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My client has his intranet website running as a SharePoint 2010 site, consisting of about 40 lists making the different categories of news.

What would be the easiest way for me to fetch this data (including the contents html-formatting) to an external solution that's written in PHP?

The fetching/exporting must happen automatically. Either every time changes are made to one of the lists, or at a timed interval (i.e. every hour).

I was looking into the built-in RSS-feed option of SharePoint 2010. Will the RSS-fields contain the HTML-formatting as well? Or is there a smarter way to handle this export?

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If you're looking for list data, you can fire off a curl request to one of SharePoint's list REST services, and parse the results. Should be pretty simple. There's also a full set of SOAP web services, but those have been deprecated in 2013, so I'd argue that developing a solution using REST is likely more future proof. You could start here for a simple introduction to REST. Once you understand the concept and what comes back just open a curl connection in PHP and parse the dataset for the element(s) you need.

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Your question is mostly asking about how to do things in PHP which I wonder if anyone here will going to help you with, you might would like to try StackOverflow for that.

However you can get data from SharePoint using web services, here's few examples,

Reading a SharePoint list with PHP (updated)

web-service to get sharepoint data gives error

PHP SharePoint Lists API

You should look for something in PHP which will fetch data hourly.

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