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PHP 5 File Upload


With PHP, it is easy to upload files to the server.

However, with ease comes danger, so always be careful when allowing file uploads!


Configure The "php.ini" File

First, ensure that PHP is configured to allow file uploads.

In your "php.ini" file, search for the file_uploads directive, and set it to On:

file_uploads = On


Create The HTML Form

Next, create an HTML form that allow users to choose the image file they want to upload:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
<body>

<form action="upload.php" method="post" enctype="multipart/form-data">
    Select image to upload:
    <input type="file" name="fileToUpload" id="fileToUpload">
    <input type="submit" value="Upload Image" name="submit">
</form>

</body>
</html>

Some rules to follow for the HTML form above:

  • Make sure that the form uses method="post"
  • The form also needs the following attribute: enctype="multipart/form-data". It specifies which content-type to use when submitting the form

Without the requirements above, the file upload will not work.

Other things to notice:

  • The type="file" attribute of the <input> tag shows the input field as a file-select control, with a "Browse" button next to the input control

The form above sends data to a file called "upload.php", which we will create next.


Create The Upload File PHP Script

The "upload.php" file contains the code for uploading a file:

<?php
$target_dir = "uploads/";
$target_file = $target_dir . basename($_FILES["fileToUpload"]["name"]);
$uploadOk = 1;
$imageFileType = pathinfo($target_file,PATHINFO_EXTENSION);
// Check if image file is a actual image or fake image
if(isset($_POST["submit"])) {
    $check = getimagesize($_FILES["fileToUpload"]["tmp_name"]);
    if($check !== false) {
        echo "File is an image - " . $check["mime"] . ".";
        $uploadOk = 1;
    } else {
        echo "File is not an image.";
        $uploadOk = 0;
    }
}
?>

PHP script explained:

  • $target_dir = "uploads/" - specifies the directory where the file is going to be placed
  • $target_file specifies the path of the file to be uploaded
  • $uploadOk=1 is not used yet (will be used later)
  • $imageFileType holds the file extension of the file
  • Next, check if the image file is an actual image or a fake image
Note Note: You will need to create a new directory called "uploads" in the directory where "upload.php" file resides. The uploaded files will be saved there.


Check if File Already Exists

Now we can add some restrictions.

First, we will check if the file already exists in the "uploads" folder. If it does, an error message is displayed, and $uploadOk is set to 0:

// Check if file already exists
if (file_exists($target_file)) {
    echo "Sorry, file already exists.";
    $uploadOk = 0;
}


Limit File Size

The file input field in our HTML form above is named "fileToUpload".

Now, we want to check the size of the file. If the file is larger than 500kb, an error message is displayed, and $uploadOk is set to 0:

 // Check file size
if ($_FILES["fileToUpload"]["size"] > 500000) {
    echo "Sorry, your file is too large.";
    $uploadOk = 0;
}


Limit File Type

The code below only allows users to upload JPG, JPEG, PNG, and GIF files. All other file types gives an error message before setting $uploadOk to 0:

// Allow certain file formats
if($imageFileType != "jpg" && $imageFileType != "png" && $imageFileType != "jpeg"
&& $imageFileType != "gif" ) {
    echo "Sorry, only JPG, JPEG, PNG & GIF files are allowed.";
    $uploadOk = 0;
}


Complete Upload File PHP Script

The complete "upload.php" file now looks like this:

<?php
$target_dir = "uploads/";
$target_file = $target_dir . basename($_FILES["fileToUpload"]["name"]);
$uploadOk = 1;
$imageFileType = pathinfo($target_file,PATHINFO_EXTENSION);
// Check if image file is a actual image or fake image
if(isset($_POST["submit"])) {
    $check = getimagesize($_FILES["fileToUpload"]["tmp_name"]);
    if($check !== false) {
        echo "File is an image - " . $check["mime"] . ".";
        $uploadOk = 1;
    } else {
        echo "File is not an image.";
        $uploadOk = 0;
    }
}
// Check if file already exists
if (file_exists($target_file)) {
    echo "Sorry, file already exists.";
    $uploadOk = 0;
}
// Check file size
if ($_FILES["fileToUpload"]["size"] > 500000) {
    echo "Sorry, your file is too large.";
    $uploadOk = 0;
}
// Allow certain file formats
if($imageFileType != "jpg" && $imageFileType != "png" && $imageFileType != "jpeg"
&& $imageFileType != "gif" ) {
    echo "Sorry, only JPG, JPEG, PNG & GIF files are allowed.";
    $uploadOk = 0;
}
// Check if $uploadOk is set to 0 by an error
if ($uploadOk == 0) {
    echo "Sorry, your file was not uploaded.";
// if everything is ok, try to upload file
} else {
    if (move_uploaded_file($_FILES["fileToUpload"]["tmp_name"], $target_file)) {
        echo "The file ". basename( $_FILES["fileToUpload"]["name"]). " has been uploaded.";
    } else {
        echo "Sorry, there was an error uploading your file.";
    }
}
?>


Complete PHP Filesystem Reference

For a complete reference of filesystem functions, go to our complete PHP Filesystem Reference.



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