This guide will cover how to install MAMP with WordPress on a macOS system so that you can host and test your websites locally before deploying them online. We will cover every aspect of the installation with clear step-by-step instructions [with pictures].
Without further ado, let’s get started.
What is MAMP?
MAMP is an acronym for macOS, Apache, MySQL/MariaDB, and PHP.
Though you can install each software separately on your macOS computer, MAMP saves you a lot of headache searching, downloading, installing, and configuring all the software necessary for hosting a website on your machine.
All the software stack is bundled in one compact, easy-to-install file. MAMP provides similar functionality with WAMP Server on Windows or LAMP on Linux.
Please note that MAMP is available on Windows operating system as well.
If you are reading this guide, you probably already know that MAMP can help host a content management system such as WordPress on your computer to host a website(s) locally for development or testing before deploying it online.
MAMP comes in two flavors: the free version and the PRO version. In this guide, we are going to use the free version.
Let’s quickly go through what the MAMP software bundle contains first.
If you are already familiar with MAMP functionality, scroll down to the installation section.
The “M” letter refers to the operating system you target to install the software, in this case, macOS.
The “A” letter stands for the Apache server – a server used to serve HTTP requests to users when accessing a website.
The “M” letter refers to MySQL/MariaDB, respectively the database management system in charge of stocking all the relevant data a website uses (content, users and passwords, posts and pages, etc.
The “P” letter stands for PHP, in charge of gluing all the components in the web stack together.
Now that we understood what MAMP is and what it is used for, let’s install it on our macOS machine.
The installation will require roughly 1.7GB of space on your computer.
Step 1: Download MAMP Server
Head over to the official MAMP Download page and click on the MAMP & MAMP Pro button to download the installer on your computer.
If you are asked to allow download from “www.mamp.info,” click the Allow button.
Double-click on the .pkg file to launch the installer. If you cannot locate the .pkg installer file, open Finder and navigate to your Download folder.
Right-click on the .pkg file and select Open.
On the MAMP Welcome window, click Continue.
Read the Important Information and click Continue.
Read the Software License Agreement and click Continue.
Click Agree to the terms of the software license agreement window.
Click Install to start the MAMP installation on your macOS machine.
When prompted, type your password to start the installation.
Once the installation is completed, click the Close button.
Step 2: Download WordPress
Head over to the official WordPress download page and scroll down to the download section. Click the Download WordPress button.
Once the download is complete, unzip the file. You should have a folder titled WordPress, as shown below.
Open a second Finder window and navigate to the Applications -> MAMP -> htdocs folder. Copy (drag and drop) the WordPress folder in the htdocs folder.
Step 3: Launch MAMP Server
Go to the Application -> MAMP folder and double-click the MAMP icon. Make sure you run the MAMP free version in the Application/MAMP folder and not the MAMP PRO located in the Application folder.
Take note of your document root location. Here is the folder where all the local websites will be stored. This is also the location we copied earlier (Step 2), the WordPress installer.
Click on the Start button on the top-right corner to start the server.
MAMP will automatically open your default browser. Click on Tools and select phpMyAdmin from the drop-down menu.
Step 4: Create A New Database
To create a new database in phpMyAdmin, click on New, type a name for your database, and click Create.
The default username and password for this database is root.
You can see the default database username and password by scrolling down on the MAMP page where you launched the PhpMyAdmin (Step: 3) under the MySQL section.
If you are not comfortable with the default username and password, follow the following steps to create a new user with a more secure password.
1. In PhpMyAdmin, select the database and click on the Privileges tab. Click Add user account.
2. Type a username and a secure password.
3. Scroll down to the Global privileges section and click the Check all checkbox.
4. Scroll to the bottom and click the Go button in the lower-right corner.
Remember the username and password as we will need them in a moment to install WordPress.
Step 5: Install WordPress
In your browser, type:
Note: if you renamed the WordPress folder to something else in Step 2, type:
You will be greeted with the WordPress Welcome screen. Click Next.
WordPress will confirm the following requirements are met before continuing. Click the Let’s go! button.
Type the database name, username, and password for the user you created in Step 4. If you chose the default root/root for username and password, type the root credentials in the respective fields. Click Submit.
If you followed the above steps correctly, WordPress would greet you with an “All right, sparky!” message. Click Run the installation button.
Next, WordPress will ask you to create a new WordPress user.
This user/password is different from the database user/password used above and is used for logging in to the WordPress website.
Choose a username and password that you can remember. You will also need to type an email address here. Click the Install WordPress button to start the installation.
Click the Log In button to be redirected to the WordPress login page.
Type your WordPress username and password and click Log In.
Congratulations! You are now ready to install themes, create and customize your website using the MAMP server on your macOS computer.
If you followed carefully the steps above, it is pretty easy and straightforward to install MAMP with WordPress on your Mac. MAMP makes it pretty easy to develop and test all your websites locally before deploying them on production.
If you encounter any issues following the steps above, please drop me a message below, and I will do my best to support you. And if you found this guide helpful, use the share buttons below to spread the word.