Runtime hosting is functionality realm of Virtuoso that is sometimes easily overlooked. In this post I want to provide a simple no-hassles HOWTO guide for installing Virtuoso on Windows (32 or 64 Bit), Mac OS X (Universal or Native 64 Bit), and Linux (32 or 64 Bit). The installation guide also covers the instantiation of phpBB3 as verification of the Virtuoso hosted PHP 3.5 runtime.

What are the benefits of PHP Runtime Hosting?

Like Apache, Virtuoso is a bona-fide Web Application Server for PHP based applications. Unlike Apache, Virtuoso is also the following:

  • a Hybrid Native DBMS Engine (Relational, RDF-Graph, and Document models) that is accessible via industry standard interfaces (solely)
  • a Virtual DBMS or Master Data Manager (MDM) that virtualizes heterogeneous data sources (ODBC, JDBC, Web Services, Hypermedia Resources, Non Hypermedia Resources)
  • anRDF Middleware solution for RDF-zation of non RDF resources across the Web and enterprise Intranets and/or Extranets (in the form of Cartridges for data exposed via REST or SOA oriented SOAP interfaces)
  • an RDF Linked Data Server (meaning it can deploy RDF Linked Data based on its native and/or virtualized data)

As result of the above, when you deploy a PHP application using Virtuoso, you inherit the following benefits:

  1. Use of PHP-iODBC for in-process communication with Virtuoso
  2. Easy generation of RDF Linked Data Views atop the SQL schemas of PHP applications
  3. Easy deployment of RDF Linked Data from virtualized data sources
  4. Less LAMP monoculture (*there is no such thing as virtuous monoculture*) when dealing with PHP based Web applications.

As indicated in prior posts, producing RDF Linked Data from the existing Web, where a lot of content is deployed by PHP based content managers, should simply come down to RDF Views over the SQL Schemas and deployment / publishing of the RDF Views in RDF Linked data form. In a nutshell, this is what Virtuoso delivers via its PHP runtime hosting and pre packaged VADs (Virtuoso Application Distribution packages), for popular PHP based applications such as: phpBB3, Drupal, WordPress, and MediaWiki.

In addition, to the RDF Linked Data deployment, we've also taken the traditional LAMP installation tedium out of the typical PHP application deployment process. For instance, you don't have to rebuild PHP 3.5 (32 or 64 Bit) on Windows, Mac OS X, or Linux to get going, simply install Virtuoso, and then select a VAD package for the relevant application and you're set. If the application of choice isn't pre packaged by us, simply install as you would when using Apache, which comes dow to situating the PHP files in your Web structure under the Web Application's root directory.

Installation Guide

  1. Download the Virtuoso installer for Windows (32 Bit msi file or 64 Bit msi file), Mac OS X (Universal Binary dmg file), or instantiate the Virtuoso EC2 AMI (*search for pattern: "Virtuoso when using the Firefox extension for EC2 as the AMI ID is currently: ami-7c31d515 and name: virtuoso-test/virtuoso-cloud-beta-9-i386.manifest.xml, for latest cut*)
  2. Run the installer (or download the movies using the links in the related section below)
  3. Go to the Virtuoso Conductor (*which will show up at the end of the installation process* or go to http://localhost:8890/conductor)
  4. Go to the "Admin" tab within the (X)HTML based UI and select the "Packages" sub-menu item (a Tab)
  5. Pick phpBB3 (or any other pre-packaged PHP app) and then click on "Install/Upgrase"
  6. The watch one of my silent movies or read the initial startup guides for Virtuoso hosted phpBB3, Drupal, Wordpress, MediaWiki.


At the current time, I've only provided links to ZIP files containing the Virtuoso installation "silent movies". This approach is a short-term solution to some of my current movie publishing challenges re. YouTube and Vimeo -- where the compressed output hasn't been of acceptable visual quality. Once resolved, I will publish much more "Multimedia Web" friendly movies :-)