Beginner's Guide to getting CipherSweet working with PDO and MYSQL


isq

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I'm brand new to posting programming questions on forums, and I just tried to get help on Stack Overflow but they downvoted me a bunch and deleted my question because it wasn't specific enough, I guess? I guess I don't know how to make my request more specific, as I'm looking for an easy-to-understand guide to make CipherSweet work with my project, and I don't understand anything after the installation process. What I need is everything else afterwards in a way that's not 1000 feet over my head. Hopefully y'all are more willing to help me than Stack peeps were.

So, I have some experience with BASIC (VERY BASIC) encryption (like sodium crypto secret box and a bit of argon stuff for passwords), and I've built sites on php with MYSQL before that never really needed the sort of encryption (especially SEARCHABLE encrypted data from a database) that I am now needing for a current project (usernames, actual names, email addresses, birthdates, etc.). I need to be able to search by encrypted email addresses, usernames, and actual names, at a minimum, and connecting any of my encryption code with the searchable ability came up null, and research led me to realize this is a huge issue and difficult enough to merit conferences on this subject alone.

Enter CipherSweet, which looks like exactly what I need...if I can just figure out how to use it.

I've never installed anything like this before that I've gotten to work for programming, and I'm guilty of just programming most things I do from scratch (yeah, I know, old school, but it's currently all I know).

This is VERY new to me, and every guide I've found on how to use CipherSweet is so far over my head I feel like I'm reading a foreign language. I've read the guides from Paragonie and got CipherSweet installed on my SiteGround shared-hosting server using Composer (had to go with version 3 because the SiteGround server itself isn't using php 8.1 yet despite the fact I have 8.1 set for my shared hosting site). The rest of the guides at Paragonie (https://ciphersweet.paragonie.com/php/setup), Github, and any I've found thus far on Stack Overflow regarding CipherSweet are completely over my head. I didn't find any information here on the coding forums on CipherSweet (but who knows, maybe I missed something?).

I'm trying to follow the guides on what to do after installation, and I'm just lost. How do I actually intitialize the engine, for example? Where do I place the code recommended? In a connect kind of file? And how do I connect my database? It looks different than what I'm used to. Can I use PDO, as is my usual preference? If so, how?

Any help would be appreciated. I imagine there are just one or two disconnects that -- once understood -- the rest will fall into place.

Thanks!
 
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