Effective Error Handling in PHP: Logging, Exceptions and User Feedback | PHP Beginner to Advance

Error handling is a crucial aspect of any web development project, and PHP is no exception. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at how to handle errors and exceptions in PHP, including logging errors and displaying error messages to users.

When an error occurs in PHP, it generates an error message which can be displayed to the user. However, in a production environment, it’s generally not a good idea to display these error messages to the end user as they may contain sensitive information about the inner workings of your application. Instead, it’s better to log the error message and notify the developer.

To log errors in PHP, you can use the error_log() function. This function takes three parameters: the error message, the error type, and the destination of the log. The destination can be a file or an email address.

error_log("Error: {$error}", 0, "error.log");

Exceptions are a way to handle errors in a more controlled manner. Instead of letting the error bubble up through the code and potentially causing the application to crash, exceptions allow you to catch and handle the error at a specific point in the code.

try {
    // code that may throw an exception
} catch (Exception $e) {
    error_log("Error: {$e->getMessage()}", 0, "error.log");

When displaying error messages to the user, it’s important to be careful not to reveal too much information. Instead of displaying the exact error message, you can display a more general message.

if ($error) {
    echo "An error occurred. Please try again later.";

In addition to logging errors, it’s also important to keep track of any errors that occur in your application. This can be done by using a centralized logging service such as Loggly or Splunk.

In conclusion, error handling is a crucial aspect of PHP development. By logging errors and handling exceptions, you can ensure that your application is more robust and less likely to crash. Additionally, by being careful about how you display error messages to users, you can help to protect the security of your application.

Here are the parts of the series