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PHP Manual


(PHP 4, PHP 5)

explodeSplit a string by string


array explode ( string $delimiter , string $string [, int $limit ] )

Returns an array of strings, each of which is a substring of string formed by splitting it on boundaries formed by the string delimiter.



The boundary string.


The input string.


If limit is set and positive, the returned array will contain a maximum of limit elements with the last element containing the rest of string.

If the limit parameter is negative, all components except the last -limit are returned.

If the limit parameter is zero, then this is treated as 1.

Although implode() can, for historical reasons, accept its parameters in either order, explode() cannot. You must ensure that the delimiter argument comes before the string argument.

Return Values

Returns an array of strings created by splitting the string parameter on boundaries formed by the delimiter.

If delimiter is an empty string (""), explode() will return FALSE. If delimiter contains a value that is not contained in string and a negative limit is used, then an empty array will be returned, otherwise an array containing string will be returned.


Version Description
5.1.0 Support for negative limits was added
4.0.1 The limit parameter was added


Example #1 explode() examples

// Example 1
$pizza  "piece1 piece2 piece3 piece4 piece5 piece6";
$pieces explode(" "$pizza);
$pieces[0]; // piece1
echo $pieces[1]; // piece2

// Example 2
$data "foo:*:1023:1000::/home/foo:/bin/sh";
$user$pass$uid$gid$gecos$home$shell) = explode(":"$data);
$user// foo
echo $pass// *


Example #2 explode() return examples

/* A string that doesn't contain the delimiter will simply return a one-length array of the original string. */
$input1 "hello";
$input2 "hello,there";
var_dumpexplode','$input1 ) );
var_dumpexplode','$input2 ) );


The above example will output:

    [0] => string(5) "hello"
    [0] => string(5) "hello"
    [1] => string(5) "there"

Example #3 limit parameter examples


// positive limit

// negative limit (since PHP 5.1)
print_r(explode('|'$str, -1));

The above example will output:

    [0] => one
    [1] => two|three|four
    [0] => one
    [1] => two
    [2] => three


Note: This function is binary-safe.

See Also

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