Error Handling Functions
PHP Manual


(PHP 4, PHP 5, PHP 7)

error_logSend an error message to the defined error handling routines


bool error_log ( string $message [, int $message_type = 0 [, string $destination [, string $extra_headers ]]] )

Sends an error message to the web server's error log or to a file.



The error message that should be logged.


Says where the error should go. The possible message types are as follows:

error_log() log types
0 message is sent to PHP's system logger, using the Operating System's system logging mechanism or a file, depending on what the error_log configuration directive is set to. This is the default option.
1 message is sent by email to the address in the destination parameter. This is the only message type where the fourth parameter, extra_headers is used.
2 No longer an option.
3 message is appended to the file destination. A newline is not automatically added to the end of the message string.
4 message is sent directly to the SAPI logging handler.


The destination. Its meaning depends on the message_type parameter as described above.


The extra headers. It's used when the message_type parameter is set to 1. This message type uses the same internal function as mail() does.

Return Values

Returns TRUE on success or FALSE on failure.



error_log() is not binary safe. message will be truncated by null character.


message should not contain null character. Note that message may be sent to file, mail, syslog, etc. Use appropriate conversion/escape function, base64_encode(), rawurlencode() or addslashes() before calling error_log().


Example #1 error_log() examples

// Send notification through the server log if we can not
// connect to the database.
if (!Ora_Logon($username$password)) {
error_log("Oracle database not available!"0);

// Notify administrator by email if we run out of FOO
if (!($foo allocate_new_foo())) {
error_log("Big trouble, we're all out of FOOs!"1,

// another way to call error_log():
error_log("You messed up!"3"/var/tmp/my-errors.log");


Version Description
5.2.7 The possible value of 4 was added to message_type.

Error Handling Functions
PHP Manual