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Lesson 1: How to Install PHP

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PHP is a server-side scripting language, which means you need a web server to run PHP programs or the PHP scripts. Luckily, installing is easier than it sounds. With XAMPP we install an Apache server on our own computer, plus PHP, MySQL and much more.

On the specified page, download the installer version for your operating system (Windows, Mac OS or Linux) and follow the installation instructions.

The installer of XAMPP asks where you want to have the package installed. I have e.g D: \xampp \ specified, other paths are also possible. If we now want to look at our PHP scripts, we will copy them to the htdocs folder under


Before we run PHP scripts, we need to start the web server. If you have Skype installed, you should stop it before starting the web server Skype, because unfortunately, Skype blocks the start of the Apache web server. After starting the web server, you can also restart Skype.

You can either start the web server by calling xampp_start.exe or by running xampp-control.exe and pressing Apache on the web server. Our PHP scripts that we have saved in the htdocs folder can then be accessed via the address http://localhost/ or
Tip: Delete the existing files in the htdocs folder, which will list all PHP scripts.

If an error message appears, then try to specify the complete URL to the page, ie http://localhost/sitename.php . If you have subfolders in the htdocs folder, then the name must also be entered in the URL.

That was the whole secret of the installation.

Later, to get your website online, your web host needs to support PHP accordingly. Meanwhile, PHP is included in almost every web hosting package, so finding a hoster should not be too difficult.

In our next lesson, we will talk about how to find a good web hosting that will also supports php.

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