Running a local Apache web server is essential for many webmasters. It is always a good idea to test code locally before publishing it on the Internet. Professional webmasters usually test their code in a local web server before it gets published. Mainly to avoid possible downtimes in the live environment but also to avoid the hassle of having to upload and edit code on the Internet or network. It's simply faster to test everything locally.
Wampserver is an Apache web server for the Windows operating system. It provides in many regards the same functionality of other web server solutions like XAMPP or Home Web Server which we have reviewed in the past. The latest version of the local web server package will install Apache 2.2.11, MySQL 5.1.36 and PHP 5.3.0 on the local computer system.
One interesting unique feature is the ability to add different versions of Apache, MySQL and PHP to the installation in the form of add-ons. This can be very handy to test a website locally under multiple different Apache, MySQL or PHP release versions.
The installation of Wampserver will always install the latest versions of Apache, MySQL and PHP. One interesting security feature is the ability to limit access to the web server to localhost. It is required to click on the "put online" option to make it available to other computer systems as well.
Additional Apache, MySQL and PHP versions can be installed from the Wamp add-ons page. All add-ons are provided as executables that can be installed easily on the operating system.
Webmasters who need to test code offline can use Wampserver to do so. It is especially useful to test code against multiple versions of Apache, MySQL and PHP. Something that the other home server solutions do not provide.
Wampserver is Open Source and can be downloaded from the developer's website.
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