macOS Update: While these instructions still work, there are new posts for recent versions of macOS, the latest being Install Apache, PHP, and MySQL on macOS Mojave.
Note: This post is for new installations. If you have installed Apache, PHP, and MySQL for Mac OS X Yosemite, read my post on Updating Apache, PHP, and MySQL for Mac OS X El Capitan.
Mac OS X runs atop UNIX. So most UNIX software installs easily on Mac OS X. Furthermore, Apache and PHP come packaged with Mac OS X. To create a local web server, all you need to do is configure Apache and install MySQL.
I am aware of the web server software available for Mac OS X, notably MAMP. These get you started quickly. But they forego the learning experience and, as most developers report, can become difficult to manage.
First, open the Terminal app and switch to the
root user so you can run the commands in this post without any permission issues:
sudo su -
Enable Apache on Mac OS X
Verify It works! by accessing http://localhost
Enable PHP for Apache
First, make a backup of the default Apache configuration. This is good practice and serves as a comparison against future versions of Mac OS X.
cd /etc/apache2/ cp httpd.conf httpd.conf.bak
Now edit the Apache configuration. Feel free to use TextEdit if you are not familiar with vi.
Uncomment the following line (remove
LoadModule php5_module libexec/apache2/libphp5.so
You can verify PHP is enabled by creating a
phpinfo() page in your
DocumentRoot for Mac OS X El Capitan is
/Library/WebServer/Documents. You can verify this from your Apache configuration.
grep DocumentRoot httpd.conf
Now create the
phpinfo() page in your
echo '<?php phpinfo();' > /Library/WebServer/Documents/phpinfo.php
Verify PHP by accessing http://localhost/phpinfo.php
Install MySQL on Mac OS X El Capitan
Download and install the latest MySQL generally available release DMG for Mac OS X.
The README suggests creating aliases for
mysqladmin. However there are other commands that are helpful such as
mysqldump. Instead, you can update your path to include
Note: You will need to open a new Terminal window or run the command above for your path to update.
Finally, you should run
mysql_secure_installation. While this isn't necessary, it's good practice to secure your database.
Connect PHP and MySQL
You need to ensure PHP and MySQL can communicate with one another. There are several options to do so. I do the following:
cd /var mkdir mysql cd mysql ln -s /tmp/mysql.sock mysql.sock
Additional Configuration (optional)
The default configuration for Apache 2.4 on Mac OS X seemed pretty lean. For example, common modules like
mod_rewrite were disabled. You may consider enabling this now to avoid forgetting they are disabled in the future.
I edited my Apache Configuration:
I uncommented the following lines (remove
LoadModule deflate_module libexec/apache2/mod_deflate.so LoadModule expires_module libexec/apache2/mod_expires.so LoadModule rewrite_module libexec/apache2/mod_rewrite.so
If you develop multiple projects and would like each to have a unique url, you can configure Apache VirtualHosts for Mac OS X.
Find this interesting? Let's continue the conversation on Twitter.