Setting up Django with MAMP on Mac OS X Lion (in ? steps)

I started playing with a Django-Python version of my current project and I needed a testing environment on my local Mac-based machine. The thing is I didn't want to use a dedicated MySQL server just for the Django deployment, as it seems really silly when I already have my quiet MAMP running in parallel with all the other CodeIgniter-PHP based projects.

It's harder than you may expect. I had to go through a painful series of steps to eventually have the whole thing working, and taking here some notes so I can have them handy when I'll need to do it again, hopefully it will help someone else. It still needs to have a "dedicated" copy of MySQL installed just to compile, but it won't be used to actually run the server.

step1. download and install the latest mysql community server from the DMG file, here. Then from the command line, add the fresh installation to the local path, this will be used to pick the sources needed for the python module compilation. Also add a variable for the dynamic library linkage, this will be used on execution of your python scripts to find the correct library:

export PATH=/usr/local/mysql/bin/:$PATH
export DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/local/mysql/lib/

step2. assuming we have already a python virtualenv script in place. Create a new virtual environment and activate it:

python django-mysql
. django-mysql/bin/activate

step3. now we're ready to install django and mysql-python. the latter should compile with few minor warnings if and only if we have correctly executed step1 (just double check that paths in the export statements are correct)

pip install django
pip install mysql-python
>>> import MySQLdb
>>> print MySQLdb

if everything works fine, then the last command above should show the full path of the mysql module compiled during the installation process

step4. create a django project and configure the so as to use the MySQL server shipped with MAMP

    'default': {
        'ENGINE': 'django.db.backends.mysql', # Add 'postgresql_psycopg2', 'mysql', 'sqlite3' or 'oracle'.
        'NAME': 'django_test', # Or path to database file if using sqlite3.
        'USER': 'root', # Not used with sqlite3.
        'PASSWORD': 'root', # Not used with sqlite3.
        'HOST': '/Applications/MAMP/tmp/mysql/mysql.sock', # Set to empty string for localhost. Not used with sqlite3.
        'PORT': '', # Set to empty string for default. Not used with sqlite3.

take EXTRA CARE to double check that the host variable is set to MAMP's socket, hence /Applications/MAMP/tmp/mysql/mysql.sock

step5. in my case, it's really not happening frequently, I also had problems with my locale, as some of the programs I installed messed around with the environment, so I got the error "unknown locale: UTF-8" as soon as I tried to sync the django db. this is solved exporting the correct variables, THEN syncing the db

export LC_ALL=en_us.UTF8
export LC_CTYPE=en_us.UTF8
export LANG=en_us.UTF8
python syncdb

and this should be all! Just a final note: this post was assembled trying things and using different sources to solve each and every problem appeared along the road, these are the original URLs I had to collate to eventually see my working copy of django: dedicated mysql dynamic library mamp socket  unknown locale