Wednesday, December 19, 2007

PHP - File Upload

When the uploader.php file is executed, the uploaded file exists in a temporary storage area on the server. If the file is not moved to a different location it will be destroyed! To save our precious file we are going to need to make use of the $_FILES associative array.

The $_FILES array is where PHP stores all the information about files. There are two elements of this array that we will need to understand for this example.

  • uploadedfile - uploadedfile is the reference we assigned in our HTML form. We will need this to tell the $_FILES array which file we want to play around with.
  • $_FILES['uploadedfile']['name'] - name contains the original path of the user uploaded file.
  • $_FILES['uploadedfile']['tmp_name'] - tmp_name contains the path to the temporary file that resides on the server. The file should exist on the server in a temporary directory with a temporary name.

Now we can finally start to write a basic PHP upload manager script! Here is how we would get the temporary file name, choose a permanent name, and choose a place to store the file.

PHP Code:

// Where the file is going to be placed
$target_path = "uploads/";

/* Add the original filename to our target path.
Result is "uploads/filename.extension" */
$target_path = $target_path . basename( $_FILES['uploadedfile']['name']);

NOTE: You will need to create a new directory in the directory where uploader.php resides, called "uploads", as we are going to be saving files there.

We now have all we need to successfully save our file to the server. $target_path contains the path where we want to save our file to.