Use PHP to Create Symbolic Links without Shell Access

[ Image: Chain Linkage ] On Unix systems, a symbolic link refers to a file that points to another file or directory. Symbolic links serve as powerful tools for web designers and developers. Using shell access, creating a symbolic link requires only one line of code:

ln -s /home/username/public_html/directory1 /home/username/public_html/directory2

Simple enough. Assuming you have access to the linux shell. Unfortunately, many shared hosting environments deny shell access. Fortunately, creating symbolic links — also called “symlinks” — remains a possibility via the PHP symlink() function. Check it out..

Symbolic Links via PHP:

Edit, copy & paste the following line of code into a PHP (.php) file and upload it to the root directory on your server (i.e., the directory that contains “public_html”):

<?php symlink('/home/username/public_html/directory1', '/home/username/public_html/directory2'); ?>

Next, trigger the function by calling the PHP file via your browser. If you see a blank page, you are good to go — the symbolic link has been created according to the specified parameters. To create another symbolic link, simply edit the parameters and repeat the process.