DEV Community


Posted on

Preview of PHP 8.4 New Features

New Features in PHP 8.4

PHP 8.4 is set to be released on November 21, 2024. It will include property hooks, JIT improvements, and method chaining without the need for additional parentheses. This is a significant change!

Property Hooks RFC

One of the biggest changes in modern PHP history: the ability to define property hooks.

class BookViewModel
    public function __construct(
        private array $authors,
    ) {}

    public string $credits {
        get {
            return implode(', ', array_map(
                fn (Author $author) => $author->name,

    public Author $mainAuthor {
        set (Author $mainAuthor) {
            $this->authors[] = $mainAuthor;
            $this->mainAuthor = $mainAuthor;

        get => $this->mainAuthor;
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

The goal of property hooks is to remove the need for numerous getters and setters by allowing each property to define its own get and set hooks. Hooks are optional, and you don’t need to add both hooks for a specific property. For instance, a property with only a get hook is a virtual property. This is probably the biggest update in PHP 8.4 so far, and it's highly anticipated as it reduces a lot of boilerplate code.

interface HasAuthors
    public string $credits { get; }
    public Author $mainAuthor { get; set; }
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

New Instance Method Chaining Without Parentheses RFC
If property hooks weren't enough, PHP 8.4 has another feature that saves a lot of code: you no longer need to wrap new instance calls in parentheses to chain methods. Personally, I find this change quite nice, considering how often we had to do this:

$name = (new ReflectionClass($objectOrClass))->getShortName();
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

Now in PHP 8.4, you can just do this:

$name = new ReflectionClass($objectOrClass)->getShortName();
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

JIT Changes RFC

PHP 8.4 changes how JIT is enabled. Before PHP 8.4, you had to set opcache.jit_buffer_size to 0 to disable JIT, but now you can disable it like this:

Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

The only way users will be affected by this change is if they have specified opcache.jit_buffer_size without opcache.jit. In such cases, you will need to add opcache.jit=tracing to re-enable JIT.

Additionally, JIT has been improved to run faster and use less memory in certain scenarios.

Implicit Nullable Types Deprecation

PHP has a quirky behavior where typed variables with a default null value automatically become nullable types:

function save(Book $book = null) {}
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

This behavior is now deprecated and will be removed in PHP 9. The solution is to explicitly make Book a nullable type:

function save(?Book $book = null) {}
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

New DOM HTML5 Support RFC

PHP 8.4 adds a \Dom\HTMLDocument class that can correctly parse HTML5 code. The old \DOMDocument class is still available for backward compatibility.

$doc = \Dom\HTMLDocument::createFromString($contents);
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

Early Access to PHP 8.4 (Dev)

As a one-stop web development environment tool, ServBay provides developers with an exclusive opportunity to explore and experiment with the latest features that PHP 8.4 has to offer. This early access is invaluable for developers looking to innovate and leverage new functionalities in their projects ahead of the curve. By having early access to PHP 8.4, ServBay users can start incorporating the latest PHP advancements into their projects, explore new development methodologies, and ultimately deliver more innovative and robust web applications.

Image description

Image description

If you want to get the latest information, follow X(Twitter) and Facebook

If you have any questions, our staff would be pleased to help, just join our Discord

Top comments (0)