6 Best PHP HTTP Client Libraries

In this blog post, we will be discussing the best PHP HTTP client libraries. These libraries can be used to make HTTP requests from your PHP code. We will be discussing the pros and cons of each library so that you can choose the one that best suits your needs.

Guzzle

Guzzle is a PHP HTTP client that makes it easy to send HTTP requests and trivial to integrate with web services. Guzzle can be used with any web service that uses an HTTP API.

Guzzle is one of the most versatile PHP HTTP clients out there. Its simple interface makes it a great asset for developers, who can use this library to make quick and liquid-smooth requests and to easily integrate with web services.

Whether you need to build query strings, POST requests, large uploads, downloads, cookies support, or JSON data management — Guzzle has got your back! On top of that, its transport-agnostic design allows developers to code in an environment-friendly manner thanks to the PSR-7 interfaces for requests, responses, and streams which come harnessed with the library.

Moreover, its extensibility extends even further due to its middleware system designed to facilitate augmentation and composition of client behavior.

$client = new GuzzleHttp\Client();
$res = $client->request('GET', 'https://api.github.com/user', [
    'auth' => ['user', 'pass']
]);
echo $res->getStatusCode();
// "200"
echo $res->getHeader('content-type')[0];
// 'application/json; charset=utf8'
echo $res->getBody();
// {"type":"User"...'

// Send an asynchronous request.
$request = new \GuzzleHttp\Psr7\Request('GET', 'http://httpbin.org');
$promise = $client->sendAsync($request)->then(function ($response) {
    echo 'I completed! ' . $response->getBody();
});
$promise->wait();

Buzz

If you’re a developer looking for a quick, easy, and lightweight library for making HTTP requests in your application, then Buzz might be the right choice for you. This super slim library supports PHP 7.1 and is coded in fewer than 1000 lines of code, giving you peace of mind that the code base will stay small and focused on the specific purpose it was designed for — issuing HTTP requests.

Not only that, but Buzz also offers three different clients to choose from FileGetContents, Curl, and MultiCurl. MultiCurl has an added advantage over the two others; namely that it can enable batch requests and make use of http2 server push capabilities.

The library makes use of a PSR-17 factory in order to generate PSR-7 requests and responses when appropriate.

use Buzz\Browser;
use Buzz\Client\FileGetContents;

$client = new FileGetContents(new Psr17ResponseFactory());
$browser = new Browser($client, new Psr17RequestFactory());
$response = $browser->get('https://www.google.com');

echo $browser->getLastRequest()."\n";
// $response is a PSR-7 object.
echo $response->getStatusCode();

Requests

Requests library for PHP is a true lifesaver for anyone who finds themselves interacting with different websites at any point in time. This tiny HHTP request library puts ease and convenience of use front and center, meaning you never have to worry about a thing once you’ve begun using it.

It was designed based on the API of the excellent Requests Python library, as well as following the ISC Licensed guidelines, which are similar to the new BSD license. Additionally, all that’s needed to get started is PHP 5.6.20+ – no other dependencies are necessary!

With impressive features like international URLs and domain support, automatic decompression, connection timeouts, SSL verification replicating browser styles, and basic and digest authentication just scratching the surface of its capabilities – you can rest assured your requests will be processed with speed and accuracy every time.

$headers = array('Accept' => 'application/json');
$options = array('auth' => array('user', 'pass'));
$request = WpOrg\Requests\Requests::get('https://api.github.com/gists', $headers, $options);

var_dump($request->status_code);
// int(200)

var_dump($request->headers['content-type']);
// string(31) "application/json; charset=utf-8"

var_dump($request->body);

Httplug

If you’re a developer, chances are you need to make use of an HTTP client to include in your library. Your first impulse might be to spend time searching for a specific implementation – but don’t fret! Introducing HTTPlug: a library that allows you to write reusable libraries with minimal effort, without binding them to a single implementation.

Built on top of the PSR-7 HTTP messages, and compatible with PSR-18, it’s easy to use and even offers an interface for asynchronous HTTP requests. Plus, you can use your regular tools or implement your own – so it’s no strain at all on you!

All of this makes HTTPlug the perfect companion for developers looking to put together their dream library without breaking the bank (and we mean that literally!).

cURL

cURL is a fantastic library for any PHP developer, enabling them to interact with and send data to web servers from the comfort of their own script. It supports a wide range of protocols such as Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP), Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS), File Transfer Protocol (FTP), and Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP).

Whether you’re trying to establish communication with websites over HTTP or want to authenticate to a mail server, cURL can make your job far easier. It can even be used in downloading files, making it ideal for automating tasks like image downloads.

And since it’s open source and regularly maintained, new security patches are released on an ongoing basis – good news for anyone worried about potential vulnerabilities. All in all, cURL is a must-have item in any PHP developer’s toolkit.

pecl_http

pecl_http is a PHP extension that allows you to efficiently and quickly send HTTP requests and receive responses. The extension supports several types of protocols, including FTP and SMTP. Aside from providing an interface for the user to send requests, it can also be used to download files from the web.

With pecl_http’s easy-to-use features, users can access content easily over the internet – no need for any complicated stuff! Plus, it helps in the negotiation of the client’s preferred content type, language, and charset. Furthermore, it offers powerful request functionality with the capability for parallel requests as well as support for caching and resuming. 

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