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Request #41223 PHP should output better HTML for the .phps (highlight source) view
Submitted: 2007-04-29 09:22 UTC Modified: 2010-12-31 20:40 UTC
Avg. Score:3.7 ± 0.5
Reproduced:3 of 3 (100.0%)
Same Version:2 (66.7%)
Same OS:2 (66.7%)
From: jeremy dot visser at gmail dot com Assigned:
Status: Open Package: *General Issues
PHP Version: 5.2.1 OS: Ubuntu 7.04
Private report: No CVE-ID: None
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From: jeremy dot visser at gmail dot com
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 [2007-04-29 09:22 UTC] jeremy dot visser at gmail dot com
When PHP outputs highlighted source, the HTML it outputs is ugly. It looks pretty when viewed in a browser, but the actual HTML is bad.

For starters, it doesn't use a DOCTYPE, and includes no <html>, <head>, or <body> elements like you'd expect.

Even worse, it preformats the text not with a <pre> tag like should be used, but with several &nbsp;'s to space text out. What is wrong with using <pre>?

Expected result:
Should be using proper HTML headers:

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" "">
<html xmlns="" xml:lang="en" lang="en">
<pre class="php">
    /* This is some PHP */

You see, when you use a <pre>, you don't need all these &nbsp;&nbsp;'s to space things out.

Actual result:
Example of ugly code:

<span style="color: #0000BB">&lt;?php<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span><span style="color: #FF8000">/*<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Test<br />&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;*/<br />?&gt;


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 [2007-04-29 14:39 UTC]
Thank you for taking the time to write to us, but this is not
a bug. Please double-check the documentation available at and the instructions on how to report
a bug at

The reason there are no headers is because the expectation is that the 
output will be embed in an existing page. Presence of the requested 
headers and elements would then cause the page to break.
 [2007-04-30 01:16 UTC] jeremy dot visser at gmail dot com
OK, I see what you mean about the headers. However, I'm not talking about the highlight_file() or highlight_string() functions. Obviously, they should not return HTML or HTTP headers.

The issue is when viewing a .phps file, where PHP does everything itself, without any script having to output the headers for it. When viewing a standalone .phps file, PHP should output the proper headers.

Of course this is a bug. PHP is not returning standards-compliant or semantic markup. This has accessibility problems. That part of my report _is_ a bug.

I'm reopening the bug, but if you close it again, I will not bother to try and argue.
 [2010-12-31 20:40 UTC]
-Package: Feature/Change Request +Package: *General Issues
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