User Login Session Timeout Logout in PHP

by Vincy. Last modified on July 6th, 2023.

This PHP tutorial is used for setting user login session expiration time for the logged-in user. Once this time is elapsed, the user no longer accesses the authenticated pages of the application.

In the previous tutorial, we created session variables once a user logged in to our application.

This tutorial will add the current logged-in timestamp to a session. We check if the login session expiration time is reached using this timestamp. If so,  the user will be logged out.

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HTML code for User Login

This code is for showing the login form to the user.


<form name="frmUser" method="post" action="">
<?php if($message!="") { ?>
<div class="message"><?php echo $message; ?></div>
<?php } ?>
<table border="0" cellpadding="10" cellspacing="1" width="100%"
		<tr class="tableheader">
			<td align="center" colspan="2">Enter Login Details</td>
		<tr class="tablerow">
			<td align="right">Username</td>
			<td><input type="text" name="user_name"></td>
		<tr class="tablerow">
			<td align="right">Password</td>
			<td><input type="password" name="password"></td>
		<tr class="tableheader">
			<td align="center" colspan="2"><input type="submit" name="submit"

Creating User Login Session

In this code, we are adding a logged-in user id and logged-in time to a session variable. Then, we invoke a PHP function to check if the login session expiration time is elapsed.

The user will be redirected to the dashboard if it is not reached.

if(count($_POST)>0) {
	if( $_POST["user_name"] == "admin" and $_POST["password"] == "admin") {
		$_SESSION["user_id"] = 1001;
		$_SESSION["user_name"] = $_POST["user_name"];
		$_SESSION['loggedin_time'] = time();  
	} else {
		$message = "Invalid Username or Password!";

if(isset($_SESSION["user_id"])) {
	if(!isLoginSessionExpired()) {
	} else {

PHP Function for Checking Login Session Timeout

This function will be invoked at the beginning of all authenticated pages. This function returns TRUE if the user login session is expired; FALSE otherwise.

function isLoginSessionExpired() {
	$login_session_duration = 10; 
	$current_time = time(); 
	if(isset($_SESSION['loggedin_time']) and isset($_SESSION["user_id"])){  
		if(((time() - $_SESSION['loggedin_time']) > $login_session_duration)){ 
			return true; 
	return false;

User Login Session Expiration Logout

This logout.php page will “unset” the logged-in user session and check for the status of the session_expired flag. If it is set, then the login session timeout message will be displayed to the user.

$url = "index.php";
if(isset($_GET["session_expired"])) {
	$url .= "?session_expired=" . $_GET["session_expired"];

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Written by Vincy, a web developer with 15+ years of experience and a Masters degree in Computer Science. She specializes in building modern, lightweight websites using PHP, JavaScript, React, and related technologies. Phppot helps you in mastering web development through over a decade of publishing quality tutorials.

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