As of PHP 5.4, the register_globals feature has been removed from php. If you still need the feature, this post is for you.

What is register_globals?

register_globals is an internal PHP setting (a php.ini directive) that registers $_REQUEST super global array’s elements as variables. For example if you submit a value in a form, via POST or GET request methods, with an input field name username, PHP will automatically register a variable $username and assign it value of the input field username.

Why register_globals was removed?

PHP is not a very strict language. If you make mistakes, it often leaves you with Notices and Warnings without stopping execution, unless a very serious problem occurs. PHP lets you use uninitialized variables and issues just a Notice that is not displayed by PHP (unless you enable strict error reporting). A script that follows anything less than very strict coding style, is exposed to security threats and bugs if the feature register_globals is enabled.

register_globals Alternative

It is highly recommended that you do not use register_globals because it allows anyone to inject variables into your script. But, for the fact that most of the developers that use register_globals develop simple websites that often do not have an authentication system, or other features that should make them conscious for their choice about secure methods and practices, Here’s a simple script that can help them implement similar feature again in PHP.

function register_global_array( $sg ) {
    Static $superGlobals    = array(
        'e' => '_ENV'       ,
        'g' => '_GET'       ,
        'p' => '_POST'      ,
        'c' => '_COOKIE'    ,
        'r' => '_REQUEST'   ,
        's' => '_SERVER'    ,
        'f' => '_FILES'
    Global ${$superGlobals[$sg]};
    foreach( ${$superGlobals[$sg]} as $key => $val ) {
        $GLOBALS[$key]  = $val;
function register_globals( $order = 'gpc' ) {
    $_SERVER;       //See Note Below
    $order  = str_split( strtolower( $order ) );
    array_map( 'register_global_array' , $order );

And then call this function at the start of your page, or call it when you want to use the feature.

register_globals( );

You can also choose which Super Global Arrays to use for registering variables.

register_globals( 'GPCFRES' );

Where G stands for $_GETP for $_POSTC for $_COOKIEF for $_FILESR for $_REQUESTE for _ENV and S for $_SERVER.

If you use HTML form field name that cannot be used as a PHP variable name, this function still registers a variable, but you will have to use that variable dynamically.

echo ${'1_invalid_name'};
echo ${'another-invalid-variable-name'};

And one last thing, did you notice the unnecessary use of $_SERVER$_ENV and $_REQUEST in the above code on Line 20? The use is not unnecessary actually. Read this Interesting Super Globals post for details on this.

Source: register_globals is Back – PHP Implementation — Page Config