We want to use sessions instead of cookies for keeping track of a few things. However, when I close my browser, and I reopen a page to echo a session var, it doesn't exist (which is how it is suppose to be). Is it possible to prevent this from happening with some magic or anything?
This is not a duplicate question, all I see are people wanting to destroy sessions, I want to do the opposite and retain the session for as long as possible.
Any knowledge would be appreciated.
The right way of doing this is with a database, you can mimic or control php sessions and store them in a database instead of in a file ( as normal ). Then once you have control of the data you can base renewing session via the ip address or better yet by login.
So say a user logs in and then you need to store some data, you store that in the session but php will store it in your database table ( when configured correctly ). Latter the user comes back, initially any visitor would get a fresh session, however once they login you would be able to retrieve the past session they had.
This topic is too extensive to put just a few pieces of example code but I did find this small article on the topic.
The guts of it is to use this function,
Once you have control of the data you can do whatever you want, however I would caution you about relying only on the IP address and it would be preferable to use a login system for something like this to prevent serving the session up to the wrong visitor.
You cannot reliably control what happens on the client side, even using a separate cookie would not be reliable and would have the disadvantage of storing data on the client where it could be accessed instead of keeping it on your server. Sessions are controlled by cookies but the data in them remains on your server, the cookie just identifies the client.