Php: Pretty Hopeless Programmer

I need help! NOT psychological, either.

I want to install some Php scripts on my brand-spanking new webpage at etc…

But I looked at the installation of them, and they all talk about chmoding this, configuring that, uploading the other.

Now, I’m not hopeless in computing and I guess I can figure out some of this, but I really need help with setting up MysQL databases stuff and configuring installing files.

I want to set up:
a: forums
b: blogs
c: and/or use something like PHP-Nuke (or similar content management system)

But I took a look at the installation instructions! I nearly gagged…

What’s going on? H e l p !

What do I do? Any practical suggestions? I don’t want to use dreamhosts own facilities because there are too many limitations on the system, and it doesn’t include c. anyway. Also, there are a lot of nice-sounding scripts that would make my websites more A L I V E!


Ken, chmod is a unix command to change file permissions etc, ie read, write and execute. It is highly likely when you first upload your files they will not have the correct permissions, hence the need to chmod them.

Forums: phpBB
Blog: Movable Type seems to be very popular
PHP-Nuke…not sure…how much space do you have?

The installation instructions for are extremely detailed. You need to contact your isp to figure out how to set up a mySQL database. If you’re using something like ensim or cpanel, it involves clicking a few buttons.


I’ve 800MB to play with!

I tried the panel at dreamhost… Seems easy to create one, but I’m not sure I can configure the installation files without help!

Any good resources for idiots like me…?


A webhoster should usually have some documentation for you. Search or ask them. Beside this, I would suggest you go to the support forums of all programs you plan to install and read a bit around there. Many people were in the same situation as you, so you could find some helpful documentation there too.

Try following the instructions for the stuff you’re trying to install. It generally only requires you to correct a few file locations, which you host can tell you about.

If you’re stuck, do a search on the forums for the product.

I use Dreamhost.

You’ll need to be more specific as to what you want to do, especially if you are new at all this stuff. FYI, I am too. However, I usually started out with a particular project in mind, for example, a bulletin board or blog. I have successfully set up phpBB and Movable Type in the past with Dreamhost. The instructions for both are quite exact. However, do keep in mind what others are saying about making sure you do the proper “chmod” thing on your files/diectories. Your FTP client should allow you to do this. Setting the propler chmod will enable your PHP scripts to work properly, as these settings configure who (owner, user, group) can do stuff (read, write, execute). As for Movable Type, this is Perl-based, although it also can use MySQL as the database. For Movalbe Type, using MySQL, the instructions will ask you to first create a database (this you can do easily through the control panel at Dreamhost). Then, the installer will take care of the rest.

for phpbb, blog and postnuke, you will need access to database either mssql or mysql, that will probably require basic command in shell, or perhaps they have gui for those, need to ask yer isp for the info.

dont have much experience on those hosting servers as i’ve always hosted my own servers