Dynamically Display Images From a Directory

Here is a nifty PHP script I use on occasion. It reads a specified directory that you have populated with images, in this case .gif images then spits them out onto a nice 4 column table.

I used this for a page that displays customer logos. To add a new logo all the client has to do is size the image, make sure it’s a gif then drop it into the proper directory, done. To remove an image, just delete it from the directory. No code.

The client wanted to order 10 of the logos first and the rest alphabetically so I came up with the easiest solution I could think of witch was to put a sort on the array of file names before writing them to HTML then coming up with a file naming scheme that they could follow. I named the logos by the company name and just put a four digit number in front of the filenames they wanted to be ordered first. They started with 0010_name.gif then 0020_name.gif etc… This way if a new one came in that they wanted first they could name it 0015_name.gif.

<table cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" border="0">
  $dir = 'path to directory';
  $dirHandle = opendir($dir);
  $image = "";
  while ($file = readdir($dirHandle)) {
    if(strpos($file, '.gif')>0) {
      $image[$count] = array ($file);
  $arrays = count($image) -1;
  $loop = -1;
  $c = 0;
  while ($loop < $arrays) {
    if ($c == 4) {
      echo '</tr><tr><td><img src="'.$dir.'/'.$image[$loop][0].'"></td>';
      $c = 0;
    } else {
      echo '<td><img src="'.$dir.'/'.$image[$loop][0].'"></td>';
  if ($c==1) {echo '<td colspan="3"></td>';}
  if ($c==2) {echo '<td colspan="2"></td>';}
  if ($c==3) {echo '<td></td>';}
  if ($c==4) {echo '';}

10 Replies to “Dynamically Display Images From a Directory”

  1. Hi Norman,
    Tried to use your code, but i’m getting these error lines:
    Warning: sort() expects parameter 1 to be array, string given in /home/virtual/studiopa/public_html/preview/rooms_01.php on line 26

    Fatal error: Cannot use string offset as an array in /home/virtual/studiopa/public_html/preview/rooms_01.php on line 37
    What should i do?

  2. There is no error trapping in this script so it could be several things.

    Are there actually .gif files in the directory you are reading?

    is $dir set to a relative path with a / at the end?

    What version of php is running?

    Try adding the following in under the $image=””;

    if (!$dir) {echo ‘ERROR: No directory.’; exit;}

    if (!$dirHandle) {echo ‘ERROR: Unable to open the directory.’; exit;}

    Try replacing the sort($image); with this
    if ($image == NULL) {
    print(“Sorry, GIF files here”);
    } else {

  3. Norman,

    this is awesome! Thank you! two quick questions. I’m trying to display a folder full of pdfs. it works great so far. now the trick is, can I reduce the size of the images on the table so the PDFs don’t show at full size? If so, how. and two, can the thumbs be clickable to the actual files? Thanks so much!!!

  4. Just put a height and width into the img tag! Then put an anchor around it.
    < ! a href="the-directory/'.$image[$loop][0].'" !>< ! img src="the-directory/'.$image[$loop][0].'" height="20" width="20" !>< ! /a !>

    (get rid of the exclamations and the extra space… necessary for placing code in a comment here)

  5. THANK YOU! that worked like a charm! Now I just need to figure a way to get imagick to render it faster and I’ll have to sort them alphabetically 🙂 I’m getting there!

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