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How to delete $_POST variable upon pressing 'Refresh' button on browser with PHP?

Hey folks,

I've been working on a PHP project where I'm using the `$_POST` variable to pass data to a new page upon form submission. However, I've come across a little issue. Whenever I refresh the page after submitting the form, the data from the `$_POST` variable persists.

I want to find a way to delete the `$_POST` variable upon pressing the "Refresh" button on the browser, so that the data doesn't stay there after a refresh. Is there a way to achieve this in PHP?

I've searched through the PHP documentation and some forums, but I couldn't find a clear solution. I tried using `unset($_POST)` and `$_POST = array()`, but they don't seem to work after a refresh. Maybe there's some server-side trick or a JavaScript solution that I'm missing?

I would really appreciate any insights or advice you can provide. Thank you in advance for your help!

All Replies


Hey there!

I faced a similar issue before and after some investigation, I found that the `$_POST` variable holds data until another request is made. This means that refreshing the page wouldn't clear the `$_POST` variable by default.

To overcome this, I used a simple technique. After processing the `$_POST` data and doing whatever I needed to do with it, I redirected the user to another page using the `header()` function. This way, when the user refreshes the new page, the `$_POST` data would no longer persist.

Here's an example of how I achieved it:

// Process the form submission
// Handle the submitted data
// ...

// Redirect the user to a new page
header("Location: new_page.php");

By redirecting the user, the browser is making a new GET request to the `new_page.php`, and thus the `$_POST` data is no longer present.

I hope this helps! Let me know if you have any further questions.


Hey everyone,

I had a similar situation a while back, and removing the `$_POST` data directly upon refreshing the page can be a little tricky. However, I found a workaround that worked well for me.

Instead of relying solely on PHP, I incorporated a bit of JavaScript to clear the `$_POST` data when the user refreshes the page. Here's what I did:

1. First, I added an `onbeforeunload` event handler in the `<body>` tag of my HTML:

<body onbeforeunload="clearPostData()">

2. Then, I created a JavaScript function named `clearPostData()` that makes an AJAX call to a simple PHP script responsible for destroying the `$_POST` data:

function clearPostData() {
var xhr = new XMLHttpRequest();
xhr.open("POST", "clear_post_data.php", true);

3. Finally, I created the `clear_post_data.php` file, which contains the code to unset the `$_POST` data:


With this approach, whenever the user refreshes the page, the `clearPostData()` JavaScript function gets triggered, making an AJAX call to the PHP script that unsets the `$_POST` variable.

Remember to adjust the file paths and names according to your project.

I hope this helps resolve the issue for you! Let me know if you have any other questions or need further clarification.

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