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Or xampp (cross-platform).

Oh yeah… and listen to @traq. You need XAMPP. The reason for this is so that you can mess around with PHP on YOUR machine, without having it live on your site/remote server. That way, you can make sure it’s legit and fairly secure before you make it truly live.

Basically, the idea is that you have a ‘virtual server’ for testing. When you set up XAMPP, you basically trick your computer into thinking that a certain directory/foler is a remote server. For all intents and purposes, it behaves exactly like one, complete with Apache, MySQL and PHP.

This is the preferred way to mess around with server-side technologies locally. By the way, XAMPP, LAMP, WAMP and MAMP are all ostensibly the same. LAMP is for Linux, WAMP is for Windows, MAMP is for Mac and XAMPP is cross-platform… hence the X.