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Writing code without a debugger is like building a house without using your hands. Ditch var_dump. I will show you a better way.

What's Here:

The Background

Picture yourself as a driver of a brand-new car. You are proud of this vehicle and even happier with the smashingly-good deal you got on it. The paint is smooth and glassy. The tires still have their black sheen. It's a beauty.

Except there's only one small catch. There's no windshield. What?! That makes the car useless, doesn't it? Nope, you figure you can drive slowly. You'll bump into a lot of things, but the damages are minimal with the impacts are at a low rate of speed.

Ridiculous, right? Yep. I would think so! You'd have a lot of concerned citizens and police trying to get you to stop ASAP.

Xdebug breakpoint

The Debugger

You don't need a debugger, just like you don't need a windshield. It's just about that critical. While you can build applications without this heads-up display, it's going to take a lot more time.

What is Xdebug? Xdebug provides insight into how your PHP application executes. You can pause the execution. You can examine variables. You can review the methods and functions executed to get to this place. You can even execute code on the fly.

I want to help you become an effective developer. Part of this comes through mastering Xdebug. I will show you how to do this.

Course overview

Here's what you get (for free):

  • 10 practical lessons. We start with the basics of installation (if you haven't already installed Xdebug).
  • Written guide to follow along, if you are not a visual learner.
  • Script to quickly enable/disable Xdebug.
  • Access to a Slack channel dedicated to exclusively answering questions related to Xdebug.
Table of Contents
  • 1. Introduction
  • 2.1. Installing on Linux
  • 2.2. Installing on Windows
  • 2.3. Installing on Mac
  • 3. Configuring Xdebug
  • 4. Terminology
  • 5. Immediate Evaluation
  • 6. Variables and Watches
  • 7. Call Stack
  • 8. Conditional Breakpoints
  • 9. Using the Profiler
  • (think we should add something else? let me know!)

You'll go from "zero to hero" in knowing how to use Xdebug. I promise.

You will see that using debugger is a huge boost to your ability to quickly solve problems as a developer

Who is this for?

  • Anyone who uses PHP and doesn't know how to use Xdebug.
  • Anyone who considers themselves decent at Xdebug—but are happy to learn some tricks.
  • Ecommerce developers looking to up their game at quickly solving problems.
Joseph speaking

About Joseph

Yep, that's me... Joseph. I've been using Xdebug since 2012. I spent hours getting it running in Netbeans. This small tool revolutionized my capabilities as a developer and has helped me solve hundreds of problems, saving me (I'm guessing) thousands of hours in the process. If I'm not actively using Xdebug throughout the day while writing or debugging code, that likely means I'm taking the day off and spending time with my family.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How much does it cost? Nothing. 0 USD. 0 INR. Not a penny.
  • Another question? Feel free to drop me a line.

Joseph Maxwell

President / Senior Developer at SwiftOtter - @swiftotter_joe