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on 22 July 2013
I used this book about 10 years ago now (presumably a previous edition) to learn PHP and MySQL as a hobby. I am now a professional web developer doing something I really love for a living, and I put it almost entirely down to this book being so accessible for a newcomer to learn how to code, and inspiring.

This book really does labour over the basics, but it doesn't skip over anything and explains what every single line of code does and why it's there. By working through this book cover to cover (and doing all of the examples myself) I was able to become very proficient with PHP and MySQL in a matter of weeks and have never looked back. After completing this book I went on to create a fully fledged forum system with the languages to test my skills, and found that this book had taught me absolutely all of the skills I needed (besides HTML and CSS of course).

This is the perfect book for newcomers to the language, or programming in general, and I still use it regularly for general reference. This would not be well suited to someone looking for something more advanced, as it really is aimed at complete beginners.

Other reviewers here are mentioning problems setting up the PHP/MySQL/Apache stack. I can't comment on this as I've always just run it on a server, however if you do want to run it locally I would recommend ignoring the instructions and CD, and simply installing WAMP (or MAMP if you have a Mac) as this sets up the entire stack for you with just a few clicks.
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on 10 December 2012
There is a lot of very useful information to be found inside of the book that is essential for anybody coming to PHP for the first time. However I found that installation of the software, especially using source code was a real problem, not being familiar with the process of installing similar source code.

In the end I installed Ubuntu and used 'apt-get install' within a linux terminal to install apache, php and postgresql (my preference over mysql).

Even taking this approach requires that you look at the net and make a few configuration file setting changes (mostly associated with access rights) to get it all working.

Others on the net have experienced the same problems that I encountered and with a little investigation and trial and error most people should be capable of getting the components to work.

I think that as the book suggests installing from source as being a good solution then it should dedicate a chapter to the set-up process requirements focused on what can go wrong and how to remedy.
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on 5 March 2013
Couldn't get my head around the installation process. I couldn't find answers to my problems in the book so had to spend hours trawling through forums. Not very good. I haven't given up on it, I will try again but I found it very stressful and irritating. I don't recommend this book.
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on 24 August 2013
You start with the step by step instructions on how to install everything but none of it works. So unless you already know what you are doing install Apache servers, which I am not, then this book doesn't help. Don't buy.
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on 4 February 2013
Bought this to learn - it has helped, but there are mistakes in the coding and also some things don't work. Bit disappointing, but maybe I was expecting too much.
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on 7 July 2014
A little bit early for me to give it a full review but so far it is worth at least 4 and probably at the end I would have voted 5*.
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