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PHP is an HTML-embedded server-side scripting language. Much of its syntax is borrowed from C, Java and Perl with a couple of unique PHP-specific features thrown in. The goal of the language is to allow web developers to write dynamically generated pages quickly. NTC Hosting offers its clients high quality PHP and HTML hosting services. Our servers are configured so as to ensure maximum performance for both your HTML and PHP-based applications and the non-interruptible functioning of your websites.


When building a complex page, at some point you will be faced with the need to combine PHP and HTML to achieve your needed results. At first point, this can seem complicated, since PHP and HTML are two separate languages, but this is not the case. PHP is designed to interact with HTML and PHP scripts can be included in an HTML page without a problem.

In an HTML page, PHP code is enclosed within special PHP tags. When a visitor opens the page, the server processes the PHP code and then sends the output (not the PHP code itself) to the visitor's browser. Actually it is quite simple to integrate HTML and PHP. A PHP script can be treated as an HTML page, with bits of PHP inserted here and there. Anything in a PHP script that is not contained within <?php ?> tags is ignored by the PHP compiler and passed directly to the web browser. If you look at the example below you can see what a full PHP script might look like:

Recommended usage:

<body class="page_bg">
Hello, today is <?php echo date('l, F jS, Y'); ?>.

The code above is simply HTML, with just a bit of PHP that prints out today's date using the built-in date function. As mentioned above, all of the plain HTML in the code above will be ignored by the PHP compiler and passed through to the web browser untouched.

See how easy that is? Integrating PHP and HTML is really very simple. Just remember that at its core, a PHP script is just an HTML page with some PHP sprinkled through it. If you want, you can create a PHP script that only has HTML in it and no <?php ?> tags, and it will work just fine.

More advanced techniques:

<?php for($i=1;$i<=5;$i++){ ?>
<li>Menu Item <?php echo $i; ?></li>
<?php } ?>

and the result is:

  • Menu Item 1
  • Menu Item 2
  • Menu Item 3
  • Menu Item 4
  • Menu Item 5

PHP in HTML using short_open_tag

If you want to shorten your code as much as possible, you can go for the short_tags option. This will save you from typing <?php at the beginning of the code, shortening it to just <?. In order to enable this, you should update the php.ini file and turn the "short_tags" setting from "Off" to "On". While on most servers this setting is already turned on, it's always best to check beforehand. A problem that can occur if using short tags is a conflict with the XML usage. For XML, the <? syntax will start a processing function. To avoid this problem, the alternative <?= tag can be used.

PHP in HTML using short_tags:

<body class="page_bg">
Hello, today is <?=date('l, F jS, Y'); ?>.

Have in mind that if you want to build a website compatible with as many platforms as possible, you should not rely on short_tags.

HTML in PHP using echo

A possible way to integrate HTML tags in a PHP file is via the echo command:

Possible yet not recommended usage:

echo "<html>";
echo "<head></head>";
echo "<body class=\"page_bg\">";
echo "Hello, today is ";
echo date('l, F jS, Y'); //other php code here echo "</body>";
echo "</html>";

This will, however, affect the HTML Code Coloring option in most HTML/PHP editors, which allows for easy understanding of the role of HTML tags. You should escape each double quote within the HTML code with a backslash.

PHP in HTML - file extensions

When a given file contains PHP code, it must have a PHP extension. In most cases this is .php, but you can also configure the .htaccess file to read the PHP code in the HTML file without renaming it or changing its extension. Below you can view the "handlers", which will have to be added in order to achieve this

For a normally configured web server:

AddHandler cgi-script .html .htm

A web server running FastCGI:

AddHandler fcgid-script .html .htm Note: this is tested and works with the NTC web hosting servers. If you are using a different hosting provider, consult them for assistance. Additionally, if you are faced with constant problems there, you can consider switching to NTC Hosting in order to get the PHP optimized stable servers you need.


You can also use HTML code in a PHP script. This can be very useful if you have built your whole page in PHP, but want to include a custom HTML form, for example. All that you need to do is reverse the order of the HTML and PHP opening tags, opening the page with PHP:

Using HTML in PHP:

$Fname = $_POST["Fname"];
$Lname = $_POST["Lname"];
<title>Personal INFO</title>
<form method="post" action="<?php echo $PHP_SELF;?>">
First Name:<input type="text" size="12" maxlength="12" name="Fname"><br />
Last Name:<input type="text" size="12" maxlength="36" name="Lname"><br /></form>
echo "Hello, ".$Fname." ".$Lname.".<br />";

While this looks a bit complicated, it actually saves you a lot of code. Here, we are using the $PHP_SELF super global, which allows us to use the value of the fields, specified under it, in the same file. Usually, for such forms two files are created - the first one is the HTML form itself and the second one is the backend PHP file, which does all the work.

If you already have a complicated PHP application, which relies on a great number of files, and you just want to keep everything as simple as possible, this can be of great assistance.

PHP with NTC Hosting

NTC Hosting offers its clients an ultimate web hosting solution. All our web hosting plans provide support for HTML and give you the possibility to choose between PHP4and PHP5