Installing Joomla on Localhost

Installing Joomla on Localhost


This tutorial will show you how to install Joomla locally, on a Windows desktop. I am going to use XAMPP for this tutorial.

XAMPP is an abbreviation for cross-platform, Apache, MySQL, PHP, and Perl, and it allows you to build Joomla, WordPress, Drupal, and other CMS websites offline, on a local web server on your computer. This simple and lightweight solution works on Windows, Linux, and Mac – hence the “cross-platform” part.

Since Joomla isn’t a stand-alone application, XAMPP provides two essential components for its installation – Apache, which is used to create the local server, and MySQL which you can use as a database for your website.

Here’s how you do it:

Step 1: Install XAMPP

  • Download XAMPP to your computer.
  • Run through the XAMPP installation process.
  • In your taskbar, down the by the date in the bottom-right hand corner of your screen, look for the XAMPP icon. Click on that icon.
  • You should see a popup. Click “Start All Services” and then click “Localhost.”
  • Hopefully you’ll see a white screen with the XAMPP Server logo in the top-left corner.

Step 2: Download Joomla

  • Go to and click on the black button saying “Download Joomla. Get the Latest Version”. Find the line saying “…. Full Package” and click on the “ZIP” text.
  • The file you download should have a long name such as

Step 3: Move Joomla to XAMPP

  • Click on the XAMPP icon in your taskbar again and now click “XAMPP directory”. This will take you to the folder where XAMPP stores its websites.
  • Open htdocs directory
  • Move your Joomla folder into this directory.
  • Extract the Joomla folder.
  • It will be confusing to keep accessing the website through a folder called /Joomla_1.5.15-Stable-Full_Package/ so rename the folder to something simple such as /joomlatest/

Step 4: Set up our database

  • Click on the XAMPP icon in your taskbar again and now click “phpMyAdmin”. This will take you to the software where Joomla’s databases are managed.
  • Find the field labelled “Create new database” and enter “joomlatest”. Click “Create”.
  • Hopefully you’ll see the name “joomlatest” appear in the left column.

Step 5: Install Joomla

  • In your browser, visit this address: http://localhost/joomlatest
  • You’ll see the the normal Joomla installation screen. Click through screen 1, 2 and 3.
  • On screen 4, these will be your settings:
    1. Host Name: Localhost
    2. Username: root
    3. Password: [leave this blank]
    4. Database: joomlatest
  • On screen 5, enter your site name plus a username, email and password.

Step 6: Delete/rename installation directory

  • Hopefully you still have your Joomla folder open. If not, click on the XAMPP icon in your taskbar again and then on “htdocs directory”.
  • Rename the installation folder to something such as /installation-back/
  • Click “Site” on the final installation screen or visit http://localhost/joomlatest.

You should now have a shiny new installation of Joomla on your desktop where you can develop your website securely in your local environment.

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