As you may know by now I strive to maintain a perfect development environment here with Rapid Purple Hosting. With that said just a few days after it was officially announced by the PHP development team, the latest bugfix-only release of PHP 5.6.0 is now available on all of our client servers. This is the third RC version of PHP 5.6.0 now which accumulates all bug fixes that have been reported by the large PHP community worldwide.
The latest version boasts a wide range of improvements and brand new features that are aimed at making PHP much safer and easier to work with. Here is a list of the key new features included in the new release:
- added support for constant scalar expressions – numeric and string literals and/or constants are now allowed in static-value contexts, such as constant and property declarations or default function arguments.
- variadic functions via ‘…’ – the variadic functions can now be implemented through the ‘…’ operator, instead of the func_get_args() function.
- ?rgument unpacking via ‘…’ – the ?rrays and traversable objects can be unpacked into argument lists when calling functions through the ‘…’ operator.
- exponentiation via ‘**’ – a right associative ** operator and a **= shorthand assignment operator have been added to support exponentiation.
- use function and use const – the use operator now supports importing functions (via the use function construct) and constants (via the use const construct), apart from classes.
- phpdbg – PHP now includes an interactive debugger called phpdbg, which is implemented as a SAPI module.
- default character encoding – the default_charset is now used as the default character set for functions that are encoding-specific, such as htmlspecialchars(). The default value for this setting is UTF-8.
- large file uploads – files larger than 2 gigabytes in size are now supported.
- SSL/TLS improvements – peer verification is enabled by default, support for certificate fingerprint matching is now included, mitigation against TLS renegotiation attacks is activated; many new SSL context options, which allowbetter control over the protocol/verification settings when using encryption, are included too.
You can see a full list of the new features and functionalities of the new PHP 5.6.0 release here: http://php.net/manual/en/migration56.new-features.php. All PHP users are encouraged to try out the new version carefully, and to report any bugs in the bug tracking system – https://bugs.php.net. The next Release Candidate version of PHP 5.6.0 is expected to be released in mid-August.