Installing Open Review Script

Before starting installation, check you have the following:

  • PHP version 5.1.6 or later
  • MySQL 4.1 or later
  • GD Library
  • Client URL Library (libcurl)

Most hosts will already have all these installed.

Follow the instructions below and you should be all set up in just a few minutes.

Get The Files

There are 2 versions you can download, a zip file and a tar file. Choose whichever you are most familiar with, they each contain exactly the same files.

Note: before uploading, the file needs to be unzipped to a directory. You are going to upload the contents of that directory to your server.

Transferring The files

You will need either an FTP client or shell access to your server (most shared hosting will not have shell access).

Uploading With FTP

You will need an FTP program, you can use a free one like FileZilla which is available for Windows, Mac or Linux.

After connecting to your hosting account with your FTP client you should see a directory called “public_html” which is where your website files are stored. This is the directory where you will be uploading the script. If you want to put the script in a sub-directory, create a directory inside “public_html” called, for example, “reviews”.

Now upload the contents of the directory you unzipped earlier to your chosen directory on your server. With FileZilla, you would find the unzipped script directory, select everything in that directory and drag and drop them to the directory on your server.

When the upload is complete, go to the Preparing For Installation section.

Shell Access

You can transfer the file directly from our server to yours: (skip this if you are using FTP)

cd ~
mkdir openreviewscript
cd openreviewscript


cd ~
mkdir openreviewscript
cd openreviewscript
curl -O

then unpack the file:

tar -xzvf openreviewscript_v1.0rc2b.tar.gz

Preparing For Installation

Before going any further, it's worth going to the install page in your browser just to check if there are any issues with your server. It's better to do this now than spend any more time getting the files, directories and database ready only to find your server needs a setting changed or has an old version of PHP ;-)

In your browser, go to the install page, the url will be something like this:


You should see the first page of the installer.

The installer will check your server settings and let you know if any changes need to be made to your server or settings. If you are unsure how to change server settings or you have any other hosting issues, it's unlikely we will be able to help you with this so please contact your host for help.

It's possible the installer will tell you several files and directories are not writeable… and that's what we're going to look at next.

Set Permissions

Certain files and directories need to be writeable so that the script can upload files, resize images and update config files. With your FTP client you need to go to each of the following files and directories and change the permissions to 755 (with FileZilla this is as simple as right-clicking the file or directory and selecting “File Permissions…” from the menu).

Change permissions on these directories and files:


If you are using shell not FTP you should chmod these directories and files to 755.

Create A Database

By default, OpenReviewScript needs a MySQL database (it's possible to use other types of database but as most hosts will have at least one MySQL database available for you to use, we just assume MySQL).

You will need to log in to your hosting account control panel to set up the database. Some hosts provide one database already created and ready to use. If not, create a database in your control panel and grant a user access to that database.

Now go back to your browser (you should still be on the first page of the installer) and click the 'Next Step' button.

Enter the database details on the form:

  • Hostname - often this will be 'localhost' or '' but sometimes a host will provide you with a different hostname
  • Database Name - enter the name you chose for your database or the name your host gave you
  • User Name - enter the name of the user that has access to the database
  • Password - enter the user's password (be careful copying and pasting passwords as they are sometimes copied with extra characters)

Note: if you have problems with your database settings it is possible your database name and user name will have had a prefix added when you created them. For example, you called your database 'mydata' and your server named it 'abc_mydata'.

Click 'Next Step' when you are ready and you should see the next page. If you see a message telling you there was a problem connecting, check all the details again.

Final Step

Site And Manager Information

In the final step of the installation, you will be choosing a name for your site, providing an email address where site emails will be sent and a manager username and password. All of these details can be changed later in the manager area.

It is a good idea to keep a copy of your password somewhere safe but should you lose the password there is a process for resetting it.

Complete the form and click 'Next Step'

Installation Complete

Congratulations, you just installed OpenReviewScript!!!

Before you continue there is just one more quick job to do. Delete the 'install' directory using your FTP client (or shell users 'cd' to the OpenReviewScript directory and 'rm -Rf ./install'), simply renaming it is probably not a good idea. Leaving the directory there could be a security risk and would make it easier for evil people to do bad things to your site, so even if you don't do this right now, you really should delete it as soon as possible. When the directory has been deleted, click one of the links on the page to see your site or to log in to the manager area.

To get started with your new site, read the User Guide.

Thank you for choosing OpenReviewScript!

Except where otherwise noted, content on this wiki is licensed under the following license: GNU Free Documentation License 1.3