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Joe Ferguson:
Homestead Welcomes Z-Ray by Zend
Feb 07, 2018 @ 09:41:44

In a post to his site Joe Ferguson, the maintainer on the Laravel Homestead project, has announced a change in the 7.1.0 version: compatibility with Zend's Z-Ray debugging tool.

Since the release of Homestead version 7.1.0 and base box version 5.1.0 Homestead now supports the Zend Z-Ray plugin for PHP 7.2. You can start leveraging the power of Z-Ray in your application with a small changes to your Homestead project.

He includes the instructions to help you upgrade your current installation to this latest versions and the configuration changes required. He also walks through the commands you'll need to use and the resulting output so you can be sure you're on the right track. The end result integrates Z-Ray directly into the site without any additional work.

tagged: laravel homestead zend zray debugging tool install vagrant

Link: https://www.joeferguson.me/homestead-welcomes-z-ray-by-zend/

Derick Rethans:
Xdebug 2.6
Jan 31, 2018 @ 10:45:10

On his site Derick Rethans, lead on the Xdebug project, has posted about the release of the latest version of the popular PHP debugging tool: Xdebug 2.6.

I have just released Xdebug 2.6. Xdebug 2.6 adds supports for PHP 7.2 (and drops support for PHP 5), and adds a whole bunch of new features. This article describes these new features.

Among the items he details are changes around:

  • Garbage Collection Statistics
  • Profiler Enhancements
  • Remote Debugging Improvements
  • Behavioural Changes

There are also some smaller improvements in the output of the tool allowing for custom filenames, superglobal details and the inclusion of assign-by-reference assignments. You can find out more about this latest version and get the latest from the main Xdebug site. If you'd like to show appreciation for all the hard work Derick has put into the tool, you should consider becoming a patron to show your support.

tagged: xdebug debugging tool release v26 announcement derickrethans

Link: https://derickrethans.nl/xdebug-26.html

Jason McCreary:
The Debugging Golden Rule
Dec 14, 2017 @ 11:41:42

Jason McCreary has a post on the Dev.to site sharing what he calls the "debugging golden rule" to keep in mind when stepping through and trying to debug your code for issues.

Developers, especially new developers, often forget this when debugging. We jump into the debugger. We add tracing statements. We review the commit log.

Such actions can be misguided. Before debugging the code we must follow a moral code. Debugging needs a Golden Rule. A rule to remind developers of a few important facts of debugging.

Boiled down to its basics the "golden rule" here is that, most of the time, it's not the tools that are the issue - it's you and your code. He shares the common thoughts we've all had when debugging ("it's the upgrade, not my code") but points out that, regardless of where the issue is, it still needs to be fixed. Even if it is something in the tool, some odd bug or weird functionality that only kicks in once in a blue moon, you still have to ultimately make it work.

tagged: debugging goldendrule code tools opinion

Link: https://dev.to/gonedark/the-debugging-golden-rule-7cb

Delicious Brains Blog:
How to Use Xdebug for Advanced PHP Debugging
Aug 07, 2017 @ 10:17:14

On the Delicious Brains site there's a tutorial posted that shows you how to use XDebug for advanced PHP debugging versus some of the usual practices of var_dump or print_r-ing your way through your testing.

You could just debug your PHP code using functions such as error_log, print, and var_dump, (and to be honest we’ve all done it, a lot!), but sometimes they just aren’t enough, and can actually slow you down while developing.

There must be a better way, surely?! Enter Xdebug, the rather awesome debugging and profiling tool for PHP.

In this post, I’ll take you through why Xdebug is amazing, getting it setup, how to use it, get the most out of it it, and some neat advanced uses all to make your life easier.

He starts with some background on his previous debugging practices and how discovering XDebug revolutionized his workflow. He then talks about breakpoints for debugging and what he calls "debug driven development". The article then walks you through the installation process and the integration with IDEs, specifically PHPStorm. The rest of the post shows examples of how to use XDebug along with breakpoints and IDE features to get more information about the current application state and where things are failing. He also includes sections about using XDebug for profiling and performing remote debugging via an SSH tunnel.

tagged: xdebug introduction debugging profiling tutorial setup ide integration

Link: https://deliciousbrains.com/xdebug-advanced-php-debugging/

Derick Rethans:
15 years of Xdebug
May 10, 2017 @ 10:27:14

In a recent post the fifteenth anniversary of the XDebug PHP debugging tool was celebrated and lead developer Derick Rethans was presented with several tokens of appreciation from the PHP community. In this new post to his site he shares the experience (it was a surprise after all) from his perspective and thanks those involved.

This article was going to be about some upcoming features in the 2.6 release. Or rather, I was hoping to announce at least a beta release of Xdebug 2.6. Unfortunately, I couldn't find enough time to work on all the issues that I wanted, although I've made a little progress.

What I can write about, is a little mystery.

He talks about the initial invite from James Titcumb to meet him at his favorite whisky store and the eight special bottles that the community purchased to show their appreciation for his hard fifteen years of work on this invaluable tool. He lists out the types for those interested and some of the messages from contributors showing their appreciation. He thanks all of those involved.

And on the Xdebug front, there are plenty of bugs to fix, features to add for Xdebug 2.6, and undoubtedly Dmitry will be "breaking" some things in PHP 7.2 that I need to support in Xdebug as well.
tagged: fifteen years anniversary derickrethans xdebug debugging tool project whiskey

Link: https://derickrethans.nl/xdebug-15.html

SitePoint PHP Blog:
Getting to Know and Love Xdebug
Apr 20, 2017 @ 17:55:59

On the SitePoint PHP blog editor Bruno Skvorc has posted a tutorial introducing you to Xdebug, the powerful debugging tool for PHP applications.

It’s been 15 years since Xdebug first came out. We think this is the perfect opportunity to re-introduce it to the world, and explain how and why it does what it does. Xdebug is a PHP extension (meaning it needs to be compiled and installed into a PHP installation) which provides the developer with some features for debugging.

It starts off by explaining some of the functionality that Xdebug brings to your debugging practices and the features that can help make it flow a little easier. It talks about how it differs from some of the IDE debugging tools and services like Blackfire.io. Next up is the example putting it to use and what the resulting errors look like. The post then gets into the integration of Vagrant with PhpStorm, using the profiler and how to force the rendering in Laravel output (it normally overrides the exception output with its own formatting).

tagged: tutorial know love xdebug introduction php debug debugging

Link: https://www.sitepoint.com/getting-know-love-xdebug/

PhpStorm Blog:
Working With PHPUnit and PhpStorm
Mar 23, 2017 @ 11:50:12

On the PhpStorm blog (from JetBrains) Gary Hockin reflects on a post from Adam Wathan with tips for combining PHPUnit and PhpStorm for more effective debugging.

Community stalwart and Laravel aficionado Adam Wathan blogged on his PHPUnit workflow in Sublime text.

Gary then goes through the points in Adam's post and shows how they can (mostly) be accomplished directly in PhpStorm:

  • Generating unit test boilerplate for a class
  • Using "snippets" to create shortcuts for reusable code
  • Running the tests in just one file directly from the IDE

Each section comes with a brief description and animated screen grabs showing the flow of the setup and use for each.

tagged: phpstorm debugging unittest feature generation snippets singlefile tutorial

Link: https://blog.jetbrains.com/phpstorm/2017/01/working-with-phpunit-and-phpstorm/

Freek Van der Herten:
Packages that make developing Laravel apps easier
Feb 13, 2017 @ 09:46:12

Freek Van der Herten has a new post to his site sharing what he considers some of the most helpful Laravel package to help with your debugging.

In this post I’d like to share some of the packages that make developing a Laravel app easier.

His list of packages includes a wide range of testing tools like:

For each item on his list he includes a screenshot of it in action (either of a terminal or a UI) and a brief explanation of how it can help.

tagged: framework help debugging package laravel development

Link: https://murze.be/2017/02/packages-make-developing-laravel-apps-easier/

Derick Rethans:
Good Bye PHP 5
Jan 11, 2017 @ 10:13:53

On his site Derick Rethans has posted an announcement about a major change in the Xdebug project (a widely used PHP debugger) he leads, saying goodby to PHP 5.

A few days ago I merged a patch into on GitHub. Maintaining PHP 5 and PHP 7 support in one code base is not particularly easy, and even more complicated for something like Xdebug, with its deep interactions with PHP's internals.

As PHP 5.6's active support has ended on December 31st, I also felt it no longer needed to support PHP 5 with Xdebug any more. It saves more than 5000 lines of code.

He shares some of the responses to the change (via Tweets) from the community ranging from full support to outcry over the change. He points out that the current version of Xdebug (2.5) will continue to operate on PHP 5 systems but when Xdebug 2.6 rolls around, the 2.5 branch will only receive bugfixes and no new features. You can find out about those upcoming features here.

tagged: xdebug debugging tool php7 php5 upgrade support

Link: https://derickrethans.nl/xdebug-php5.html

Laravel News:
Quickly Dumping Laravel Queries
Nov 28, 2016 @ 12:49:36

The Laravel News site has a quick post today with a helpful hint for those trying to track down exactly what queries their Laravel application is performing on database calls. In this post they show two ways to get this information - one using the Debugbar and the other with a quick script.

When you are building an application and utilizing Eloquent it’s very easy to hit the N+1 problem. This is where you select a model and then later use lazy loading to fetch child records.

They give an example of selecting a user, grabbing it's list of "posts" and then looping through them causing queries to fire for each post individually. A fix for it is using the "with" method to pre-load them but determining this could be tricky. Enter their two solutions: the Laravel Debugbar package and this quick script shared by magkopian that listens for a "kernel.handled" event and outputs the results of the "getQueryLog" method with the Laravel "dd" helper.

tagged: laravel dump queries debugbar debugging sql database tip

Link: https://laravel-news.com/2016/11/quickly-dumping-laravel-queries/