Preparing the debugging engine
Before you start debugging, make sure that you have a debugging engine installed and configured properly. PhpStorm supports debugging with two most popular tools: XDebug and Zend Debugger. These tools cannot be used simultaneously because they block each other. To avoid this problem, you need to update the corresponding sections in the php.ini file. To find out which php.ini file is active, create and run a test file with phpinfo(), then search for the Loaded Configuration File.
For more information on configuring debugging engines, see Configuring XDebug, Configuring Zend Debugger, http://confluence.jetbrains.com/display/PhpStorm/Xdebug+Installation+Guide, and http://confluence.jetbrains.com/display/PhpStorm/Zend+Debugger+Installation+Guide.
Breakpoints are source code markers used to trigger actions during a debugging session. Typically, the purpose behind setting a breakpoint is to suspend program execution to allow you to examine program data. However, PhpStorm can use breakpoints as triggers for a variety of different actions. Breakpoints can be set at any time during the debugging process. Your breakpoints don't affect your source files directly, but the breakpoints and their settings are saved with your PhpStorm project so you can reuse them across debugging sessions.
Place the caret on the desired line of the source code.
Breakpoints can be set in the PHP context inside *.php, *.html, and files of other types. Only executable lines are valid locations for line breakpoints. Comments, declarations, and empty lines are not valid locations for the
Do one of the following:
- Click the left gutter area at a line where you want to toggle a breakpoint.
- On the main menu, choose .
- Press Ctrl+F8Ctrl+F8Ctrl+8Ctrl+F8Ctrl+F8F9Ctrl+F8Ctrl+Shift+B or Ctrl+F8Command F8Command F8Shift Command B.
These bookmarklets will appear on the toolbar of your browser. They provide control over the debugger cookie, through them you will activate and deactivate the debugger.
Enable the Bookmarks toolbar in your browser by doing one of the following depending on the browser type:
- In Firefox, choose .
- In Chrome, choose .
- Open the Project Settings and click PHP. Then click Debug under the PHP node.
- On the Debug page, that opens, click the Use debugger bookmarklets to initiate debugger from your favorite browser link.
- On the Zend Debugger & XDebug bookmarklets page that opens, check the debugging engine settings and click Generate. The bookmarks for listed debugging-related actions are generated.
- Drag the generated links to the bookmark toolbar in your browser.
- Generate the Start Debugger/Stop Debugger bookmarklets, if you have not done it yet. These bookmarklets will appear on the toolbar of your browser. They provide control over the debugger cookie, through them you will activate and deactivate the debugger.
- Set the breakpoints, where necessary.
- Toggle the Start Listen PHP Debug Connections button so it changes to . After that PhpStorm starts listening to the port of the debugging engine used in the current project. Ports for debuggers are set at the PhpStorm level in the Debug dialog box ( ).
- Open the starting page of your application in the browser.
- To activate the debugging engine from the browser, choose the Start debugger bookmark.
- Re-load the current page (the starting page of the application).
- Switch to PhpStorm.
- As soon as the debugger suspends on reaching the first breakpoint, examine the application by analyzing frames. A frame corresponds to an active method or function call and stores the local variables of the called method or function, the arguments to it, and the code context that enables expression evaluation. All currently active frames are displayed on the Frames pane of the Debug tool window. where you can switch between them and analyze the information stored therein in the Variables and Watches panes. For more details, see the section Examining Suspended Program.
Continue running the program and examine its frames as soon it is suspended.
- To control the program execution manually, step through the code using the commands under the F7F7F7F7F7F11 or F8F7F5F7F7F5), (Shift+F8Shift+F8Shift+F8Shift+F8Shift+F8Shift+F11 or Ctrl+Shift+F8Ctrl+F7F7 or Shift+F8Shift F8Shift F8F7), (F8F8F8F8F8F10 or Shift+F8F8F6F8F8F6), and others. For more details, see Stepping Through the Program. menu or toolbar buttons: (
- To have the program run automatically up to the next breakpoint, resume the session by choosing F9F9F9F9F9F5F5F8 or F9Alt Command RF9F8 or pressing
This approach can be useful, when your application contains scripts that use AJAX. Suppose you have a menu-ajax-script.php that "reloads" a part of your web page. This script works properly so you do not need to debug it. However, this script is still requested during the debugging session. To have incoming connections to this script ignored, add the menu-ajax-script.php script to the skipped paths list. You can also group such scripts into folders and add these folders to the "ignore list".
- Open the Project Settings, click Debug under the PHP node, then click Skipped Paths.
On the Skipped Paths page that opens, configure an "ignore list" of scripts and folders with scripts not to be invoked if PhpStorm receives incoming
connections to them.
- To add a new entry to the list, click the Add button or press Alt+InsertAlt+InsertAlt+InsertAlt+InsertAlt+InsertAlt+InsertAlt+Insert or Ctrl+NAlt+InsertCommand N or Control EnterControl N or Control EnterCommand N or Control Enter. Then click the Browse button and in the dialog box that opens choose the file or folder to skip connections to.
- To remove an entry from the list, select it and click the Remove button or press Alt+DeleteAlt+DeleteAlt+DeleteAlt+DeleteAlt+DeleteAlt+DeleteAlt+DeleteAlt+DeleteCommand Delete or Command BackspaceCommand DeleteCommand Delete or Command Backspace. The script will be now executed upon receiving requests to it.
- To have PhpStorm inform you every time it receives a request to a script to be skipped, select the Notify about skipped paths check box.