Tag Archives: PCRE

PHP: preg_match_all_callback

There are several PCRE functions available, but today I looked for one that just wasn’t there: preg_match_all_callback().

Could’ve maybe used preg_replace_callback(), but felt wrong since I didn’t actually want to do any replacing. I just needed my function to be called for each match.

So I wrote it myself. Noting it here, in case I (or someone else) needs it again.

<?php
/**
 * Perform a global regular expression match
 * and calls the callback for each match.
 */

function preg_match_all_callback(
        string $pattern,
        string $subject,
        callable $callback)
{
    $r = preg_match_all($pattern, $subject, $matches, PREG_SET_ORDER);
    foreach($matches ?? [] as $match)
        $callback($match);
    return $r;
}

And, in case someone reads this post and knows it actually does exist… and if that someone is you, please do leave a comment!

And, yes, I could’ve just written those 3 lines where I needed them, but what’s the fun in that? And besides, the shorter the code where it counts, the easier what counts is to read.

Usage

preg_match_all_callback('/(\w)\w*/', 'Hello World', 'var_dump');
array (size=2)
  0 => string 'Hello' (length=5)
  1 => string 'H' (length=1)

array (size=2)
  0 => string 'World' (length=5)
  1 => string 'W' (length=1)