fileSQL 1.1beta3


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What is it?

We all know how boring text file handling is for saving information: (Online users, visit counters...)
even more if we have to insert, extract, update or manage that information in any way.

FileSQL is a group of functions that let us work with plain text files through queries the way we would launch them against a database such as mySQL. Therefore, we would be able to launch INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE or SELECT sentences to insert, update, delete or select information from our files. .

The idea is quite simple: a directory would be a database. Each file of the directory would be a table. In each text file there would be several data fields separated by the ":" character.

FileSQL functions are analog to their mySQL equivalent ones. This is: mysql_fetch_array would turn into file_fetch_array. Besides, we have file_query, file_num_rows, file_fetch_row, file_connect, file_fetch_assoc file_close, and a specific function to import phpmyadmin '.sql' files directly into fileSQL system.

How does it work?

You just have to include the fileSQL.php file in your script to make fileSQL work, and start managing your file data.
You must create a new directory with all the permissions (its name would be the one of the db). You can create all the text files you want in the directory. However, in every directory there must be a special file called "fields.fql" with the field definition:

Let's see it with an example:

Content of fields.fql:

# Example of field definition for fileSQL
#        Format: 
#                file:field1:field2:field3 ...
# A '*' leading a field name indicates AUTO_INCREMENT


This file says that we have 2 text files, noticias.txt and usuarios.txt, and then the fields separated with ":". The content of users.txt could be the following:


There should also be another file called shop.txt with the field order previously declared in fields.fql

Using fileSQL:


include ("fileSQL.php");

// We 'connect' the directory 
// the directory must have read and write permissions

$connection file_connect("./files");

    Example of queries fileSQL can perform
    $query = "INSERT INTO file.txt (field1,field2,field3) VALUES ('value1','value2','value3')";
    $query = "INSERT INTO data.txt VALUES ('value1','value2','value3','value4')";
    $query = "DELETE FROM data.txt WHERE field1 = 'value' AND field2 = 'value2'";
    $query = "UPDATE data.txt set field1='value1', field2='value2', field3='value3' WHERE field1 LIKE 'A%' AND field2 <= 35";
    $query = "SELECT field1,field2 from datafile.txt WHERE (field1 LIKE '%value%' OR (field2 < '3' AND field3 = 'value') ORDER BY RAND() LIMIT 10";
    $query = "SELECT field3 FROM data.txt ORDER BY field1 DESC limit 2,3";

//  queries with special functions

    $query = "SELECT * from data.txt ORDER BY RAND()";

//    queries with NOT LIKE, IN and NOT IN
    $query = "DELETE FROM data.txt WHERE field1 NOT LIKE 't%' AND colors IN ('red','green','blue')";
    $query = "DELETE FROM data.txt WHERE countries NOT IN ('Spain','France','Germany')";

// valid as of fileSQL 1.1beta*
    $query = "SELECT AVG(price),MAX(price) from shop.txt ";
    $query = "SELECT MIN(date) FROM file.txt WHERE id > 4 AND field2 LIKE 'p%'";
    $query = "SELECT COUNT(*),SUM(field1) FROM data.txt";
    $query = "SHOW TABLES";
    $query = "SHOW COLUMNS FROM data.txt"; 


/* To launch the query we use file_query  */

$result_id file_query($query,$connection); // the resource link ($connection) is mandatory

echo 'Records found: ' file_num_rows($result_id); // file_num_rows returns the number of records.
echo file_result($result_id,0); // works just as mysql_result ( resource result, int row [, mixed field] )

/* Loop through the results
    - file_fetch_array 
    - file_fetch_row 
    - file_fetch_assoc  */
// i.e:

echo '<table>';
    while (
$data file_fetch_row($result_id)) {

// or

echo '<table>';
    while (
$data file_fetch_assoc($result_id)) {



Limitations of fileSQL:

There are obviously many limitations. FileSQL cannot replace a complex database such as mySQL, for example.


Queries syntax is very flexible (space, no space, with or without quotes, case-insensitive clauses), and the numer of possible queries are endles at this moment. Therefore, the debug works were very important to detect errors and problems in the queries (more will be found, please report them).

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fileSQL by thessoro

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