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Beansbooks is available "as is" and will no longer be maintained. We would like to thank everyone who has used and contributed to Beansbooks.

Getting Started

This guide will walk you through getting a local instance of BeansBooks running. This is useful for development and testing, but should not be followed strictly for running a live environment. In order to get started, you'll need the following:

  • Apache 2
  • PHP 5 >= 5.3. PHP 7 will not work
  • MySQL 5+
  • Git Client

On Ubuntu, you can run the following to get up to speed:

sudo apt-get update  
sudo apt-get install apache2 php5 libapache2-mod-php5 php5-cli php5-mysql php5-mcrypt php5-gd mysql-server mysql-client git  

Once you've installed all of the prerequesites, create a directory where you want the source to reside, then download the code from git into that directory. The following will create a directory called 'source' within your home directory and install BeansBooks there.

cd ~
mkdir source
cd source
git clone --recursive
cd beansbooks

Copy the example.htaccess file to .htaccess within your working directory

cp example.htaccess .htaccess

If you are not planning on hosting with SSL, then we need to comment out two lines in the .htaccess file. Open the file for editing:

nano .htaccess

Look for the following two lines:

RewriteCond %{HTTPS} !=on
RewriteRule ^ https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [L,R=301]

Add a # character before them:

#RewriteCond %{HTTPS} !=on
#RewriteRule ^ https://%{HTTP_HOST}%{REQUEST_URI} [L,R=301]

Additionally, you'll need to update the permissions on two directories before proceeding:

chmod 770 -R application/logs
chmod 770 -R application/cache

And create a configuration file:

touch application/classes/beans/config.php
chmod 660 application/classes/beans/config.php

Finally, your web user ( presumably, www-data ) will require access to the owner of your application directory. Presuming you've setup BeansBooks to run locally, it's easiest to add www-data to your user group.

sudo usermod -a -G `whoami` www-data

If you'd like a more secure solution, you should create a user specifically for BeansBooks and install everything within a sub-folder of the home directory for that user. In that case, you could want to replace `whoami` in the above solution with the name of the user you created.

You should now have everything you need to run BeansBooks locally. Next, we'll configure and setup several dependencies to enable your application to run.

Configuring Packages

Before configuring BeansBooks itself, we need to setup the environment to run it. We're going to quickly setup a local MySQL database, Apache Virtual Host, and create the correct permissions on our code.


When setting up the packages in "Getting Started" above, you should have been prompted to create a root password for MySQL. You'll need this for the next set of steps. Run the following to connect to MySQL - you should provide the password that you created earlier when prompted.

mysql -h localhost -u root -p

Next - enter the following lines one by one. Please note - this sets the password for your database user to "beansdb" and should probably be changed. Go ahead and replace "beansdb" with a strong password.

CREATE USER 'beans'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY  'beansdb';  
GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON `beans`.* TO 'beans'@'localhost';

Great! Now you've setup your database and user. Please make a note of the username ( beans ) and password you set above.


First things first, enable Mod_Rewrite:

sudo a2enmod rewrite

Now we're going to setup Apache to serve BeansBooks locally. In order to determine where are going to set our document root, we need to run the following in a terminal:


Whatever the output of that is - make a note of it. It will be the "document root" for your virtual host.

We're going to setup our instance of BeansBooks to be found at http://beansbooks/ - this is convenient as it will neither interfere with an actual domain, and can be configured fairly easily. Go ahead and run the following command:

sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/beansbooks.conf

That will open a text editor for a new virtual host configuration - go ahead and copy and paste the following into the file. Make sure to replace PWDHERE with the result of running "pwd" above - it will probably looking something like /home/yourusername/source/beansbooks and should be inserted without any trailing / .

TIP: To paste into the editor that you've opened, use Control + Shift + "v"

    ServerName beansbooks 
    ServerAlias beansbooks 

DocumentRoot PWDHERE            
<directory pwdhere>
    Options FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride All
    Order allow,deny
    allow from all

If you're using Apache 2.4 or newer you should use the following instead.

    ServerName beansbooks 
    ServerAlias beansbooks 

DocumentRoot PWDHERE            
<directory pwdhere>
    Options FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride All
    Require all granted

After pasting in and editing the above code, hit Control + "x" to exit. If it prompts you to save your changes, hit "y". Then run the following to disable the default virtual host, enable the beansbooks.conf virtual host and reload the Apache configuration.

sudo a2dissite 000-default
sudo a2ensite beansbooks.conf
sudo service apache2 reload

Then we need to add an entry to your hosts file to be able to load the local instance of beans.

sudo sh -c "echo ' beansbooks' >> /etc/hosts"


At this point you should be able to navigate to http://beansbooks/ to finish the installation process. If you would prefer to run the installation and initial database setup from the command line please do as follows:

Manually Configure BeansBooks

Copy example.config.php to config.php in application/classes/beans/ and fill in the appropriate information.

cd application/classes/beans/
cp example.config.php config.php
chmod 660 config.php
nano config.php

It's important that your config file is not world-readable. The keys that encrypt your data, in addition to your database and email credentials, should be secure.

There are quite a few values that should be changed in the file, however it's mostly self explanatory. For starters, every place that you see "INSERTSTRONGKEY" should have a unique, long ( at least 128 characters ), string of random characters. You can generate random data from here:

Also note that you should enter the MySQL username and password you setup above under the "database" section.

Lastly, email support is optional - though it enables quite a few useful features when communication with customers and vendors. If you have an SMTP email provider, you should enter the correct information in the "email" section.

Once you've saved the config.php file, it's time to manually run the installation process.

cd ~/source/beansbooks
php index.php --uri=/install/manual --name="Your Name" --password="password" --email="[email protected]" --accounts="full"

SSL Support

If you would like to serve your instance of BeansBooks over SSL, you just need to add SSL support to your web server:

sudo a2enmod ssl

Then go ahead and edit your virtual host to support SSL connections:

sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/beansbooks.conf

        ServerName beansbooks
        ServerAlias beansbooks

    DocumentRoot PWDHERE            
    <directory pwdhere>
        Options FollowSymLinks
        AllowOverride All
        Order allow,deny
        allow from all

    SSLEngine on

    SSLCertificateFile /path/to/ssl/
    SSLCertificateKeyFile /path/to/ssl/

        SSLOptions +StdEnvVars

    BrowserMatch "MSIE [2-6]" nokeepalive ssl-unclean-shutdown downgrade-1.0 force-response-1.0
    BrowserMatch "MSIE [17-9]" ssl-unclean-shutdown

Note - if you adjusted your VirtualHost above for Apache 2.4, you should do so here as well.

When you're done making changes, make sure to restart Apache.



If PHP / Apache complain that you're missing mcrypt support, or that an algorithm isn't available - you likely need to manually enable the mcrypt module:

sudo php5enmod mcrypt

Make sure to restart Apache afterwards and it should be resolved.

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