Get it done with BitNami Stacks

Let's face it: setting up a full-scale web server and site is hard, no matter what OS you use. You need server software. You need databases, scripting engines, libraries.

Nobody likes taking the time to set up a server like that manually, and the folks at BitNami realized that. They bring to the table BitNami Stacks, and already the name gets you thinking of what it does.

Offered among these Stacks are something you'd expect: WAMP and LAMP stacks. And, with a little configuration, one could easily do this with any other package manager or installer. However, these Stacks are already preconfigured to "just work." All that needs to be done is a copy-paste of the files you want on the server, and you are online in moments. The installer doesn't expect anything of you; it brings everything it needs with it.


One big feature I saw of the Stacks was that they were self-contained; that is, they work in their own bubble and don't mess anything else up. They also can be run as an unprivileged user, which also means you can have more than one stack installed at a time.

I was skeptical of the whole idea at first, but once it was installed I was amazed at how easy it was. It really was just an operation of clicking Next and filling out the boxes, and before long I had a fully functional web server.

First off, I tried the Roller installer, since that was one of the few Linux stacks available at the time. It was quite a massive download, and it turned out that Java was bundled with it which bumped the size up almost a hundred megabytes. After installing everything, the site was up and running, even using JSP.

That done, I was curious to try the generic LAMP stack. It was just as easy to install as the Roller stack. Included was Apache 2, MySQL, PHP, and phpMyAdmin. Everything was ready to go after filling in the installer fields. However, some of the options are ambiguous, which for a new user might be confusing. One point it asks for a MySQL port number with no description, which makes you wonder if you need MySQL already set up. Turns out you don't; the port number will be used by the MySQL version in the stack itself.

However, some other parts of the installer were very helpful. The WordPress stack integrated WordPress' own installer right into it, saving a few minutes going through another setup page.


All in all, the Stacks are doing something never done previously: packaging everything needed into one neat file, making it easy enough for any end user to install. The file sizes are not friendly: the average stack installer is about 50MB. Some of the installers could be lightened up by the removal of the entire Java Runtime Environment, and in the future it is possible to see a Java-less stack.

BitNami Stacks are available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. All were x86 versions, however I had no trouble getting them to run on my AMD64 system. They are available under an Apache 2.0 license, and can be downloaded at the following:

Avatar for jacob Jacob Peddicord -

Jacob is a web developer, student, and programmer from Ohio. He is a staff member at the Ubuntu Forums and is most likely a fanboy of the distribution. He loves to write in code and words, play video games, and rant about topics most would have abandoned long ago. Jacob uses GNOME and is never seen running stable software, much to the demise of his laptop.

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Discussion: Get it done with BitNami Stacks

  1. # Posted on 28 September 2007 at 07:17 AM

    <strong>Get it done with BitNami Stacks...</strong>

    Let’s face it: setting up a full-scale web server and site is hard, no matter what OS you use. You need server software. You need databases, scripting engines, libraries....

  2. rjregenold (guest)

    # Posted on 29 September 2007 at 07:42 PM

    Just gave BitNami a try (the LAMP stack) and it saved me a ton of time. Thanks for writing about this. Also, I just found FOSSwire about a week ago and love it.

  3. antonio (guest)

    # Posted on 01 October 2007 at 02:47 PM

    Let me thank you for your great review on BitNami :)

    As I told you in the forums, we are thinking of the best way to create those Java-less stacks, so stay tuned!

  4. beltran (guest)

    # Posted on 06 October 2007 at 02:05 AM


    Thanks to your suggestion we have created a java-less stacks. These stacks decrease about 40MB and search a suitable JDK installation in your system.

    You can find the new stacks in

  5. kanishka (guest)

    # Posted on 20 September 2009 at 07:33 PM

    i was using bitnami wordpress stack 2.7. i GOT SOME TROUBLE AS and i uninstalled it, now, I am unable to reinstall. It hangs up at finished part.and i have to cancel installtion. Moreover, some registry files exist and i find it difficult to erase Bitnami folder from the winxp/dricec/program files. I tried it with 2.8 and still the prob remains same. I had so many installation attempt.

    pleeeeze help me out asap. I am a tech-dumb and come up with layman language to get things in to my mind. when i run it shows database error and many a time blank screen, I had it running fine. log in : user and password was just 123 with no spcl characters.

  6. Irriffuro (guest)

    # Posted on 07 October 2009 at 05:48 AM

    Hi People How are you doing?

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