By: Dmitri Popov
If you’ve ever worked with MySQL databases, you are probably familiar with phpMyAdmin, a PHP-based tool that allows you to create and manage MySQL databases via a browser. It is an indispensable tool for anyone building a PHP/MySQL-based Web application. But while phpMyAdmin eases the task of creating and managing the back end of your Web application, it is of no help when it comes to designing a Web-based interface. To simplify creating PHP-based front ends, try phpMyEdit, an ingenious piece of software that can generate a functional Web interface in a matter of minutes — no PHP programming skills required. Although phpMyEdit hides the complexity of generating a PHP-based interface, it still offers an easy-to-use yet powerful mechanism to customize virtually any aspect of the created front end.
Let’s start with creating a simple front end to an even simpler MySQL database, consisting of a single table and three fields: ID, Notes, and Source. Download the latest release of phpMyEdit, unpack it, and move the resulting folder into the document root of your Web server. Point your browser to http://serveraddress/path/to/phpMyEdit/phpMyEditSetup.php. If phpMyEdit works properly, you should see a database connection form. Fill out the required fields and press the Submit button. phpMyEdit then displays a list of the fields in the specified database table, and you have to select a so-called identifier (a primary key in MySQL terminology). phpMyEdit then asks you to provide the name and title you want to use for the generated page. Here you can also decide whether the page should have a header/footer and use a basic CSS stylesheet by ticking the appropriate check boxes. Once you’ve pressed Submit, phpMyEdit generates the page and writes it to the phpMyEdit folder. It also conveniently displays the generated code, which you can copy and paste into a text editor for additional tweaking.