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Cookie Issues[especially session ones!]

Browsers send all "matching" cookies to a server when they connect.  

A cookie consists of:

Name: the name of the cookie

Data: the stuff in the cookie

Domain: the domain name of the website to send the cookie to

Path: the path to match on the server[typically /]


Ignore path for the moment, domain matches are the domain of the host being connected to and anything up the chain.


So for

Any cookie for;;; and .com would be sent.   Browsers don't allow cookies to be set for top level domains[.com] because of this.  If multiple cookies with the same name match, then they are all sent.  So for magento you have a your logon cookie as follows:



The staging server will receive:




PHP grabs one of the 2 cookies at what might as well be random, so things work, then they break, then they work, then they break..


A common host setup for us is: --> --- main website -- dev site -- staging site


So if you are doing anything on both the main site and dev or staging, cookies being set by the main site can interfere.


I do not have a GOOD answer to this problem.  A quick hack is to copy:


To local and edit line 44 and make it unique for dev, staging, and live:

const SESSION_NAMESPACE = 'adminhtml';

In PHP 5.3 it is not possible to use an expression when setting a constant. so

Won't work. It should work for PHP 5.6 but I don't recall at what point this was changed.