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Now that all the tools have been explained it is time to get started with the Installation. I have documented the steps I took to make this site work. None of the theme integration will be discussed in this post, just the structural setup so that the themes can be created. At the end of this post all CMS’s will be setup and running locally. If you wish to also repeat the steps you can install the CMS’s online knowing that they will still be in separate folders and have their default themes.

This post is a bit long so make sure you read all pages. If following along with the theme tutorial make sure you set aside at least an hour of time to complete this whole section of the tutorial. I will dedicate each page of the post to a particular installation. This is a general installation and documents my installation of the three CMS’s locally. I did not run into any errors and if you need advanced help I suggest visiting the official CMS’s site at any time.


For those of you who skipped Site Design: Part 3 here are some quick links to download all the files needed in this section of the tutorial. WordPress, Zenphoto, Piwik, MAMP, and Textwrangler.

First setup your Text Editor. The editor won’t be used for this post but it’s always good to have it installed just in case some text editing needs to be done. Download your text editor of choice and install.

Local Server Setup

First step in getting started is to install your local server. Like I mentioned in Site Design: Part 3, I am using MAMP as my local server. If you have researched and found another program, or are using XAMPP on PC, the setup will still be very similar.

1. Begin the installation

2. Customize:

Select Customize and uncheck MAMP PRO. For this tutorial we will only need the basic features of MAMP.

3. Server Path

After the installation finishes it will place a folder called MAMP into your applications folder. Inside the MAMP folder you will find the MAMP application amongst other files.

Note: This is also the folder that the default server folder is located if you decide not to select a custom folder.

4. Web Interface

At the end of the installation your web browser will open to the web interface of the MAMP server. By default this is http://localhost:8888/MAMP/?language=English

This also shows the port number your local host is on. In most cases leave at the default port 8888

5. MAMP App.

MAMP itself will have a single window for the application. After you click “Start Servers” you can minimize the MAMP window. The only time you will need this window is to: get to the web interface in the previous step, change MAMP application preferences, or Start/Stop the server.

6. Custom Root

For my local installation of the CMS’s I created a folder on my hard drive named “Server”. I want to set this folder as the root for my local website. This root is compared to the root folder on my actual website online. It is the main folder all the files are stored. To select a folder other than the default, click Preferences…. on the MAMP window and then select the Apache tab. In the image below you can see the default value. Click select and then pick your folder of choice. After you click OK you may need to Stop and then Start the server again. This will now direct the localhost address to your specific folder.

7. CMS Files

Navigate to your Server folder in Finder or Windows Explorer. Create three folders inside the Server, or custom root location, folder. There needs to be one folder for each CMS with the appropriate names as shown below. After each folder is created extract the downloaded files from the CMS’s website into the corresponding folder.

8. Database Creation

We now need to create the database that will store all CMS information. Open your web browser and navigate back to the MAMP web interface. If you closed the browser you can get to this page by selecting “Open Start Page” from the MAMP application window. Once on the web interface, select the phpMyAdmin tab.

9.Database Name

Type the name of your database (for this tutorial I used “mysite”) and click Create.

After your database is created you will receive a confirmation message at the top of the screen.

10. Database user

After the database has been created we need to create an administrator user for the database. This user will be used in the CMS installations and will have privileges to modify the database. Select the Privileges tab and click Add a new User.

Create an admin user and give it a password. For this tutorial I am using a password of Passw0rd1

Note: You may want to write this information down, it is required in the next 3 installations.

After the user is created you will receive a confirmation message. Double check that all the boxes are checked giving this user full rights to the database.

11. Finished

That’s it! You’ve completed installing your local server and setting up the database for your CMS’s. There are several different ways to do this. Some people prefer to have a different database for each CMS or a single database with a different database user for each CMS. This would be ideal for sites that are going to have heavy traffic and a lot of content. For my site, however, a single database to store my photo gallery, blog, and analytics will suffice.

Series Navigation<< WordPress Site Design – CMSWordPress Site Design – WordPress Install >>

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