Frequently Asked Questions (Windows)

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-windows-installer.exe.

To begin the installation process in graphical mode, double-click the downloaded file and follow the instructions shown.

NOTE: On Windows platforms, Windows may block the executable file. If, after double-clicking the file, the Bitnami installer does not appear within 10-20 seconds, you must manually unblock the file by right-clicking the executable file, navigating to the "Properties" tab and clicking "Unblock" and then "OK".

Unblocking the installer on Windows

Where is the installation directory?

The default installation directory is C:\Bitnami\APPNAME-VERSION. In previous versions, it was C:\Program Files\BitNami Application Stack.

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
MySQL or MariaDB 3306
PostgreSQL 5432
Tomcat 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-windows.exe on Windows 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 Windows native installer creates shortcuts to start and stop services created in the Start Menu, under "Programs -> Bitnami APPNAME Stack -> Bitnami Service". Servers can also be managed from the Windows "Services" control panel. Services are named using the format APPNAMESERVICENAME, where APPNAME is a placeholder for the application name and SERVICENAME is a placeholder for the service name. For example, the native installer for the Bitnami WordPress Stack installs services named wordpressApache and wordpressMySQL.

These services will be automatically started during boot. To modify this behaviour, refer to the section on disabling services on Windows.

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:

  • Stop all servers using the shortcuts in the Start Menu or the graphical manager tool.

  • Create a compressed file with the stack contents. You can use a graphical tool like 7-Zip or WinZip.

  • Download or transfer the application-backup.zip file to a safe location.

  • Restart all servers using the shortcuts in the Start Menu or the graphical manager tool.

How to restore a stack?

Follow these steps:

  • Stop all servers using the shortcuts in the Start Menu or the graphical manager tool.

  • Uncompress the backup file to the original directory.

  • Install services by running the following commands from an elevated command prompt:

     $ cd installdir
     $ serviceinstall.bat INSTALL
    
  • Start servers using the graphical manager tool.

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.

    • Uninstall existing stack services. Run the following commands from an elevated command prompt:

      $ cd installdir
      $ serviceinstall.bat REMOVE
      
    • 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.

    • Install stack services. Run the following commands from an elevated command prompt:

      $ cd installdir
      $ serviceinstall.bat INSTALL
      
    • 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 disable auto-start services on Windows?

By default, Bitnami native installers configure servers to automatically launch on startup. To disable auto-start on Windows, follow these steps:

  • Select the "Start -> Run" menu item and run the command services.msc. This will launch the "Services" control panel.

  • Bitnami stack services are named using the format APPNAMESERVICENAME, where APPNAME is a placeholder for the application name and SERVICENAME is a placeholder for the service name. For example, the native installer for the Bitnami WordPress Stack installs services named wordpressApache and wordpressMySQL. Look through the list until you find the services you wish to disable.

Service management

  • Right-click each service you wish to disable and select the "Properties -> Startup Type" field. set the startup type to "Manual". Avoid setting it to "Disabled", as doing so will result in various error messages as Windows will not be able to start it at all.

Service management

  • Click the "Apply" and "OK" buttons.

The changes will come into effect on the next restart.

How to configure anti-virus software to work with Bitnami stacks?

Bitnami stacks install a large number of files, since they include all dependencies and servers required for running the bundled Web application. If you are installing a Bitnami application on a Windows machine that has an anti-virus agent enabled, this may slow down the installation significantly, and there is also a chance that some servers (Web server or database server) may be blocked by the anti-virus software.

Take the following steps to run Bitnami applications without anti-virus software conflicts:

Add firewall exceptions

If you have Windows Firewall enabled by default, this alert may appear when the servers are started. The servers require network access if you want to access to the Bitnami application from other computers in your same local network.

Antivirus configuration

If the anti-virus software also has firewall capabilities, check that the default ports for the servers are not blocked. Depending on the Bitnami stack in use, open the correct ports in your firewall. The default ports for the Bitnami stacks are as follows:

  • Apache (PHP and Python applications): 80, 443
  • MySQL: 3306
  • PostgreSQL: 5432
  • Apache Tomcat (Java applications): 8080, 8005, 8009
  • Thin servers (Ruby On Rails applications): 3001, 3002
  • LibreOffice: 8100
  • Subversion: 3690
  • Apache Solr: 8983

Disable execution scans

If the anti-virus software is set to "scan all files", executable files for the servers may slow down due to the scanning process. We recommend disabling the scan for executable server files, such as httpd.exe and mysqld.exe.

Disable Web scanning for localhost URLs

Anti-virus software sometimes scans traffic for different URLs. If you are developing with Bitnami stacks on your own machine, exclude localhost traffic from being scanned.

Example configuration

Avast is a popular anti-virus software for Windows. The steps below demonstrate to change its configuration for better performance of the Bitnami servers. Similar configuration changes can be made for other anti-virus systems.

To disable the executable file scan:

  • Navigate to "Security panel -> File System Shield -> Settings".
  • Add exclusions for the server executable files. For example, the following screenshot shows how to disable the anti-virus scan for MySQL and Apache servers in the Bitnami WAMP Stack.

Antivirus configuration

To disable Web scanning for localhost URLs:

  • Navigate to "Security panel -> Web Shield -> Settings".
  • Add an exclusion for localhost traffic. Add exclusions for other hosts if your application is running on a local network.

Antivirus configuration

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 127.0.0.1. Edit the C:\windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts file and add the line below to it, replacing the HOSTNAME placeholder with the actual host name of the machine.

127.0.0.1 HOSTNAME

How to configure the hostname from the manager tool?

Some applications like WordPress, Moodle, etc require to specify the IP address to access the application. The hostname or IP address is configured to be the same as the machine IP address by default during the installation.

Select from the following options:

  • Custom: Configures a specific domain name (eg. example.com).
  • Local: Configures the application IP address to 127.0.0.1. Using this option ensures access from the same system but denies access from other systems on the local network.
  • Autoconfigure: Configures the application to be accessible from your local network.

Bitnami manager GUI

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

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.sendgrid.net
  • 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

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.mandrillapp.com
  • 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.