Why PHP is so much more popular for web-development

Jeff McNeil jeff at jmcneil.net
Wed Jul 25 14:58:12 EDT 2007

Unfortunately, I also find that PHP programmers are usually more
plentiful than their Python counterparts.  When thinking of staffing
an organization, it's common to target a skill set that's cheaper to
employ and easier to replace down the road if need be.

Also, larger hosting shops are hesitant to run things such as TG and
Rails that require an additional server process.  The name of the game
is density.  Sure, it may be easy to manage and run a TG project, but
it's a pain to set one up on a shared hosting server.

Lastly, I personally think it has something to do with the fact that
so many of the popular, free, web applications are PHP based. It's
easy for the average Web Administrator to get started with your
standard PHP package. From there, picking up the language is the next
logical step.


On 7/25/07, walterbyrd <walterbyrd at iname.com> wrote:
> "Once you start down the Dark path, forever will it dominate your
> desiny. Consume you, it will."
> - Yoda
> I'm fairly new to web-development, and I'm trying out different
> technologies. Some people wonder why PHP is so popular, when the
> language is flawed in so many ways. To me, it's obvious: it's because
> it's much easier to get started with PHP, and once somebody gets
> started with a particular language, that person is likely to stay with
> that language.
> Before you can even get started with Python web-development, you have
> to understand this entire alphabit soup of: CGI, FASTCGI, MOD_PYTHON,
> FLUP, WSGI, PASTE, etc. For me, configuring fastcgi has been the most
> difficult part of getting django to work. PHP developers don't have to
> bother with anything like that. With PHP, you just throw some code in
> the middle of your html file.
> Also, PHP, and PHP frameworks, are supported everywhere. If you going
> to use a PHP MVC framework, like codeignitor, you would have a hard
> time finding a hoster that didn't support it - all you need is php4
> and mysql. Dollar-hosting, for $10 a year, should work just fine with
> codeignitor. With codeignitor, just copy your files to whatever host,
> and that's it, you're done.
> By contrast, the most popular Python frameworks have sky-high system
> requirements. Take a look at the requirements and/or recomendations
> for popular Python frameworks like Django, TurboGears, or CherryPy:
> Apache 2.0, mod_python (latest version), fastcgi (at least), command
> line access, PostgreSQL. And a lot of low-cost hosters don't support
> Python at all.
> Don't get me wrong: I am not saying that PHP is better than Python for
> web-development. But, I sometimes think that Python could learn a few
> things from PHP.
> All JMHO, of course.
> --
> http://mail.python.org/mailman/listinfo/python-list

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