If you are a PHP developer, you may have come across the mysql_* functions at some point in your career. These functions are used to interact with a MySQL database in PHP applications. However, you might have heard that using these functions is not recommended. In this blog post, we will discuss why you shouldn’t use mysql_* functions in PHP.
First of all, the MySQL extension is not under active development. It has been officially deprecated as of PHP 5.5, which was released in June 2013. This means that as of December 2018, it does not exist in any supported version of PHP. If you are using a version of PHP that supports it, you are using a version that doesn’t get security problems fixed. This puts your application at risk of security breaches and other vulnerabilities.
Moreover, the MySQL extension lacks an Object-Oriented (OO) interface. In the modern programming world, OO programming is a popular and standard way to write code. This makes it easier to manage code and also makes it more efficient. Without an OO interface, it is difficult to write code that is flexible and can be easily updated in the future.
In addition, the MySQL extension doesn’t support non-blocking, asynchronous queries, prepared statements or parameterized queries, stored procedures, multiple statements, transactions, and many other new functionalities in MySQL 5.1 or later. This means that your code will be less efficient and less secure if you use the MySQL extension.
One of the most important things that the MySQL extension lacks is support for prepared statements. Prepared statements provide a clearer, less error-prone method of escaping and quoting external data than manually escaping it with a separate function call. This makes it much easier to write secure code that is less vulnerable to SQL injection attacks.
Another reason why you shouldn’t use mysql_* functions in PHP is that they are deprecated. This means that using them makes your code less future-proof. As newer versions of PHP are released, these functions may be removed entirely, which means that you will have to update your code to keep it working.
In conclusion, there are many reasons why you shouldn’t use mysql_* functions in PHP. They are not under active development, lack an OO interface, and don’t support many important features of modern MySQL databases. Most importantly, they lack support for prepared statements, which makes them vulnerable to SQL injection attacks. So, it’s always better to use modern, secure, and future-proof alternatives like MySQLi or PDO to interact with your MySQL database in PHP applications.