As Internet marketers, we are faced at some point with not only creating web pages, such as a sales page or opt-in page, but also complete websites either static or on a CMS platform such as WordPress.

This work usually involves time spent in your HTML editor creating the pages, adding images, an opt-in form, ad boxes and other elements that will make up the website. Then you put all this information into folders, log into your webhosting account, and FTP everything up to your server.

A question is, when would be the best time to do this work that someone might not see all this construction when your site is online 24/7.

What if you could create an environment similar to that of your web server on your local computer, do all the work on your site and when completed, FTP to your server as a complete site.

Well, to do that, you need a WAMP! No, it has nothing to do with 'Work At Home Moms' or something you drive your car up on. A WAMP is an application the runs in a Windows Operating System. The acronym is Windows Apache MySQL and PHP or Perl or Python.

This is where the first note comes in: You should be at least an intermediate level computer user to use these types of programs.

EasyPHP logo

EasyPHP is one such program. Actually, it was the very first WAMP, developed in 1999 and licensed under the GPL. EasyPHP is a WAMP package that includes the scripting language PHP, the web server Apache, the SQL server MySQL, as well as the database manager PhpMyAdmin and the debugger Xdebug. There is nothing to configure by the user, it's already done by the application!

EasyPHP package image

EasyPHP is portable as well. You can install it on your system or on a USB drive and develop or present locally your PHP code, projects, websites, scripts, applications, etc.

And yes, that was a tip for those of us doing local business promotion. How powerful would it be for you to be able to not only give a customer a view of their proposed site, but have them locally involved in its creation?

EasyPHP is simple to install and is a very light weight application. Theonly real limits to it are the size of the databases you create. And that, of course,  is subject to your machines capacity. But, this is a development, not a production, application.

EasyPHP has pre-configured modules available for it. It has the CMS platforms WordPress, Joomla and Dupal; Prestashop, an ecommerce storefront that is also free and open source software; SPIP, a CMS oriented toward online collaborative editing. Soon there will also be modules for Phorum and phpBB, the online forum platforms.

EasyPHP modules image

Personally, I have only used EasyPHP for WordPress site building. However, I do not use the WordPress module. I just downloaded the latest version of WordPress and placed the unzipped WordPress folder inside of the 'WWW' folder of the EasyPHP program files and run from that.

You just add your theme and plugins folders to the wp-content folder, just as with your server. Then create your site as you like and when complete, just take all of your theme folders and upload to your server. Hook up and configure the plugins and test your links. That's about it!

I run EasyPHP on Windows XP, however, it will run on Vista and 7. If you have a 64bit system, you will find EasyPHP in your X86 program files.

Like I said earlier, EasyPHP is not a tool for everyone. But, it really is easy to use and a serious time saver in terms of site development. And as Internet marketers, anything that saves us time is a plus.

This brings to a close our series on 'Internet Marketing With Free And Open Source Software'.

I hope that you have found it useful!

Till next time!

Technorati Tags: CMS, Drupal, EasyPHP, free and open source, internet marketing, Joomla, Phorum, phpBB, Prestashop, software, SPIP, WAMP, websites, WordPress

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