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Retreiving a web page in PHP

Posted by admin (Graham Ellis), 11 August 2002
I was asked "I want to grab a web page from another site every day using a PHP program.   How can I do it?"

Firstly, I'm going to question whether PHP is the best tool for the job;  there's a linux command called wget that you can use to retrieve a page without having to do any programming at all.  However ... if you do want to code it in PHP, remember that functions that read files will equally easy read from a URL if you give them one.  Thus, you can pick up a web page with a piece of code as simple as:

#!/usr/bin/php -q
$stuff = file("");
print implode ("",$stuff);

Since my questioner asked me about a "daily job", I've written this example to run from the command line .... then you'll be able to run it using crontab if you're fortuante enough to have access.  Write something like
     12  4  *  *  *  /home/graham/bin/graburl
into your crontab file to collect the file at 12 minutes after 4 every morning, even if you're still asleep!

Posted by admin (Graham Ellis), 17 October 2002
Just adding that you can also use ftp: (and https as your protocol if you want to , and they also apply to all the other file reading functions in PHP too.   The "-q" command line option in my example asks for quiet mode, which supresseses the "Content Type" header as were not using PHP as part of a web page, and also supresses tags that would normally be added around any warning and error messages from the PHP

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