Laravel Releases Valet, a Minimalist Development Environment with Support for WordPress

photo credit: Valet Parking, Las Vegas, NV - (license)
photo credit: Valet Parking, Las Vegas, NV(license)

Laravel, the open source MVC PHP framework created for application development, has just released Valet, a minimalist development environment for Mac. It uses just 7mb of RAM, because it doesn’t include Vagrant, Apache, Nginx, or a /etc/hosts file. Here’s how it works:

Laravel Valet configures your Mac to always run PHP’s built-in web server in the background when your machine starts. Then, using DnsMasq, Valet proxies all requests on the *.dev domain to point to sites installed on your local machine.

Valet supports Laravel, Lumen, Statamic, Craft, Jigsaw, and even has a driver for WordPress. It’s handy if you just need a simple, fast development environment without virtualization. Developers can also share sites publicly via local tunnels. It’s as easy as navigating to the site’s directory in the terminal and running the valet share command, which generates a publicly accessible URL.

WP Pusher founder Peter Suhm, who is active in both the Laravel and WordPress communities, wrote a tutorial for setting up Valet for WordPress development.

“For larger apps, I generally prefer my development environment to be very similar to production,” Suhm said. “Vagrant and Docker are great for that. Valet is great for all those quick and dirty WordPress installations you need, just to test something or quickly work on an idea. If you don’t need anything else besides PHP 7 and a database, Valet is a great setup.”

Since it doesn’t require a ton of dependencies, Valet is quick to set up and doesn’t require any configuration. Developers don’t even need to make Valet aware that their app is WordPress – you can simply drop WordPress core files into a folder on your machine and then access the site in your browser.

If you’re looking for a new lightweight development environment or just a quick way to do some PHP 7 testing for WordPress plugins, Valet may fit nicely into your workflow. You can install it using Homebrew. View the docs for installation and site setup or follow along with Suhm’s tutorial.

To see a quick demo of Valet in action, check out the two-minute introduction video created by Adam Wathan:

6 Comments


  1. This is pretty darn cool. Up and running in a couple minutes. Got xdebug running too. Seems snappier than VVV/HGV, maybe just because there isn’t an guest/host file system lag and certainly need to play more, but pretty excited by this.

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  2. I’ve been using Valet, it’s terrific and, according to the creators speaking on today’s Laravel News podcast, there are a bunch of powerful new features coming shortly, along with a bunch of new integrations with other PHP apps.

    Be aware that Valet’s use of localhost overrides MAMP, DesktopServer, AMPPS or any other apps you might be using that display sites via localhost.

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  3. Tested Homestead for a minute but kicked back to VVV. On Docker now and love it. Ditched MAMP 10 years ago. Valet taps native PHP on your Mac so it’s not contained? Hmm. Also, just watched the promo video totally dissing Vagrant. All the hater-bleeps they make (yawn) have been resolved OR they run crappy workflows #Unfunny. But it’s great to see so many Devs using Macs these days ;)

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  4. Valet is pretty slick, but I’m having problems with 404s in wp-admin and 301s when using ngrok. I’ve tried writing a custom ValetDriver but no joy so far. Anyone else getting these issues?

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  5. I’m enjoying using Valet immensely. Definitely a breath of fresh air.

    I made a video about setting up a local WordPress development environment in seconds (or a couple of minutes tops) with Laravel Valet and a little bit of bash scripting with WP-CLI.

    Hope it might help someone: here’s the link.

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