Difference between require, include, require_once and include_once?


Question

In PHP:

  • When should I use require vs. include?
  • When should I use require_once vs. include_once?
1
1141
3/27/2018 11:39:41 AM

Accepted Answer

There are require and include_once as well.

So your question should be...

  1. When should I use require vs. include?
  2. When should I use require_once vs. require

The answer to 1 is described here.

The require() function is identical to include(), except that it handles errors differently. If an error occurs, the include() function generates a warning, but the script will continue execution. The require() generates a fatal error, and the script will stop.

The answer to 2 can be found here.

The require_once() statement is identical to require() except PHP will check if the file has already been included, and if so, not include (require) it again.

1348
6/21/2019 1:43:41 PM

Use

  • require
    when the file is required by your application, e.g. an important message template or a file containing configuration variables without which the app would break.

  • require_once
    when the file contains content that would produce an error on subsequent inclusion, e.g. function important() { /* important code */} is definitely needed in your application but since functions cannot be redeclared should not be included again.

  • include when the file is not required and application flow should continue when not found, e.g.
    great for templates referencing variables from the current scope or something

  • include_once
    optional dependencies that would produce errors on subsequent loading or maybe remote file inclusion that you do not want to happen twice due to the HTTP overhead

But basically, it's up to you when to use which.


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