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Xdebug Update: July 2022

In this monthly update I explain what happened with Xdebug development in this past month. These are normally published on the first Tuesday on or after the 5th of each month.

Patreon and GitHub supporters will get it earlier, around the first of each month.

You can become a patron or support me through GitHub Sponsors. I am currently 46% towards my $2,500 per month goal. If you are leading a team or company, then it is also possible to support Xdebug through a subscription.

In July, I spend 18 hours on Xdebug, with 32 hours funded. I have been on holiday, so was not be able to dedicate as much time as I wanted to.

Xdebug 3.2

Most of the work that I did on Xdebug was related to release the first two alpha releases of Xdebug 3.2, which add support for PHP 8.2, and drops support for PHP 7.2, PHP 7.3, and PHP 7.4. I do not enjoy dropping support for older PHP versions, but the additional time it costs to maintain older versions, and have their configurations run on CI, is not really worth my time. Of course, users of PHP 7.2 through PHP 7.4 can continue to use Xdebug 3.1. The guidelines of which PHP versions Xdebug supports is outlined in the documentation.

Now that PHP 8.2 itself has approached beta state, it was time to release the first alphas of Xdebug 3.2 as well. In the near future, when PHP 8.2 comes into their Release Candidates cycle, I will release beta versions of Xdebug 3.2 as well, with a stable release when PHP 8.2.0 comes out.

These alphas and betas are an excellent opportunity to try out Xdebug 3.2, as well as PHP 8.2, to see whether your projects support the latest PHP version, and how Xdebug 3.2 interacts with that.

The main new features in Xdebug 3.2 can now also be tested. And these include:

  • Support for PHP 8.2.

  • The step debugger now introduces an extra step when returning from a function, so that you can inspect the return value. This is supported in the PHP Debug Adapter for Visual Studio Code, but not yet in PhpStorm, although there is a ticket.

  • You can now configure a list of headers to scan for through the xdebug.client_discovery_header setting, instead of only being able to set one. The documentation for this is yet to follow.

  • The step debugger now supports the pseudo hosts xdebug://gateway and xdebug://nameserver as values to the xdebug.client_host setting. These pseudo-hosts instruct Xdebug to try to make a debugging connection to the default gateway and name server (as configured on Linux through /etc/resolv.conf and friends) respectively. The documentation for this is yet to follow too.

I am intending to create a video for each of these new features for my YouTube channel.


The first lesson is now nearly fully edited, with just the "tech talk" section to finish. Beyond that, I will need to work on create a web site to publish this course too, so that you can take it. The course will consist of many chapters, with some of them being free.

Xdebug Cloud

Xdebug Cloud is the Proxy As A Service platform to allow for debugging in more scenarios, where it is hard, or impossible, to have Xdebug make a connection to the IDE. It is continuing to operate as Beta release. Packages start at £49/month.

If you want to be kept up to date with Xdebug Cloud, please sign up to the mailinglist, which I will use to send out an update not more than once a month.

Xdebug Videos

I have published no new videos this month, but you can find all previous videos on my YouTube channel.

Business Supporter Scheme and Funding

In July, no new business 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, a profile on GitHub sponsors, as well as an OpenCollective organisation.


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