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node.js – How to share session between NodeJs and PHP using Redis?

Posted by: admin July 12, 2020 Leave a comment


I want to share the server session between a NodeJs app and a PHP app using Redis. I took most of the code from this gist.

NodeJs code:

    store: new RedisStore({prefix: 'session:php:'}),
    name: 'PHPSESSID',
    secret: 'node.js'

app.use(function(req, res, next) {
    req.session.nodejs = 'node.js!';
    res.send(JSON.stringify(req.session, null, '  ') );


And it outputs:

    "cookie": {
        "originalMaxAge": null,
        "expires": null,
        "httpOnly": true,
        "path": "/"
    "passport": {},
    "nodejs": "node.js!"

PHP code (I use redis-session-php and Predis) :


$_SESSION['php'] = 'php';

if (!isset($_SESSION["cookie"])) {
    $_SESSION["cookie"] = array();


And it outputs:

array(2) {
    ["php"] => string(3) "php"
    ["cookie"] => array(0) { }

The problem:
I would expect both sessions to look the same, but they don’t ( the app is run on the same domain ). Setting the values with set() from Predis\Client works (but the values won’t be on the session variable). I found this code that I think would work, using set() and get(), but I feel that it would overcomplicate the code.

Do you know what I am doing wrong?

How to&Answers:

I’m the author of the gist. The code worked until express-session started forcing signed cookies and started implementing them in a different way.

I have updated the gist to work with the latest version of express-session. A copy of the gist follows for convenience:


var express = require('express'),
    app = express(),
    cookieParser = require('cookie-parser'),
    session = require('express-session'),
    RedisStore = require('connect-redis')(session);

app.use(express.static(__dirname + '/public'));
app.use(function(req, res, next) {
  if (~req.url.indexOf('favicon'))
    return res.send(404);
  store: new RedisStore({
    // this is the default prefix used by redis-session-php
    prefix: 'session:php:'
  // use the default PHP session cookie name
  name: 'PHPSESSID',
  secret: 'node.js rules',
  resave: false,
  saveUninitialized: false
app.use(function(req, res, next) {
  req.session.nodejs = 'Hello from node.js!';
  res.send('<pre>' + JSON.stringify(req.session, null, '    ') + '</pre>');



// this must match the express-session `secret` in your Express app
define('EXPRESS_SECRET', 'node.js rules');

// ==== BEGIN express-session COMPATIBILITY ====
// this id mutator function helps ensure we look up
// the session using the right id
define('REDIS_SESSION_ID_MUTATOR', 'express_mutator');
function express_mutator($id) {
  if (substr($id, 0, 2) === "s:")
    $id = substr($id, 2);
  $dot_pos = strpos($id, ".");
  if ($dot_pos !== false) {
    $hmac_in = substr($id, $dot_pos + 1);
    $id = substr($id, 0, $dot_pos);
  return $id;
// check for existing express-session cookie ...
$sess_name = session_name();
if (isset($_COOKIE[$sess_name])) {
  // here we have to manipulate the cookie data in order for
  // the lookup in redis to work correctly

  // since express-session forces signed cookies now, we have
  // to deal with that here ...
  if (substr($_COOKIE[$sess_name], 0, 2) === "s:")
    $_COOKIE[$sess_name] = substr($_COOKIE[$sess_name], 2);
  $dot_pos = strpos($_COOKIE[$sess_name], ".");
  if ($dot_pos !== false) {
    $hmac_in = substr($_COOKIE[$sess_name], $dot_pos + 1);
    $_COOKIE[$sess_name] = substr($_COOKIE[$sess_name], 0, $dot_pos);

    // https://github.com/tj/node-cookie-signature/blob/0aa4ec2fffa29753efe7661ef9fe7f8e5f0f4843/index.js#L20-L23
    $hmac_calc = str_replace("=", "", base64_encode(hash_hmac('sha256', $_COOKIE[$sess_name], EXPRESS_SECRET, true)));
    if ($hmac_calc !== $hmac_in) {
      // the cookie data has been tampered with, you can decide
      // how you want to handle this. for this example we will
      // just ignore the cookie and generate a new session ...
} else {
  // let PHP generate us a new id
  $sess_id = session_id();
  $hmac = str_replace("=", "", base64_encode(hash_hmac('sha256', $sess_id, EXPRESS_SECRET, true)));
  // format it according to the express-session signed cookie format
// ==== END express-session COMPATIBILITY ====


$_SESSION["php"] = "Hello from PHP";
if (!isset($_SESSION["cookie"]))
  $_SESSION["cookie"] = array();

echo "<pre>";
echo json_encode($_COOKIE, JSON_PRETTY_PRINT);
echo json_encode($_SESSION, JSON_PRETTY_PRINT);
echo "</pre>";