Setting up a development environment

Not having a development environment at home I decided I needed to set one up. I wanted something that would run Eclipse smoothly and the only PC I had which I thought was capable was my music studio PC running Windows 7.

It’s one of the first Intel Core2 Quad’s with 4GB or RAM and I thought that should do the trick, the problem is I didn’t have a spare harddrive and I want to use Ubuntu to develop on as it’s the environment I’m most comfortable on when coding. Therefore I decide to set out on the scary task of resizing a partition to give myself 20GB of space to build a little development system.

Partition Adjusting

I’ve only ever messed with partition sizes back in the 90s with Partition Magic and it was very scary so I felt pretty worried doing this, however I’m sure it’s much safer these days. I just use the Windows 7 tools to Shrink the disk by 20GB then rebooted with a Ubuntu Desktop 12.04 CD.

Installing Ubuntu

Everything booted up off the CD fine and I choose to install it. After a few clicks I was surprised to see a menu which asked if I wanted to

  • Install along side Windows 7
  • Replace Windows 7
  • Custom Install

In a moment of confusion I clicked Install along side Windows 7 and it just started to install with no other prompts. I was a bit worried that it would try to resize partitions or do something weird but as it turned out it put it in the space I allocated exactly as I wanted. Lucky win there, I think I’d click Custom if doing it again.

I was also pretty surprised to see it offered to import preferences from Windows!

After the install I had to use EasyBCD to add the installed Grub2 to the Windows loader and there I had it, a full dual boot system.

Installing the software


Great development tool for Firefox, if you don’t know about it then find out! To install it just go to

in Firefox and click the big Install Firebug button.

Google Chrome

Chrome has some pretty nifty features of its own so I grabbed that from

where they provide it in a nice Ubuntu package.


Just recently getting into Git, I really like the fact that you can just create a repository inside you source code tree with a few simple commands. Easily installed with


Been using VI & VIM since my first days of linux, as soon as I need to get down and dirty it’s what I use so I have to install that.

Apache, PHP & MySQL

Going to need these so grabbed them straight away

I’ll probably need a load of PHP extensions pretty soon but straight away I need Curl so I could install PHPUnit_Selenium


PHP’s package management system, PHPUnit is managed with this.


I used pear to install this with the following commands taken from the PHPUnit website. I also grabbed the Db extension because I’m sure it will come in handy and the Selenium one which I will be using extensively.


Very clever testing system which launches a browser and tests your site by clicking it like a user would, definitely want to get into this. To install I just downloaded the standalone server from the website and put it in /opt/selenium. To start the server I can now execure


I tried installing it from Ubuntu Software Center but it was an out of date version which wouldn’t update or install some plugins. In the end a grabbed a copy from the eclipse website and put it in /opt

Next I installed the PHP & Javacript languages from the Juno repository in Eclipses built in plugin management system (Help->Install New Software).

I also added EGit through the same system with the following URL

Zend Debugger

Finally I grabbed the ZendDebugger from

In order to set it up I needed to also install libssl 0.9.8

 Setting up the webserver

I decided to add an extra virtualhost in apache to point to my workspace. First thing I added the name workspace to my /etc/hosts file

Next I created /etc/apache2/sites-available with the following content

I also enabled mod_rewire because I’m sure I’ll be using that

To finish this set up all that is needed is to enable the site and restart apache


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *