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Setting a Local Development Environment for Laravel on Windows | Install Laravel on Windows

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Many developers use Windows for PHP projects, we will cover a basic XAMPP Setup for a Laravel project. Following these easy steps will help you run your PHP projects and install Laravel on Windows in a matter of minutes.

1.Installing XAMPP for Laravel

  • Download XAMPP for Windows from their official site:
  • For our example, we’ve chosen PHP 7.1 and XAMPP 32 bit
  • Run the installer and select Apache, MySQL and phpMyAdmin
  • It’s recommended to make the installation in C:\ to avoid issues with Windows User permissions (or the drive where your Windows is installed)
  • After it’s complete do not start anything just yet.

2.Setting PHP from Windows CMD

  • Open Advanced System Settings (System Properties -> Advanced)
  • Open Environment Variables
  • On the top window select Path and click on Edit
  • In the new window click on New
  • We need to enter the path to XAMPP’s PHP

We will also add MySQL’s Path, click on New again and enter


3.Composer from Windows CMD

  • Download Composer’s Windows .exe installer:
  • Place the installer and run it from the added to Path directory –

Now that we have Apache, PHP, MySQL and Composer installed, we’re ready to install Laravel, set a Virtual Host with a custom domain for local development. XAMPP’s Apache uses the htdocs folder for serving HTTP requests, we’ll set our custom Laravel Virtual Host under C:\xampp\htdocs\example\ which will be opened locally from

4.Install Laravel on Windows with Composer

  • Open Window’s CMD or PowerShell
cd C:\xampp\htdocs

Install Laravel using Composer

composer create-project --prefer-dist laravel/laravel example

5.Creating MySQL Database for Laravel

  • Open the CMD or PowerShell again
  • Access the MySQL CLI
mysql -u root -p

Create Database for Laravel


6.Setting Laravel’s .env file

  • Navigate to C:\xampp\htdocs\example
  • Open the .env file and edit the MySQL Connection settings

7.Virtual Host with XAMPP

  • Navigate to C:\xampp\apache\conf\extra
  • Open httpd-vhosts.conf and append:
NameVirtualHost *:80 
 DocumentRoot "C:\xampp\htdocs\example\public"
 <Directory "c:/xampp/htdocs/example/public">
 Require all granted </Directory>

8.Enable mod_rewrite for Laravel

  • Open the httpd.conf file in C:\xampp\apache\conf\extra
  • Look for LoadModule rewrite_module modules/ and remove the ; at the start

9.Setting local domain with hosts file

  • Navigate to c:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc
  • Open the hosts file with Administrator Privileges
  • Append the line at the bottom

Start Apache and MySQL, your local Laravel project will be opened from and you’re ready to start working on it. When ready you can contact us to have it deployed on a WebHostFace server

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