Pragmatism in the real world


This post is part of a series about my experiences building a PHP app for Windows Server 2008 and IIS 7 for the European WinPHP Challenge 2009 which is sponsored by iBuildings, Microsoft and Leaseweb.

It’s time to connect PHP to MS SQL Server. To make life simple, I decided to take my Zend Framework tutorial and get that going.

I created the database and albums table using the SQL Server Management Studio and populated with a couple of rows.

Using The SqlSrv API Reference, I started by with a simple test PHP script:

$connectionInfo = array(
$conn = sqlsrv_connect('RKAWIN2008\SQLEXPRESS', $connectionInfo);

if ($conn === false) {
echo "<p&gtConnection could not be established.</p&gt <pre>";
die(print_r(sqlsrv_errors(), true));

// Tidy up

which gave me the error:

[Microsoft][ODBC Driver Manager] Data source name not found and no default driver specified

A quick google around suggested that I needed to install the SQL Server Native Client, so I did :) This worked!

It seems a little odd that the Web Platform Installer let me install PHP and MSSQL Server Express, but didn’t do the native client at the same time!

Once you have a connection, it gets easy! The code to retrieve data from the database and iterate over it is:

$sql = "SELECT * FROM albums";
$stmt = sqlsrv_query($conn, $sql);
if ($stmt === false) {
echo "<p>Error in query preparation/execution.</p>";
die(print_r(sqlsrv_errors(), true));

// Retrieve each row as an associative array and display the results.
while ($row = sqlsrv_fetch_array( $stmt, SQLSRV_FETCH_ASSOC)) {
echo $row['artist'] . ': ' . $row['album'] . "<br/>n";

which gives the output:


The next step is to connect and use a Zend_Db_Adapter, but there isn’t one yet. I’ve also discovered that you can’t use the SQL Server driver for PHP with PDO, so I’ll be creating an App_Db_Adapter_Sqlsrv which, assuming it works, I’ll propose for addition to Zend Framework.

7 thoughts on “MSSQL and PHP

  1. Thanks for the code. I am wondering, though, shouldn't I iterate over the contents of the result set in the View? If so, how do I pass the result set $stmt into the view? Or, if this is incorrect, could you suggest a better procedure?

    Also, I look forward to you sqlsrv adapter.

    Many thanks,


  2. ok i have a databse (sql)uploaded to my database now i want to connect it to php and php to my website the meaning is that a customer can use it fill in a form and press save the filled in forum saved in the database and the an email to my boss

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