[rrd-developers] RRD Extension for PHP *without* graphing

Rob Sweet rob at ldg.net
Wed Apr 24 20:56:58 MEST 2002

Hi everybody.

I've got a problem.  I'm trying to compile PHP with the RRDTool extension
available in contrib.  The problem is that I'm also compiling GD support
into PHP.  Because the RRDTool libs and PHP extension use their own version
of GD, I'm getting conflicts between the GD functions in the main GD on the
system and the GD that comes with RRDTool.

Yes, I know that the new beta is using libarts.  However, aside from having
trouble compiling it, I'd rather not usebeta software in a production 
environment (expecially one as large as ours).  

So in thinking about this problem I came to the conclusion that all I
*really* needed in the PHP extension were the "data handling" functions.
The idea was that for the normal graphs, rrd_graph was fine.  When I wanted
to do some funky custom graphs (pie charts - yes, I know they're kind of
supported) I wanted PHP-native functions to pull data from the RRD files
that I could parse/manipulate/do math on to build my graphs and charts.
I know that I can use rrd_info to pull data but from PHP, that would involve
a system call which has comparatively high overhead.

That said, here are the questions:

1) Am I missing something about how RRDTool is put together?  Is there
already a way to build an RRD lib without the presentation bits that I could
then compile the existing PHP extension with?

2)  How hard would it be to split the RRD functionality from the
presentation functionality to allow other apps to manipulate RRD's and do
their own presentation?

As I see it, RRD is just another kind of database so from a PHP perspective,
you'd normally have a RRD extension for PHP that handles the data (just like
Oracle or MySQL or Postgres) and a display class that works with the
fuctions of that extension to build the graphs.


Rob Sweet
rob at ldg.net

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