Tag Archives: Cakephp

Installing CakePHP on IIS 7

Recently I spoke with someone on Twitter who was having issues running CakePHP on IIS. With all the talk about ASP.NET MVC on IIS, folks forget that the MVC pattern works in other languages as well. CakePHP provides MVC  development on PHP. That said, I wanted to dive in and see what the issues were involved in getting this project up and running on IIS 7. I managed to get it installed pretty quickly, but it does take a little tweaking to get you up and running. I’ve chronicled my adventures with CakePHP below in case anyone else is having issues. That said, I must first say that I am not an expert working with CakePHP. This was my first experience with the project, so this information is provided “as-is” and should be taken with a grain of salt. With this demo, I’ll be walking through the “Cake Blog Tutorial” offered on cakephp.org, and modifying it as needed to work with IIS 7. That said, let’s get started.


Yes, there ARE a lot of Prerequisites, but these are pretty typical for any MVC app on any platform.

Assumptions / Conventions

For the purposes of this post, I will use the convention/assumption that you have unzipped CakePHP to c:inetpubCakePHP . You should have the following paths now:

  • c:inetpubCakePHP
    • app
    • cake
    • vendors
    • .htaccess
    • index.php
    • version.txt

I will also use the assumption that this is being installed on the “Default Web Site”. This is unlikely what you are doing, so you’ll want to replace the “Default Web Site” instances in the steps below with your site or application path.

Lastly, I will assume that you are using and have already installed MySQL. You may use another database if you please, but this blog will reference MySQL.

Installing the Blog Sample

Pointing IIS to the cake document root

First, you’ll need to configure your website to point to the correct location. Using the assumptions above, the correct location would be c:inetpubCakePHPappwebroot .

Creating a Blog Database

Second, configure your database connection. To do this, you’ll need to create a blog database, and then point your configuration to that new catalog.

Start by creating a new MySQL Catalog using your favorite tool. I used MySQL Administrator. Simply right click in the catalogs and click “create new schema.”

Create a schema named “CakeBlog”. Once the schema is created, click on the “Tools” menu and select “MySQL Query Browser” and execute the following script:

/* First, create our posts table: */
     title VARCHAR(50),
     body TEXT,

/* Then insert some posts for testing: */
INSERT INTO posts (title,body,created)
      VALUES ('The title',
                  'This is the post body.', NOW());
INSERT INTO posts (title,body,created)
      VALUES ('A title once again',
                  'And the post body follows.', NOW());
INSERT INTO posts (title,body,created)
      VALUES ('Title strikes back',
                  'This is really exciting! Not.', NOW());

* This SQL code copied verbatim from tutorial found here:

You’ve now created your database and a blog posts table with some default posts. Time to configure CakePHP to read from the database:

Cake Database Configuration

We’ll need to let CakePHP know where the database is. Copy database.php.default in c:inetpubCakePHPappconfig to database.php

Open c:inetpubcakephpappconfigdatabase.php and change the $default variable to point to your database:

var $default = array( 'driver'    => 'mysql',
                      'connect'   => 'mysql_connect',
                      'host'      => 'localhost',
                      'login'     => 'CakeBlog',
                      'password'  => 'c4ke-1z-k00l',
                      'database'  => 'CakeBlog',
                      'prefix'    => '' );

* This PHP code copied nearly verbatim from tutorial found here:

You should now be able to open your browser to your application and see the default cake configuration page.

Setting up Rewriting Rules

CakePHP uses mod_rewrite, but also provides the ability to use Cake’s built-in ‘pretty URLs’. We’ll be importing the mod_rewrite rules from the .htaccess files from the default cakephp installation into the IIS URL Rewrite module. We’ll then have to modify those rules.

Start this process by opening the IIS Management Console. Open your application path. In this instance, we are using “Default Web Site”.

  1. Click on the “Default Web Site
  2. Open the “URL Rewrite” module
  3. Click on “Import Rules…” in the Actions pane
  4. Click the “” button next to the “Configuration file” textbox.
  5. Select the c:inetpubcakephp.htaccess file and click “OK
  6. Click the “Import” button
  7. Click the “Apply” button in the “Actions” pane
  8. Repeat steps 4, 5, 6 and 7 for c:inetpubcakephpapp.htaccess and c:inetpubcakephpappwebroot.htaccess files.

The rules are imported, but now you’ll need to edit the rules.

  1. Click the “Back to Rules” button in the “Actions” pane
  2. Edit the two rules with the action starting with “webroot/
  3. Remove the “webroot” portion of the “Rewrite URL”. Your paths should now look as follows:

Creating your MVC Application

The remainder of your application setup should follow the steps found in the original “Cake Blog Tutorial”. There is nothing different between IIS and Apache at this point, so copying the steps would be a bit redundant. Start with the step named “Create a Post Model”. Much like ASP.NET MVC, Cake provides an MVC pattern for developing PHP applications.

Once you have completed the steps, you should have a default site that looks something like the following:


Installing CakePHP on IIS is actually not much different from installing on Apache. The main difference lies in the implementation of mod_rewrite on Apache vs URL Rewriter in IIS. Obviously the installation of PHP differs from Apache. IIS makes the installation of PHP simple with Web Application Installer. If you are using CakePHP on IIS, I would be interested to hear if your experience was different than mine.