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I'm a web developer and I am building a site on a CMS that has issues moving from a WAMP server to LAMP. The live server is LAMP and I am running Windows 7.

I don't want to run into problems moving from the test server to the live server, so I was wondering if I could somehow run Linux using a virtual machine (using Windows Virtual PC which I think supports Linux or VirtualBox) and then using a Linux equivalent of WAMP2 server as a test server.

Anyone have any ideas on how to do this and what the best Linux distribution to use would be?

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I'm guessing that you want to try to copy the "test" Virtual HDD to a real HDD? Also, server distros are far and wide - I'd say Slackware, but then again I've always been a bit partial... –  new123456 Apr 9 '11 at 18:49

2 Answers 2

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You certainly could do that. Some of this is personal opinion but I'd install CentOS in a Virtualbox pc. I'll give CentOS instructions but you could just as well use Ubuntu server.

  1. Download and install Virtualbox
  2. Download CentOS ISO.
  3. Create a virtual machine and point the cd drive to your Linux ISO.
  4. Boot the virtual machine and install Linux.
  5. Depending on the exact options you used during installation you'll need to install PHP, MySQL, and Apache.
  6. Once that's done you'll have a LAMP appliance ready to go.
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I just looked at the web host and it is running CentOS. Is there any kind of package I can install (like WAMP2-server) that includeds php, apache, mysql? Or do I have to install them individually? –  jlego Apr 9 '11 at 19:41
    
I'd suggest having a look at this site: (howtoforge.com/quick-n-easy-lamp-server-centos-rhel) I'm not aware of a meta package but you could just do "yum install httpd httpd-devel mysql mysql-server mysql-devel php php-mysql php-common php-gd php-mbstring php-mcrypt php-devel php-xml php-cli phpmyadmin" @jlego –  dkwiebe Apr 9 '11 at 20:29
    
hmm i'm actually using Windows Virtual PC instead of VirtualBox since I already have it installed and using it to test different versions of IE. I've successfully pointed the boot to the CentOS ISO, but when it tries to boot it freezes and makes a loud beeping noise which I am unsure what that means. –  jlego Apr 9 '11 at 23:10
    
@jlego: Microsoft Virtual PC doesn't support Linux guests very well. Several tweaks will be required to get it working properly, so it will probably be far easier in the long run to use VirtualBox. If you still want to try and get it working in Virtual PC, post a new question with more details about your problem. –  Patches Apr 10 '11 at 1:08
    
Well, I've tried it on VirtualBox as well and while it boots fine, there is a serious issue with the cursor and the mouse. THink it could be because my main mouse is one that comes with an Intous tablet. :/ –  jlego Apr 10 '11 at 2:19

The "best" distro for you to run in your virtual machine is whatever your production server is going to run, so you don't run into any gotchas when you go live. http://www.howtoforge.com has a bunch of great tutorials on setting up a linux server. My personal experience is to use VirtualBox or VMWare Server to host the VM and either of them will work fine.

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