just as is the case with most things, the more you know, the more you can do.  Even a little knowledge can go a long way. One great example, is the deceptively short PHP command, phpinfo.

Even in its simplest form, with no parameters, it can provide invaluable information about current state of PHP. This includes:

  • PHP compilation options
  • PHP extensions (not be confused with WordPress extensions)
  • PHP version
  • Server information and environment
  • PHP environment
  • OS version information
  • Paths
  • Master and Local values of configuration options
  • HTTP headers
  • PHP License

This information can be invaluable in diagnosing problems and configuring various aspect of your WordPress install, extensions, plugins and more without having to resort to a tech support call or cornering your system administrator in the break room.

So how do I use it?

Making a phpinfo file.  A phpinfo file is nothing more than a file containing this one line of code and saved with the extension “.php”.

<?php phpinfo(); ?>

Yes, that is it.  Upload this file to your web server and visit the location with your web browser and it will display more information than most users will know what to do with.  So much, in fact, that you may need use your browser page search function (Control F on PC, Command F on Mac) to find specific pieces of information.

Here is an actual example of the phpinfo.php output.

If, for some reason, you cannot create or deploy your own phpinfo file (limited server access, no FTP, etc), you can also use a very simple phpinfo plugin to achieve similar effects (though this may not be helpful if you are trying to diagnosis and issue running WordPress in the first place, obviously).

If you’d like to learn more about phpinfo and what it can do, visit the official PHP documentation page about it (and other topics).

Need help implementing this tip in your WordPress site? Contact us for our professional services.  We can also provide support & expertise in convenient “blocks” to suit your short and long term needs.


I'm the front-man of It's WordPress. I come from a diverse array of backgrounds, enjoying the opportunity to expand my knowledge base and skill set by re-inventing myself. I enjoy environments that focus on emerging information, technology and concepts. I put on the technical hat in my early 20s and never really looked back. I'm love technology and the internet, as well as the outdoors and avidly hike, kayak and camp every chance I get.

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