php $_POST with special characters

I just wondered why $private_key=$_POST['pkey']; doesn´t work, when I use a variable with AJAX, which also contains a +.

The solution is surprisingly simple: PHP changes fields containing the characters space, dot and others to ensure compatibility with the (obsolete) register_globals.

There are many workarounds. I use this function:

function getRealPOST() {
    $pairs = explode("&", file_get_contents("php://input"));
    $vars = array();
    foreach ($pairs as $pair) {
        $nv = explode("=", $pair);
        $name = urldecode($nv[0]);
        $value = urldecode($nv[1]);
        $vars[$name] = $value;
    return $vars;

Many thanks for publishing this function to

But if the passed variable contains one or more = this no longer works because of $nv = explode("=", $pair);. In this case explode must be limited to two fields: $nv = explode("=", $pair, 2);

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