Core PHP functions: do they really need to be enabled?


New member
I've been taking a bit of a look at XenForo as a potential platform for a project. However, I notice that XF requires that certain potentially problematic core PHP functions be enabled. I would be running it on a VPS with several other sites, some of which have CMS software which requires these functions be disabled. The only way around this as far as I can see would be to assign XF a different version of PHP (say, 7.3 instead of 7.4) with core functions enabled.

I'm just wondering about the reality on the ground: does disabling these core functions really lead to significant problems in common usage?



New member
Thanks @Brogan. I asked because I did indeed run the script on one of my sites and it said that there might be unpredictable behaviour, so I thought I'd ask just in case to see if anyone's been running the software with these functions enabled.


XenForo moderator
Staff member
exec is required for XFMG and FFmpeg integration - if you don't plan to have XFMG then it's not required.

proc_open and popen are required for email delivery when using the built in PHP option - they are not required if using SMTP.


Active member
IIS can enable different versions of php according to the installation folder eg

C:\xf1 > php 7.4 + options
C:\xf2 > php 8.0 + options

Even the same version per folder with different options is possible.

Surely Apache or other web servers can do the same?