Delete the First Character of a String with PHP 

 June 12, 2019

By  Jack Fisher

When it comes to any skill, reinforcing the basics can pave the way for a boundless future. Indeed, taking a step back and presenting simple topics promotes a better form of comprehension. Thus, today’s post focuses on one primordial PHP function: how to delete the first character of a string.

To accomplish this task, you should be familiar with PHP’s substr( $string, $start, [ $length ] ) function. When used with only the first two parameters, substr returns all characters in $string from index $start to strlen( $string ) - 1 (the end), inclusive. Note that the first index of a string is actually zero.

With this baseline knowledge, writing a function to delete the first character of a string becomes quite trivial. By passing in a value of one to the substr function, the returned string will contain all characters except the first. Through this acknowledgment, a new PHP function may be created:

function deleteFirstChar( $string ) {
	return substr( $string, 1 );
}

With the above function, you can delete the first character of any string by simply passing it as a parameter:

$newString = deleteFirstChar( $oldString );

If you are having trouble with any other PHP topics, make sure you take full advantage of the documentation.

Jack Fisher


Hey - I'm Jack. I've been goofing around with code since 2002, and I've come a long way from my first Geocities site. I started Lateral Code 12 years ago and have been blogging ever since.

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