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Ideal way to debug php server?

What’s the best way to debug a PHP server ?

currently I’m debugging with echo messages, var_dump and printing to log file

How can I debug php server normally ?

Your safest bet is to work with XDEBUG in Eclipse

You can find guides online
http://www.fieg.nl/setting-up-xdebug-for-eclipse

If you’re using apache as your web server, then you could use the apache logs to view any errors preventing the successful execution of a PHP script.

You could use

tail -f /var/log/apache2/error.log
to view the apache logs and that would do the job (atleast for a subset of PHP related errors).