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The PHP documentation has this to say about the max_input_time directive:
"This sets the maximum time in seconds a script is allowed to parse input data,
like POST, GET and file uploads."
it is difficult to tell from this what time span the setting refers to: The time
that the whole request may take (including the time the client needs to upload a
possible attached file) or the time after the request has been received, that is
needed to parse the received data into temporary files, POST variables and such.
I was unable to find any solid information on this anywhere else, and am not
proficient enough to understand it from the PHP source code's zend_set_timeout().
I would like to request that this be clarified in the documentation. Thank you.
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From my read of the source code, this option seems near useless. The time starts counting *after* the input data is read and before the script is executed, so it refers only to parsing of the input data (by then saved in memory) into $_POST/$_GET/other superglobals. However, most of those superglobals are also built just-in-time (unless PHP is configured otherwise), so that parsing is actually deferred until script execution time, when the variable's requested.
Also, with multipart requests reading and parsing the data are done in one step (in the reading step), so that occurs before the timeout starts counting. The documentation is wrong when it mentions "file uploads".
Automatic comment from SVN on behalf of vrana
Log: Better explain max_input_time (doc bug #53590)
This bug has been fixed in the documentation's XML sources. Since the
online and downloadable versions of the documentation need some time
to get updated, we would like to ask you to be a bit patient.
Thank you for the report, and for helping us make our documentation better.