How can I get a PHP CMS page to create an HTML file and save it to the UNIX server?

I am designing a website for performers, using PHP and MySQL.

I need the CMS (which I am building) to be able to delete/ edit and add performers.  No problem, but the way I would usually do this is so that the performers web page would look something like this:
or Big Top

But I really need the URL to be Big Top.html and for the file to exist...

I know I can pass HTML through the PHP compiler, so I can execute PHP in HTML, but, and HERE'S THE QUESTION:

How can I get a PHP CMS page to create an HTML file based on a template, and save it to the UNIX server so it can be accessed?

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If this is going to be a dynamic site, I would recommend against creating a static page like 'Mr Big Top.html'. However, you can use a rewrite in Apache to allow users to browse to a URL like "", but in the background you are realling calling a page like "". The users of your site will never know the difference, because the only thing they will see in the address bar is "".

For more information, see

Note: Spaces are usually not a good idea in a URL, because some browsers and/or webservers will not interpret them correctly. You should either drop the spaces, or replace them with something like underscores as I did in my above.
Read the file with fopen() then fread() to get the contents of the template...
Parse through it and insert the data where needed.

fwrite the contents to a file. If you need to create folders through the CMS then you'll need to use execute() to execute a "mkdir" command (provided that the user running the Apache service has rights to execute command line...
CrisThompsonUKAuthor Commented:

I see you are a master..  I am humbled.

The reason for all lthis is that we are replacing a static (HTML) site with a dynamic one, and we need to try to keep the page rankings as much as possible undisturbed, so the system needs to be able to crate new performers, but these need to be visible to search engines and browsers as whoever.html.

What would you suggest as the best way to achieve this?

Use mod_rewrite for this. Its the best solution for that. You have .html-urls, but always up to date content without the need to sync your content from the database to the disk-files.

RewriteRule ^/performer/(.*).html$ /performer.php?id=$1 [R]

CrisThompsonUKAuthor Commented:
Thanks guys...

300 for glcummins for setting me straight in the first place, and 200 for hernst42 for having a go at the actual syntax...

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