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PHP : Function Reference : COM and .Net (Windows)

COM and .Net (Windows)


COM is an acronym for Component Object Model; it is an object orientated layer (and associated services) on top of DCE RPC (an open standard) and defines a common calling convention that enables code written in any language to call and interoperate with code written in any other language (provided those languages are COM aware). Not only can the code be written in any language, but it need not even be part of the same executable; the code can be loaded from a DLL, be found in another process running on the same machine, or, with DCOM (Distributed COM), be found in another process on a remote machine, all without your code even needing to know where a component resides.

There is a subset of COM known as OLE Automation which comprises a set of COM interfaces that allow loose binding to COM objects, so that they can be introspected and called at run-time without compile-time knowledge of how the object works. The PHP COM extension utilizes the OLE Automation interfaces to allow you to create and call compatible objects from your scripts. Technically speaking, this should really be called the "OLE Automation Extension for PHP", since not all COM objects are OLE compatible.

Now, why would or should you use COM? COM is one of the main ways to glue applications and components together on the Windows platform; using COM you can launch Microsoft Word, fill in a document template and save the result as a Word document and send it to a visitor of your web site. You can also use COM to perform administrative tasks for your network and to configure your IIS; these are just the most common uses; you can do much more with COM.

Starting with PHP 5, this extension (and this documentation) was rewritten from scratch and much of the old confusing and bogus cruft has be removed. Additionally, we support the instantiation and creation of .Net assemblies using the COM interoperability layer provided by Microsoft.

Please read » this article for an overview of the changes in this extension in PHP 5.


COM functions are only available for the Windows version of PHP.

.Net support requires PHP 5 and the .Net runtime.


There is no installation needed to use these functions; they are part of the PHP core.

The windows version of PHP has built in support for this extension. You do not need to load any additional extension in order to use these functions.

You are responsible for installing support for the various COM objects that you intend to use (such as MS Word); we don't and can't bundle all of those with PHP.

For Each

Starting with PHP 5, you may use PHP's own foreach statement to iterate over the contents of a standard COM/OLE IEnumVariant. In laymans terms, this means that you can use foreach in places where you would have used For Each in VB/ASP code.

Example 402. For Each in ASP

Set domainObject = GetObject("WinNT://Domain")
For Each obj in domainObject
 Response.Write obj.Name & "<br />"

Example 403. while() ... Next() in PHP 4

= new COM("WinNT://Domain");
while (
$obj = $domainObject->Next()) {
$obj->Name . "<br />";

Example 404. foreach in PHP 5

= new COM("WinNT://Domain");
foreach (
$domainObject as $obj) {
$obj->Name . "<br />";

Arrays and Array-style COM properties

Many COM objects expose their properties as arrays, or using array-style access. In PHP 4, you may use PHP array syntax to read/write such a property, but only a single dimension is allowed. If you want to read a multi-dimensional property, you could instead make the property access into a function call, with each parameter representing each dimension of the array access, but there is no way to write to such a property.

PHP 5 introduces the following new features to make your life easier:

  • Access multi-dimensional arrays, or COM properties that require multiple parameters using PHP array syntax. You can also write or set properties using this technique.

  • Iterate SafeArrays ("true" arrays) using the the section called “foreach” control structure. This works because SafeArrays include information about their size. If an array-style property implements IEnumVariant then you can also use foreach for that property too; take a look at the section called “For Each” for more information on this topic.

Exceptions (PHP 5)

This extension will throw instances of the class com_exception whenever there is a potentially fatal error reported by COM. All COM exceptions have a well-defined code property that corresponds to the HRESULT return value from the various COM operations. You may use this code to make programmatic decisions on how to handle the exception.

Runtime Configuration

The behaviour of these functions is affected by settings in php.ini.

Table 25. Com configuration options

Name Default Changeable Changelog
com.allow_dcom "0" PHP_INI_SYSTEM Available since PHP 4.0.5.
com.autoregister_typelib "0" PHP_INI_ALL PHP_INI_SYSTEM in PHP 4. Available since PHP 4.1.0.
com.autoregister_verbose "0" PHP_INI_ALL PHP_INI_SYSTEM in PHP 4. Available since PHP 4.1.0.
com.autoregister_casesensitive "1" PHP_INI_ALL PHP_INI_SYSTEM in PHP 4. Available since PHP 4.1.0.
com.code_page "" PHP_INI_ALL Available since PHP 5.0.0.
com.typelib_file "" PHP_INI_SYSTEM Available since PHP 4.0.5.

For further details and definitions of the PHP_INI_* constants, see the Appendix I, php.ini directives.

Here's a short explanation of the configuration directives.


When this is turned on, PHP will be allowed to operate as a D-COM (Distributed COM) client and will allow the PHP script to instantiate COM objects on a remote server.


When this is turned on, PHP will attempt to register constants from the typelibrary of objects that it instantiates, if those objects implement the interfaces required to obtain that information. The case sensitivity of the constants it registers is controlled by the com.autoregister_casesensitive configuration directive.


When this is turned on, any problems with loading a typelibrary during object instantiation will be reported using the PHP error mechanism. The default is off, which does not emit any indication if there was an error finding or loading the type library.


When this is turned on (the default), constants found in auto-loaded type libraries will be registered case sensitively. See com_load_typelib() for more details.


It controls the default character set code-page to use when passing strings to and from COM objects. If set to an empty string, PHP will assume that you want CP_ACP, which is the default system ANSI code page.

If the text in your scripts is encoded using a different encoding/character set by default, setting this directive will save you from having to pass the code page as a parameter to the COM class constructor. Please note that by using this directive (as with any PHP configuration directive), your PHP script becomes less portable; you should use the COM constructor parameter whenever possible.


This configuration directive was introduced with PHP 5.


When set, this should hold the path to a file that contains a list of typelibraries that should be loaded on startup. Each line of the file will be treated as the type library name and loaded as though you had called com_load_typelib(). The constants will be registered persistently, so that the library only needs to be loaded once. If a type library name ends with the string #cis or #case_insensitive, then the constants from that library will be registered case insensitively.

Resource Types

This extension defines a reference to a COM component returned by deprecated com_load() (this function does not exist in PHP 5; use the COM class instead).

Predefined Constants

The constants below are defined by this extension, and will only be available when the extension has either been compiled into PHP or dynamically loaded at runtime.

CLSCTX_ALL (integer)
VT_NULL (integer)
VT_EMPTY (integer)
VT_UI1 (integer)
VT_I2 (integer)
VT_I4 (integer)
VT_R4 (integer)
VT_R8 (integer)
VT_BOOL (integer)
VT_ERROR (integer)
VT_CY (integer)
VT_DATE (integer)
VT_BSTR (integer)
VT_DECIMAL (integer)
VT_UNKNOWN (integer)
VT_DISPATCH (integer)
VT_VARIANT (integer)
VT_I1 (integer)
VT_UI2 (integer)
VT_UI4 (integer)
VT_INT (integer)
VT_UINT (integer)
VT_ARRAY (integer)
VT_BYREF (integer)
CP_ACP (integer)
CP_MACCP (integer)
CP_OEMCP (integer)
CP_UTF7 (integer)
CP_UTF8 (integer)
CP_SYMBOL (integer)
CP_THREAD_ACP (integer)
VARCMP_LT (integer)
VARCMP_EQ (integer)
VARCMP_GT (integer)
VARCMP_NULL (integer)

See Also

For further information on COM read the » COM specification or perhaps take a look at Don Box's » Yet Another COM Library (YACL). You might find some additional useful information in our FAQ for Chapter 9, PHP and COM. If you're thinking of using MS Office applications on the server side, you should read the information here: » Considerations for Server-Side Automation of Office.

Table of Contents

COM — COM class
com_addref — Increases the components reference counter [deprecated]
com_create_guid — Generate a globally unique identifier (GUID)
com_event_sink — Connect events from a COM object to a PHP object
com_get_active_object — Returns a handle to an already running instance of a COM object
com_get — Gets the value of a COM Component's property [deprecated]
com_invoke — Calls a COM component's method [deprecated]
com_isenum — Indicates if a COM object has an IEnumVariant interface for iteration [deprecated]
com_load_typelib — Loads a Typelib
com_load — Creates a new reference to a COM component [deprecated]
com_message_pump — Process COM messages, sleeping for up to timeoutms milliseconds
com_print_typeinfo — Print out a PHP class definition for a dispatchable interface
com_propget — Alias of com_get()
com_propput — Alias of com_set()
com_propset — Alias of com_set()
com_release — Decreases the components reference counter [deprecated]
com_set — Assigns a value to a COM component's property
variant_abs — Returns the absolute value of a variant
variant_add — "Adds" two variant values together and returns the result
variant_and — performs a bitwise AND operation between two variants and returns the result
variant_cast — Convert a variant into a new variant object of another type
variant_cat — concatenates two variant values together and returns the result
variant_cmp — Compares two variants
variant_date_from_timestamp — Returns a variant date representation of a Unix timestamp
variant_date_to_timestamp — Converts a variant date/time value to Unix timestamp
variant_div — Returns the result from dividing two variants
variant_eqv — Performs a bitwise equivalence on two variants
variant_fix — Returns the integer portion ? of a variant
variant_get_type — Returns the type of a variant object
variant_idiv — Converts variants to integers and then returns the result from dividing them
variant_imp — Performs a bitwise implication on two variants
variant_int — Returns the integer portion of a variant
variant_mod — Divides two variants and returns only the remainder
variant_mul — multiplies the values of the two variants and returns the result
variant_neg — Performs logical negation on a variant
variant_not — Performs bitwise not negation on a variant
variant_or — Performs a logical disjunction on two variants
variant_pow — Returns the result of performing the power function with two variants
variant_round — Rounds a variant to the specified number of decimal places
variant_set_type — Convert a variant into another type "in-place"
variant_set — Assigns a new value for a variant object
variant_sub — subtracts the value of the right variant from the left variant value and returns the result
variant_xor — Performs a logical exclusion on two variants

Code Examples / Notes »

sorin dot andrei

[Editor's Note:
Serializing the object, storing it and then (on the next page) unserializing it WILL work.
End Note]
the big problem for PHP is it can't save in session an COM object
an samples code is here. This works just first time, then give the error:
Call to undefined method com::Refresh() on line  $mMap->Refresh();
the reson is he can't save the object $mMap in session
 if (isset($_SESSION['map'])) {
$mMap = $_SESSION['map'];
   $ArcIMSConnector = new COM ("aims.ArcIMSConnector")  or die("can not create AIMS message object");
echo "Loaded ArcIMSConnector,
$ArcIMSConnector->ServerName = "";
$ArcIMSConnector->ServerPort = 5300;
$mMap = new COM ("aims.Map")  or die("can not create aims.Map message object");
echo "Loaded aims.Map,
print "AIMS-ServerName= $ArcIMSConnector->ServerName
$resultInit= $mMap->InitMap($ArcIMSConnector,"Worldgeography");
$mMap->Width    = 400; // 'Width of the map in pixels
$mMap->Height   = 300; // 'Height of the map in pixels
$mMap->BackColor = 15130848;
$_SESSION['map'] = $mMap;
$resultRefresh = $mMap->Refresh(); //Refresh the map
$urlImage      = $mMap->GetImageAsUrl();
print "
print "
<IMG SRC='$urlImage'>";
$ArcIMSConnector = null;
$mMap = null;

aldric dot vaseur

Yes !
Finally i found how to kill MsWord Com process...
The next MSWord function does not work if the optional args are empty :
this doesn't work:
but this is ok :
   $empty = new VARIANT(); //for optional args...
Hope this usefull.


XSLT transformations using MSXML can be done with this code
function xsltransform1($xslpath,$xmlstring)
 $xml= new COM("Microsoft.XMLDOM");
 // $xmlstring is an xml string
 $xsl = new COM("Microsoft.XMLDOM");
 // $xslpath is path to an xsl file
 return $response;
// enjoy
//Alan Young

richard dot quadling

With thanks to Harald Radi and Wez Furlong.
Some VBA functions have optional parameters. Sometimes the parameters you want to pass are not consecutive.
GoTo What:=wdGoToBookmark, Name="BookMarkName"
In PHP, the "blank" parameters need to be empty.
Which is ...
// Some servers may have an auto timeout, so take as long as you want.
// Show all errors, warnings and notices whilst developing.
// Used as a placeholder in certain COM functions where no parameter is required.
$empty = new VARIANT();
// Load the appropriate type library.
// Create an object to use.
$word = new COM('word.application') or die('Unable to load Word');
print "Loaded Word, version {$word->Version}\n";
// Open a new document with bookmarks of YourName and YourAge.
// Fill in the information from the form.
$word->Selection->GoTo(wdGoToBookmark,$empty,$empty,'YourName'); // Note use of wdGoToBookmark, from the typelibrary and the use of $empty.
// Save it, close word and finish.
$word = null;
print "Word closed.\n";
The example document is ...
Hello [Bookmark of YourName], you are [Bookmark of YourAge] years old.
and it would be called ...


When first writing applications instancing COM objects I always faced the problem of the instanced program not terminating correctly although everything else worked fine. In fact the process had to be killed manually by using the task manager. When experimenting a bit I was able to isolate the cause for this peculiar behaviour to be illustrated by the sample code below:
//Accessing arrays by retrieving elements via function ArrayName(Index) works, but certainly is neither efficient nor good style
$excel=new COM("Excel.Application");
//Accessing arrays as usual (using the [] operator) works, buts leads to the application not being able to terminate by itself
$excel=new COM("Excel.Application");
The sample code performs the same action twice and each time the file is properly created. Yet for some mysterious reason the instanced excel process won't terminate once you've accessed an array the way most programmers (especially those who do a lot of oop in c++) do! Therefore until the PHP developers become aware of this problem we'll have to use the inefficient coding style illustrated in the first example.

pedro heliodoro

Using the Windows Media Player OCX and the latest snap of PHP 5.1 i was able to eject a CD-ROM drive
//create an instance of Windows Media Player
$mp = new COM("WMPlayer.OCX");
//ejects the first cd-rom on the drive list


Useful PHP MSWord class I created to do some simple file conversions.  This class could have a lot more to it but I am not familiar with all the COM MS Word function calls.

// NOTE: Using COM with windows NT/2000/XP with apache as a service
// - Run dcomcnfg.exe
// - Find word application and click properties
// - Click the Security tab
// - Use Custom Access Permissions
// - Add the user who runs the web server service
// - Use Custom Launch permissions
// - Add the user who runs the web server service

$wdFormatDocument = 0;
$wdFormatTemplate = 1;
$wdFormatText = 2;
$wdFormatTextLineBreaks = 3;
$wdFormatDOSText = 4;
$wdFormatDOSTextLineBreaks = 5;
$wdFormatRTF = 6;
$wdFormatUnicodeText = 7;
class MSWord
// Vars:
var $handle;

// Create COM instance to word
function MSWord($Visible = false)
$this->handle = new COM("word.application") or die("Unable to instanciate Word");
$this->handle->Visible = $Visible;

// Open existing document
function Open($File)

// Create new document
function NewDocument()

// Write text to active document
function WriteText( $Text )
$this->handle->Selection->Typetext( $Text );

// Number of documents open
function DocumentCount()
return $this->handle->Documents->Count;

// Save document as another file and/or format
function SaveAs($File, $Format = 0 )
$this->handle->ActiveDocument->SaveAs($File, $Format);

// Save active document
function Save()

// close active document.
function Close()

// Get word version
function GetVersion()
return $this->handle->Version;

// get handle to word
function GetHandle()
return $this->handle;

// Clean up instance with word
function Quit()
if( $this->handle )
// close word

// free the object
$this->handle = null;
Example 1, opens an html file, writes text to it, then saves it as a document:
$input = "C:\\test.htm";
$output = "C:\\test.doc";
$Word = new MSWord;
$Word->WriteText("This is a test ");
Example 2, opens an html file, then saves it as a rtf file:
$input = "C:\\test.htm";
$output = "C:\\test.rtf";
$Word = new MSWord;
$Word->SaveAs($output, $wdFormatRTF);

court shrock

took me a while until I found out how to loop through COM objects in PHP.... in ASP, you use something like:
set domainObject = GetObject("WinNT://Domain")
for each obj in domainObject
 Response.write obj.Name & "
I finally found a note in a PHP bogus bug report that said you needed to do something like this (this is using ADSI):
$adsi = new COM("WinNT://Domain");
while($obj = $adsi->Next()) {
 echo $obj->Name.'
}// while
// will list all the names of all objects in the domain 'Domain'
Also, you can access the IIS metabase by doing something like the following:
$iis = new COM("IIS://localhost/w3svc");
while($obj = $iis->Next()) {
 if ($obj->Class == 'IISWebServer') {
   $site = new COM("IIS://Localhost/w3svc/".$obj->Name);
   echo 'serviceID ('.$obj->Name.'): '.$site->ServerComment.'
   $bindings = $site->ServerBindings;
   echo '<ul>';
   foreach($bindings as $binding) {
     list($ip, $port, $hostHeader) = explode(':', $binding);
     echo "<li>$ip:$port -- $hostHeader</li>";
   }// foreach
   echo '</ul>';
   // hint: ssl bindings are in $site->SecureBindings
 }// if
}// while
// will list all the sites and their bindings on 'localhost'


Took me a while to work this out as there is very little help available. Accessing com variables that are multi arrays can prove tricky.
$ex = new COM("application");
is an array A-H [stPrice,stCurrency]
php chucks out an error on this:
so, you have to do this
$tmp = $ex->Stock->stSalesBands(C);
echo $tmp->stPrice;


To pass a parameter by reference to a COM function, you need to pass VARIANT to it. Common data types like integers and strings will not work for it.
As an example, calling a function that retrieves the name of a person will look like:
$Name = new VARIANT;
$comobj = new COM("MyCOMOBj.Component") or die("Couldn't create the COM Component");
if(!$comobj->GetName($Name)) {
   echo("Could not retrieve name");
else {
   echo("The name retrieved is : " . $Name->value);
$Name->type will contain the type of the value stored in the VARIANT e.g. VT_BSTR.
Note For PHP 5:
Insted of '$Name->value', we can use only '$Name' for getting the value stored in the VARIANT. To get the type of the value stored in the VARIANT, use 'variant_get_type($Name)'.
Feroz Zahid


To manage the Windows Register at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\ use these functions:
* @return string
* @param aplicacio string
* @param nom string
* @desc Retorna el valor del registre HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\aplicacio\nom
function rtv_registre($aplicacio, $nom)
Global $WshShell;
$registre =  "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\\" . $aplicacio . "\\"  . $nom;
$valor = $WshShell->RegRead($registre);
* @return string
* @param aplicacio string
* @param nom string
* @param valor string
* @param tipus string
* @desc Actualitza el valor del registre HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\aplicacio\nom
function put_registre($aplicacio, $nom, $valor, $tipus="REG_SZ")
Global $WshShell;
$registre =  "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\\" . $aplicacio . "\\"  . $nom;
$retorn = $WshShell->RegWrite($registre, $valor, $tipus);
// Creem una instància del COM que ens serveix per
// accedir al registre de Windows, i la mantenim.
// D'aquesta manera millorem el rendiment.
$WshShell = new COM("WScript.Shell");


To get the cpu load percentage you can do something like this.
$wmi = new COM('winmgmts://');
$processor = $wmi->ExecQuery("SELECT * FROM Win32_Processor");
foreach($processor as $obj){
$cpu_load_time = $obj->LoadPercentage;
echo $cpu_load_time;
To list current apache instances
$wmi = new COM('winmgmts://');
$processes = $wmi->ExecQuery("SELECT * FROM Win32_Process WHERE Name = 'httpd.exe'");
foreach($processes as $process){
echo $process->CommandLine . "<br />";
echo $process->ProcessId . "<br />";
To run a php script in a background process
$dir = "C:\\path\\to\\dir";
$php_path = "C:\\path\\to\\php.exe";
$file = "somescript.php";
//send time current timestamp
$cmd_options = "-t " . time();
$wscript = new COM('WScript.Shell');
$wscript->Run("cmd /K CD $php_path $dir\\$file  &  ", 0, false);


This took me days to work out how to do so I gotta share it:
How to get the word count from a MS Word Document:
#Instantiate the Word component.
$word = new COM("word.application") or die("Unable to instantiate Word");
$word->Visible = 1;
$temp = $word->Dialogs->Item(228);
$numwords = $temp->Words();
echo $numwords;
Note that this is the only way to get the word count accurately:
Will see all carriage returns and punctuation as words so is wildy innaccurate.


This is a sample to make a parametrized query using ADO via COM, this sample was used with Foxpro but will work's with most ADO complient databases. This was tested on IIS with WIN XP pro.
// Create the main connection
$dbc = new COM("ADODB.Connection")  or die ("connection create fail");
$dbc->Provider = "MSDASQL";
// Creates a temporary record set
$RSet = new COM("ADODB.Recordset");
// Create one ADO command
$cm   = new COM("ADODB.Command");
$cm->Activeconnection = $dbc;
// the ? inside values will be the parameters $par01 and $par02
$cm->CommandText =  "Insert Into testtable ( mycharfield,mymemofield) VALUES (?,?)" ;
$cm->Prepared = TRUE;
// Creates and append 2 parameters
$par01 = $cm->CreateParameter('ppar01',129,1,50,'ABCDEFGHIKL');
$par02 = $cm->CreateParameter('ppar01',129,1,50,'123456789012346789');
// Call 10 times the exec comand to show 10 different queries
for ($i = 1; $i <= 10; $i++) {
 $par01->Value = 'Count '.$i;
 $par02->Value = 'Passing here'.$i.' times';
 $RSet = $cm->Execute;
$RSet = $dbc->Execute("select * from testtable");
while (!$RSet->EOF){
 echo $RSet->fields["mycharfield"]->value.' ' ;
 echo $RSet->fields["mymemofield"]->value ;
 echo '
$RSet = null;
$dbc = null;
$cm = null;


This function converts the crystal report in file $my_report to a PDF file $my_pdf. Exceptions may raise, so put it in a try..catch block.
I struggled so hard to get this done... any comments, please contact me.
function exportCrystalReportToPDF( $my_report, $my_pdf )
 // by dfcp/mar/06
 $ObjectFactory= New COM("CrystalReports11.ObjectFactory.1");
 $crapp = $ObjectFactory->CreateObject("CrystalDesignRunTime.Application");
 $creport = $crapp->OpenReport($my_report, 1);
 $creport->ExportOptions->DestinationType=1; // Export to File
 $creport->ExportOptions->FormatType=31; // Type: PDF


This code use a Crystal Reports file with a connection on
Oracle 9i Database, suports manipulate and refresh data
and export to PDF file:
------ REMEMBER ------
These functions are only available if you had instaled the
Crystal Reports Developer Edition. Catch the trial on the web site.
//------  Variables ------
$my_report = "C:\\rel_apontamento.rpt";
$my_pdf = "C:\\teste.pdf";
//------ Create a new COM Object of Crytal Reports XI ------
$ObjectFactory= new
//------ Create a instance of library Application -------
//------ Open your rpt file ------
$creport = $crapp->OpenReport($my_report, 1);
//------ Connect to Oracle 9i DataBase ------
//------ Put the values that you want --------
//------ This is very important. DiscardSavedData make a
Refresh in your data -------
//------ Read the records :-P -------
//------ Export to PDF -------
//------ Release the variables
$creport = null;
$crapp = null;
$ObjectFactory = null;
It's functional and perfectly !!!!!!!


There's no way to use static dlls in php. only way to use a dll in php is to make it a com object first and then using it in php like this
$NewCom=new COM("uni.example");
once we created the COM object this can be used like any other php classes.


The only way I've been able to call Win32 API functions with PHP5 has been through COM and DynamicWrapper.
Get DynamicWrapper at:
(remove new line)
Here's an example to play a beep sound with your computer speaker:
$com = new COM("DynamicWrapper");
$com->Register("KERNEL32.DLL", "Beep", "i=ll", "f=s", "r=l");
$com->Beep(5000, 100);


The documentation for this feature is a bit redundant. It mentions that COM performs and encourages information hiding (a.k.a. encapsulation) three times. Perhaps instead it could expand a bit on what COM is useful for, and particularly why combining it with PHP can be beneficial.
The contributed examples above do a nice job of illustrating the benefits of PHP+COM. In a nutshell, many Windows applications (especially office suites and databases) expose useful functionality through the COM interface.
For example, Microsoft Word can read RTF files and (of course) write Word Documents. You could use PHP to generate RTF and then use Microsoft Word via PHP's COM interface to convert the RTF to a DOC. The amazing thing about this is that you can actually insert PHP (or template) code into Word itself, because RTF files are text-based like HTML. Throw Distiller into the mix and you've got a web-based, template-driven, maybe even database-driven PDF generator!
Have fun,


Since my last post, I struggled hard to find a way to pass parameters to Crystal. Luckly, all I needed was to restrict results from a query, so I found this simple solution:
 // by dfcp/mar/06
 $ObjectFactory= New COM("CrystalReports11.ObjectFactory.1");
 $crapp = $ObjectFactory->CreateObject("CrystalDesignRunTime.Application");
 $creport = $crapp->OpenReport($my_report, 1);
 $creport->FormulaSyntax = 0;
 $creport->RecordSelectionFormula = "{}>10 and {}<20";
notice that RecordSelectionFormula must be in Crystal Syntax, and the FormulaSyntax=0 makes it work 100% of the time (I suspect that it's bug, although they1 don't seem to think so).
If you need to pass parameters to, say, multiply some field by, IMHO the right way is to use ParameterFields, but the code above hangs on the last line:
$z = $creport->ParameterFieldDefinitions->Item(1); //gets the first parameter
$z->SetCurrentValue( "teste" ); // hangs here
I saw this at some ASPX foruns... no idea why it doesn't work here on PHP... feedback would be highly appreciated.


Simple example for creating your own dll's which can be called as COM objects in PHP:
First create your ActiveX dll (Visual Basic):
Name your project as "foo" and class as "bar".
'---start VB code---
Public Function hello() As String
   hello = "Hello World!"
End Function
'---end VB code---
Then make the dll and register it with regsvr32.exe
Now create your PHP script:
$obj = new COM("");
$output=$obj->hello(); // Call the "hello()" method
echo $output; // Displays Hello World! (so this comes from the dll!)


Simple convert xls to csv
// starting excel
$excel = new COM("excel.application") or die("Unable to instanciate excel");
print "Loaded excel, version {$excel->Version}\n";
//bring it to front
#$excel->Visible = 1;//NOT
//dont want alerts ... run silent
$excel->DisplayAlerts = 0;
//open  document
//XlFileFormat.xlcsv file format is 6
//saveas command (file,format ......)
//closing excel
//free the object
$excel = null;


Searched for days on how to set up a multi-column html output grid that didn't use an array when creating an ADODB connection. Couldn't find one so I figured it out myself. Pretty simple. Wish I would have tried it myself sooner. Commented code with database connection is below...
//create the database connection
$conn = new COM("ADODB.Connection");
$dsn = "DRIVER={Microsoft Access Driver (*.mdb)}; DBQ=" . realpath("mydb.mdb");
//pull the data through SQL string
$rs = $conn->Execute("select clients from web");
$clients = $rs->Fields(1);
//start the multicolumn data output
$i = 0;
$columns = 5;
while (!$rs->EOF){
//if $i equals 0, start a row
if($i == 0){
echo "<tr>";
//then start writing the cells in the row, increase $i by one, and move to the next record
echo "<td>" . $clients->value . "</td>";
//once $i increments to equal $columns, end the row,
//and start the process over by setting $i to 0
if($i == $columns || $rs->EOF) {
echo "</tr>";
$i = 0;
//end multicolumn data output
//close the ADO connections and release resources
$rs = null;
$conn = null; ?>

11-nov-2003 01:25

I strongly suspect this is due to excel helpfully asking "Do you want to save the changes you made to  'Book1'?" when Quit is called.
This can be avoided by making sure that you set the 'Saved' property to True on ALL workbooks before exiting.
Assuming you only have the one workbook:
$excel->ActiveWorkbook->Saved = 1
Word suffers a similar problem and you must set the saved property to true on each document.
This demonstrates the pitfalls of scripting Word, Excel and similar applications in a non-interactive environment.


I have been trying to solve the problem of terminating the excel process when using the COM functionality. I found a few 'supposed fixes' including not using arrays etc but none of them seemed to work. Example:
None of these variants properly quit the process - ONLY the visible application. Several hours of using your code would leave thousands of excel processes running invisibly in the background and eating all your ram very quickly.
As I was developing on a solution designed to work on clients running windows, my solution was to install microsofts 'kill.exe' into the windows directory and then run it using:
shell_exec("kill excel.exe");
One problem is because kill.exe is an add on utility, some clients running windows will not have it. The solution is then to use file_exists(filename) to detect for the file and then if not present, let the user download it. Example:
$killApp = "C:\WINDOWS\KILL.EXE";
if (file_exists($killApp)) {
   # continue
} else {
   # show message and link to kill.exe download


Printing to a network printer :
read this note for :
// NOTE: Using COM with windows NT/2000/XP with apache as a service
// - Run dcomcnfg.exe
// - Find word application and click properties
// - Click the Security tab
// - Use Custom Access Permissions
// - Add the user who runs the web server service
// - Use Custom Launch permissions
// - Add the user who runs the web server service
// starting word
$word = new COM("word.application") or die("Unable to instanciate Word");
print "Loaded Word, version {$word->Version}\n";
// bring it to front
$word->Visible = 1;
//this is for example a printer on my network
$word->ActivePrinter = "\\\\\\printer1";
// Open a word document, or anything else that word
// can read
$input ="c:\\test.html";
// closing word
// free the object
$word = null;
its based on :
at last i did it with lot's of thanks too :


Some COM functions not only return values through the return value, but also act upon a variable passed to it as a parameter *By Reference*:
RetVal = DoSomethingTo (myVariable)
Simply sticking an '&' in front of myVariable doesn't work - you need to pass it a variant of the correct type, as follows:
 $myStringVariant = new VARIANT("over-write me", VT_BSTR);
 $result = $comobj->DoSomethingTo( &$myStringVariant );
The value in the variant can then be retrieved by:
 $theActualValue = $myStringVariant->value;
Other types of variant can be created as your needs demand - see the preceding section on the VARIANT type.

tomas dot pacl

Passing parameters by reference in PHP 4.3.2 (and in a future releases of PHP )
In PHP 4.3.2 allow_call_time_pass_reference option is set to "Off" by default and future versions may not support this option any longer.
Some COM functions has by-reference parameters. VARIANT object must be used to call this functions, but it would be passed without an '&' before variable name.
$myStringVariant = new VARIANT("over-write me", VT_BSTR);
/* works */
$result = $comobj->DoSomethingTo($myStringVariant );
/* works only with allow_call_time_pass_reference option set to "On" and may not work in a future release of PHP */
$result = $comobj->DoSomethingTo(&$myStringVariant );
The value in the variant can be retrieved by:
$theActualValue = $myStringVariant->value;


open PDF Documents with Internet Explorer
$browser = new COM("InternetExplorer.Application");
$browser->Visible = true;
this works for me with php-gtk


now in PHP >=4.0.6
programming in window can use the
ADO through the COM like this:
$dbconn=new COM ("ADODB.Connection") or die ("connection create fail");
$dbconn->Open("Provider=sqloledb;Data Source=ndht;Initial Catalog=printers;User Id=printers;Password=printers;");
$rec=new COM("ADODB.Recordset") or die ("create Recordset error");
while (!$rec->EOF)
echo $rec->fields["fieldname"]->value."
but there's still a little question of working with the image field of mssql server.

vedanta dot barooah

Microsoft provides two binaries to create windows services: INSTSRV.EXE and SRVANY.EXE, using these php scripts can be run as windows services.
More information is available at:


Many COM objects don't do well when passing long (win32) filenames as function parameters.  You can get the 8.3 name of the folder or file on *most* (some win platforms don't support it, and it can be toggled off in the registry for performance reasons) servers using the following:
//create FSO instance
$exFSO = new COM("Scripting.FileSystemObject") or die ("Could not create Scripting.FileSystemObject");
//set vars
$myDir = "C:\\Program Files\\";
$myFile = "a long file name.txt";
//get folder & file objects
$exDir = $exFSO->GetFolder($myDir);
$exFile = $exFSO->GetFile($myDir . $myFile);
echo $exDir->ShortPath;
echo $exFile->ShortPath;

mark dickens

Just a note to those wanting to use COM to interface to printers under Windows 2000/XP.  If it doesn't work or seems to hang, try changing the logon identity under which the Apache (assuming you're using Apache) service is running from the System account to another account.  By default most services will install to run under the System account and although the System account has total authority on the computer it is running on, it has no authority outside of that realm as I understand it.  Apparently accessing printers is considered "outside the realm".  I used this technique to interface a Dymo thermal label printer to my server and it works now.

a dot kulikov

In case you are wondering how to group rows or columns in the freshly created EXCEL files, then this may help you
   * Grouping Rows optically in Excel Using a COM Object
   * That was not easy, I have spent several hours of trial and error to get
   * this thing to work!!!
   * @author Kulikov Alexey <>
   * @since  13.03.2006
   * @see    Open Excel, Hit Alt+F11, thne Hit F2 -- this is your COM bible
  //starting excel
  $excel = new COM("excel.application") or die("Unable to instanciate excel");
  print "Loaded excel, version {$excel->Version}\n";
  //bring it to front
  #$excel->Visible = 1;//NOT
  //dont want alerts ... run silent
  $excel->DisplayAlerts = 0;
  //create a new workbook
  $wkb = $excel->Workbooks->Add();
  //select the default sheet
  //make it the active sheet
  //fill it with some bogus data
      for ($col=1;$col<=5;$col++){
         $cell->value = 'pool4tool 4eva ' . $row . ' ' . $col . ' ak';
      }//end of colcount for loop
  // Select Rows 2 to 5
  $r = $sheet->Range("2:5")->Rows;
  // group them baby, yeah
  // save the new file
  $strPath = 'tfile.xls';
  if (file_exists($strPath)) {unlink($strPath);}
  //close the book
  //free up the RAM
  //closing excel
  //free the object
  $excel = null;


If you want to use ms indexing server by querying it from ms sql server in a stored procedure with parameters you can do the following:
1.) Create the Catalog named 'myIndexServer' in indexing server
2.) execute addLinkedServer in query analyzer
      EXEC sp_addlinkedserver
          @server     = 'myIndexServer',
          @srvproduct = 'Index Server',
          @provider   = 'MSIDXS',
          @datasrc    = 'myIndexServer'
 in case myIndexServer already exist choose another name or  
 delete it (be carefull)
   EXEC sp_dropserver myIndexServer
3.) Write the following string in query analyzer
    declare @sql varchar(1000)
    declare @searchFor varchar(400)
    set @searchFor = 'phporsomething'
    set @sql =' SELECT Path, Filename
                        FROM OPENQUERY( pmsIndexServer,
                        ''SELECT Path, Filename FROM                
                            WHERE CONTAINS( '''''+@searchFor+''''' )'' ) AS dres' -- end of long sql-string
     exec (@sql)
     Attention 5 times ' !!!
4.)  Execute the string (F5)
5.) Create a simple stored procedure and copy the string from step 3. Make @searchFor an parameter of your sp
6.) You are done, lean back, enjoy and relax
To contact me remove the fruits.

jack dot chliang

If you want to search an Excel file and don't connect with ODBC, you can try the function I provide. It will search a keyword in the Excel find and return its sheet name, text, field and the row which found the keyword.
// The example of print out the result
$result = array();
searchEXL("C:/test.xls", "test", $result);
foreach($result as $sheet => $rs){
echo "Found at $sheet";

echo "<table width=\"100%\" border=\"1\"><tr>";

for($i = 0; $i < count($rs["FIELD"]); $i++)
echo "<th>" . $rs["FIELD"][$i] . "</th>";

echo "</tr>";

for($i = 0; $i < count($rs["TEXT"]); $i++) {
echo "<tr>";

for($j = 0; $j < count($rs["FIELD"]); $j++)
echo "<td>" . $rs["ROW"][$i][$j] . "</td>";

echo "</tr>";
echo "</table>";
* @param $file string The excel file path
* @param $keyword string The keyword
* @param $result array The search result
function searchEXL($file, $keyword, &$result) {
  $exlObj = new COM("Excel.Application") or Die ("Did not connect");
  $exlBook = $exlObj->ActiveWorkBook;
  $exlSheets = $exlBook->Sheets;
  for($i = 1; $i <= $exlSheets->Count; $i++) {
  $exlSheet = $exlBook->WorkSheets($i);
  $sheetName = $exlSheet->Name;
  if($exlRange = $exlSheet->Cells->Find($keyword)) {
$col = 1;
while($fields = $exlSheet->Cells(1, $col)) {
            if($fields->Text == "")

$result[$sheetName]["FIELD"][] = $fields->Text;

$firstAddress = $exlRange->Address;
$finding = 1;
$result[$sheetName]["TEXT"][] = $exlRange->Text;

for($j = 1; $j <= count($result[$sheetName]["FIELD"]); $j++) {
$cell = $exlSheet->Cells($exlRange->Row ,$j);
$result[$sheetName]["ROW"][$finding - 1][$j - 1] = $cell->Text;
while($exlRange = $exlRange->Cells->Find($keyword)) {
  if($exlRange->Address == $firstAddress)

$result[$sheetName]["TEXT"][] = $exlRange->Text;

for($j = 1; $j <= count($result[$sheetName]["FIELD"]); $j++) {
$cell = $exlSheet->Cells($exlRange->Row ,$j);
$result[$sheetName]["ROW"][$finding - 1][$j - 1] = $cell->Text;

For more information, please visit my blog site (written in Chinese)

06-jan-2005 05:11

if you want to add a new hyperlink with excel :
$cell->Hyperlinks->Add($cell ,'here_your_file');
I write this note because is very difficult to find
the good method to do that .
Merci beaucoup


If you are using a COM object that opens windows or dialogs (like Office applications), those windows or dialogs will not appear and will stay invisible even if you use codes like    
$word->visible = true;
To solve this problem, go to the web service properties (Administrative Tools) and click (in the Logon TAB) "Allow the Service to Iterate with desktop".
This explain lots of problems to close applications. When you try to close, the dialos asking to save the file must appear, but only in the option to iterate with desktop is on.
Hope it helps.

jason neal

If you are having issues with the outlook.application locking up when you try to access it, ensure that your apache server is running in the context of a user on the machine instead of the system account.

03-oct-2006 12:11

If someone want to get a COM object out of a DCOM object can do something like that:
 $dcom_obj = new COM('dacom.object','remotehost') or die("Unable to get DCOM object!");
 $com_obj = new Variant(NULL);
 $dcom_obj->Get_Module($com_obj); //user function which returns a custom IDispatch (casted as variant*)
Hopefully this will help someone, because it took me quite long to figure this out.


I thought this excel chart example could be useful.
Note the use of Excel.application vs Excel.sheet.
   print "Hi";
#Instantiate the spreadsheet component.
#    $ex = new COM("Excel.sheet") or Die ("Did not connect");
$exapp = new COM("Excel.application") or Die ("Did not connect");
#Get the application name and version    
print "Application name:{$ex->Application->value}
" ;
print "Loaded version: {$ex->Application->version}
#$wkb = $ex->Application->ActiveWorkbook or Die ("Did not open workbook");
print "we opened workbook
$ex->Application->Visible = 1; #Make Excel visible.
print "we made excell visible
$sheets = $wkb->Worksheets(1); #Select the sheet
print "selected a sheet
$sheets->activate; #Activate it
print "activated sheet
#This is a new sheet
$sheets2 = $wkb->Worksheets->add(); #Add a sheet
print "added a new sheet
$sheets2->activate; #Activate it
print "activated sheet
$sheets2->name="Report Second page";
$sheets->name="Report First page";
print "We set a name to the sheet: $sheets->name
# fills a columns
for ($i=1;$i<$maxi;$i++) {
   $cell = $sheets->Cells($i,5) ; #Select the cell (Row Column number)
   $cell->activate; #Activate the cell
   $cell->value = $i*$i; #Change it to 15000
$ch = $sheets->chartobjects->add(50, 40, 400, 100); # make a chartobject
$chartje = $ch->chart; # place a chart in the chart object
$chartje->activate; #activate chartobject
$selected = $sheets->range("E1:E$maxi"); # set the data the chart uses
$chartje->setsourcedata($selected); # set the data the chart uses
print "set the data the chart uses
if (file_exists($file_name)) {unlink($file_name);}
#$ex->Application->ActiveWorkbook->SaveAs($file_name); # saves sheet as final.xls
$wkb->SaveAs($file_name); # saves sheet as final.xls
print "saved
Alex Madon


I thought i'd share with those of you unfamiliar with one of the cool things
about developing php on win32 systems..
This is a good article, but i don't think the author hit the nail on the
head showing how useful this can be.
Now, checkout this article:
Notice how he describes 1) how to build a com object & 2) how to call and
use the com object from ASP.
In php, this is how you would call the same object:
$instance = new COM("Checkyear.LeapYear");
$isleapyear = $instance->IsLeapYear($year);
if($isleapyear) {
echo "The <b>$year</b> is a leap year";
else {
echo "The <b>$year</b> is not a leap year";
I hope this helps someone.. you can contact me at if
you would like to discuss this further.

kleontiv -at- combellga -dot- ru

I think some one wants to access to Microsoft Active Directory using ADSI with different credential by PHP. You can also do it via pure LDAP but using ADSI it is more simpler.
On VB, VBS or ASP you can do like folowing (so not trivial):
Set dso = GetObject("LDAP:")
Set DsObj = dso.OpenDSObject( _
   "LDAP://DC=mydomain,DC=com", _
   "DOMAIN\login", _
   "password", _
for each Obj in DsObj
Response.Write & " with class of: " & Obj.class & "
On PHP you can do like that:
$ADSI = new COM("LDAP:") ;
$DsObj = $ADSI->OpenDsObject("LDAP://DC=mydomain,DC=com",
                            515) ;
while($Obj = $DsObj->Next())
 echo $Obj->name.' with class of: '.$Obj->class.'
' ;
The access type enumeration you can use as ADS_AUTHENTICATION_ENUM.


I found the lack of good online docs about how to access a windows environment very frustrating.  I finally found something here: but it's a php4 way.  I cleaned up the code, added introspection for methods and voila.  Thanks and credit to the original posters.
// php translation of asp script by Bill Wooten from
function showServices($vComputerName, $vClass)  {
   $objLocator = new COM("WbemScripting.SWbemLocator");
   if($vComputerName == "") $objService = $objLocator->ConnectServer();
   else                     $objService = $objLocator->ConnectServer($vComputerName);
   $objWEBM = $objService->Get($vClass);
   $objProp = $objWEBM->Properties_;
   $objMeth = $objWEBM->Methods_;
   foreach($objMeth as $methItem) echo "Method: " . $methItem->Name ."\r\n";
   echo "\r\n";
   $objWEBMCol = $objWEBM->Instances_();
   foreach($objWEBMCol as $objItem) {
       echo "[" . $objItem->Name . "]\r\n";
       foreach($objProp as $propItem) {
          $tmp = $propItem->Name;
          echo "$tmp: " . $objItem->$tmp . "\r\n";
        echo "\r\n";
// Test the function:
showServices("", "Win32_Processor");
showServices("", "Win32_LogicalDisk");


I didn't found any working examples of PHP using the MSMQ COM object, so I made up one, thought I share it with works ok.
You have to create a local Public message queue named "TestQueue" first.
define(MQ_SEND_ACCESS , 2);
define(MQ_DENY_NONE , 0);
$msgQueueInfo =  new COM("MSMQ.MSMQQueueInfo") or die("can not create MSMQ Info object");
$msgQueueInfo->PathName = ".\TestQueue";

$msgQueue =  new COM("MSMQ.MSMQQueue") or die("can not create MSMQ object");
$msgQueue=$msgQueueInfo->Open(MQ_SEND_ACCESS, MQ_DENY_NONE );

$msgOut = new COM("MSMQ.MSMQMessage") or die("can not create MSMQ message object");
$msgOut->Body = "Hello world!";



I couldn't find much on Crystal Reports and COM's when I went to tackle it
so I thought a few lines of code here may help out anyone looking for where
to get started in the future.

$crapp = new COM("CrystalRuntime.Application.10");
$creport = $crapp->OpenReport($reportToRun, 1);
//reportToRun=full path to *.rpt file
Item(1)->ConnectionProperties['User ID'] =  $user;
Item(1)->ConnectionProperties['Password'] = $pass;
//fomatType = integer 22=xls, 31=pdf etc
$creport->ExportOptions->FormatType = $formatType;

//type 1 is to output to a file I think 2 is email
$creport->ExportOptions->DestinationType = 1;

//location = full path to report output file
$creport->ExportOptions->DiskFileName = $location;



How to send email via MAPI (works with Windows NT4, apache launched as a service)
#New MAPI session...
$session = new COM("MAPI.Session");
$strProfileInfo = "exchange_server" . chr(10) . "exchange_user";
$session->Logon("", "", 0, 1, 0, 1, $strProfileInfo);
# New message...
$msg = $session->Outbox->Messages->Add();
$msg->Subject = "Subject";
$msg->Text = "body";

#set recipients...
$rcpts = $msg->Recipients;
$rcpts->AddMultiple("", 1);   #To...
$rcpts->AddMultiple("", 2);   #Cc...
$rcpts->AddMultiple("", 3);   #Bcc...
# Resolve senders

#Send message

if($msg!=null) {
$msg = null;
if($session!=null) {
$session = null;
ps : NT account launching the service and exchange user must match !


I´ve GOOGLED alot to find out how to use the MS Index Server (which comes with IIS-Webserver) as a search engine. Here is the code that makes a connection via ADO and lists a result for a given searchstring. Hope you'll find it usefull, it will surely prevent you from searching a long time in search engines. If anybody knows how to do it better, feel free to post it here. The following url contains a description for the index server. It also mentions some further features of the index server (  japanese only, sorry).
$objIndexServer = new COM("ADODB.Connection") or die("Cannot start ADO");
$objIndexServer->Provider = "msidxs";

$sql="SELECT DocTitle, VPath, Path, Filename, Access, HitCount, Rank "
."FROM SCOPE('DEEP TRAVERSAL OF \"d:\inetpub\intranet \"') "
."WHERE ((CONTAINS(' \"$searchstring\" ') >0) "
."AND ((Path NOT LIKE '%\_vti%') AND (Path NOT LIKE '%\_private%') "
."AND (Filename NOT LIKE 'search.php'))) ORDER BY Rank DESC";

$objRS = $objIndexServer->Execute("$sql"); # submit the query

while (!$rs->EOF) //create output
$objRS->Fields["DOCTITLE"]->value." -- "
.$objRS->Fields["FILENAME"]->value." -- "
.date("d.M.y",$objRS->Fields["ACCESS"]->value)." -- "
.$objRS->Fields["HITCOUNT"]->value." -- "
.($objRS->Fields["RANK"]->value/10)."% ----> "

23-nov-2003 05:57

Here is an example of reading the custom properties like Author, Keywords, etc. which are stored in MS Office and other Windows files. You must install and register dsofile as described at;EN-US;Q224351. The .frm file in that distribution lists most of the available properties.
// the file you wish to access
$fn = '/docs/MFA.xls';
$oFilePropReader = new COM('DSOleFile.PropertyReader');
$props = $oFilePropReader->GetDocumentProperties($fn);
// one syntax
$au = com_get($props, 'Author');
print "au: $au \n";
//another syntax
$str = 'LastEditedBy';
$lsb = $props->$str;
// set a property if you wish
if (!$props->IsReadOnly()) {
 $props->Subject = 'tlc';


Here is a spell check implementation that displays the suggestion list for each misspelled word.
function SpellCheck($input)
$word=new COM("word.application") or die("Cannot create Word object");
$result= $doc->SpellingErrors->Count;
echo "Input text contains misspelled words.\n\n";
for($i=1; $i <= $result; $i++)
echo "Original Word: " .$doc->SpellingErrors[$i]->Text."\n";
echo "Suggestions: ";
for($j=1; $j <= $list->Count; $j++)
echo $correct->Name.",";
echo "\n\n";
echo "No spelling mistakes found.";
$str="Hellu world. There is a spellling error in this sentence.";


Here is a COM function that creates an excel spreadsheet with any number of worksheets, containing data from a matching number of SQL queries.  Be ware of the upper limit of excel worksheets.  This function properly shuts down Excel on the server.  
function WriteExcel($strPath,$astrSheetName,$astrSQL){
/* This function takes a file save path, and array of sheet names and a corresponding array */
/* of SQL queries for each sheet and created a multi-worksheet excel spreadsheet*/
$dbs=new clsDB;
$exapp = new COM("Excel.Application") or Die ("Did not connect");
$exapp->Application->Visible = 1;
for ($int=0;$int<$intSheetCount;$int++){
$strOut="";//initialize the output string
for ($int2=0;$int2<$intCols;$int2++){//we start at 1 because don't want to output the table's index
  $cell->value = $strOut;
}//end of colcount for loop
}//end while loop
}//end sheetcount for loop
if (file_exists($strPath)) {unlink($strPath);}
}//function WriteExcel


For use parameters with PHP this is a Code Example
$ObjectFactory= New COM("CrystalReports11.ObjectFactory.1");
 $crapp = $ObjectFactory->CreateObject("CrystalDesignRunTime.Application");
 $creport = $crapp->OpenReport("//report1.rpt", 1);
     $z= $creport->ParameterFields(1)->SetCurrentValue("Mango");
 $z= $creport->ParameterFields(2)->SetCurrentValue(5000);
 $creport->ExportOptions->DestinationType=1;   $creport->ExportOptions->FormatType=31;
$len = filesize("reportin.pdf");
header("Content-type: application/pdf");
header("Content-Length: $len");
header("Content-Disposition: inline; filename=reportin.pdf");

shawn coppock

For those of us that are not experts with object models, if you have Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Word available, go into the Visual Basic Editor (Alt+F11). Now you can open the object browser window (F2) and see what you find.
If you select "Word" in the object browser, then the classes and members of that class are displayed below. For example, if you click on "Selection" in the classes column, and then "Font" in the members column, you will then see "Property Font As Font Member of Word.Selection" displayed at the bottom. Click on the "Font" link there.
Click on Word "Selection" again in the classes column, and then "PageSetup" in the members column, you will then see "Property PageSetup As PageSetup Member of word.Selection" displayed at the bottom. Click on the "PageSetup" link there.
Using the above examples, you can now formulate your Word Document from php. Here is a simple example that creates a 1 & 1/2" space for text based on the margin settings & with dark red text and an 8pt Helvetica font face:
$content = "Insert Sample Text Here\n\nThis starts a new paragraph line.";
$word= new COM("word.application") or die("Unable to create Word document");
print "Loaded Word, version {$word->Version}\n";
$word->Visible = 0;
$word->Selection->PageSetup->LeftMargin = '3"';
$word->Selection->PageSetup->RightMargin = '4"';
$word->Selection->Font->Name = 'Helvetica';
$word->Selection->Font->Size = 8;
$word->Selection->Font->ColorIndex= 13; //wdDarkRed = 13
echo "done";
This example (and others) worked for me with Microsoft Word 10.0 Object Library (MS Word 2002), Apache & PHP on Windows XP. Experimenting using the Visual Basic editor will yield some amazing documents from PHP as it will help you see the relationships of the objects used and give you an idea as to how to construct your code. But be prepared for an occaisional PHP.exe crash if your code is way off base.
Hope this helps!


For permissions problems, etc. including "Could Not Open Macro Storage" with Word;
How To Configure Office Applications to Run Under the Interactive User Account

03-oct-2003 08:55

Convert Microsoft word document .DOC to adobe acrobat .PS or .PDF files:
Drawback: if any dialog boxes pop up, the conversion will become non-automated.
// You must have word and adobe acrobat distiller on
// your system, although theoretically any printer driver
// that makes .PS files would work.
// starting word
$word = new COM("word.application") or die("Unable to instanciate Word");
print "Loaded Word, version {$word->Version}\n";
// bring it to front
$word->Visible = 1;
// Select the acrobat distiller as the active printer.
// I presume that you could also use the Acrobat PDF writer // driver that comes with Acrobat full version.
$word->ActivePrinter = "Acrobat Distiller";
// Open a word document, or anything else that word
// can read
// This will create a .PS file called $output
$word->ActiveDocument->PrintOut(0, 0, 0, $output);
// If you need a .pdf instead, use the acrobat
// distiller's watched folder option.
// closing word
// free the object
$word = null;


Complementing Alex's Excell Example, let's print the SpreadSheet to a PDF file using Acrobat Distiller:
$wkb->PrintOut(NULL, NULL, NULL, NULL, "Acrobat Distiller");
There you go!!!

francois-r dot boyer

As allan666 pointed out, your Office application may not terminate correctly, and leave processes in the background, if a dialog box was opened by the application.
I had the problem when trying to call Access VBA scripts from PHP; the call was working but Access would never quit.  The problem was that the Apache server is running as SYSTEM, and not a user we normally use to run Office.  And as the first time a user runs Office, it asked the SYSTEM user to enter its name and initials! ;-)
To correct this problem: Stop Apache, go to Services, Apache, Properties, "Log On" tab, and check "Allow service to interact with desktop.  Restart Apache, then open your office application, in a page loaded by the Apache server, with a small PHP code like this, :
$app = new COM("Access.Application"); // or Word.Application or Excel.Application ...
$app->Visible = true; // so that we see the window on screen
Put the name you want and quit the application.  Now your Office application should terminate correctly the next time you load it with a COM object in PHP.  You can stop Apache uncheck the "Allow service to interact with desktop", and restart Apache if you like.  I don't even require a Quit or anything to be sent to Access, it quits automatically when PHP terminates.
And for those who wish to know how I'm calling Access VBA scripts, instead of using ODBC or any other way to send SQL requests, which does not seem to work to call VBA scripts, I open the database as a COM object and it works fine:
$db_com = new COM("pathname of the file.mdb");
$result = $db_com->Application->Run("function_name", param1, param2 …);


Apache 1.3
PHP 4.x
I found the Example from Admin Purplerain usefull but, it wasn't working without this first Line:
// after that the code from Purplerain
$objApp = new COM("Outlook.Application");
$myItem = $objApp->CreateItem(olMailItem);
$a=$myItem->Recipients->Add("your adress here");
$myItem->Body="This is a Body Section now.....!";
Still have to switch of the Outlook Security Warnings.

kleontiv -at- combellga -dot- ru

And here is an example of using ADSI via ADODB. This sample is unique because only ADODB can provide recursive Active directory searching and listing. But ADODB can only READ Active directory. So you can find something by ADODB and then modify that directly by ADSI.
With previos example this help build you PHP coded interface to Menaging and browsing Microsoft Active Directory.
Also ADODB on ADSI helps you sort recordset and search on it.
$objConnection = new COM ("ADODB.Connection") ;
$objConnection->Open("Provider=ADsDSOObject;user id=DOMAIN\\login;password=your_passowrd;") ;
$objCommand = new COM("ADODB.Command") ;
$objCommand->ActiveConnection = $objConnection ;
$Cmd  = "<LDAP://dc=mydomain,dc=com>;" ;
$Cmd .= "(&(objectClass=user)(mail=*)(!cn=SystemMailbox*));" ;
$Cmd .= "name,mail,telephoneNumber;subtree" ;
$objCommand->Properties['Sort On']->Value = "name" ;
$objCommand->CommandText = $Cmd ;
$objRecordSet = $objCommand->Execute() ;
$OrderNumber = 0 ;
 $OrderNumber ++ ;
 $nn = $objRecordSet->Fields['name']->Value ;
 $mm = $objRecordSet->Fields['mail']->Value ;
 $ph = $objRecordSet->Fields['telephoneNumber']->Value ;
 echo "$OrderNumber: $nn mail: $mm phone: $ph
" ;
 $objRecordSet->MoveNext() ;
Echo "===========================
" ;
Echo "All MailBoxes: " ;
Echo $objRecordSet->RecordCount() ;
$objRecordSet->Close() ;
$objCommand->Close() ;
$objConnection->Close() ;
unset($objRecordSet) ;
unset($objCommand) ;
unset($objConnection) ;


An easy way to send e-mail using your default Outlook account:
$objApp = new COM("Outlook.Application");
$myItem = $objApp->CreateItem(olMailItem);
$myItem->Body="This is a Body Section now.....!";


After many hours of trial and error, I have finally discovered how to kill the notorious Word process.  I hope my solution works for everyone else.
#1) $word->Quit() is perfectly fine.  Don't bother feeding in as parameter those empty variants.
#2) Do NOT have com_load_typelib('Word.Application') anywhere in your script.
#3) Make sure you have the following line before $word->Quit() :
#4) Add the following lines after $word->Quit() :
$word = null;
If my solution indeed helped you with your problem, please email me and let me know.  I would like to see if the problem was indeed solved.


After alot of trouble with IIS 6/Windows 2003 and PHP 5.0.2 I figured out how to use Imagemagick COM+/OLE interface. Seems you have to recreate the COM object after each convert() otherwise it will sometimes fail with very strange errors, since the PHP COM interface is not as stable as the old ASP one apparently is.


Using a COM("ADODB.Connection") object in PHP4 and PHP5 to return date fields in databases will have different results.
In PHP4, the date is returned as a string as represented in the database.  In my case, '2005-04-11 11:35:44'.
In PHP5, the date is returned as a VARIANT type, when printed or implicitly casted would result as '4/11/2005 11:35:44 AM'.
For this example, the solution is to use the variant conversion function variant_date_to_timestamp() to convert the value to a Unix timestamp.
Please refer to this as an example.  Other date types may be converted using one of the other variant_<convert> functions.


A Notes example:
$session = new COM "Lotus.NotesSession" );

$someDB = "C:\Lotus\Notes\Data\somedb.nsf";
$db = $session->GetDatabase("", $someDB) or die("Cannot get someDB.nsf");
$view = $db->GetView("some_view") or die("Some View not found");
$doc = $view->GetFirstDocument() or die("Unable to get Initial Some Document");
// loop through
 $col_vals = $doc->ColumnValues();
 echo $col_vals[0];
 $doc = $view->GetNextDocument($doc);


A nice feature you get with COM is the ability to connect to the Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI for short). This allows you to monitor various system statistics (e.g. disk space en cpu usage) of local and remote systems.
Small example:
$hostname = ".";
$wmi = new COM("WinMgmts:{impersonationLevel=impersonate}
 $cpus = $wmi->ExecQuery("Select * from Win32_Processor");
 foreach ($cpus as $cpu)
   echo trim($cpu->Name)." {$cpu->MaxClockSpeed}MHz {$cpu->LoadPercentage}%\n";
will give you this:
Intel Pentium III processor 860MHz 1%
Intel Pentium III processor 860MHz 2%
For more examples, see this post on my weblog:

gianluca gimigliano

// NOTE: Using COM with windows XP with apache as a service
// - Compact a Microsoft Access Database
// Be careful $sourceFile and $destFile
//cannot be the same and
// $destFile must be unexistent
Function CompactMSAccess($sourceFile,$destFile) {
$com = new COM("JRO.JetEngine");
$com->CompactDatabase("Data Source=$sourceFile",
"Data Source=$destFile");
return is_file($destFile);
//if $destFile exists it's a compact DB

superzouz is

-- Catching COM events --
Hello everyone.
Anyone who did VB + COM would know something is missing here: events!
Here's how to catch IE events using some undocumented functions:
class ieSinker {
   var $terminated = false;
   function TitleChange($text) {
         echo("title has changed: $test \n");
   function OnQuit() {
          echo "Quit!\n";
          $this->terminated = true;
$ie = new COM("InternetExplorer.Application");
$ieSink =& new ieSinker();
com_event_sink($ie, $ieSink, "DWebBrowserEvents2");
$ie->navigate(' PATH TO YOUR HTML FILE GOES HERE! ');
$ie->visible = True;
while(!$ieSink->terminated) {
Works perfect for me with php 4.3
You can find more info on the undocumented functions in the YACL documentation.
Note the "DWebBrowserEvents2" interface. You can find more information about these in the microsoft platform SDK documentation, under "web development". Or maybe they have a smaller web development SDK? I wasn't able to use any other interface, so what I do is send messages from IE to the PHP script by changing the title of the html document with JavaScript.
By the way, I cant take credit for the above code, I stole it from some website of which I lost the address.
Thats it... bye...


//Connect Database
$conn = new COM("ADODB.Connection") or die("Cannot start ADO");
$conn->Open(DRIVER={Microsoft Access Driver (*.mdb)}; DBQ=".$dbfile; );
$rs = $conn->Execute("Select * From tb_sql");
echo "$count ==> $result[$count]
if use version 4.3.10 with windows 2003  can not run "$conn->Open()"

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