ColdFusion Installation

As mentioned in the introduction, you need to install ColdFusion before you can build ColdFusion applications on your local computer. Once downloaded, ColdFusion installation shouldn't take much more than 10 minutes.

You can download ColdFusion from the Adobe website (Adobe is the company that produces ColdFusion). Adobe has this comparison of the ColdFusion editions to ensure you download the correct edition.

Don't forget that the (free) developer edition actually gives you the same functionality as the full-blown enterprise version. The only limitation is that you can only access the website from the local computer and two other IP addresses. This means that you won't actually need to pay for ColdFusion in order to build your website. And as long as your web hosting provider supports ColdFusion, you won't need to pay anything else to use ColdFusion.

Installation Steps

To give you an idea of what ColdFusion installation involves, below are the steps that I took when installing ColdFusion 2016 Developer edition onto a MacBook Pro. Don't let the number of steps put you off though — most of it is just clicking your way through.

This page was created when ColdFusion 2016 was the current version. If by the time you read this, you have a later version of ColdFusion, the steps may differ slightly from below.

Here's a version of this page with screenshots accompanying each step.

  1. Once downloaded, double click the installation file. In my case (Mac) this was called ColdFusion_2016_WWEJ_osx10.dmg. You should see the following introduction screen: ColdFusion 2016 installation screen 1
  2. Click Next
  3. Licence Agreement (Confirm that you've read and agree to the licence agreement)
  4. Select installation type (and serial number if applicable)
  5. Select installer configuration (either Server or JEE)
  6. Select ColdFusion Server Profile (either Development Profile, Production Profile, or Production Profile & Secure Profile)
  7. Select the sub-components you want to install. By default, all sub-components are selected.
  8. Enter a username and password for remote start/stop ColdFusion
  9. Select the directory you'd like to install Coldfusion into. The default directory is fine (unless you have a specific reason to change this)
  10. Choose whether to run CF on its built-in web server or to configure your web server to run CF. The web server option is recommended, however, if you'd like this version of CF to co-exist with a previous version, you can enable this by selecting the built-in web server option.
  11. Select which web servers/websites should be configured to use ColdFusion. Click Add to configure a web server to use with CF.
  12. Add Web Server Configuration: If you run your own web server (such as IIS or Apache), this screen allows you to add it to be configured to serve ColdFusion pages. Select the web server from the drop down list that you'd like to configure for ColdFusion
  13. Review/adjust the port number for the built-in web server. The default port number is 8500 but ColdFusion gives you the option to change this to another port number if required.
  14. Configure OpenOffice if required. This step enables you to configure OpenOffice with ColdFusion so that Office documents are processed with OpenOffice. Select Configure OpenOffice or deselect it as you wish.
  15. Enter a password for accessing the ColdFusion Administrator. Note that you can always disable the login requirements for accessing the ColdFusion Administrator (you can do this via the ColdFusion Administrator). In general, you should never disable this unless it is in a development environment (eg, on your own local machine).
  16. Enable RDS (Remote Development Service) if required. Only enable RDS if you need to access the server remotely for development purposes. As a general rule, you should disable RDS on production servers (for security reasons)
  17. Server Updates: ColdFusion can automatically check for server updates whenever you log in to the ColdFusion Administrator. Select or deselect Automatically check for server updates as you wish.
  18. Pre-Installation Summary: Review your settings. You can go back and change anything that's incorrect. If all is correct, click Install. This is the bit that actually installs ColdFusion on your computer.

ColdFusion will now be installed on your computer. This should take no more than 5 or 10 minutes.

Once ColdFusion has been installed, you will see the following screen. You will be notified of any errors that occurred during installation with instructions on how to view the log file.

ColdFusion 2016 Installation Complete screen

Starting ColdFusion

Once ColdFusion has been installed, your web server should be able to render any ColdFusion file. That is, if it has a .cfm extension, your web server will pass it to ColdFusion to process. However, this will only occur if ColdFusion has in fact, been started.

You may need to start ColdFusion once you've finished the installation. Here's how to do that.


  1. Open a Command Prompt window
  2. Change directory to {cfroot}\cfusion\bin
  3. Run the following command: coldfusion.exe -start -console

You can also stop and restart ColdFusion. To stop ColdFusion use coldfusion.exe -stop -console. To restart use coldfusion.exe -restart -console.

UNIX/Linux/Solaris/MAC OS X

  1. Open a Terminal window
  2. Change directory to {cfroot}\cfusion\bin
  3. Run the following command: ./coldfusion start

To stop ColdFusion use ./coldfusion stop. To restart use ./coldfusion restart.

Note that {cfroot} means the ColdFusion root directory — the directory that it is installed in. On my iMac, the default installation was /Applications/Coldfusion2016.

Therefore, you could also use the following command to start CF: /Applications/Coldfusion2016/cfusion/bin/coldfusion start.

If you get the following message You must be the root user to configure the ColdFusion connector. Start ColdFusion as "sudo ./coldfusion start" to configure connector. you will need to start ColdFusion using the root user (i.e. using sudo).

You should only need to do this once (i.e. the very first time you run CF). Once the connector has been configured you should be able to run CF as a non-root user.

You can find the web server configuration tool at {cfroot}\cfusion\runtime\bin\wsconfig if you need to configure a web server with CF.

ColdFusion Migration

When you first open the ColdFusion Administrator (at, ColdFusion migrates settings from any previous version of ColdFusion to the new version.

Log in using the ColdFusion Administrator password (i.e. the password that you provided earlier during the installation), then follow the prompts to complete the migration.

ColdFusion 2016 Migration Wizard