Taken singly, it's easy to research versions and compatibility. Version information is readily available on each single part of a platform stack, such as MySQL. You can find out the latest version, stable version, and sometimes even the percentage of people adopting it by version (personally, I like seeing numbers on adoption rates).

However, when trying to find the best possible mix of versions, I have a harder time. For example, "if you're using MySQL 5.5, you'll need PHP version XX or higher."

It gets even more difficult to mitigate when you throw higher level platforms into the mix such as Drupal, Joomla, etc.

I do consider "wizard" like installers to be beneficial, such as the Bitnami installers. However, I always wonder if those solutions cater more to the least common denominator -- be all to many -- and as such, I think I'd be better to install things on my own. Such solutions do seem kind of slow to adopt new versions, slower than necessary, I suspect.

Is there a website or tool that consolidates versioning data in order to help a webmaster choose which versions to deploy or which upgrades to install, in consideration of all the other parts of the stack?


Are you asking for a source that shows the latest current stable version of each app? If so, I think that's what package managers are for.

So just pick the distro of your choice, their website should point you to the latest build. Then run apt-get/yum and install the latest stable release of each part of the stack. Or, if you're running Ubuntu, you could just use tasksel to install the AMP part in one go.

Edit: I don't think there are any special considerations (other than whether you want to run PHP over CGI or as a module) you need to make for these packages. Installing a WAMP stack is a little more tricky, but on linux you can just choose the latest stable and run with it. Though you may need to choose an older stable if there's a compatibility issue with PHP/MySQL and your web apps.

  • +1, You're right -- as much as I prefer to have control over versioning, the distro management of this makes it easier on us. – Chris Adragna Jan 12 '11 at 18:31
  • @Chris: You can actually create your own yum (perhaps apt as well) repository server and manage it yourself. If you're only tracking a few packages, it might not be too much work. Though more involved, it's probably also possible to create a client that will check the compatibility of your installed apps/frameworks with each stack component. I can see that being pretty useful to webmasters. – Lèse majesté Jan 13 '11 at 2:05

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