Installing PrestaShop on your computer
You may wish to install PrestaShop on your local machine, either in order to test it before investing money in a server and domain name, or to customize your store locally before you push your modifications to the PrestaShop installation that would already you have online.
Installing any web-application locally requires that you first install the adequate environment, namely the Apache web server, the PHP language interpreter, the MySQL database server, and ideally the phpMyAdmin tool. This is known as an AMP: Apache+MySQL+PHP. It exists for many operating systems, which provides another letter for the acronym: WAMP (Windows+Apache+MySQL+PHP), MAMP (Mac OS X+...) and LAMP (Linux+...).
This would require you to be quite technical; luckily there exist many pre-built packages that you can install easily. It does not prevent you from having to get technical here and there, but they do provide a huge help. Since all of the items packaged are open-source, these installers are most of the time free. Here is a selection of free AMP installers:
- XAMPP: http://www.apachefriends.org/en/xampp.html (Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, Solaris)
- WampServer: http://www.wampserver.com/en/ (Windows)
- EasyPHP: http://www.easyphp.org/ (Windows)
- MAMP: http://www.mamp.info/ (Mac OS X)
Choose the package that you feel the most comfortable with, launch it, and make sure that everything it has installed does work before going on with this PrestaShop installation tutorial:
- The web server should be up and running. You should be able to access it through your browser, by typing "127.0.0.1" in the address bar.
http://127.0.0.1is the "localhost", meaning "your computer": it is a loopback address which directs the browser to your local server. In effect, http://
http://localhostare synonymous: you can use one or the other interchangeably.
- The database server should be up and running. MySQL is where all of PrestaShop's data is stored. The AMP package should provide you with a clear indicator whether MySQL is running or not.
- The phpMyAdmin tool should be accessible. This is the web application that helps you handle data stored in MySQL. Its location depends on which AMP packaging you chose: it can be found at
http://127.0.0.1/phpmyadmin(XAMPP, WampServer, MAMP),
http://127.0.0.1/mysql(EasyPHP), or maybe at another location. Check your package's documentation – it might even provide a phpMyAdmin button of sort that would open the correct URL in your browser.
Once you have checked that the package is correctly installed and that all of its parts are running, you need to find the root folder. That is the local folder where you will place your application's files, and can be compared to the root folder of your online server, only its content is accessed with
http://127.0.0.1. The actual local location of the folder depends greatly on the AMP package, and can be customized:
Finally, you need to know the root user name and password for MySQL, in order to install PrestaShop. Most packages use the user name "root" with an empty password. Read your package's documentation.
With all that clear and done, you can follow up on the rest of this Getting Started guide and start installing PrestaShop, keeping in mind that when you install PrestaShop locally:
- Files are not to be uploaded via FTP to a server: simply move them in the correct local folder, as indicated above.
- You do not have to create a local domain name: PrestaShop is available through the loopback address indicated above, which is either
http://127.0.0.1. PrestaShop itself is available at this address by adding its folder's name, for instance
http://127.0.0.1/prestashopif PrestaShop is in the
/prestashop/subfolder of the local root folder. When accessing this address for the first time, you should be automatically redirected to PrestaShop's install, at either
http://127.0.0.1/prestashop/install. From there on, follow the regular installation guide, starting directly at the "Creating a database for your shop" section.