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on October 21, 2007
I purchased this book based on an immediate need at my job, and have since created two nice PHP extensions. I found it to be extremely helpful at getting started into an otherwise poorly documented area of PHP and the Zend API. It does lack depth in some areas, such as PHP5 objects. I found that consulting the source code of several existing PHP extensions was necessary to fill in some of these gaps.
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on March 10, 2011
If you need to write PHP extensions, you will need this book, simply because the information it contains is not available anywhere else. That being said, a lot of the content of this book feels like the kind of information that would normally be part of a free open source documentation.

The book assumes you are already somewhat familiar with PHP internals and basically "throws you in the deep end" right away. It is also aimed at C programmers (the language PHP is written in); if you only know PHP, you will probably have a hard time creating an extension using only the information contained in this book.

The book is also doesn't contain a lot of newer information, since it was written in 2006. Getting extensions to work with PHP 5.3 sometimes requires changes to old code that is not mentioned in this book.
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on February 13, 2010
I work at a company where looking at source code is not an available means to decipher how things work. This book was the only way that I could accomplish my job of writing a custom PHP extension for connecting to our database product. In short, if it weren't for this book, I honestly don't know how I would have accomplished my job.
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on September 17, 2012
This book may lack some few updates since it was written (Namespaces, Traits and Closures aren't described in it) but it is so well written and gives you so much keys about the engine, that these new features can be found and understood with some very little search in the API.

It is a very good source of information to understand PHP's internals, even if you don't plan to build PHP extensions.

A book that every good PHP developper interested in code performances should read.
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on June 3, 2010
This book is, rightfully so, the definitive guide on creating your own php extensions. Golemon definitely knows her stuff and by the end of this book you will too! Just be prepared, it's a LOT of information, really fast...expect your head to hurt while reading.
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on May 11, 2013
I have read many good technical books during my life, and this one will certainly be in my top five.

Sara has a very in-deep knowledge of PHP extension development as well as PHP internals, and she knows how to guide the developer from the beginning, putting first in place "simple" tasks (like some traditional "hello world" function) up to more complex tasks such as PHP classes or streams implementations. The book even addresses the differences betwen PHP 4 et PHP 5 in separate chapters !

The book thoroughly covers every detail and I appreciated that the Windows developer that I mainly am was not forgotten in this learning process...

The reader is pacefully guided through the various steps of PHP extension development, with many ready-to-run examples and a really clear and never boring language style. Not only is this book one of the rare ones to address PHP extension development ; but it also couldn't have presented the subject more clearly.

I recommend this book to everyone involved into PHP development, even for people who do not intend to realize PHP extensions, because it also shows PHP internals that are of invaluable help to reach a deeper understanding of the PHP architecture.

Keep going on, Sara !
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on December 28, 2015
I no longer have this book but it provided excellent details and guidance on advanced PHP concepts.
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on November 4, 2015
I've written two complex PHP extensions that would have been absolutely impossible without the insights provided by this book. Invaluable.
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