This is an old revision of the document!

This page contains bits and pieces of the Zend Engine documentation:

Op-array structure

  • each op_array has an array of literals (constant values)
  • opocde operands don't contain zval directly any more but points to thistable instead
  • during compilation they are accessible by index e.g:
  • the pass_two() changes indexes into pointers so during execution they are accessible by:


These are questions, often times with answers, for the PHP Internals. This document is temporary until it's polished and finds a home within the PHP Manual sources. Feel free to add questions with or without answers.

Note: This is rough, feel free to clean it up.


Extensions can be written in C++, you have to add PHP_REQUIRE_CXX to the config.m4 file to make the build system C++-aware though.

To allow static builds of the extension one has to mind this:

09:20:43 <johannes_> and ext/extname/php_extname.h has to be a valid C header, not C++, as it's included in internal_functions.c ...
09:22:06 <dsp_> hmm, that's the point..
09:23:01 <johannes_> you can have your own additional header for C++ suff, but that one has to be C compatible

Memory Management

[12:00pm] scoates: ok.. last question for now, I think: should I explicitly destroy on RSHUTDOWN, or let the non-persistent flag take care of that?
[12:00pm] johannes_: always cleanup yourself

Note here: while MM shutdown will take care of all allocated memory, it won't run any dtors etc., that's why it is important to clean up the resources properly - otherwise external dependencies can be messed up. And of course you'd get leaks reported in the debug mode.

Causes for crashes

Throwing Exceptions

If throwing exceptions results in a segmentation fault on 64bit systems only, then be sure that you have:

#include "zend_exceptions.h" 

(Remark: This header is always needed. The segfault might be caused by the fact, that C defaults the return value and parameters of undefined parameters to int. In cases where pointers and/or long data types are needed this might be wrong so a wrong function call is being made. A good compiler should give a warning. --johannes)


[11:58am] scoates: what's the difference between zend_hash_[add] and zend_hash_quick_[add] ?
[11:58am] scoates: removal of gofaster loops? (-:
[11:58am] Derick: with the 2nd one you can provide an already calculated hash-list index
[11:59am] scoates: and the hashtable will automatically grow on _add, right? the length passed to init is just a hint?
[11:59am] johannes_: right


Add your random stuff here. I'll move it/update it/fix it (Derick)

internals/engine.1272226272.txt.gz · Last modified: 2017/09/22 13:28 (external edit)