Everyone tells you to do it, but few actually do install a Joomla test site on their home computer. Why is it so complicated? Actually it is not! The following tutorial will help you to set up a test site on your home computer using WAMP. A Joomla test site allows you to you play with all extensions and settings without compromising your production site. It is fairly simple to set up a Joomla site at home by following the next steps (for windows computers only):
Step 1: Get the WAMPServer packageand install this on your computer. WAMP stands for Windows, Apache, MYSQL and PHP, the ingredients needed to run Joomla on your home computer. To learn more about trouble shooting a WAMP installation and cloning your production website, please click here.
Step 2:Download the latest Joomla production version from the Joomla website. It comes in a zip file.
Step 3:Make a new folder in the C:\wamp\www folder: for example C:\wamp\www\Joomla Test Site and unzip the zip file in this directory. You will see the following files in the directory:
Step 4: Start WAMP and type localhost in your browser to open the WAMP administrator page. Under "Your Projects" click on the Joomla Test Site and you will see the following screens:
Step 4.1: Select the language and click on next.
Step 4.2: Hopefully everything looks like the screen below and click on next.
Step 4.3: Click on next to accept the license.
Step 4.4: This is an important step in the installation where most people make the mistake filling out a password - YOU SHOULD NOT DO THIS! WE ENTER A PASSWORD LATER IN THE INSTALLATION PROCESS. Type in as host name localhost - leave root as username, leave password empty and type in a name for the database (Joomla_Test_Site for example) and click on next.
Step 4.5: Click on next to ignore the FTP settings.
Step 4.6: Please enter the name of your site, an email address and the password you will need to login in the administrator section of Joomla. If you want, you can also install the sample data (you need to do this before you click on next).
Step 4.7: The next step is to delete the installation directory.
You can find the installation folder in C:\wamp\www\Joomla Test Site\... and just simply delete the folder.
Step 4.8:We should be all set. Type in localhost in the browser and click on the new Joomla Test Site in the list of project. Alternatively, you can also type in localhost/Joomla Test Site/administrator:
You should be seeing the admin login page of Joomla. Your username is admin and the password is the one you entered in step 4.4. You can change these in the Joomla User Manager. You now have your own Joomla test site!