Frequently Asked Questions (Mac OS X)

What is a Bitnami native installer?

A Bitnami native installer includes everything you need to run your Bitnami-packaged application of choice. Once downloaded, you can launch it and it will provide a step-by-step wizard. The installation and configuration of all of the software included in the stack is completely automated, making it easy for everyone, including those who are not very technical, to get them up and running.

All Bitnami native installers are completely self-contained and run independently of the rest of the software or libraries installed on your system. This means that you don't have to worry about installing any other software on your system to make the new application work. They also won't interfere with any software already installed on your system, so everything you're already running will continue to work normally.

What is the difference between a Bitnami stack and a Bitnami module?

Bitnami installations come in two formats: stand-alone stacks and modules.

  • If you only want to install one Bitnami-packaged application, then just download and install the stack. It will contain everything you need to run the application.

  • If you want to run more than one application, you may want to download a LAMP, MAMP or WAMP stack, which will enable you to install several application modules on top of it. That way, all of the Bitnami-packaged applications you want to run will share a single instance of Apache, MySQL and PHP, which will save space and improve performance.

To download a Bitnami stack or module, visit the Bitnami download page, select the application you want to install and then click on the download link for your operating system icon (Windows, Linux, or Mac OS X).

What are the system requirements for native installers?

To install a Bitnami stack using a native installer, you will need:

  • Intel x86 or compatible processor
  • Minimum of 512 MB RAM for PHP and Python applications and 1024 MB RAM for Ruby and Java applications.
  • Minimum of 150 MB hard drive space
  • TCP/IP protocol support
  • One of the following compatible operating systems:
    • A Linux operating system.
    • A Windows operating system such as Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2012, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 10.
    • An OS X operating system.

How to download and install a Bitnami stack?

Native installers for Bitnami stacks are distributed as binary executables. They can be downloaded from the Bitnami website.

The downloaded file will be named bitnami-APPNAME-VERSION-osx-x86_64-installer.dmg.

  • To begin the installation process in graphical mode as a normal user, double-click the downloaded file and follow the instructions shown.

  • To install the stack as administrator on Mac OS X, follow these steps:

    • Double-click the downloaded .dmg file.

    • Once the disk is mounted, open a new Terminal window.

    • Navigate to the folder /Volumes/APPNAME. Replace the APPNAME placeholder with the name of the application folder in the mounted volume.

       $ cd ./Volumes/APPNAME
    • Run the following command:

       $ sudo ./

Where is the installation directory?

The default installation directory is /Applications/APPNAME-VERSION.

If the destination directory does not exist, it will be created as part of the installation.

What are the default ports?

A port is an endpoint of communication in an operating system that identifies a specific process or a type of service. Bitnami stacks include several services or servers that require a port.

The defaults ports for the main servers are the following:

Apache 80 or 8080
MySQL or MariaDB 3306
PostgreSQL 5432
Tomcat 8080

When installing the stack as a non-privileged user (that is, a user apart from the root user or the system administrator), the default Apache port is 8080.

If these ports are already in use by other applications, the installer will prompt for alternate ports to use during the installation process.

NOTE: To run applications as a non-privileged user, select port numbers above 1024.

What are the installation modes?

There are multiple installation modes:

  • Graphical mode: The default mode.
  • Command line mode: This mode is used by default when a graphical environment is not available or by passing the –mode text command-line switch to the installer.
  • Unattended mode: Unattended or silent installations can be performed by passing using the –mode unattended command line option to the installer.

For all modes, available installer options can be obtained by passing the –help command-line switch to the installer.

What is the directory structure?

The installation process will create several sub-directories under the installdir directory:

  • Servers and related tools: apache2/, mysql/, postgresql/, apache-tomcat/, openoffice/, subversion/, etc.
  • Languages: php/, python/, ruby/, tcl/, etc.
  • Application files: apps/phpMyAdmin/, apps/drupal/, apps/joomla/, apps/redmine/, etc.
  • Common libraries: common/
  • Licenses of the components included in the stack: licenses/

Application files are stored in the installdir/apps/APPNAME/htdocs directory. The configuration file for the Apache Web server is stored in the installdir/apps/APPNAME/conf/ directory.

How to uninstall the stack?

As part of the installation process, an uninstaller executable or script will be created in the installation directory. Uninstallation can be performed in graphical, text and unattended modes.

To begin the uninstallation process in graphical mode, double-click the uninstaller executable file and follow the steps shown.

How to start or stop the servers?

Bitnami native installers include a graphical tool to manage services. This tool is named manager-osx on Mac OS X and is located in the installation directory. To use this tool, double-click the file and then use the graphical interface to start, stop or restart servers. Server log messages can be checked in the "Server Events" tab.

Management tool

The native installer also includes a command-line script to start, stop and restart applications, named This script can be found in the installation directory and accepts the options start, stop, restart, and status. To use it, log in to the server console and execute it following the examples below:

  • Call it without any service names to start all services:

    $ installdir/ start
  • Use it to restart a specific service only by passing the service name as argument - for example, mysql or apache:

     $ installdir/ restart mysql
     $ installdir/ restart apache
  • Obtain current status of all services:

     $ installdir/ status

The list of available services varies depending on the required components for each application.

How to create a full backup of a stack?

Bitnami stacks are self-contained and the simplest option for performing a backup is to copy or compress the Bitnami stack installation directory. To do so in a safe manner, you will need to stop all servers, so this method may not be appropriate if you have people accessing the application continuously.

Follow these steps:

  • Change to the directory in which you wish to save your backup.

     $ cd /your/directory
  • Stop all servers.

     $ sudo installdir/ stop
  • Create a compressed file with the stack contents.

     $ sudo tar -pczvf application-backup.tar.gz installdir
  • Restart all servers.

     $ sudo installdir/ start
  • Download or transfer the application-backup.tar.gz file to a safe location.

How to restore a stack?

Bitnami stacks are self-contained, so to restore a stack, you only need to uncompress the backup file in the same location. It is important to use the same path that was used when the stack was originally installed.

How to upgrade a Bitnami stack?

It is strongly recommended to create a backup before starting the upgrade process. If you have important data, create and try to restore a backup to ensure that everything works properly.

There are two different ways to upgrade a Bitnami stack.

  • You can upgrade the application only without modifying any other stack components. To do this, refer to the application pages.

  • You can upgrade the application and all stack components, such as PHP, Ruby, MySQL and Apache. Follow the instructions below:

    • Download the latest native installer for the stack.

    • Stop existing stack services using the graphical manager.

    • Depending on whether the Bitnami stack uses MySQL or PostgreSQL, backup the existing database as described on the MySQL component page or the PostgreSQL component page.

    • Install the new stack to a different installation directory.

    • Run the Bitnami Console script as described in the Bitnami Console page.

    • Restore the database from backup as described on the MySQL component page or the PostgreSQL component page

    • Copy any uploaded files or configuration files. It may also be necessary to run migration scripts to update the database schema; however, this varies per application. Refer to the application pages for more information on application-specific upgrade steps.

    • Restart the servers using the graphical manager.

You should now be able to access your new stack.

How to change the default page that appears when accessing the installation?

Edit the file located at installdir/apache2/htdocs/index.html.

How to enable remote access to the Bitnami stack?

By default, the Mac OS X firewall does not permit incoming connections and it will not be possible to access the Bitnami stack application using a Web browser from other hosts. To allow access from other hosts on the same network, follow these steps:

  • Launch the "System Preferences" panel.

  • Click the "Security & Privacy" icon followed by the "Firewall" tab.

  • If the firewall is on, click the lock to make changes. Enter administrator credentials when prompted.

  • Click the "Turn Off Firewall" button.

    Firewall management

  • Click the lock to save your changes and prevent them from being reset.

    Firewall management

You should now be able to access the Bitnami application from other hosts at http://localhost/.

How to start the stack automatically on boot?

NOTE: You will need administrator privileges to perform the steps below.
NOTE: Once you have enabled auto-start using the technique outlined below, you will no longer be able to stop the server using the graphical manager.

Follow the steps below, replacing the APPNAME placeholder in all the information that follow with the application name:

  • Write a properties file (a type of configuration file with a .plist extension) in the /Library/LaunchDaemons folder for each service to be started. Typically, you would create the file /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-APPNAME.apache.service.plist to start the Apache Web server, and the file /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-APPNAME.mysql.service.plist to start the MySQL database server.

For example, if using the Bitnami Drupal stack, create the file /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-drupal.apache.service.plist to start the Apache Web server, and the file /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-drupal.mysql.service.plist to start the MySQL database server.

  • Edit the /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-APPNAME.apache.service.plist file and fill it with the following information. Replace the USERNAME placeholder with the name of the user account the stack was installed under, or root if the stack was installed by an administrator.

     <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
     <!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "">
     <plist version="1.0">
  • Edit the /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-APPNAME.mysql.service.plist file and fill it with the following information:

     <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
     <!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "">
     <plist version="1.0">

Reboot your system and the servers should start automatically.

An alternative is to use the launchctl tool to start the services manually, as shown below. Replace the APPNAME and SERVICENAME placeholders with the application name (eg. wordpress) and service name (eg. apache or mysql) respectively.

$ launchctl load -w /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-APPNAME.SERVICENAME.service.plist

To uninstall the service:

  • Run the command below:

     $ launchctl unload -w /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-APPNAME.SERVICENAME.service.plist
  • Delete the properties file:

     $ rm /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.bitnami-APPNAME.SERVICENAME.service.plist

How to set the machine hostname for local name resolution?

Some Java-based applications need to be able to resolve the machine hostname to an IP address in order to run. If unable to do so, the application may report the following error:

The installer was not able to resolve the machine hostname. 
Java-based applications require to solve the hostname. 

To fix this, add an entry mapping the machine host name to the IP address Edit the /private/etc/hosts file and add the line below to it, replacing the HOSTNAME placeholder with the actual host name of the machine. HOSTNAME

How to configure your application to use a third-party SMTP service for outgoing email?

Bitnami applications can be configured to use a third-party SMTP service for outgoing email. Examples of such third-party SMTP services are SendGrid and Mandrill. Instructions for using both these are provided below.


SendGrid's SMTP service can be accessed using your SendGrid account credentials. These credentials can be obtained by logging in to the SendGrid website and visiting the "Account Details" page.

SendGrid configuration

To configure your application to send email through SendGrid's SMTP service, use the settings below. Replace USERNAME with your SendGrid account username and PASSWORD with your SendGrid account password.

  • SMTP host:
  • SMTP port: 25 or 587 for unencrypted/TLS email, 465 for SSL-encrypted email
  • SMTP username: USERNAME
  • SMTP password: PASSWORD

Here's an example of configuring WordPress to use SendGrid:

WordPress with SendGrid

More information is available in the SendGrid documentation.


Mandrill's SMTP service requires an API key for access. To obtain this key, log in to the Mandrill website, navigate to the "SMTP & API" section and create an API key. Note the SMTP server name, username and API key, as these serve as your credentials for accessing the Mandrill SMTP server.

Mandrill configuration

To configure your application to send email through Mandrill's SMTP service, use the settings below. Replace USERNAME with your SMTP username and API-KEY with the generated API key.

  • SMTP host:
  • SMTP port: 25, 587 or 2525 for unencrypted/TLS email, 465 for SSL-encrypted email
  • SMTP username: USERNAME
  • SMTP password: API-KEY

Here's an example of configuring WordPress to use Mandrill:

WordPress with Mandrill

More information is available in the Mandrill documentation.

Similar steps can be followed for other third-party SMTP services as well. Consult your service provider's documentation to obtain details on authentication credentials and available ports.