The PHP CGI is a free-standing PHP interpreter. While this makes PHP available through the command line, it is less efficient than the mod_php4 Apache Module.


To install the PHP4 CGI, connect to your Virtual Private Server via Telnet or SSH and do the following:

  1. Install the PHP4 CGI by doing the following, according to your server O/S:

    % vinstall php4-cgi

    When you run the vinstall command, you will be given the option to select which extensions you want to use. In order to not waste memory on your Virtual Private Server, we recomend that you only select extensions you will actually be using. If you find you need to add or remove extensions at a later time, you can manually edit the php.ini file, or use the vinstall command to change the active extensions.

  2. NOTE: Any version prior to PHP 4.2.2 has a known security vulnerability which can compromise your Virtual Private Server. If you are using a version of PHP prior to 4.2.2, we strongly encourage you to upgrade to the most recent version.

  3. Due to Security Issues the PHP4 CGI is installed at ~/usr/local/bin/php. Do the following to link the PHP4 CGI into your ~/www/cgi-bin directory.

    % cd ~/www/cgi-bin
    % ln ../../../bin/php php
  4. Make the following additions and modifications to your web server configuration file (~/www/conf/httpd.conf).

    1. Modify the DirectoryIndex line so that PHP4 files will be included as directory indices.

      DirectoryIndex index.php index.php4 index.php3 index.cgi index.html index.htm
    2. Add the following lines so that all files with .php, .php3, .php4, and .phtml extensions will be redirected to the PHP4 CGI executable.

      Action     php4-script /cgi-bin/php
      AddHandler php4-script .php .php3 .php4 .phtml
    3. Restart your web server by running the restart_apache command.

  5. To test your PHP installation, try creating the following ~/www/htdocs/test.php4 document and viewing it in your web browser.


    The phpinfo() function reports the version number, as well as the features that are compiled into PHP and information about the environment and configuration.

Please note: the information on this page applies to ITS web hosting plans. It may or may not apply to other environments. If you are looking for a feature described here, or better support from your hosting provider, please consider hosting your site with ITS!

1555 N Naperville/Wheaton Road, Suite 107
Naperville, IL 60563
phone 630.420.2550
fax 630.420.2771