XAMPP stands for cross-platform, Apache, MySQL, PHP and Perl. It’s a simple and lightweight solution that allows you to create a local web server for testing purposes.
Since XAMPP is cross-platform, it also works on Mac and Linux, but today we’re going to focus on how to set up XAMPP on Windows 10.
WordPress isn’t a stand-alone application and requires server software in order to run. XAMPP provides the necessary environment needed to run WordPress on a local machine.
Go to the Apache Friends website and download XAMPP.
The XAMPP file is 109MB. Once downloaded, launch the installer.
During the install process, you may receive warnings such as Windows asking you if you’re sure you want to install the software and the installer prompting you about antivirus software. As you would when installing any software on Windows, use your best judgment, but you probably want to click “Yes” to continue with the install.
The XAMPP setup wizard will guide you through the installation. Click Next.
In the next window you will be asked to select which components of the software you would like to install and which ones you don’t want. Some options, such as Apache and PHP are essential to running the software and will at automatically installed, so they are greyed out so you can’t select them.
It’s up to you which components you want to install. Since we want to run WordPress in our localhost environment, leave MySQL and phpMyAdmin checked and uncheck the remaining options.
Next, select the folder where you would like to install XAMPP on your machine. I’m going to create a new folder in C:\Program Files\XAMPP.
In the next window, you’ll be asked whether you would like to install Bitnami for XAMPP, which offers free tools for installing WordPress, Drupal and Joomla! on top of XAMPP.
Since we’re going to install WordPress manually later in this turorial and don’t need free installers, untick “Learn more about Bitnami for XAMPP” and click Next.
After going through all those initial installation steps, XAMPP is now finally ready to install. Click Next.
Once installed, you’ll be asked whether you would like to start the XAMPP Control Panel, which provides an interface for running your localhost environment. Leave this option ticked and click Finish.
The Control Panel will automatically open, but if you unchecked the option in the prevous window, you can go to the XAMPP folder on you computer and open XAMPP Control Panel instead.
If the installation process went well and everything is running smoothly, the control panel will open with black and blue text updates at the bottom. But if there are issues…
… Well, look at that – red text! It looks like I’ve run into some errors already. Not to fear, it looks like a port conflict.