How to Install the MongoDB Driver for PHP

How to Install the MongoDB Driver for PHP


The power of the PHP MongoDB driver is in its script information collecting and communication abilities. That being said, installing the correct PHP driver for your macOS or Linux and other UNIX-based system is the main key to successful computer script writing. When you follow the right steps, the installation of MongoDB driver for PHP is an effortless task that you’ll find easy to accomplish.


  • Open a new terminal by entering Ctrl+Alt+T.

  • Give yourself privileges to access the system by using the sudo command. If you are using a mac OS, use the finder to get to the terminal app in the /Applications/Utilities folder.

Screenshot of a macOS finder window with the Utilities folder and Terminal app highlighted

  • MongoDB – Install the application, then run it.

  • MongoDB PHP Driver – Install a compatible MongoDB driver based on your version of MongoDB.

pecl search mongo

Install MongoDB before you install the PHP driver. Try typing mongo to get into the Mongo shell server.

  • In a terminal window, type php -v or php --version to install PHP 7.

Package managers and MongoDB

Now install the PHP driver after the MongoDB installation is finished.

For Linux distros

Use ‘YUM’ (Yellowdog Updater, Modified) to install PHP-PEAR:

For Red Hat distros (of Linux such as Centros)

You have the option to install MongoDB first, then PEAR and use ‘YUM’ to do that.

You can do a YUM repository update:

sudo yum -y update

Use YUM to add driver dependencies

Install ""Development Tools""

sudo yum groupinstall ""Development Tools""
sudo yum install php-pear php-devel

Update the APT repository for distros: Install php-pear

  • Update the APT repository and install the php-mongodb MongoDB PHP Library:
sudo apt-get update
  • Install the PHP-PEAR library:
sudo apt-get install php-pear

Use PHAR to install PEAR

  • This script calls to install the repository for PEAR via PHAR.
curl -O sudo php -d detect_unicode=0 go-pear.phar
  • The installation process will take you through a series of steps then you’re done.

Verify that PEAR for PHP is installed properly

  • Here’s the quick command to check your installed PEAR version. Type the following in a terminal window.
pear version

The pear version command entered on this macOS lists both PEAR and PHP versions. The installation packages will be installed on those versions.

Screenshot of a macOS terminal checking the version of PHP PEAR installed

About Installing the MongoDB PHP Driver

How both Linux and macOS install the MongoDB PHP driver is somewhat the same. For installing PHP packages, they can use the PEAR and PHP-dependent PHP Extension Community Library (PECL).

Install the MongoDB driver using PECL:

  • Use the command pecl install. The PHP-package repository, PECL, is for installing PHP packages including libraries for macOS, UNIX-based (such as Linux) systems.
sudo pecl install mongodb
  • Check for PHP module or extension issues with the php -v command at the terminal.

>NOTE If you experience problems with the installation process, you may have an older driver. For example, PHP 5 is considered an older version. In that case, it’s not mongoDB but referred to as mongo. Try this command sudo pecl install mongo to install the driver.

The MongoDB driver: Configure it

PECL automatically attempts to configure libmongoc and libbson packed versions.

  • Wait until the installation has finished, then in a terminal window, use the command grep to find the php.ini .
sudo php -i | grep 'Configuration File'

NOTE: If you want, you can use the following commands to change the path for the configuration file.

sudo pear config-set php_ini /path/to/php.ini

sudo pecl config-set php_ini /path/to/php.ini
  • A successful result in bringing up the file is config-set succeeded.

  • Edit the file. Now you can see the PHP .ini configuration file’s path location.

example macOS location:

Loaded Configuration File => /usr/local/etc/php/7.3/php.ini

example Linux location:

Loaded Configuration File => /etc/php/7.3/cli/php.ini

The nano command line editor is handy for editing files. Use it or one like it to edit the PHP configuration file.

sudo nano /etc/php/7.3/cli/php.ini
  • Include at the bottom of the PHP .ini configuration file, then save it.

The to the PHP .ini file:

Screenshot of """" being added to the php.ini file

>IMPORTANT: Unlike the beginning of the other commands within the PHP configuration file, you won’t add a semi-colon (;) on the command line. If you forget and add the semi-colon there, it will be just like the file wasn’t edited because PHP won’t read the command.

If you run into error results, there may be a conflict due to an older PHP 5 version installed on your OS. If this occurs, the best way to fix the issue is to remove the old extension from your configuration file.

Linux: Restart the Apache server

  • To make the changes to the ini configuration file effective, restart the Apache server.

  • Use systemct1 at the command line to restart apache2 HTTPD service.

sudo systemctl restart apache2


sudo systemctl restart httpd.service

MacOS: The Apache server — Restart it

  • Use brew to restart the Apache server if you used Homebrew to install Apache and PHP 7.

for a Homebrew installation of Apache and PHP:

brew services restart httpd
brew services restart php
  • Use apachetl to restart the Apache server if you used the Apache default installation for Apple and you have a macOS.

For the default version of Apache that comes with macOS:

sudo apachectl -k restart

Make the MongoDB Connection with the PHP Driver

  • Use the PHP driver to connect to MongoDB. After you connect using the MongoDB PHP driver, you should be set with the installation. Everything should be running now.

Start a PHP MongoDB project

  • Setup a new MongoDB project for PHP. You’ll need to create a test project directory and a script that goes inside the directory. An example is shown below. The PHP script can be made with the command touch.
sudo mkdir mongo-php

cd mongo-php

sudo touch mongophp.php

Run the Script for PHP Driver Testing

  • The OLD MongoClient() function is replaced by NEW Manager(). In this example, those changes are based on the newest PHP library changes. Adding to the directory path of MongoDBDriver is necessary.

  • Debug your project before production but during development. Use display_errors to show any PHP issues.



ini_set('display_errors', 1);

// use error reporting for debugging

// OLD MongoClient() class for PHP 5 and 'mongo'

// $mongo_client = new MongoClient();

// NEW Manager() class for PHP 7 and 'mongodb'

$mongo_client = new MongoDBDriverManager();

echo ""

Connection to Manager():



>NOTE: Watch for this error message after you run the script: Fatal error: Uncaught Error: Class 'MongoDBDriverManager' not found. If you receive that error, check the configuration file for the proper wording of the command and make sure it’s in the right file–the PHP 7 version’s php.ini file.

Installation Option: Use the Git Repository

  • Use the Git repository and the source code there to build the MongoDB driver if you experience installation problems with the other methods.

  • The clone command, then the update on the submodule should work for you.

sudo git clone

cd mongo-php-driver

sudo git submodule update --init
  • Install the php7.x-dev package if you haven’t already. The apt install php7.x command works for you if you have an APT repository that your Linux server uses.
sudo apt install php7.1-dev

# or: sudo apt install php7.2-dev

# or: sudo apt install php7.3-dev
  • Build, configure, and install the driver:
sudo phpize

sudo ./configure

sudo make all

sudo make install


This tutorial explained the installation of MongoDB Driver for PHP on a macOS or UNIX-like system, such as Linux. As you learned today, it can be achieved in many ways. Among those, you discovered how you can use PEAR and PECL to install MongoDB and the PHP driver. You read some tips and tricks to make the process more convenient to perform. Now that you’ve installed the MongoDB Driver for PHP, you’ll likely see a positive difference in developing all your PHP projects.

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