Monday, October 02, 2006

Grandma's LAMP. It's easy enough for Grandma!

A VMware LAMP Appliance that even your Grandma can use!

Version: 1.0.0
MD5SUM: c6ebd6c649f0d8ee9d9e39522957b705
Operating System: Xubuntu 6.06.1 LTS
Size: 337MB
username: vmware
password: vmware

Download: torrent

Discuss Grandma's LAMP, Get Help, and Share Ideas on the Discussion Forums.

My friend tried other LAMP Appliances, and they were all very complicated to use, so I decided to make something that he could use, that I could use, and that my Grandma could use.

Everything is described in plain english on a web page that automatically loads when you power on the VM. Grandma's LAMP includes a development environment with the following: L- Linux, A- Apache, M- MySQL, P- PHP. Grandma's LAMP also includes extras such as phpmyadmin, Samba, and SSL. Here's a screenshot:


lawrence said...

This LAMP is probably the best on the web. I've used the popular rPath LAMP before, but the PhP was 4 years outdated, and the documentation was useless. Grandma's MySQL, PhP, and Apache are fresh out of the oven!

The only annoyance with it is that it's ubuntu Linux, which takes a good several minutes to boot. Then again, once it's booted the first time, I just suspend the virtual machine (the free VMWare Player), and I can resume it instantly any time.

I can actually pull the plug on Grandma's LAMP's internet connection for security enhancement, and still prototype a whole PhP/MySQL website from the browser provided inside it. rPath doesn't even come with a browser.

Another thing it has is this "samba share" thing that lets me do all my PhP source code editing from my Windows XP host, then copy the files into a virtual harddisk for execution inside the LAMP. (The harddisk basically maps to the LAMP's virtual webroot.)

And as with any lamp, I can simulate various hacker attacks and see how my site responds. Better to learn about your site's vulnerabilities in the safety and comfort of a virtual machine.

rxhui said...

lawrence, thanks for the awesome feedback!

Please tell all of your friends about it.

F Quednau said...

Hi there,
thanks for the lovely Granma-lamp! My Grandma was quite happy. However, she's German. Clever though she is, she looked into Ubuntuguide how to change the keyboard layout to German. Alas, she did not find System -> Preferences. Is this Ubuntu somehow modified in its completeness? My Grandma would be happy for any pointers.

Keep up the good work and regards

rxhui said...

If your Grandma is German, you can try this. My Grandma isn't German so she hasn't tried this herself yet.


Grandma's lamp is based on Xubuntu which is Ubuntu with xfce instead of gnome, so that's why System -> Preferences isn't there.

I removed a bunch of packages to make the LAMP smaller, so you may need to isntall some of the german language packages.

sudo apt-get install synaptic
sudo synaptic
Search for German, and install some of those packages

In particular, you can try installing these:


Good Luck!

F Quednau said...

Well, thanks for the link, my Grandma is superhappy now, no worries about the lang packages, the layout was simply straining my memory regarding the en/us layout.

Oops, did I say 'my'..? ;)

Most appreciated!


Bill said...

This is great work, but one basic thing is missing that many Linux-learners (like myself) would find very useful... ivman. It makes mounting usb drives very easy.

Anonymous said...

Hey this is a great lamp distro, loving using it, but i would like to be able to edit the smb config file amoung others but they all say read only, (even with the vmware root account), is there a reason for this, is there a solution.

rxhui said...

the vmware account is not a root account, but it does have sudo access.

You can use sudo to execute a command as root. Just enter in 'vmware' for the password when prompted.

For example,

to edit smb.conf as root,

sudo vi /etc/smb/smb.conf

to become root,

sudo su

Anonymous said...

apt-get doesn't work for me. I try apt-get install sendmail and I get 403 errors.

Err dapper/main libdb4.2 4.2.52-24build1
403 Forbidden [IP: 80]

glenleslie said...

any chance of downloading Granny's LAMP directly instead of Torrent.

I'm on satellite internet (meaning I don't live near an Internet hotspot-- certainly not one that will open up port forwarding on a router...) so bit torrent... is bit-by-bit-by-bit... you can see them marching in... in slomo...

lawrence said...

Dear Grandma, I just noticed that there's a new version of PHP -- 5.2.0 -- that's supposed to fix lots of bugs. If you get around to it, please update your LAMP. Thanks!

rxhui said...

I'll upgrade to PHP 5.2.0 when I update the LAMP to Edgy Eft, Ubuntu 6.10. I think I should have some time in the next month to get an updated LAMP posted.

For now, I can only support downloads via torrent.

bj_guzman said...

I just wanted to thank your team for making such a great free product. I used it to create a site for a client. (If you want to have a look, it's, with a link to Grandma's LAMP at the bottom.)

While it took me a few weeks to develop the site, it only took a few hours of minor adjustments to make it work live on the web.

I think this is a fantastic tool for simulating website enhancements without disrupting a live site. I will definitely continue to use it in the future. Hopefully you'll have upgraded libraries at some point.

Matic said...

For setting MySQL password is it enough to do:
#mysqladmin -u root password put-your-new-mysql-password-here

Thanks for this VM! Great job!

Matic said...

BTW, i picked this up from:

And don't know why exactly is also this (is it also required? works without it for me):
#mysqladmin -h root@local-machine-name -u root -p password your-new-password

For other who'll use this - you'll ne to restart mysql after that:
#sudo /etc/init.d/mysql restart


nightryde said...

I am loving the simple core services for web/app development provided in this appliance. However, I have absolutely no use for its desktop and low memory consumption is very important to me. What are the all the packages associated with the desktop that I can remove using apt-get remove?

dtabone said...

Thanks for the appliance! I've been trying to download for quite a while and unf my ISP does not allow the passing of torrent packets on its network which sucks. could someone please send me an alternative place where i can download the ISO? (perhaps a rapidhsare link)


nightryde said...


uTorrent and Azureus are now undetectable by ISP's

take a look at:

Chris said...

This LAMP is great, did you make an iso for installing on a real machine? Ever thought of Grandma's Linux as a distro?

rxhui said...

chris, glad you like Grandma's LAMP. I haven't thought too much about making it a distro, but it probably wouldn't be too tough to write an install script that installs everything you need on top of an ubuntu/kubuntu/xubuntu installation. I don't know if I have the expertise or the time to maintain a full-fledged distro, but I would give my support to anyone who wanted to do such a thing.

Miles said...


One thing I would recommend adding is something like gallery with imagemagick, or something similar, so it would be easy to post photos, etc.

I love it.

In fact, if you could post a howto on doing just that, I would be thankful!


schnibitz said...

Your VM is badass man. Seriously, it worked just as advertized. Thank you for all you're hard work.

Thad said...

Such a great LAMP, very impressed and very turnkey! Quick question, any update on the availability of a release with PHP 5.2? There are some SimpleXML classes that I would like leverage.

Laurent said...

It's great guys! Thanks!

cad said...

Noob question:

This whole concept is fantastic!!!

But, I don't know how to get Perl to work. What directory should the script be placed?

Any suggestion?


Greg said...


This is great! I do have one question. How would I make it so that I can work on multiple sites at the same time?


Janos said...

Many thanks for this virtual machine. It saved me from hours of installation and configuration...

One hint though: since you activated mod_rewrite you should also set AllowOverride to All in /etc/apache2/sites-enabled/000-default (the second time it appears). It could be pretty confusing for newbies (I've been there) and they might loose precious time figuring out why mod_rewrite isn't working despite the fact that it's activated.

Peter said...

This VM is awesome! I have a pretty nice laptop but hate putting a bunch of stuff on it. This VM allows me to run a full lamp stack for my PHP development without slowing my machine down. I set the networked to NAT and have full access to everything I need.

Thanks for the Samba, a perfect addition!

Michael said...

By FAR, the best LAMP virtual application out there. Thanks for the great work.


Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Thanks for another great VM. Does it have SOAP and JSON enabled? If not, how can I get that enabled?


Karsten said...

Thanks, too, for this great LAMP. Extremely useful for me because it works with the Redaxo CMS out-of-the-box.

Those who were looking for http download of Grandma's LAMP, please note that there is one at

I hope this project team doesn't feel uncomfortable with such links...

jleigh said...

Is this project still available? I get this error on the link:

dbconn: mysql_connect: Can't create a new thread (errno 11); if you are not out of available memory, you can consult the manual for a possible OS-dependent bug

MrAlvin said...

A new project may benefit from your expeirence. The UHS (Ubuntu Home Server) project.

Is there any way to get a description of the steps you have taken to setup Grandma's LAMP? As this IMHO would give the UHS project a great basis to work from.

Paul said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paul said...

Karsten thanks for linking to the mirror I set up for Grandma's LAMP at

I also hope the project maintainers don't mind that I have the download available there.

As an FYI I changed the passwords and added Joomla to allow to be hosted using Grandma's LAMP on a home computer. So if you download it from that Link you download Grandma's LAMP on an actual system running it.

Yaakov said...

Any idea how I can install something using RPM on the Grandma Lamp? I have tried the RPM command but it is listing as invalid.

david-delikat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
david-delikat said...

in case anyone is looking I'm downloading from the mirror and then I will seed the torrent, there are about 20 piers out there by no one has a copy... it'll be around an hour before it starts though...

Phil said...

this is an awsome appliance, any one know how to move it from a vm to a HD or Physical machine? i.e 'export' the VM to an iso file.

nocca said...

This appliance is so close to what I need, but it isn't allowing Drupal's clean URLs. Any tips?

Dominik LukeŇ° said...

Re: Clean URLs (and Drupal): you have to edit the 000-default file in /etc/apache2/sites-enabled to set AllowOverride All for the right directory (also make sure you actually put the .htaccess file where it belongs - that's what tripped me up)

nocca said...

Clean URL's worked with some config changes!

Next question: Is anyone else experiencing slowness with PHP site's using +100 mySql tables? I have a couple of Drupal sites and the one's with lots of add-ons/modules are really sluggish.

Grandma's LAMP running on MS Vista, 2GHz CPU, 1GB RAM.

Neil said...

Great appliance. Is it possible to install eAccelerator on the box (

If so, how?

Thanks for your help.

Nomen-Nescio said...

Hi rxhui,
As many others I have used your "Grandma's LAMP" a lot. It is very easy to use for my friends an me, even as none of us has decent (X)ubuntu/linux knowledge. It is very easy to simulate the production server while developing new projects. So I really like to thank you for creating and sharing it. Also the updated version that finally became available (we have been looking forward to it since september) is very welcome too!
But (why do people always have to come with a but...?) what has taken more time than it should it finding out how to update the VMware Tools to 1.0.4. During installation we keep getting the question: What is the location of the "make" program on your machine. And this we haven't figured out yet.
Could you please give some advice? Or is there a reason why you did not include it in the latest release?
Nevertheless it's a super-usefull package that we use with great enthousiasm. Thanks!

GoogyBlogger said...

Great LAMP - nicely done. It'll save me loads of messing about with the real live server and much quicker to test.

One quick one though - I (so far) can't get PhP includes working

The whole of the include appears untouched when the page is received by the browser. The include doesn't happen. Any ideas?

Cheers - really nice build.

Bone-Ard said...


this is nice for us noobs... but here's another noob Q.. Is there a mail function, i installed Joomla, and need to send mails via Joomla site..

Is there some kind of smtp service on grandmas lamp? or hoo?

John Griffin said...

Hi, sounds great. However, I can't seem to download it! The torrent site is down - returning a network error to me. Also the mirror on opensourcegaming seems to have disappeared. Anyone know of any alternative hosts?

Steve said...

I noticed that the appliance is no longer available. I would be willing to host it if someone could upload it to me. Let me know. You can email me at steverpayne (at)

Nomen-Nescio said...

Version 1.0.1 of Grandma's Lamp can be found here:
We would like to have some suggestions as to how we could update the VMware tools in this appliance. Thanks in advance.

Chris said...

I'm sick and tired of people trying to capitalize by putting this VM on sites paid for by ads.

After evaluating this lamp stack, if it is a good one I will host it on my server, for free. Wow, there's a concept...

Erdem said...

How can i get your LAMP? Every time i click on the Link i get: Can't find torrent file!

I realy want to use your Grandmaothers LAMP.

Pleas publish a Linkl to a Downloadsource.


IntNEngineer said...

New Torrent

David said...

Rxhui thank's a million for this LAMP. I used it to setup a Racktables server. Even with my limited Linux knowledge, it was actually "fun" to work with. This makes me want to use Linux more often. Keep up the good work!

Thomas said...

This is by far one of the simplest LAMP stacks I've used to get something going quick. I really like this thing if I need a quick development environment set up.

Daniel Ribeiro said...

Hi. I'm trying to Connect to the Grandma's MySQL Server using a MySQL Workbench installed in my Windows, but i'm getting an error message:
Can't connect to MySQL server on '' (10061).

Anyone know how can I use the MySQL Workbench to manage the MySQL Server from the Grandma's VA? Thanks a lot!