I decided to start a fun new project by setting up a development environment for WordPress. My primary goals are to have something I can use on my desktop or laptop without worrying about cluttering up the operating system (OS)on my PCs or scattering project files all across my home network. My buddy Justin over at Chop Shop pointed me toward VirtualBox a while back, so I decided to dive in and give it a try. VirtualBox is a free, open-source virtualization application that allows you to set up virtual machines (VMs) quickly and easily. Virtual machines offer many benefits:
They are “sandboxed” and won’t interfere with your OS installation
They can be saved in a particular state, exported, and transferred to another VM host (so if I’m going on vacation I can copy my VMs from my desktop to my laptop)
The same base VM installation (with the OS, Apache, MySQL, and PHP installed) can be saved and duplicated for multiple development environments (WordPress, Drupal, etc.)
Modern hardware is designed to support virtualization technologies so performance is generally excellent
Typically, the primary (non-virtualized) OS on the computer is called the “host” operating system, and the virtual OS is called the “guest” operating system. I’ll be using those terms throughout this tutorial.
I don’t have any spare Windows licenses lying around, so I’m turning to Linux for my guest OS. I’ve had some experience with Ubuntu in the past, and I think the x86 version will work just fine for WordPress. I’ll also be using XAMPP for Linux (formerly LAMPP) as my application platform to host WordPress on.
This entry is part 2 of 4 in the series WordPress Development Environment. One of the first things I noticed in the WordPress development environment I set up using VirtualBox and Ubuntu (see my previous post) was that whenever I wanted to install or upgrade a theme, plugin, etc. I had to enter my credentials […]
This entry is part 3 of 4 in the series WordPress Development Environment. I do most of my WordPress development using a combination of VirtualBox and Ubuntu. Over time I’ve developed a few simple tips that make my workflow a little more efficient, so I wanted to share them with anyone else who read my […]
I do most of my WordPress development using a test environment that I installed on a Ubuntu Virtual Machine (VM). This let’s me play around as much as I want without any risk to my production website or my computer; everything is contained within the VM, and it costs me nothing because I only use open-source and/or free software (read about it at http://wp.me/p1iF71-4x).
However, I prefer to do the actual development and testing from Windows 7 because I prefer using it to any other OS. While my VM is running my WordPress installation, I can access the files from my Windows host OS and use development tools like Notepad++ to access the WordPress files via my home network.
To accomplish this, Ubuntu will need to install a sharing service so Windows can “see” it using the virtual network adapter. When we’re finished, the VM will appear to be just another computer on the network.
First, navigate to opt/lampp/htdocs and right-click on the wordpress folder. Select “Sharing Options” to open the Folder Sharing window.
Check the box for “Share this folder” and click the Install Service button when prompted. You’ll need to enter your password. (more…)