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How to remove empty values from an array in PHP

Topic: PHP / MySQLPrev|Next

Answer: Use the PHP array_filter() function

You can simply use the PHP array_filter() function to remove or filter empty values from an array. This function typically filters the values of an array using a callback function.

However, if no callback function is specified, all empty entries of array will be removed, such as "" (an empty string), 0 (0 as an integer), 0.0 (0 as a float), "0" (0 as a string), NULL, FALSE and array() (an empty array). Let's try out an example to understand how it actually works:

<?php
$array = array("apple", "", 0, 2, null, -5, "0", "orange", 10, false);
var_dump($array);
echo "<br>";
 
// Filtering the array
$result = array_filter($array);                 
var_dump($result);
?>

In the above example the values 0 and "0" are also removed from the array. If you want to keep them, you can define a callback function as shown in the following example:

<?php
$array = array("apple", "", 0, 2, null, -5, "0", "orange", 10, false);
var_dump($array);
echo "<br>";
 
// Defining a callback function
function myFilter($var){
    return ($var !== NULL && $var !== FALSE && $var !== "");
}

// Filtering the array
$result = array_filter($array, "myFilter");     
var_dump($result);
?>

The callback function myFilter() is called for each element of the array. If myFilter() returns TRUE, then that element will be appended to the result array, otherwise not.


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