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getenv — Gets an environment variable value.


string getenv(name);
string name: Name of environment variable


Environment variable setting; FALSE on error


Retrieves the name of an environment variable from the system. This may be path information, the location of the system temporary directory, etc. The availability of various environment variables differs from system to system. A mostly complete list can be displayed using phpinfo() . Other system information items such as PATH and PROMPT are global but not terribly useful. If PHP is an Apache module, those environment variables displayed in phpinfo are variables in the GLOBAL variable space within the script.

getenv() can help improve security by ensuring that a script is accessing the value of an environment variable, instead of a value passed by a user or by a coding error.


Example 993. Retrieve PATH information

echo "The current list of directories in the system path is ", getenv("PATH");

PHP Functions Essential Reference. Copyright © 2002 by New Riders Publishing (Authors: Zak Greant, Graeme Merrall, Torben Wilson, Brett Michlitsch). This material may be distributed only subject to the terms and conditions set forth in the Open Publication License, v1.0 or later (the latest version is presently available at The authors of this book have elected not to choose any options under the OPL. This online book was obtained from and is designed to provide information about the PHP programming language, focusing on PHP version 4.0.4 for the most part. The information is provided on an as-is basis, and no warranty or fitness is implied. All persons and entities shall have neither liability nor responsibility to any person or entity with respect to any loss or damage arising from the information contained in this book.

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