Installing Apache on Vista

by Simon. Average Reading Time: about 2 minutes.

Following the purchase of a spangly new Toshiba laptop running Vista, and not one for making life simple, I decided not to run my development environment on IIS7, but rather, I wanted to install the latest version of Apache.

Installing Apache under Windows XP was relatively trivial. This is not the case under Windows Vista. The creation of the Apache service fails, but not overtly. Furthermore, the all-important conf directory can™t be set up by the installer, probably due to user permission problems.

I finally got it working with the following procedure. I used the latest version of Apache (2.2.4) and Windows Vista Business Edition.

  1. Uninstall any previous installations of Apache Web server (Start > Control Panel > Programs and Features).
    Make sure that all old Apache folders are also removed (e.g. like C:\Program Files\Apache Software Foundation\…).
  2. Turn off your firewall via the Control Panel.
  3. Stop User Account Control (UAC).
  4. Get the most recent version of Apache from http://httpd.apache.org/ and put it on your desktop, or folder of your choosing. The file I used was called apache_2.2.4-win32-x86-no_ssl.msi, but for ease, it is a good idea to rename the install file to apache.msi.
  5. Start > All Programs > Accessories Right-Click Command Prompt and choose œRun as Administrator.
  6. Via the command prompt, navigate to the folder in which the apache.msi install file is located.
  7. Type msiexec /i apache.msi on the command prompt.

    Apache Install Command Prompt

  8. Run through the Apache installer.

    Apache Install Step 1

    Apache Install Step 2

    Apache Install Step 3

    Apache Install Step 4

    Apache Install Step 5

    Apache Install Step 6

    Apache Install Step 7

    Apache Install Step 8

    Apache Install Step 9

  9. I™m running it as a development server, so I left the domain as “localhost”.
  10. Choose the default server on port 80 for all users option.
  11. The default installation directory is C:\Program Files\Apache Software Foundation\Apache2.2\, but again for ease, you could change the installation directory to C:\Apache.
  12. Reboot your computer.
  13. The little Apache feather icon won™t appear on the task bar under Vista with the present version of Apache (2.2.4). To remove the œerror box that says blank or “the operation completed successfully on startup, go to All Programs > Startup, and remove the “Monitor Apache Servers” item there.
  14. Browse to http://localhost. It should say “It works!” If it doesn’t, panick, or check your httpd.conf file by going to All Programs > Apache HTTP Server 2.2.x > Configure Apache Server > Test Configuration. Follow the directions for fixing the configuration file.
  15. Turn your firewall back on.
  16. Turn UAC back on too, if you like to be constantly bugged by control messages!

Good luck!

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  • I usually install Apache in the default location, which in my case was Program Files. I don’t think it really matters where you install it; it is a simple matter of preference.

  • aamir

    i am trying to install apache on my window vista home premium.at the of installation i got the error that Apache server is already running.could any one tell me what the problem is

  • Vera

    Simon, thanks a lot! Only your explanation helped me. ^__^ IT WORKS! Respect from Russia.

  • Asmita Rathva

    Thank You so much Simon…..this helped me a lot…

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