A long time ago I wish I could to do exactly what I’m about to show you how to do, that is have a portable web server that I can plug into almost any computer. This is a useful way to develop for a client & never let it be seen on the Internet until you have finished the job.
Before I list the space needed as this may be an issue if you try to do this on just any portable drive. For some reason Hard drive manufactures think that a megabyte is 1,000,000 bytes when in reality it is 1,048,576 bytes or 1,024 bytes times 1,024 bytes. Also if you are using a flash-based portable drive it only has a limited number of writes for any particular sector, so with use the amount of available space will go down. (I’m not going to get into the details of that in this post as that is another discussion altogether.) So all the space that I’m saying you will need you will need the manufacturer to say that you have IIRC about 7% to 11% more than what they say. (Sorry I didn’t feel like doing that math again.)
One other note with most if not all flash-based drives you can not read at the same time that you are writing so during the copying process you get to wait before you can do much else. Also because the drive I’m using in this is really old you should get faster speeds than I did.
Tutorial on how to setup your own web server with Apache MySQL and PHP using XAMPP. The universal messaging standard Tried and tested.
Also I reference “G:” through out this walk-through you should substitute that with whatever drive letter your drive is assigned.
The following numbers to not account for wasted disk space they only account for total bytes that are used ignoring the wasted space.
- 1.2 MB PortableApps.com Platform Only (Size on disk is 1.26 MB)
- 150 MB PortableApps.com Suite Light (Size on disk is unknown)
- 355 MB PortableApps.com Suite Standard (Size on disk is unknown)
- 221 MB XAMPP (Size on disk is 241 MB)
- 116 MB XAMPP Lite (Size on disk is 160 MB)
- 1 MB XAMPP Launcher (Size on disk is 183 KB)
- 7 MB WordPress files (Size on disk is 7.04 MB)
- 230.2 MB for XAMPP, Platform Only & WordPress files
- 379 MB for XAMPP, Suite Light & WordPress files
- 584 MB for XAMPP, Suite Standard & WordPress files
- 125.2 MB for XAMPP Lite, Platform Only & WordPress files
- 274 MB for XAMPP Lite, Suite Light & WordPress files
- 479 MB for XAMPP Lite, Suite Standard & WordPress files
So according to these number a 256 MB drive might barely be able to do this with XAMPP & Platform Only, but since it ignores wasted space I guess you could try XAMPP Lite instead.
Here are the files you will need to download. (These links all point to the current version at the time I write this post & the size requirements may change.)
- Download PortableApps.com Platform Only, download PortableApps.com Suite Light, or download PortableApps.com Suite Standard (You would go here to check for newer versions.)
- Download XAMPP or download XAMPP Lite (You would go here to check for newer versions.)
- Download XAMPP Launcher (You would go here to check for newer versions.)
- Download WordPress (That link always gets the current stable version of WordPress.)
After you have downloaded all of the files to your computer you will start installing them to a portable drive that can fit all the stuff you just downloaded. Well I just discovered I have a 256 MB flash-based drive so I will try the install on it. I got it almost 10 years ago so it will have some use on it as well. After retrieving the data on it & formatting it I have 246 MB available formatted FAT32. Because I’m installing using FAT32 I don’t have to deal with any security issues I might have if it was formatted NTFS, besides Windows XP won’t let me format it NTFS.
For step 2 You will need a lot of patience as it will take some time to finish installing. Also as far as time goes it does partly depend on the speed of the drive you are copying to my 256 MB drive was old & as such it is slower than a newer drive which would be much faster.
- Install the PortableApps.com platform or suite that you chose to download. If you don’t have a previous version installed & have it running you will need to tell it which drive to install it on, you will need to remember this for the next step. Aside from that Windows asks if you really want to run it which is a yes, than it asks which language, since I speak English I went with that, You hit next so it will ask you the drive letter, in my case it was “G:” (They do have a browse button.), than you click on install, than leave the box checked to “Launch PortableApps.com Platform”. A new icon will show up in your system tray, which is down by the time.
- Install XAMPP & specify the drive letter you noted in the last step. (Remember you drive letter may be different then it is on mine so don’t go with “G:” unless yours was assigned to that letter also.) It will also ask you if you want to run it so you click on run, then it asks the installation folder which on my computer it defaulted to “C:” which is wrong so I changed it to “G:” & clicked on install (It has a browse button as well.), I then waited for over 3 hours. After the wait it brought up a DOS window asking “Should I add shortcuts to the startmenu/desktop?” so I said no, then for the “Should I locate the XAMPP paths correctly?”, so I said yes, then for “Should I make a portable XAMPP without drive letters?” so I said yes (this takes a while as well I didn’t time it though, but I think it took less than 20 minutes.), it then lets you know which time zone it thinks it is in, & provides information on what file to modify to correct that if it is wrong. After that all you need to do is tell it to exit with an x & then an enter.
- Install XAMPP Launcher If you have the PortableApps.com platform or suite running it should detect which drive to install on to. So if you have the portable app running all you need to do is click on next, than install, than finish. To see it in the list you will want to go to the portable apps icon in the tray, Options, Refresh App Icons. After installing all of that I noticed I was out of room so I can’t even fit WordPress on it. (It turns out that a full copy of XAMPP takes up 241 MB due to wasted space.) Also before I started this I thought that the Lite version didn’t have MySQL but had SQLite instead, turns out I was wrong so I guess I’ll try that instead.
- Install WordPress. You need to launch the XAMPP Control Panel so that you can start MySQL & Apache. You also need to copy the extracted files & folders for WordPress into “G:xampplitehtdocs” I just copied the wordpress folder so that it will be here once it is installed. So browse to here to create a new database. You need to name it, create a user name for it & a password for the user name. So under “Create new database” you enter the name you want to assign it, I just called mine wordpress, then you just click on the create button. Since it will automatically take you to that table you just need to go to the “Privileges” tab & click on “Add a new User”, set “User name” to the user name, set “Host” to local in the drop down, Hit the Generate button next to “Generate Password” to assign a random password to the database with the third field showing you it in clear text, you will want to either copy it watching case or copy it to the clipboard. Then under that make sure that “Grant all privileges on database” is selected, next to “Global privileges” you want to click on “Check All”, then you just have to click on the “Go” button. Now you want to go here to start the install, click on the “Let’s go!” button, set the MySQL, database name, user name, & password. You can leave the database host with the default of localhost also if you want you can change the “Table Prefix”, I never install more than one install to the same database as I don’t want to ever deal with that. Then hit the “Submit” button, than if you got the details right you can click on the “Run the install” button, it than asks for a “Blog Title” & “Your E-mail”, on my personal blog that I posted this my “Blog Title” is “Joker”, the “Your E-mail” is the e-mail address that the admin account will be assigned, If you leave the “Allow my blog to appear in search engines like Google and Technorati.” option checked when you click on “Install WordPress” you can just export from the USB install & than import it on to your web host. After waiting for a time assuming you have your php.ini set to allow it to run long enough you will be told that the user name is admin & what the randomly generated password is.
- If you want to follow good protocol you will go here to get a custom set of constants which are used since version 2.6.0 of WordPress. You then add it to the wp-config.php file in about lines 45 through 48. This isn’t as important on a portable install but it is still a good idea
When I installed XAMPP Lite it only took about 2 hours to install, it asked the same questions that was asked for the regular XAMPP install. I didn’t time how long it took to make the change for XAMPP Lite so that it doesn’t use any drive letters.
I also learned something else during this install. If your drive is slow enough you will have timeout issues after you enter the “Blog Title” & “Your E-mail”. I got this after I changed the max_execution_time to a ridiculously high 999999. The php.ini file is located in “G:xampplitephp”.
The final total for XAMPP Lite, Platform Only & WordPress installed uses 167 MB. I’m not testing how much space is ultimately used with any other combination as that takes way to long to do.
17 Best Alternatives of Xampp Server:- Xampp is an open source application that is primarily used for testing. Programmers can develop a local web server using Xampp. Xampp is equally compatible with operating systems like Linux, Microsoft Windows and Mac as well.
Programmers find Xampp very easy to use, the reason is simple that it is powered by Apache, MySQL, PHP and Perl. So if user were to develop local web server, Xampp would pretty much take care of things like server application, a database management system, coding language and network programming.
Are there any alternatives to Xampp? Yes, there are. We will look at these different alternatives.
Xampp Lite Download
WampServer is also another tool used for creating web applications and PHP development. WampServer will come along with three major tools like PHP, MySQL and Apache. WampServer is only available for Microsoft Windows OS.
One advantage that WampServer provides is the interface that is available in many languages. You have the ability to see all the elements on the browser. Another function worth mentioning is that that the PhpMyAdmin would take care of the database management. You can also try offline and online modes with WampServer.
If the accessibility concerns you, then you can limit it to local-host, otherwise, you can choose everyone to get the access. You can have access to server settings and files as well. Another interesting feature that WampServer offers is that you can accommodate all the next versions of PHP, Apache and MySQL into it. So, you can keep on upgrading with new releases as you move ahead.
EasyPHP is one of the best contenders to Xampp. If you want to only focus on the coding part, and leave the rest headache of configuration, then this is the best tool. It will get you PHP, the scripting language along with MySQL for database management. Apache will take care of web server application.
Even if you are a beginner with coding, you can use EasyPHP as a tool for development. Interactive eportfolios blogeffective curriculum ideas. You can work with applications like WordPress, Joomla and Drupal with EasyPHP. But remember, you cannot host websites using EasyPHP. If you want to turn your machine into personal hosting, then go for EasyPHP WebServer. This will enable offline hosting in the machine that will be easy to operate, and also will be secured. If you otherwise want a WAMP environment for your machine, then go for EasyPHP DevServer. These versions will have difference in programs offered, apart from the basic ones.
UwAmp Server is another development tool for web applications of Microsoft Windows OS. UwAmp Server has tools like SQLite, Apache and PHP integrated with it. With UwAmp Server, if user decided to have web applications tested offline, then that would be possible. So you wouldn’t actually need an internet connection to get the applications tested. Users who are concerned about the installation of UwAmp Server need not worry because it doesn’t need an installation. You can very well begin with a zipped file.
Users are bound to find the interface for UwAmp Server very interactive. Users will be able to find a lot of information with the interface. You can check configuration settings along with the commands on the interface. If you are to run a new PHP releases along with UwAmp Server, then that would be feasible. Users will also be able to get data on the CPU usage. Users can even run the web server from the flash disk using UwAmp Server.
Users can use AMPPS to develop web applications in PHP. AMPPS (from Softaculous) can be run on Microsoft Windows, Mac and Linux OS. The availability of AMPPS on operating systems other Microsoft Windows gives it a strong position amongst the top. The installation is too easy and the user can begin within minutes after the installation.
With AMPPS, you will find integrated tools like Apache, MySQL, Python, MongoDB and Perl. It is certainly one major tool for PHP. Users can get an access to over 300 PHP web applications along with thousands of classes of PHP. All the editions of PHP are compatible with AMPPS.
Users can do the website development either by programming themselves or by open-source web apps. With a single mouse click, users will be able to manage the database. The scripting part with AMPPS has been made easy for users. You can work on any application that suits your requirement like WordPress, Joomla or Drupal.
The Uniform Server
The Uniform Server also stands in the top category of tools used to run web servers, mainly used to check and validate HTML coding. The Uniform Server can only be run on Microsoft Windows OS. The Uniform Server comes with Apache, PHP, Perl and MySQL. All the latest versions are compatible with The Uniform Server.
Features that most of the users like about The Uniform Server are that that it doesn’t require to be installed, and the fact that it will consume less than 10MB storage space. This is really great for users who have to go through the cumbersome set-up process, and also that consumes a lot of space. Users can get updates on a regular basis, along with some great support to resolve queries on time. Users can also go one step further and change the settings to get better control over programming. So if you are looking for extra configuration and tweaking, then The Uniform Server is one of the best options.
MAMP is tool to run websites that are more complex in nature, like Dynamic Websites. MAMP happened to be serving only Mac Operating System earlier. As it is made for Macintosh, it is called as MAMP. So if you came across the term LAMP, then it is a similar version to MAMP, but used for Linux OS. You can even find a similar version for Microsoft Windows.
MAMP is a great tool that comes along with a database management system, Web server and countless programming languages. So by now you would have guessed that it has Apache, MySQL, Perl, Python and PHP support.
MAMP is open-source. Users like to use MAMP with applications like Drupal and other Content Management System apps. Users even like MAMP for the fact that it does not tamper with other existing applications in the system. They don’t even make any alterations in configuration.
On deleting MAMP, users will be surprised to know that system remains normal like before. MAMP has also got a pro version to offer. You will usually need this if you are a professional programmer, and would want to get additional features for multiple hosting along with features like virtual server, Dynamic DNS, Multi-PHP and LAN Access.
WPN-XM is also an amazing tool to build PHP web applications. WPN-XM is only available for Microsoft Windows OS. If users want to try a different stack than those available with other software, then WPN-XM is an ideal choice. WPN-XM is the package that consists of MariaDB for database management, NGINX for the web server and PHP for coding. X stands for Xdebug, which is a debugger. So initials of all these softwares make WPN-XM.
The interface will make the running of server very easy for the users. Users can even get a lot of utils like Composer, Pickle, PHPUnit for development. You can even add many types of software with WPN-XM if you need to. Users can get the list of updates from the register available.
Users may not worry about installation related problems, as WPN-XM comes with 5 installation wizards. So what all wizards can a user expect from WPN-XM? You will get hands on The Webinstaller, The Full Installer, The standard Installer, The LiteRC Installer and The Lite Installer.
Wnmp is a tool used for development environment. Wnmp offers a great interface that is easy to operate, yet a robust one. It is an open-source platform that comes along with MariaDB, PHP, NGINX and a Control Panel.
Users find Wnmp very easy to operate, the only part users may find irritating is the installation, as it may go on for longer than usual time. User can easily configure the settings for the tools that are available along with Wnmp. User can perform set of actions like reloading and running of settings. The editor available with Wnmp is Notepad. But the user has control to change that. User can also increase the speed by changing few settings. If you want to see the program activity, you can go to the bottom of the interface and check.
Generally, users like Wnmp because it doesn’t consume much of the RAM, therefore the system performance wouldn’t get tampered with Wnmp. Booting with Wnmp is also easy and smooth experience for users.
The difference between Wamp and SecureWamp is that the latter is more secure to be used. Needless to mention, other tools like MySQL, Windows, Apache and PHP are made available to the users.
Users have two options for settings with SecureWamp, that is either they can opt for developers or for production settings. For secure web hosting, users would always prefer to work with SecureWamp. There is a central Graphical User Interface available to take control of settings, meaning that all the pain of configuration files that are cryptic is taken care of. User need not even worry of problems like number of interfaces.
If you happen to be a web developer or an administrator, then SecureWamp might serve you well for testing and development.
DesktopServer is best-known software that is used along with WordPress for development and testing. It can be seen as a strong competitor to Xampp. DesktopServer can skip all the redundant tasks for you. Users rarely have to be worried about database management and file configuration.
DesktopServer is friendly software and you will be happy to realize that the time taken is way too low as compared to some other similar software. Website development for all the WordPress users has become unimaginably simple with DesktopServer. Users have to just click a few times, and they can see the new website.
Do not worry about the WordPress files, DesktopServer will get all the necessary files installed for you. You don’t even have to worry about security keys. The interface is quite simple, so if you are new, it wouldn’t matter much. You can even export, import and share files. And if you are a seasoned player, then you will be happy to use a powerful software as DesktopServer.
For all WordPress admirers, it cannot just get better if you have DesktopServer with you. There are some advanced features for software available with a premium version of the same software. You can use the software for Microsoft Windows and Mac OS.
Abyss Web Server
For Microsoft Windows, Mac and Linux OS users, Abyss Web Server is another tool available as a web server, as the name suggests. Abyss Web Server complies with all the norms of HTTP/1.1.
People using Abyss Web Server can tell that it consumes fewer resources in comparison to other tools, it consumes less memory, and hence the load on the system by Abyss Web Server is very low. And despite of the fact that it consumes very less resources, it doesn’t compromise with the speed. The interface comes with a support for many languages. Users can also find a feature that is designed to be an anti-hacking function, and this is automatic.
Users can even go at lengths with customization to suit their needs. It is also portable. These features make the browsing experience very easy for the user. There are two versions available, the basic version if free. However, if you want it for professional use, then you can buy the Pro Version.
As the name suggests, USB Webserver can be run without even being installed on the machine, you can simply run it from the USB. You can build PHP websites with the software. With USB Webserver, the user will get access to PHP, phpMyAdmin, Apache and Mini Relay. As it runs from the USB, you don’t have to worry about any files and logs left on your system.
It is free software and users find it very easy to be used. Professionals will also find it quite flexible. Users can find multi-lingual support with the new versions of the USB Webserver. The earlier version had a DPI bug, the current version has got that bug fixed.
Generally, users prefer to use USB Webserver to demonstrate the offline version of the website. Users even have the ability to work from various locations, and also run the test before making the website live. It’s also free and open-source. Looking at the amount of resources that it consumes, it is very responsive. Users will have a nice experience with its interface.
Denwer is usually used for debugging and developing the websites. Denwer will get a list of web-servers along with it. It will contain stack of PHP, Perl, MySQL, Apache, phpMyAdmin and a Virtual host management system.
You will get all of these pre-configured when you install, but users can manage to customize according to their requirements. Once you install, all you need to do is PHP coding. Users can start developing and debugging along with it. Users can also manage to debug the website offline. You can easily work with installation and configurations smoothly, but you may struggle with the language, as it is Russian.
FoxServ is software used for development on OS such as Microsoft Windows and Linux. FoxServ gets PHP installer, MySQL and Apache along with it in the package. User can avail the new releases for all these applications along with the configuration.
Xampp Lite For Windows
PHPTriad is a good tool for PHP development. PHPTriad is also used as a server environment for Microsoft Windows OS. User can avail PHP, MySQL, Apache and phpMyAdmin with PHPTriad.
Users find it very simple to handle. The installations are also quite simplified. Users will also find the compiling process very easy. So they can expect a pretty decent environment, database management and web server with PHPTriad. The settings with this software have kept quite basic, so if you need some other settings, then you can configure according to your needs. If you need PHP and Perl libraries, then you may need to get those externally as those are not pre-installed.
Winginx is a local web server used by developers. Most often it is used by Nginx users. Although users of PHP, MongoDB , MySQL and NodeJS can also use it. Winginx is not easy as other software to be used. It is used along with Microsoft Windows OS. But, users need to be wary of the fact that it cannot be used with all the versions of Windows. They can only use it along with versions that are higher than Vista or Vista itself.
The installation is easy, you don’t have to struggle much with this part. Users can develop multiple projects with Winginx. The platform is very accommodative for local web development. Users can perform tasks like testing and launching of the local websites. Same is true for services and applications that are browser-based. Users like Winginx for the fact that settings can be easily changed, and the updates for its components can be obtained on a regular basis.
Saurav is associated with IT industry and computers for more than a decade and is writing on The Geek Page on topics revolving on windows 10 and softwares.