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Sending a Cookie to the Server, First.

Posted on 2002-05-09
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2008-03-03
Hi Guys $ Ladies,

I am confused here.  I keep getting header errors when I try to set a cookie.  Then I realise that I have to Send the cookie to the server first.  ........  hha ha ha, got it.  I wipe everything off my folder and upload the cookie page first.  Still it does not work.

What is meant by sending the cookie first?, and how do I have to go about it.?
Question by:Senyonjo
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Expert Comment

ID: 7000354

Accepted Solution

andreif earned 200 total points
ID: 7000606
when you set headers using
header() or setcookie()
you can meet an error which says that headers are already sent.
This means that your script is not allowed to produce any output before header() or setcookie() call.

Sometimes it can be empty line like this:

--------- php file begin ------------




this empty line before php tag will send to output before header call, so you can't modify headers any more

Expert Comment

ID: 7000637
(This answer repeats some of andreif's comments)

you can't send header info manualy after some header info has already been sent.

It doesn't have anything to do with uploading files or anything.

Basically, when you write a page that starts with <html>, header info will be sent, this is how http works.

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Expert Comment

ID: 7000643

when you use a cookie function like this :

setcookie('myCookieName', $myCookieValue,time()+15000);
Header("Location: somepage.php");

you send header info, namely "Location:somepage.php".

If you would do this :
sending cookie
setcookie('myCookieName', $myCookieValue,time()+15000);
Header("Location: somepage.php");

you automatically send header info because you have html to display, but then you request to send more info, after the header info has already been sent.

Like andreif said, even a blank line or a comment can be enough to trigger Header info to get sent.

In short : when use a Header() function, make sure that there is *no* possibility of characters being sent, like blank lines or comments.

Good luck

if you still have problems, post your code.
LVL 32

Expert Comment

ID: 7002682
If you need to set the cookie after the start of your script, like jpoesens code


you could use ob_start() and ob_end_flush() to buffer the output:


This would work.

So you have to choice.

The most common one is to make sure that all cookies are set at the beginning of the script as the other comments describes to you.

Or: You could buffer the output to somewhere down in the script. Then the content of the page will be buffered on the server until ob_end_flush() is called.

LVL 40

Expert Comment

by:Richard Quadling
ID: 7005681
Just another point to add.

A blank line at the top of a file before the <?php tag will be enough to bugger up cookies if you are not using on_start() and ob_end_flush().


Richard Quadling.

Author Comment

ID: 7018446
Thise were exellent comments.  Very helpful and my project is moving forward.  Thank you

Expert Comment

ID: 8181703
In addition to Batalf's comment

ob_end_flush() isn’t needed in MOST cases because it is called automatically at the end of script execution by PHP itself when output buffering is turned on either in the php.ini or by calling ob_start(). I should also mention that Output buffers are stackable, that is, you may call ob_start() while another ob_start() is active. Just make sure that you call ob_end_flush() the appropriate number of times. If multiple output callback functions are active, output is being filtered sequentially through each of them in nesting order.

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