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Xdebug Update: January 2020

Another month, another monthly update where I explain what happened with Xdebug development in this past month. It will be published on the first Tuesday after the 5th of each month. Patreon supporters will get it earlier, on the first of each month. You can become a patron here to support my work on Xdebug. If you are leading a team or company, then it is also possible to support Xdebug through a subscription.

In January, I worked on Xdebug for just over 90 hours, on the following things:

Xdebug 2.9.1 and Xdebug 2.9.2

This month brought two releases. The Xdebug 2.9.1 release restores step debugging performance as it was in Xdebug 2.7.2, while still maintaining the resolved breakpoint feature. Beyond improved performance for debugging, it also addresses a whole range of smaller issues.

The 2.9.2 release is a normal bug fix release, which addresses three relatively minor issue.

With the latest 2.9.2 I also updated the Xdebug web site to have a latest release download page and a historical release download page. On top of that, the code behind the web site no longer computers SHA256 checksums of the download files, but instead they are now committed to GIT. The separation makes the general download page much leaner, which allows me to put other related downloads on that same page too. Which brings me to the next topic.

debugclient and DBGp Proxy

I have continued working on a command line debugging client in Go, and am making more progress for a DBGp proxy implementation as well. The proxy currently knows how to register IDEs with their IDE key, and can accept connections from debugging engines. It does not yet know how to route these incoming connections to IDEs yet.

However, I have released the command line debugging client "debugclient" for Linux, macOS and Windows. You can find downloads on the restructured downloads page. At the moment the debugging client is not yet Open Source, but I am intending to do that once I've cleaned things up and know Go well enough to not be embarrassed by it.

I have written some basic documentation for the debugclient. More extensive, but harder to read, documentation is available in the description of the DBGp protocol. You can find a "teaser GIF" below:

Business Supporter Scheme and Funding

I have moved the supporters in the Business Supporter Scheme to a more prominent place, right on the front page of

In January, no new supporters signed up.

If you, or your company, would also like to support Xdebug, head over to the support page!

Besides business support, I also maintain a Patreon page and a profile on GitHub sponsors.


The PHP Internals News has returned with the second season. In this weekly podcast, I discuss in 15-30 minutes, proposed new features to the PHP language with fellow PHP internals developers. It is available on Spotify and iTunes, and through an RSS Feed. In the first episode I spoke with Nikita Popov about Preloading and WeakMaps.


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It would be useful to start working on Xdebug on Swoole. I know it appears to be huge amount of work.

Also, could it be possible to provide "break on property access" feature?

@Nadir: I am having a look at Swoole. I spoke with some of their authors in the last few weeks, and I think we can come up with a plan here. This isn't all the way at the top of my list to work on, but it is on the list.

As for other feature requests, please file those at โ€” although I don't think it would be easy to implement the "break on property access" feature, if possible at all.


good news, even if the main issue with swoole is the memory management (of PHP), this will ease the adoption of that beast.

About the "break on property access" feature, I know there exist a hacky workaround using a generic __set and a private prop, Requires to rewrite code, maybe it could give ideas:

php - Break on property change in Xdebug - Stack Overflow:

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