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macfan777

Running MAMP Server as Standard User

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I'm running a private utility website using MAMP under 10.5.2. Right now the account is set as an admin, but I tried running as a standard user at one point but it completely threw the Apache and MySQL servers into panic mode. (a.k.a. It Didn't Work) Does anybody know why, and is there a way to do this? Thanks!

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Firstly, make sure you've chosen to use the default ports (80 for apache, can't remember what the default is for mysql, but it picks the right one when you click the button), then ensure web sharing is turned off in your system preferences so there are no conflicts, then totally exit MAMP. Change you user to a standard user, log out and then log back in again, and MAMP should work.

 

It will still ask you for your admin username and password, since changing ports under 1000 (ie, starting or stopping apache) requires you to be an administrator for security reasons.

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If you want to run it as a standard user, then yes. I've not been able to get it going any other way. What security reasons might these be? It makes no real difference what port you run MAMP under, if someone really wanted to do something all it would take is a five second port scan and they know the alternate port.

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The big reason I want to run an alternate port is that 80 is the most used port for webserves - I tried 80 and got several port scans on it within just a few days. Getting your server off 80 makes it so that people don't even know the server exists unless they do a full port scan. Mine has none so far. True, if someone knew about and wanted to specifically hack my server, they'd just need a port scan to figure out the number, but hackers going around looking for trouble are going to be scanning port 80 because that's where most servers are. I don't know, I may put it on 80, but I'd definitely rather have it on an alternate port.

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Ok, MAMP is you development environment, right? So if they hack it, they can get what? Not much, and even less if you're running as a standard user. You're getting close to tin foil hat territory here.

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Ok, MAMP is you development environment, right?

Technically, no. I'm running it as a private site to host my school files, a forum for school projects, and any other uses I may eventually find for it. I simply wanted to keep it as secure as possible since it is running on my main computer.

 

I did go with Port 80, though, and I'm glad I did. Not only because I'm now successfully running as a standard user, but also because the DNS hosting site actually displays the domain name in the URL for port 80 sites, as opposed to alternate port number sites displaying the ugly IP address/Port combination. I'll just have to watch any suspicious activity, but I doubt that will be a problem.

 

Thanks for the advice!

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