Zend readies PHP for Windows


Zend Technologies in January unveiled a public beta program for Zend Core 2.0, which extends the company’s PHP (Hypertext Preprocessor) platform to Microsoft Windows. The company also is introducing its new CEO, Harold Goldberg, a former BMC Software executive.

Zend and Microsoft in October announced a collaboration to boost PHP Web application deployments on the Windows platform; this latest announcement is part of that arrangement.

“It is our certified version of PHP for Windows and therefore, if you want to create fast or reliable versions of PHP applications for Windows, this is the version to get,” said Mark de Visser, chief marketing officer at Zend.

Running PHP on Windows has been a less-than-optimal experience thus far, de Visser said. “[PHP is] very much created for the open source world,” he said.

“Now, we’re creating commercial versions of PHP for the Windows platform,” de Visser said.

Microsoft benefits by making its Windows platform more attractive to PHP developers, said de Visser. Zend Core 2.0 also functions with Linux and Unix. The general release is expected a couple weeks after the public beta, according to Zend.

The Zend-Microsoft alliance boosts exposure for PHP and Zend, said PHP user Ben Ramsey, an engineer at software developer Art & Logic.

“I think what’s going on here is Zend, through this partnership, is sort of increasing the visibility in the Windows world for Zend, and I think also for PHP, so it’s a good [move] for PHP, and it’s a good thing for Zend,” Ramsey said.

However, Ramsey said he tends to use PHP with Linux or Unix. “It’s just something I’m familiar with,” he said.

Microsoft could not be reached for comment.

Goldberg, meanwhile, takes over for interim CEO David Banks, who came aboard after CEO Doron Gerstel departed the company seven months ago to return to Israel.

Goldberg noted PHP’s open source status and cited the speed at which open source software brings changes.

With commercial software, products are upgraded maybe every six to nine months, while companies like Zend are releasing products on a monthly basis, he said.

“I think there’s a disruptive play going on here in software that open source has an opportunity to really add a new dimension to really help enterprise commercial accounts consume software,” Goldberg said.

Zend products are offered on a commercial basis, but the company leverages open source technologies. Zend bills itself as “the PHP company.” Goldberg had been senior vice-president of worldwide marketing at BMC.

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