I used to like to compile PHP myself, that just felt geeky. It made me feel special, just as if I was almost a real geek, nerd or whatever. I liked to torture myself and install other packages and dependencies before. But only the right version please! I liked to find out that the order of the –with config-switches made a difference. I liked to watch the configure process running for quite a while to finally see that another error occured again! I liked to watch the make and see it fail with some missing dependency or some library it could not link because the exported symbols didn’t match.
NO, I didn’t!
It was always an aweful waste of time. But somehow it made me understand better, what happens underneath. And sometimes it also made you look into the source code, which definitely was not bad. But at the current level of specialization that people have, it might need to be avoidable.
What am I saying here? I needed to have PHP and MySQL running on my Mac - quickly. The Apache fortunately is already running by default (just switch it on in the System Preferences/Sharing). So I started to compile PHP, which was taking too long in my eyes. After two or three errors because of missing deps I knew that was going to take longer. Back to the web and search for a .dmg! But a certain version of PHP, as the customer requires it! That was really easy. Thanks to Marc Liyanage you can find a lot of different binary versions of PHP at entropy.ch. And installing MySQL is not a problem either. There are enough different binary versions of MySQL. Now I only had to modify the /etc/httpd.conf and/or /private/etc/httpd/users/<username>.conf and set the proper DocumentRoot and Options I needed and I was done. Cool! That’s what I call usability, very nice.
Less pain - more spare time