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Installing XAMPP for Windows

By B Lingafelter          testserver, workflow

This quide assumes you have already downloaded XAMPP 5.6.28-0 with PHP 5.6. If not, head over to Apache Friends and download the xampp-win32-5.6.28-0-VC11-installer.exe file. NOTE: As of this writing, there is a newer download of XAMPP with the new PHP 7.x but it's not yet supported by our web hosting and is likely to be problematic for awhile.

Notes on installation guide:

  • If you have an older version of XAMPP already installed in the C:\XAMPP default location, run the uninstaller to completely remove it before installing the newer version.
  • Skype uses port 80 as alternate port. If you have Skype installed, check the following before installing XAMPP. In Skype choose Actions -> Options -> Connection. Clear the check box for "use port 80 for an alternate port" and restart Skype to verify it still functions normally. 
  • The first time you start Apache and MySQL you may get a Windows Security alert - be sure to click Allow Access (Unblock) for each alert.
  • When you are finished with local testing, remember to stop Apache and MySQL (XAMPP Control Panel).

Install XAMPP Version 5.6.28-0-VC11

Install using the defaults.

  1. Close all open applications and double-click the xampp-win32-5.6.28-0-VC11-installer.exe file to run the installer.
  2. If you see the UAC warning message shown below, click OK. You will not be installing XAMPP in Program Files folder, so this will not affect you.
    XAMPP Install UAC Warning Message
  3. When the Setup Setup Wizard appears, click Next to start the installation.
    XAMPP Install Setup Wizard
  4. With all components selected by default, click Next.
    XAMPP Install Components
  5. Accept default location of c:\xampp and click Next.
    XAMPP Install Location
  6. Clear the Learn more about BitNami for XAMPP checkbox and click Next.
    Bitnami for XAMPP
  7. Click Next to begin installing XAMPP.
    Install XAMPP
  8. The install will take a few minutes.
    Installing XAMPP
  9. When the installer is finished, click Finish to start the XAMPP Control Panel.
    Xampp Install Complete
  10. You can choose not to open the XAMPP Control Panel at this point. To open the XAMPP Control Panel later, double-click the XAMPP Control Panel shortcut on your desktop, or go to Start > All Programs > XAMPP > XAMPP Control Panel.
    XAMPP Control Panel
  11. In the XAMPP Control Panel, click Start button next to both Apache and MySQL.
    Note: The first time you start Apache and MySQL you may get a Windows Security alert - be sure to click Allow Access (Unblock) on local network for both Apache and MySQL.
  12. In a few moments, you should see PID/Port information next to the module that's now running, and the Action button will now be labeled as Stop button. (Start/Stop is a toggle)
    XAMPP Control Panel with Modules Running
  13. VERY IMPORTANT! Unless you know what you're doing and have a valid reason to do so, DO NOT mark the checkboxes on the far left of the Control Panel which would allow components to run as a service (Apache, MySQL). While this means you'll have to open the XAMPP control panel and manually start Apache and MySQL when you need to use them, you are also much less likely to have conflicts with other applications or servers that use one or more of the same ports.
  14. To test the install, click the Admin button next to Apache to open the XAMPP for Windows page in your default browser.
    Alternative: You can also type http://localhost in address bar of a browser to open the XAMPP Administration page.
  15. Choose English if prompted for language.
  16. If the XAMPP for Windows page (shown below) is displayed, the install was successful and you're ready to move on.
    XAMPP Start Page
  17. Stop both Apache and MySQL servers in XAMPP Control Panel.
  18. Click Quit button to close XAMPP Control Panel and remove it from Notification area. NOTE: Clicking the "X" button in upper right minimizes XAMPP to Notification area but does not close it.
  19. You are ready to Configure PHP.