How to install Moodle: part two

Welcome back to the continuing saga of my attempt to get a Course Management System up and running on Windows Server 2008. So far I’ve installed Internet Information Services 7, PHP Hypertext Processor (PHP) and MySQL.

How to install Moodle: part two

The next job is to sort out some graphical tools to work with MySQL, and fortunately these are available from the same place I got MySQL. Visit www.pcpro/links/176serv2 for the MySQL GUI Tools Downloads page, which gives you access to a single download that contains the following tools:

– MySQL Administrator 1.2

– MySQL Query Browser 1.2

– MySQL Migration Toolkit 1.1

For Windows there are two versions, one with an installer and one where you simply unzip the contents. It’s entirely up to you which one you choose, but for reporting purposes I chose the one with the built-in installer, which at the time of writing was version 5.0-r16 for Windows (there are different version numbers for different operating systems).

Once downloaded I ran the installation, which provided me with the usual welcoming splash screen, followed it up with a licence agreement with Sun Microsystems, and then showed me the installation path, which is of course modifiable to anywhere you might prefer.

it_photo_28787Then you get the option for a complete installation or a custom job. I took a peek at Custom to see what I’d have got with the complete installation, and that turned out to be a set of common components, the three MySQL GUI tools listed earlier, and language support for German, Greek, Japanese, Polish, and Portuguese from Brazil. Make your choices and hit Install.

Once it’s completed, head for Start, find the tools and run MySQL Administrator. You’ll need to supply a server name, a username and the password you created when you set up MySQL earlier, so in my case I went with “localhost” as the server name, “root” as the username, and the password I created earlier.

MySQL Administrator should now open. On the left-hand side is a series of labelled icons that take you to various administrative areas. “Server Information” is highlighted by default and provides you with information on the instance that you’re running, with both client and server information.

I noticed that the tool is currently unable to identify Windows Server 2008, labelling the operating system as “unknown”, but this didn’t seem to affect the way it worked and I’ve had no problems yet. To see the databases that exist on your system, go to the bottom of the icon list and select Catalogs.

You should see three schemata appear in the left-hand pane called information_schema, mysql and test. Schema is MySQL speak for “database”, and so to avoid confusion I’ll use the term “schema” from now on whenever I talk about a database, in order to fit in with the menu offerings in MySQL Administrator.

To create a new schema, right-click in the Schemata pane and choose “Create New Schema” from the pop-up menu. Give your schema a name, and then click on OK. The new schema will appear in the list of existing schemata and you click on it to make it the active schema.

At this point you have an empty database, but before you go about doing anything with it, you’ll need to pick a user account to work with it. Currently you’re logged in as root and, while this is fine for what you’ve just done, you really don’t want to be using root as the default account for managing your schema. Look up the list of icons and you’ll see one labelled User Administration. Click on that and then on Add New User in the right-hand pane.

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