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4.1 out of 5 stars41
4.1 out of 5 stars
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on 8 August 2014
I have real trouble with this book. I've used other books by Mike McGrath in the past and been very impressed, and generally really like this series. But this one seems to have a good few errors and following the instructions step by step/word for word the examples only seem to half work - often things like the code works but also prints the php next to it or the browser reads parsing errors. Probably just errant speech marks etc, but if you're learning that can be eally problematic.
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on 11 March 2013
I've used this series before for basic Web Design, and loved it.
PHP & MySQL was just the next logical step from that. Being introduced to PHP through a module in University, I found the subject hard to grasp in the way we were being taught... Which was basically, here's a problem - fix it, with no real guidance or previous help.

Like other books in the series, you receive step by step instructions on what to do, and what the code you're writing does - and how it affects anything else as a whole.

Yes there are tutorials for PHP and MySQL out there, but not in such an easy to learn and well written style (well none that I've found anyway). With such a low price tag it's well worth the buy.
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on 6 July 2013
I have been designing web pages with ASP and Access databases but never managed to get MySQL running. Although the current version of MySQL is newer than the one in the book and seems to be completely different to install the older version was still available and it worked just like the book showed. I also chose to use the PHP add-on to IIS instead of the standalone server used in the book and, with IIS now built into Windows 7 and 8, this would probably be a better choice.
This book was just what I needed to get started and will be a handy reference to the syntax of PHP.
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on 7 October 2012
This book is a good starting point for anyone who wants to learn PHP & MYSQL, it gives you step-by-step instructions on how to get everything set-up and it's even in colour. However, the negative point of this is that it does not talk about the full PHP language, it gives a small overview but not detailed enough it talks about loops, if statements, arrays, strings but does not go in to much detail. The MYSQL part has a lot of detail.

When your told to write some code it is nicely organized numbered down and in full colour, each step is easy to follow. (I guess that's why the call it easy-steps)

Towards the end you make a forum, user registration (encrypted) and a shopping site all data driven. So I would say it is the perfect book for beginners and even those who actually know PHP I know some PHP I learned over the years but this was a nice refresher with MYSQL. (I don't know MYSQL+PHP)

For the price it is a short (192 Pages) but good book. I finished it in 2 days.
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on 8 October 2015
Do not purchase if you use a Mac as the writers have no interest in supporting you. It is early days on the rest of the book, but installation of systems on my Mac Air to allow me to work through this has been awful !!! I have had to use a lot of third party websites to assist me, some of which have also commented on the poor standards of the book. The book acknowledges the existance of Mac computers only, and then just ignores any support at all for users. I am hoping that the PHP and MySql coding scripts and guidance is better. If your not confident in trying to find work arounds for the Mac then avoid. The book might better be titled PHP & MySQL "but only if you have a Windows system"
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on 11 July 2014
Not for beginners. I have HTML + CSS experience, I thought it was time to move-on up and learn dynamic development.

The title misleading, In Easy Steps?! heck yeah! Oh wait. This book is really dull and dry and FULL of technical jargon.
No practical examples of what things do and how they could be used.

I suppose I'll refer to it when I'm much more comfortable with PHP.
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on 2 February 2013
Although I have only used this book for two days, it leaves me a good impression. It explains all core technical difficulties step by step, and the quality of this book is also very good. However, it still has some shortages. For example, the chapter about MySQL I am currently studying, it should have gotten into a more difficult extent.
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on 4 November 2014
Excellent book. I have experience coding in a few languages but have never used PHP before. This book is easy to follow and is written in a way in which someone with no coding experience could learn how to use PHP and MySQL.
I like the book so much i have now purchased 4 other books in the 'In Easy Steps' series.
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on 10 January 2013
Simply fantastic. I've been battling with learning PHP & MySQL for a while and tried several books and video courses that all seemed to make hard work of it. This book makes it very simple and I managed to get through the first 61 pages of the book in only a few hours and get to grips with things I've known vaguely for ages but not ever got a solid handle on.

I think one of the strengths of this book is that it explains what other books might consider too obvious to mention. Like the fact that a variable is created simply by stating its name.

My only criticism would be that sometimes it's hard to tell where there should or should not be spaces in the code. But I don't think that's enough to make me give it any less than 5 stars because it's still the best PHP book for absolute beginners that I've come across.

Will certainly be buying other books in this series to master the basics of other programming languages.
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on 6 January 2016
Excellent book. Only difficult I had was when I completed the code and implemented it I had difficult get some of my CSS to stop pages and margins moving. However very practicable, but this is a basic implementation but good grounding
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