Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people, just like you, are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions

Can I post form data without a form using PHP?

Posted on 2009-05-13
Last Modified: 2013-12-12
I have already collected the data to be sent to PayPal previously and would just like to go to PayPal for  processing the data without needing  someone to submit  a form.

<form action="https://www.paypal.com/au/cgi-bin/webscr" method="post">
 <input type="hidden" name="cmd" value="_xclick">
<input type="hidden" name="business" value="test@test.com.au">
 <input type="hidden" name="item_name" value="Sample Business -Invoice Payment">
 <input type="hidden" name="item_number" value="<?php echo "Invoice: ".$id; ?>">
 <input type="hidden" name="email" value="<?php echo $_POST['email']; ?>">
 <input type="hidden" name="quantity" value="1">                        
 <input type="hidden" name="amount" value="<?php echo $amount; ?>">
 <input type="hidden" name="invoice" value="<?php echo $id; ?>">
 <input type="hidden" name="first_name" value="<?php echo $_POST['first_name']; ?>">
 <input type="hidden" name="last_name" value="<?php echo $_POST['last_name']; ?>">
 <input type="hidden" name="address1" value="<?php echo $_POST['address1']; ?>">
 <input type="hidden" name="city" value="<?php echo $_POST['city']; ?>">
 <input type="hidden" name="state" value="<?php echo $_POST['state']; ?>">

I just need a way of automatically submittting or sending the data to PayPal, I hope this makes sense.

Thanks in advance for you help and feedback.
Question by:sabecs

Expert Comment

ID: 24373807
hmm... sounds a bit strange to me. Someone needs to "push the button" in the end because otherwise you would not have any script run at all don't you ?

So if you already have all data, you could surely just open your php script in your browser, or run it on the command line to post your data to the PayPal API.

Still I'm not sure if I really understood your problem ??

Expert Comment

ID: 24373840
Just put a little javascript after your form definition:

<script type="text/javascript">

Open in new window


Expert Comment

ID: 24373918
to send POST-Vars you could directly connect to the foreign server and send your data using fputs(), see attached example code (taken from a german PHP FAQ).

All this script does is simulate form submission by "hand craftign" all necessary HTTP-params.

The example sends 2 parameters (pid, poll_vore_number) to the server www.linux.com.

Change the function call to PostToHost() to fit your needs.


function PostToHost($host, $path, $referer, $data_to_send) {
  $fp = fsockopen($host, 80);
  fputs($fp, "POST $path HTTP/1.1\r\n");
  fputs($fp, "Host: $host\r\n");
  fputs($fp, "Referer: $referer\r\n");
  fputs($fp, "Content-type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded\r\n");
  fputs($fp, "Content-length: ". strlen($data_to_send) ."\r\n");
  fputs($fp, "Connection: close\r\n\r\n");
  fputs($fp, $data_to_send);
  while(!feof($fp)) {
      $res .= fgets($fp, 128);
  return $res;
$data = "pid=14&poll_vote_number=2";
$x = PostToHost(

Open in new window

Free Tool: Site Down Detector

Helpful to verify reports of your own downtime, or to double check a downed website you are trying to access.

One of a set of tools we are providing to everyone as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.


Author Comment

ID: 24374099
Thanks for your feedback,
Basically I have an order form on a previous page that takes the users input and passes it to a PHP page that processes the order.  If the payment option selected by the customer is PayPal then I need the information they have already provided to go to PayPal so that they complete the payment process. If they did not select PayPal as their payment option then some other code will be executed.

Expert Comment

ID: 24374161
so then make your script which processes the users input go to Paypal in case paypal is selected.

Author Comment

ID: 24381418
Thanks for your help, the inital order form is already complicated by validation and other code so would I prefer to keep the PayPal code on another page, it will only execute if PayPal is selected.

Accepted Solution

mostart earned 500 total points
ID: 24382254
well then create some kind of paypal.php put the paypal code inside and in case paypal is selected you just include that file:


Author Closing Comment

ID: 31580920
Thanks mostart for all your comments and help.

Featured Post

Free Tool: Subnet Calculator

The subnet calculator helps you design networks by taking an IP address and network mask and returning information such as network, broadcast address, and host range.

One of a set of tools we're offering as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Suggested Solutions

Title # Comments Views Activity
how to use a switch statement with heredoc 11 33
hbo knew my windows software 4 62
ajax to record click 3 16
Add Logo to Bookmark and Tab Headings in Browser 3 12
Author Note: Since this E-E article was originally written, years ago, formal testing has come into common use in the world of PHP.  PHPUnit (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PHPUnit) and similar technologies have enjoyed wide adoption, making it possib…
Foreword (July, 2015) Since I first wrote this article, years ago, a great many more people have begun using the internet.  They are coming online from every part of the globe, learning, reading, shopping and spending money at an ever-increasing ra…
The viewer will learn how to dynamically set the form action using jQuery.
The viewer will learn how to create and use a small PHP class to apply a watermark to an image. This video shows the viewer the setup for the PHP watermark as well as important coding language. Continue to Part 2 to learn the core code used in creat…

839 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question