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Caution As of Nov 2012, the MoWeS software is no longer available since CH Software discontinued business activities on November 7, 2012. Caution

MoWeS stands for the three letter abbreviation Modular Webserver System and makes it possible, to run a webserver based on Apache, MySQL and PHP (WAMP) from an USB Stick or any other writable media (harddrive, flash cards etc.) without installation under Windows (XP to 7).

There are three different versions of MoWeS: MoWeS Portable II

  • ... is the basic version and a grown-up release
  • ... is free
  • ... is released under the GNU/GPL and is OpenSource
  • ... is packed with Apache2, MySQL5 and PHP (4/5) - you can choose whatever your taste is like
  • ... comes with a selectable bunch of preinstalled software (TYPO3, Joomla!, Mambo, Wordpress, Moodle, OS Commerce, Drupal, PHPMyAdmin and many more)


  • For TNG V9, you can download the MoWeS software with TNG integrated from the TNG Extras section of the TNG software download site
  • The original Download MoWeS is not longer available.

You need to select the mixture of server software that you want to download as shown in the image on the right.

MoWeS download server selection.jpg

Install instructions

You can find install instructions for MoWeS on the MoWeS Help page

TNG on a stick

MoWeS is also available as a package with TNG already integrated within it. Originally put together by Frans Erich, it can be found under the TNG Extras tab on the TNG download page. Although the facility was last updated on April 12th 2009, and the versions of TNG available are restricted to 6.2.0, 7.0.1, 7.0.2 and 7.0.3, there is no difficulty in running versions up to and including 8.1.0

This installation is equally suitable for a desktop, laptop or USB drive. After downloading, installation is straightforward, following the enclosed instructions. The location, username and password of the database will need to be adjusted. Bearing in mind the assigned letter of the installed drive may (will) not be known, the installation can be made independent of the drive letter by modifying the following line in config.php:

$rootpath = getenv("DOCUMENT_ROOT")."/genealogy/";

Backup and synchronisation of a TNG web site (One user's experience)

I manage my genealogy database in Legacy7 and upload this to TNG by GEDCOM 5.5. All articles and media are are ftp'd directly to TNG. I use the Ipswitch WS_FTP Pro software but most ftp programs should offer similar services.

My web site also includes a Lazarus guestbook. The following is my procedure for maintaining a working and synchronised backup of my site on my desktop PC and on 3 USB drives (These 3 drives are kept as archives for my three potential web "heirs" who will take over from me in the fullness of time and when their interest in genealogy matures!) Two of these drives are Scandisk USBs which generate the drive letter L: on my system; the third is a Scandisk Cruzwer which generates a drive letter M:

My web environment

My web host carries out a nightly (and a separate weekly) backup of my whole site to a secure external location. This means that, unlike the working site, I have access to both the TNG file system and the raw mySQL database tables without needing to do manipulations through phpMYadmin or CPanel.


I installed TNG on MoWes version 7.0.3 into a subdirectory (I named it TNG810onMowesII) on my PC, following the instructions and confirming access. Examination of the directory structure confirms the TNG files to be stored in the www subdirectory from the root and then the TNG files to be stored in the www subdirectory in a structure which matches the naming of your own site. Also from the root is a subdirectory called mysql. This directory called data which is where the database tables will be stored. (For reference, each table has three associated files with separate suffixes, thus: tng_addresses.frm, tng_addresses.MYD, tng_addresses.MYI)

I accessed my web backup store and, using WS_FTP, did a full backup of the TNG subdirectory from the web into the TNG install directory on TNG810onMowesII - overwriting all the 7.0.3. I then did a full backup of the database tables subdirectory (depending on your web host it will probably be named similar to the name of your database installation) into the data subdirectory of mysql on TNG810onMowesII

The next step needs the adjustment of the values in config.php as mentioned above and this is easiest accomplished by using your edit software (rather than TNG admin mode). If you have Lazarus installed, you will need to modify the appropriate file too.

Keep a backup of these two files in case you overwrite them in the future.

You should now have a working copy of your web site on your hard drive - which is at worst one day behind your online site.

Installation on a USB drive

Once the hard drive installation is working, it is a simple matter of doing a directory copy (TNG810onMowesII) from the PC to each USB drive in turn.

Just check each installation to confirm.


WS_FTP has the facility to create synchronisation tasks which compare the two installations and then upload (from web to hard drive) only those files which have been changed since the last run. I created two such tasks: one to synchronise the TNG files, the other the database tables. The TNG task takes about 25 minutes, the database tables about 3 minutes. Although I haven't done so yet, this task could be automated to run at set times.

Once the web to hard drive synchronisation has been carried out, I use the program Allway Synch to synchronise each of the USB drives to the hard drive.

Mission accomplished.

Related links

Other Home Computer web server options are available using: