Home and Learn: PHP Programming Course

Check if a user is logged in, logout


This lesson is part of an ongoing User Authentication tutorial. The first part is here: User Authentication along with all the files you need.

Check if a user is logged in

If you open up the file called page1.php (It's one of the files you downloaded from here: scripts.), you'll see some PHP code at the top:



if (!(isset($_SESSION['login']) && $_SESSION['login'] != '')) {

header ("Location: login.php");



Again, we first start a PHP session. The IF Statement that comes next is quite complex. But we're testing for two things: has a user session called login been set? And is this session a blank string?

!(isset($_SESSION['login']) && $_SESSION['login'] != '')

The first part is this:


To check if a session is set you can use the inbuilt function isset. We're using the NOT operator before it. (The NOT operator is an exclamation mark.) So we're saying, "IF the session is NOT set". The session might be set, but may have a "1" in it. We also need to check if the session called login is a NOT blank string. If both of these things fail then we can redirect to the login.php page, as it means that the user is not logged in.

For every page in your site, if you have the above script at the top of your page, it will redirect a user if they are not logged in. That way, you can protect your pages from non-members. If they are logged in, they will be able to view the page.


Logging out

If you have a look at the code for logout.php you'll see the following:




This is all you need to log a user out: you start a session, and then issue the session_destroy command. All you need is a link to this page from anywhere on your site. The link would be something like this as your HTML:

<A HREF = logout.php>Log Out</A>

When the user clicks this link, they will be taken to the page with the code that destroys the session.



Although our login/signup scripts are by no means complete, we hope that they've given you something to think about. In particular, that these types of scripts are not as simple as you first thought. There are quite a few ready-made login scripts that will do the job for you, but we hope that you will develop your own!

In the next walkthrough, we'll script a complete survey/poll application.

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