MAMP is a helpful tool that enables users to develop dynamic websites in a local environment. This means you can install and test WordPress or other website files and systems on your computer, without the need for a website host or server. Like most tools, however, you may encounter errors from time to time.

If you’re unable to access the phpMyAdmin function of your MAMP installation, there may be several reasons. By troubleshooting a few common causes, you should be able to identify and quickly correct any problems, restoring MAMP’s phpMyAdmin function to full operation.

In this article we”ll explain three different but related errors, discuss why they might occur, and show you how to fix them. Let’s get started!

What the MAMP phpMyAdmin Not Working Error Is (and Why It Happens)

The MAMP stack includes an operating system, web server, database management system, and scripting language. These are the essential elements of a development environment, and they enable users to develop and test dynamic websites or Content Management Systems (CMS), such as WordPress or Drupal.

MAMP is an acronym derived from its components — MacOS, Apache, MySQL or MariaDB, and PHP, Perl, or Python — though users may choose alternative components within the installation. The phpMyAdmin tool included in your MAMP installation enables users to access and manage the database function through either MySQL or MariaDB.

A phpMyAdmin error may yield a blank page when you select the phpMyAdmin tool from the MAMP home page in your web browser. Alternatively, it may block you from selecting the tool altogether by deactivating the link in the phpMyAdmin menu.

When you do encounter a problem with phpMyAdmin, you may receive an error message with information on the cause. However, this isn”t always the case. When faced with a nonspecific error and no additional information about what’s happening, you can use the steps below to troubleshoot and correct it.

Important

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How to Fix the MAMP phpMyAdmin Not Working Error

There are a few common reasons for encountering a phpMyAdmin error within MAMP. In the next three sections, we’ll describe the different variations of this error, and walk you through the various solutions.

Database Connection Error

A database connection error means that your phpMyAdmin tool is not able to connect to the MySQL database. Usually, this is because the MAMP phpMyAdmin configuration file has the incorrect settings. This may occur if you reinstall MAMP on your computer, or install MAMP on another machine without updating the default settings.

This error appears when you navigate to the Tools menu on the MAMP home page. The phpMyAdmin menu option will display the message “MySQL server not running”:

An error message in the phpMyAdmin menu.

An error message in the phpMyAdmin menu.

To correct this, you”ll need to check your settings and resolve any errors within your MAMP phpMyAdmin configuration file.

Step 1 – Locate the Configuration File

If your MAMP installation is running, you”ll want to begin by stopping any active servers and quitting the application.

The phpMyAdmin configuration file sits within your MAMP application, and enables the tool to connect with its corresponding database.The config.inc.php file contains settings which correspond to your database settings:

The config.inc.php file in MAMP.

The config.inc.php file in MAMP.

In Windows, this file is located at C:/MAMP/bin/phpMyAdmin/. Mac users can locate the file by going to the /Applications/MAMP/bin/phpMyAdmin/ folder.

Step 2 – Correct the Configuration File Settings

Once you’ve opened the config.inc.php file, you”ll need to locate the following database configuration settings:

  • DB_NAME
  • DB_USER
  • DB_PASSWORD
  • DB_HOST

Then, compare these settings with your MySQL database settings. Correct any errors and save the config.inc.php file:

Correcting errors in the config.inc.php file.

Correcting errors in the config.inc.php file.

To see if this has cleared the error, open MAMP, start your servers, and retry the phpMyAdmin tool in the MAMP home page menu. (If MAMP isn”t starting, troubleshoot that first.)

You should now be able to select phpMyAdmin to run the tool. If not, quit MAMP, return to the config.inc.php file, and find the port settings:

Changing MAMP

Changing MAMP’s port settings.

You can update these to correspond to your MAMP installation’s Port Settings, and then test again to see if the error has been resolved.

If you’re having trouble connecting to the database, you can take a look at our post on fixing MAMP “Error Establishing a Database Connection”.

Blank phpMyAdmin Page

If you select the phpMyAdmin tool from the MAMP home page and see a blank page (or the MAMP index page), this may indicate a problem with a recent MAMP update.

To correct this error, you can restore the previous version of phpMyAdmin. There are two ways to approach this fix.

Step 1 – Rename the Folder

First, this issue can be resolved by renaming the phpMyAdmin folder. To do this, quit the MAMP application and locate the phpMyAdmin folder within the application support directory.

Windows Users can go to C:\Users\Public\Documents\Appsolute\MAMP\phpMyAdmin, while Mac users can go to /Library/Application Support/appsolute/MAMP PRO/phpMyAdmin:

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Opening up the phpMyAdmin folder.

Opening up the phpMyAdmin folder.

Rename the phpMyAdmin folder to “phpMyAdmin_bak”. Then open MAMP, restart your servers, and navigate to phpMyAdmin to access the tool.

Step 2 – Install the Latest Stable Version of phpMyAdmin

If renaming the phpMyAdmin folder does not fix the error, you can return to the latest stable version within your MAMP installation. First, if you have renamed the folder as detailed above, you’ll need to change its name back to “phpMyAdmin”.

Next, download the latest stable version of phpMyAdmin. Unzip the download and move it to your \appsolute\MAMP folder. You will have two phpMyAdmin folders now – the original and the previous release that you have just downloaded. The latter should be named something like “phpMyAdmin-x.x.x-all-languages”, where “x.x.x” is the numeric version of the release:

The version download page for phpMyAdmin.

The version download page for phpMyAdmin.

Next, you will need to update the configuration settings in your new phpMyAdmin folder. Before doing this, back up a copy of the config.inc.php file located in the original folder.

Once you’ve backed up the file, in your original phpMyAdmin folder, copy the php.inc.config file and paste it over to the phpMyAdmin-x.x.x-all-languages folder you just added. When the program asks if it’s okay to overwrite the folder, say yes.

Then, rename the original phpMyAdmin folder to “phpMyAdminOriginal” (or something similar), and name the new folder simply “phpMyAdmin”. After that, you can open your MAMP application, restart your servers, and navigate to the phpMyAdmin tool on the MAMP home page.

PHP Version Compatibility Error

You may receive an error message stating that phpMyAdmin needs a PHP version within a specific range. This might happen if you’re running an outdated version of PHP, or a new update is not compatible with your version of MAMP. In this case, you”ll need to change the PHP version of your MAMP application.

In MAMP Pro, this is as simple as changing the setting. First, note the required version in the error message. The requirement is usually stated as a range of PHP versions that you can choose from.

Then, still in MAMP Pro, go to Preferences and select the PHP tab. In the drop-down menu, change the PHP version to one listed within the range given by the error message.

After that, you can navigate to the MAMP home page and refresh your browser. Select Tools from the menu to verify that the error has been resolved.

Summary

A phpMyAdmin error in MAMP prevents you from accessing your website’s database with the phpMyAdmin tool. The error may be presented in several different ways: a blank page, an inactive menu option, or a connection error.

In this article, we discussed three common phpMyAdmin errors and how to fix them:

  • Database connection error
  • Blank phpMyAdmin page
  • PHP version incompatibility

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