Installing Magento easy way

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Those of you who know what SVN is, feel free to skip this article. Those of you who are not familiar with SVN, this is a must-read. If you use standard FTP to upload all Magento files, you may find this process very time consuming. Magento 1.1.8 has over 6.700 files in over 2.200 folders. FTPing can sometimes take few hours on some servers. Let’s look at alternatives.

Both alternatives require SSH access to the server. I’m aware that some low quality webhosting providers do not provide you with SSH info immediately. If you don’t have SSH info, ask webhosting support. If they don’t give it to you, change webhosting provider. Make it a rule, you’ll make your life much easier.

Get yourself familiar with basic UNIX commands first.

Alternative 1: SVN

In the Downloads tab on Magento website, you will notice SVN page link:

You can see how short this page is. You have 2 commands you can run at SVN. You can chack latest work in progress or you can checkout latest stable version. If you are starting to develop a real project, you will probably want a stable version.

Let’s look at the original command:

svn checkout

This is probably not the exact command you wish to run on the server. It will place the files in trunk folder. I will assume two things:

  1. You will want the clean code
  2. You will want to specify the folder where you wish Magento to be installed

If those are correct assumptions, you will want to run a command similar to this one:

svn export --force shop
  • svn – This is the command
  • export – The difference with checkout is that with an export, you get a clean copy of the code, and none of the subversion metadata, so it can’t be used  to svn up or make further changes.
  • –force – you will overwrite all of the folders and files if they exist
  • – this is SVN URL. Leave it intact.
  • shop – the name of the folder you wish to place the files into. You may set the folders name to your likings.

Read more about SVN at Wikipedia SVN Page and Subversion official site.

Alternative 2: Installing via wget

I will not be very descriptive here. This alternative is very well explained on Magento website in Wiki section:

Both scenarios will only place files. You still need to run web based installer afterward. But, that is another story.

About Tomislav Bilic

Founder and CEO

Tomislav is a founder and CEO at Inchoo. Enjoys traveling - especially quick getaways, traditional cuisine (from most cultures), good wine and strong rakija.

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  1. Hmm, SVN eh? Going to have to try that our next time.

    Option #3 took way too much time for me. Like the author wrote, FTP’ing 9000 folders & files takes a lot of time… I canceled the upload half way through.

    This is what I did if you have CPanel access…
    1: FTP upload the .tar.gzip file to the server
    2: Use CPanel to unzip the file. Move/rename the extracted Magento root folder as desired.
    3: Run the HTML installer as usual

    Done in 20 mins… or less!

    Another advantage over Option #3 is that the folder & file permissions should be the same as they were in the zip file.

  2. Option #3: download the zip file, unzip, and FTP the files over. While I actually use a different method altogether where I unzip the files into my own SVN repository for each one of my projects, I assume that what I described above is probably the most common way that people use out there.
    Thanks for the SVN explanation.

  3. Hi dumpydooby đŸ™‚

    Yes, Tortoise SVN is a nice Windows tool and we use it a lot here. It integrates nicely in Windrows explorer and you can easily notice what file had been changed just by looking at the icons.

    Btw. People tell that much better Subversion system from SVN is GIT. This one is becoming more accepted between developers with each day. We will also give it a try with some of the next new projects.

  4. I just barely used SVN for the first time the other day. I was downloading some stuff for a MediaWiki project, and one of the plug-ins was only available from an SVN server. I really wish I had gotten into it earlier. Boy have I been missing out.

    If you’re a Windows user doing Magento development locally (e.g., on a WAMP setup), it might be worth your while to go the SVN route as well. The most acclaimed SVN solution for Windows is surprisingly not the official Subversion program. Tortoise SVN seems to be much more preferred by developers, largely because it interfaces as a shell extension.

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