Installing and Running Magento

The instructions below can be followed to install and run a sample e-commerce site using Magento. Magento is an open-source e-commerce platform implemented in PHP and originally developed by Varien, Inc.

1. Download and install XAMPP, a software package which incorporates the Apache web server, the MariaDB database, and the PHP server-side web language, all of which will be necessary to install Magento. As of this writing, the latest version of XAMPP is available for download from the URL “”.

2. Install XAMPP. When prompted, specify and make a note of the password for the “root” user of the MariaDB database.

3. Initiate a MySQL client session somehow, perhaps by opening a command prompt and entering the command “mysql -u root –password”. Enter the password specified in the previous step when prompted.

4. At the MariaDB session prompt, enter the command “create database magento;”.

5. Download Magento. As of this writing, the latest version is available by visiting the URL “”, clicking on the “Clone or Download” button, and clicking the “Download ZIP” button.

6. Extract Magento from the downloaded .zip file using any convenient ZIP utility, perhaps 7-Zip.

7. Rename the extracted Magento directory to “magento” and copy it into Apache’s “htdocs” directory (perhaps at “C:\xampp\htdocs”).

8. Enable PHP’s “soap” extension by locating the file “php.ini” (perhaps at “C:\xampp\php\php.ini”) and editing it to remove the initial semicolon from the line “;extension=php_soap.dll”. This will uncomment the line, which should enable the extension.

9. Still within php,ini, locate the max_execution_time variable and increase its value significantly, perhaps to 120 (seconds). Save the file. This change may prevent a premature timeout error during the installation process.

10. Start or restart the Apache server, perhaps by starting the XAMPP control panel and clicking the “Start” button on the line for Apache. This will apply the changes from the previous steps to the PHP and web server setup.

11. Open a web browser and navigate to the Magento Installation Wizard at the URL “”. (Do not use “localhost”, as the Magento installer does not seem to handle this alias correctly.)

12. Follow the prompts to install Magento, and make a note of the encryption key generated by Magento in the final step. (The installation process is by no means robust, and following any errors it may be necessary to discard and replace te magento directory under htdocs, drop and re-create the “magento” database in MySQL, restart Apache, and re-start the installation. If errors do occur, Magento will likely suppress any details from appearing in the browser, so it may be helpful to look in the “var/reports” directory under the “magento” directory to see the actual error text.)

13. On the final page of the Magento Installation Wizard, click the button labeled “Go to Backend”. On the page that appears in a new browser tab, log in using the admin account created in the previous step. Dismiss any popup notifications, and verify that the Magento Admin Panel user interface appears as expected.

14 .Back on the final page of the Magento Installation Wizard, click the button labeled “Go to Frontend”. Verify that the default Magento frontend user interface appears.

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