Setting up Joomla on Windows

I had to do this recently. It’s not excessively difficult.

You can use this thing, but it’s really for dev environments.

WampServer installs Apache, MySQL and PHP. Easy.

Once it’s running, go into PhpMyAdmin and change the root password from the default (blank). You’ll need to update the PhpMyAdmin config too: this is in C:\wamp\apps\phpmyadmin2.10.1\ — remember that this, like most of the files, is in Unix format, so you need to use a Unix-aware file editor. (Wordpad seems to be okay for this if you have nothing else installed, at least on Windows Server 2003.)

Download Joomla and chuck it into the root directory (default is c:\wamp\www)

Browse to http://localhost/

If Joomla tells you to change anything in the PHP setup, you’ll find it in C:\wamp\bin\php\php5.2.5\php.ini — though it seemed to take no notice when I changed magic_quotes_gpc as requested. Odd. I eventually found you can reset it using the WAMP5 tray icon: Left-click, PHP, PHP Settings. It then automatically restarts Apache to make it take effect. Neato.

The rest is easy… go through the Joomla install pages and it does it all for you. Then start figuring out your template and structure.

Still to figure out:

  • Contact page/email doesn’t work. Probably some hiccup with Apache not figuring out how to send emails from Windows… maybe I need to make sure the Windows IIS SMTP server is running or something.
  • Issues with .htaccess, needed to switch on friendly URLs (well, friendlier than those default Joomla/Mambo monstrousities)