Pow!, created by the 37 Signals team, is a “zero-config Rack server for Mac OS X”. If you’re working on multiple applications that are connected, it’s a great tool to keep all of your sites up and running on your machine.

Homebrew, “the missing package manager for OS X” makes installing applications simple. Most of the time it just works, and when extra steps are needed, Homebrew usually explains what you need to do once the install is complete.

Install Pow! using Homebrew: brew install pow

Then follow the directions so the daemon is always running:

Sets up firewall rules to forward port 80 to Pow:

  sudo pow --install-system

Installs launchd agent to start on login:

  pow --install-local

Enables both launchd agents:

  sudo launchctl load -w /Library/LaunchDaemons/cx.pow.firewall.plist
  launchctl load -w ~/Library/LaunchAgents/cx.pow.powd.plist

Pow is installed and ready to useā€¦Almost! Looking at Pow’s documentation, I just need to create symlinks in my ~/.pow directory, but I don’t have one. So let’s fix that by first making sure Pow has a directory for hosts:

mkdir -p ~/Library/Application\ Support/Pow/Hosts

And then create a symlink ~/.pow that points to Hosts:

ln -s ~/Library/Application\ Support/Pow/Hosts/ ~/.pow

Now you can use Pow normally:

cd ~/.pow
ln -s <my Rails project dir> myapp

Browse to http://myapp.dev

Check out Pow’s documentation for more information.

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