How To Insert a Carriage Return in a PHP String

If you need to insert a Carriage Return in a string in PHP:

  • Carriage return is: "\r" 
  • But carriage return (CR) is different from "new line" (NL)
  • New Line (NL) is "\n"
  • What in HTML is called "line break" is the sum of a CR and a NL.
  • And different systems use this characters in different way; so, to get a "line break":
    • in Linux/Unix: \n
    • in Windows: \r\n
    • in Mac (pre-OS X): \r
    • in Max (OS X): \n (like Linux/Unix)

So, the best fix is to insert "\r\n"

the string "This is the first line\r\nThis is the second line"
Will render so:

This is the first line
This is the second line

You can also use the PHP constant PHP_EOL; so, the construct

"This is the first line".PHP_EOL."This is the second line"

will render the same.

Beware to the double quotes! "\r\n" will render a full carriage return; otherwise '\r\n' will render \r\n verbatim.

  • php
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