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6.9.4 The mysqlnd plugin API

Copyright 1997-2014 the PHP Documentation Group.

The following is a list of functions provided in the mysqlnd plugin API:

  • mysqlnd_plugin_register()

  • mysqlnd_plugin_count()

  • mysqlnd_plugin_get_plugin_connection_data()

  • mysqlnd_plugin_get_plugin_result_data()

  • mysqlnd_plugin_get_plugin_stmt_data()

  • mysqlnd_plugin_get_plugin_net_data()

  • mysqlnd_plugin_get_plugin_protocol_data()

  • mysqlnd_conn_get_methods()

  • mysqlnd_result_get_methods()

  • mysqlnd_result_meta_get_methods()

  • mysqlnd_stmt_get_methods()

  • mysqlnd_net_get_methods()

  • mysqlnd_protocol_get_methods()

There is no formal definition of what a plugin is and how a plugin mechanism works.

Components often found in plugins mechanisms are:

  • A plugin manager

  • A plugin API

  • Application services (or modules)

  • Application service APIs (or module APIs)

The mysqlnd plugin concept employs these features, and additionally enjoys an open architecture.

No Restrictions

A plugin has full access to the inner workings of mysqlnd. There are no security limits or restrictions. Everything can be overwritten to implement friendly or hostile algorithms. It is recommended you only deploy plugins from a trusted source.

As discussed previously, plugins can use pointers freely. These pointers are not restricted in any way, and can point into another plugin's data. Simple offset arithmetic can be used to read another plugin's data.

It is recommended that you write cooperative plugins, and that you always call the parent method. The plugins should always cooperate with mysqlnd itself.

Table 6.15 Issues: an example of chaining and cooperation

Extensionmysqlnd.query() pointercall stack if calling parent
  1. mysqlnd_cache.query()

  2. mysqlnd.query

  1. mysqlnd_monitor.query()

  2. mysqlnd_cache.query()

  3. mysqlnd.query

In this scenario, a cache (ext/mysqlnd_cache) and a monitor (ext/mysqlnd_monitor) plugin are loaded. Both subclass Connection::query(). Plugin registration happens at MINIT using the logic shown previously. PHP calls extensions in alphabetical order by default. Plugins are not aware of each other and do not set extension dependencies.

By default the plugins call the parent implementation of the query method in their derived version of the method.

PHP Extension Recap

This is a recap of what happens when using an example plugin, ext/mysqlnd_plugin, which exposes the mysqlnd C plugin API to PHP:

  • Any PHP MySQL application tries to establish a connection to

  • The PHP application will either use ext/mysql, ext/mysqli or PDO_MYSQL. All three PHP MySQL extensions use mysqlnd to establish the connection to

  • Mysqlnd calls its connect method, which has been subclassed by ext/mysqlnd_plugin.

  • ext/mysqlnd_plugin calls the userspace hook proxy::connect() registered by the user.

  • The userspace hook changes the connection host IP from to and returns the connection established by parent::connect().

  • ext/mysqlnd_plugin performs the equivalent of parent::connect( by calling the original mysqlnd method for establishing a connection.

  • ext/mysqlnd establishes a connection and returns to ext/mysqlnd_plugin. ext/mysqlnd_plugin returns as well.

  • Whatever PHP MySQL extension had been used by the application, it receives a connection to The PHP MySQL extension itself returns to the PHP application. The circle is closed.

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