Wouldn’t it be useful to be able to test a new version of your website locally, on your own computer, before putting it up on your server? Suppose you were working on a new design, and were coding it as a WordPress theme. You wouldn’t want to just edit it live, would you? While that’s fine for quick edits, if you’re overhauling your template it wouldn’t be a good idea…and we’ll leave it at that.
How would you go about setting up a local server? It’s dead easy if you’re running Windows or Mac OS X.
Windows users have WAMP, which stands for Windows Apache MySQL PHP, a play on the acronym LAMP. Just download it, unpack it, and run the installer. If you’re on a Mac, you have the Macintosh equivalent, known as MAMP.
Once you have the server installed, you can use it just like you would a remote server, albeit without the slow FTP/SSH upload times. The included copy of phpMyAdmin allows you to manage your MySQL databases. So you can throw a copy of WordPress or your CMS of choice into your *AMP server and copy your database over from your production server.