This is post is now quite old and the the information it contains may be out of date or innacurate.
Xdebug is an excellent addition to a PHP developers arsenal. However when debugging large arrays etc, the truncating can get in the way.
To stop Xdebug truncating arrays etc when you dump them using var_dump, just make these two additions to your php.ini file:
1 2 3
For a fuller explanation of Xdebug check out this article