PHP vs JavaScript: Comparison of Two Scripting Languages

PHP vs JavaScript

PHP and JavaScript are both scripting languages that web developers use regularly. However, each scripting language has its own differences and use cases. And, in this article, we will explore the difference between PHP vs JavaScript and when to use the scripting language in development projects.

Let’s start the guide by looking at how these languages came into existence!

PHP Vs JavaScript: Introduction

What is PHP?

PHP (recursive acronym for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor) is a broadly utilized open source general-purpose scripting language ideally fitting for server-side web development. PHP is used for creating dynamic and interactive sites.

<!DOCTYPE html>
echo "Hello World";

The PHP code is embedded in the HTML code and it has special start and end processing instructions. This enables you to jump in and out of the PHP mode.

Unlike the client-side JavaScript, PHP code runs on the server and the output HTML is generated which later is sent to the client. Here, the client is the browser that obtains the results of executing that script. However, the underlying code is masked. A PHP program is able to gather the form data, generate dynamic page content or send and receive cookies, etc.

Additionally, PHP scripts are utilized on the server-side, Command-Line scripting, and scripts for desktop applications. PHP runs on major Operating systems i.e: Windows, macOS, RISC OS, variants of UNIX, and Linux, and web servers such as Apache, IIS and several others.

What is JavaScript?

JavaScript is one of the most famous and broadly utilized scripting languages in the globe. Several companies such as Walmart, Netflix, and Paypal build internet apps over JavaScript. In its early days, it was used to build interactive web pages, however, today JavaScript opens the possibility to build web and mobile applications, real-time applications, and games. As a client-side programming language, it operates on the browser. Each browser has a Javascript engine to execute the code.

Below we have given the example of JavaScript code:

<script type="text/javascript">
document.write("Hello World");

Output: Hello World

Now, as we have seen the introduction of PHP Vs JavaScript, let see the difference between PHP Vs JavaScript.

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Difference Between PHP Vs JavaScript

Let’s look at the difference between PHP Vs JavaScript

PHP JavaScript
Server-side scripting languageClient-side scripting language
Utilized for back-end development Mainly utilized for front-end development
More secureConsists of tools for enhancing security
Slow performanceFast performance
Features availableLess load on the server and less traffic
Combined with HTML Combined with HTML, XML, Ajax
Helps in building high-level interactive web pagesHelps in building user-friendly creative web pages
MariaDB, MySQL and PostgreSQLAngularJS and ReactJS
WordPress, Drupal, JoomlaMongoDB, CouchDB, and NoSQL
Ideal for e-commerce websites and other sites that use CMSBest for dynamic SPAs

PHP Vs JavaScript: Use Cases

PHP is used by about 80% of sites on the internet and JavaScript is used by 97% of the sites.

What is PHP Utilized For ?

PHP has a wide range of uses.

One of the possible use cases for PHP is to create dynamic web pages. As per a report by ‘ BuiltWith’, PHP powers more than 34M websites and powers a few of the best known grossing sites on the internet including Nike, Salesforce, and Walmart.

PHP is ideal for a project that requires secure authentication of users. This incorporates cookie and session handling, username and password authentication, and two-factor authentication.

PHP is commonly utilized for building real-time apps like instant messaging.

Last but not the least, even if you do most of the work on the frontend, you will require a backend server. And, PHP is an ideal choice for it.

What Is JavaScript Used For?

JavaScript has become so popular that perhaps the right question to frame is ‘What ain’t JavaScript used for?’

Besides websites and web apps development, JavaScript is utilized to build all of the following:

  • Mobile apps
  • Web servers
  • Games
  • Slide decks
  • Chatbots
  • Programmable drones (Surprising isn’t it!!)

Can JavaScript Be Used with PHP?

Yes, absolutely JavaScript can be used with PHP.

A common example of this is the web forms, where it is necessary to validate user input before saving it to a database.

Additionally, you can use JavaScript for client-side validation. For instance: check if an email is in the correct format. Next, you can use PHP for server-side validation. For instance: check if an email exists in your database.


Hope this article helped you know the difference between PHP vs JavaScript.

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