How to Install or Update PHP to 7.4 with ioncube on CentOS 7

I needed to upgrade my WHMCS host server to utilize PHP 7.4. I am coming from PHP7.3 and found it pretty straight forward of an upgrade. Also, 7.3 is end of life and only on security updates right now.

Step 1: First thing I would do is back up your server you are updating. If you can, do a snapshot.

Step 2: Update your server

yum install epel-release yum-utils -y
yum update -y

Step 3: Check the version of the PHP that is currently running.

php -v

Step 4: List all the PHP packages you have installed into a file, so you can refer to it to install all those packages in PHP 7.4

rpm -qa | grep php > /home/php_rpm_originals.txt

Step 5: Remove all the installed PHP packages

yum remove "php*" -y

Step 6: Install the updated Remi repository if it is not already installed.

yum install -y

Step 7: Enable the PHP 7.4 repository, install the core and required PHP packages. You can also refer to step 4 for the previously required packages.

yum --enablerepo=remi-php74 install php php-pdo php-fpm php-gd php-mbstring php-mysql php-curl php-mcrypt php-json php-bcmath php-tidy php-tcpdf php-xmlrpc -y

Step 8: Check the updated PHP version.

php -v

PHP 7.4.27 (cli) (built: Dec 14 2021 17:17:06) ( NTS )
Copyright (c) The PHP Group
Zend Engine v3.4.0, Copyright (c) Zend Technologies
Step 9: Restart Apache to use the newly installed PHP 7.4

systemctl restart httpd

Step 10: Check what architecture you are running – in my case it was 64bit

uname -a

Linux 3.10.0-1160.53.1.el7.x86_64 #1 SMP Fri Jan 14 13:59:45 UTC 2022 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux
Step 11: Download your version of the ioncube loaders

——————– For 64-bit System ——————–

cd /tmp


——————– For 32-bit System ——————–

cd /tmp


Step 12: unzip and move into the directory

tar -zxvf ioncube_loaders_lin_x86*
cd ioncube/
ls -ltrh

Step 13: Obtain your PHP location for modules.

php -i | grep extension_dir

extension_dir => /usr/lib64/php/modules => /usr/lib64/php/modules
Step 14: Copy the files you need, in our case it was 7.4.

cp /usr/lib64/php/modules

Step 15: Modify your php.ini file to include ioncube. I added mine at the top right below [PHP]. The line you want to add is:

zend_extension = /usr/lib64/php/modules/

vi /etc/php.ini

Once done editing, hit ESC and then type in :X and hit ENTER

Step 16: Restart apache or nginx/php-fpm servers
——————– Start Apache Web Server ——————–

systemctl restart httpd

——————– Start Nginx + PHP-FPM Server —————-

systemctl restart nginx
systemctl restart php-fpm

Verify install:

php -v

PHP 7.4.27 (cli) (built: Dec 14 2021 17:17:06) ( NTS )
Copyright (c) The PHP Group
Zend Engine v3.4.0, Copyright (c) Zend Technologies
with the ionCube PHP Loader + ionCube24 v11.0.1, Copyright (c) 2002-2022, by ionCube Ltd

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