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A topic that is probably not covered enough. If you do not have debugging working in your IDE environment then you are sadly wasting a lot of your own time. A debugger allows you to step through problem code and figure out what is going wrong without adding all those die(), var_dump() and print_r() statements.

Tina4 helps a little with the initial debugging by showing decent error messages and identifying the code where your errors occurred but the most important thing is to install x-debug for PHP and get yourself up and running.

Installing a debugger can be a bit painful at first however once you have one working the rewards are self evident.

Get started by installing Xdebug, here are some pointers below for the various OS:

Windows - install XDebug
Linux & Mac - try a PECL install first otherwise you are going to be compiling from source code


Please be aware that the latest versions of x-debug has changed somewhat and the configurations that used to work are no longer valid. Below is a configuration that works.

   xdebug.mode = debug

Running Tina4 in debug mode

If you are using PHP Storm or IntelliJ then the following will get you started with little configuration.

   XDEBUG_CONFIG="client_host=" composer start 8080

In your IDE look for the icon that looks like a telephone with a bug below it

Clicking it on will allow the IDE to start listening for a debugging request based on the command you ran before. Below is how it looks when the IDE is listening for a debugging connection.

Once you hit up your web page on http://localhost:8080, the debugger should activate and you need to accept the connection.

Add break points in your code by clicking on the left margin where you want the debugger to stop and you should get something like this

  • Don't forget to turn off your debugger telephone when you're done
  • Learn shortcut keys like F8 - step and F7 - step into as well as F9 to run through debugging quickly
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