When I moved over to Mac OS X 10.6 last week I found I had to fix my MAMP stack. My old MAMP install didn’t work anymore as unfortunately Marc Liyanage’s excellent PHP package fails in 10.6.

The following instructions are mostly the same as before – except it’s not quite so easy now – if you want more than a base PHP install that is. (I even had another look at the commercial MAMP Pro offering. Nah.) For a simple MAMP stack you really only need to turn on Apple’s PHP package and grab a copy of MySQL. If easy is good for you – jump to 1.5.

But I “like” to have phpMyAdmin and don’t like being warned that I’m missing the mcrypt extension for PHP. If you want mcrypt too – start at #1.

Tools & Requirements:

  • You need admin access on your Mac
  • Basic understanding of the filesystem and Terminal.app
  • If you’ve not got it already grab the wonderful and free editor TextWrangler. The config files that need editing are hidden from normal view – but easily reached by TextWrangler which even has a menu item for that: File / Open hidden… .  It also handles authentication beautifully to allow saving without having to manually change permissions to and fro.
  1. [extra steps to customise things first eg add mcrypt PHP extension – if you don’t need/want it skip past to 1.5.] Go and see Xeon Xai’s blog post Snow Leopard PHP Extensions Installation Tutorial or for a quicker version – go here. These first optional steps to customising your set up (adding PHP extensions and even downgrading PHP from 5.3. to 5.2) has turned out to be more “interesting” than originally perceived and needs post of its own…

1.5 Prepare your php.ini file by duplicating the supplied stock example file and giving it the right name: In Terminal paste this:

sudo cp /private/etc/php.ini.default /private/etc/php.ini

You’ll need to edit the timezone – replace

;date.timezone = with
date.timezone = Europe/Madrid

For other timezones look to the official list here (note the lost semi colon – that’s the comment character)

1.6 Get PHP looking in the right place for MySQL (once you’ve installed it.) …Still editing php.ini find and replace all instances of /var/mysql/mysql.sock with /tmp/mysql.sock . (Why? – well as documented here it seems php.ini is configured for Mac OS X Server’s bundled version of MySQL)

1.7 Start PHP by un-commenting the LoadModule php5_module line in your /etc/apache2/http.conf file.

1.8 Turn Web Sharing (in System Preferences/Sharing) off-and-on again.

  1. Get yourself virtualhost.sh [waybackmachine] from Patrick Gibson. This little shell script will make the process of setting up proper virtual domains on your development server a cinch. I use “.dev” or “.live” as the TLD to prevent any conflict with the live sites. (Although now I’ve started using Git I may just drop the separation between live and development branch domains on my development box. I still put all my sites in my ~/Sites folder though.

  2. MySQL
    3.1 If you’ve already got another version installed uninstall MySQL from your Mac. NB – this will delete your databases too! But you’ve got those backed up and you want a clean slate:

  • sudo rm /usr/local/mysql
  • sudo rm -rf /usr/local/mysql*
  • sudo rm -rf /Library/StartupItems/MySQLCOM
  • sudo rm -rf /Library/PreferencePanes/My*
  • edit /etc/hostconfig and remove the line MYSQLCOM=-YES-
  • sudo rm -rf /Library/Receipts/mysql*
  • sudo rm -rf /Library/Receipts/MySQL*

3.2 Get a MySQL Community Server for the Mac and install it.

  1. Give your MySQL root user a password; type the following into the Terminal:
    /usr/local/mysql/bin/mysqladmin -u root password sniggle
    …if you like sniggle as a password that is.

  2. Now you can administer your MySQL server with phpMyAdmin and the root user you’ve just defined. (There are other tools too – eg MySQL Administrator – but I’m used to phpMyAdmin from the hosting packages I use). You may want to virtualhost phpMyAdmin to, for example, “http://mysql/”. Love virtualhost.sh.

  3. Then for each [dynamic] site you’ll probably want to add a user and then associate a DB with that user. Do this in phpMyAdmin in one step using the Privileges pane fill in “Add a new User”/then select “Create database with same name and grant all privileges”. Job’s a good ‘un.

Done and not long-winded at-all at-all!

Last updated on 10th May 2020