MAMP - The Mac Apache, MySQL and PHP installation

For the past week and a bit, I’ve been staying in Alderney with my lovely girlfriend and her family. It’s a pretty little island, and I’ve enjoyed my time here, but unfortunately for me my girlfriend has had to spend much of my time here working. However, I knew this before I arrived down here, so made sure I brought a local copy of the website that I’m currently working on with me. One thing that I’d forgotten, however, was to think about installing a webserver, php and mysql before I left Leicester.

I’d previously used a couple of LAMP for Windows installations for local web development on my main machine, so my first thought was to search for a similar prepackaged development environment for the Mac. My prayers were answered by MAMP - the Mac Apache MySQL and PHP package. The version I first installed did not come with an installed copy of mod_rewrite though, and as you can imagine that was a pretty big deal for me! After a little bit of googling, I came across Andrew Escobar’s MAMP mod_rewrite solution which fixed things up nicely for me.

Then today, whilst writing up this entry, I realised that in the few days after installing MAMP in the first place, it had advanced to version 1.0.1 status and that it now contained mod_rewrite in the standard installation. Overjoyed at this advancement, I quickly downloaded the updated packaged and installed. Alas! MAMP would no longer run! Thankfully, I’d foreseen this as a possibility and had made a full backup of the original MAMP installation. My guess is that my fiddling about and installing mod_rewrite myself was enough of a config change to utterly confuse the updater. Instead, I rolled back to the working version of MAMP, made a full backup of the MySQL database as an sql file, uninstalled and then installed the 1.0.1 version in its place. With a couple of changes to the MAMP httpd.conf file to re-enable named virtual hosts and a quick reinstatement of my database, the website I had been working on was up and running once more. Oh, and mod_rewrite worked straight out of the box.

If you’re doing web development on a Mac box, I can well and truely recommend MAMP as an incredibly easy package to install, which won’t muck up or overwrite any previous versions of Apache, MySQL or PHP on your machine.

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Neil Crosby now blogs at The Code Train and also runs, The Ten Word Review and Everything is Rubbish.