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get_defined_vars — Fetch a list of all variables in the current scope.


array get_defined_vars();
void :


Associative array


get_defined_vars() returns an associative array that contains the names and values of all variables set in the current scope. The variable names are used as the key names, while the variable values are used as the array values.

Arrays and objects are rendered as nested arrays. See the examples below.


The array contains all variables set with the exception of the special variable $GLOBALS.


Example 1379. Display all global variables

    print_r (get_defined_vars ());

Output is too long to display!

Example 1380. Display all variables within an object

class foo {
   var $bar, $baz;

   function foo () {
      $this->bar = $this->baz = 1;
      var_dump (get_defined_vars ());

new foo ();

Output:array(1) {
  &object(foo)(2) {

Example 1381. Serialize all global variables

$serialized = serialize (get_defined_vars ());

// Make the variables safe to store in a MySQL database
$serialized = mysql_escape_string ($serialized);

// Code to insert data into database

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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