I'd like to access $user from the commandline to see what properties are available on it. I could sdpm($user) in my code and go inspect it in my browser, but isn't there a way I can inspect it right from my terminal?

It looks like drush php could be helpful here, according to http://blog.damiankloip.net/2015/drush-php, but when I use it and do dump -a $user I get 'Unknown variable: $user'. That's probably obvious, so I probably need to load $user into the repl first (I'm guessing)... but how? That blog post shows how to load objects in D8, but how would I do this in D7 for $user???

1 Answer 1


You need to define the $user variable first. You can run the drush command as a particular user by specifying --user on the command line:

drush --user='admin' ev 'global $user; print_r($user);'

If you don't specify a user, drush runs as anonymous by default.

Or, you can do it like this:

drush ev '$user = user_load_by_name("admin"); print_r($user);'

It will display this:

stdClass Object
    [uid] => 1
    [name] => admin
    [pass] => *****
    [mail] => [email protected]
    [theme] => 
    [signature] => 
    [signature_format] => filtered_html
    [created] => 1443708895
    [access] => 1515415027
    [login] => 1515411954
    [status] => 1
    [timezone] => Europe/London
    [language] => 
    [picture] => 0
    [init] => [email protected]
    [data] => 
    [uuid] => f6800524-c092-4abc-abcd-f71d091623cd
    [roles] => Array
            [2] => authenticated user

    [force_password_change] => 0
  • Excellent, and the second option was what I needed to get it to work in the repl with drush php. Thanks!
    – alec
    Feb 6, 2018 at 13:32

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