Salesforce Tools: Running Workbench Securely on OSX

This post is courtesy of Bashir Qaasim, one of our talented consultants.
Salesforce Workbench is a very powerful browser-based PHP app that
allows users to describe, query, manipulate, and migrate both data and metadata in organizations directly in their web browser with a simple and intuitive user interface.
Basically, it’s Data Loader on steroids! It’s been an amazing help to me in the past month or so, and I think everyone could benefit from it. The application needs to run on a web-server though, so here is how to get it running. The installation may look intimidating, but it is actually quite simple, plus the results are nothing less than priceless:NOTE: I had an idea to get it up and running on cloud based Amazon server, but the developer never intended the tool to scale in this way, so you should run it on your own MacBook.

Download and Install XAMPP Web Server for OS X

Download XAMPP for OS X from the link below, and install the Application as you would any other (it is a simple .dmg file).

Download and Install Workbench

Unzip the workbench file you downloaded and place the folder into the following directory:

Test XAMPP and Workbench

Open your Applications Folder and open “XAMPP Control.” There will be three Start buttons, each for Apache, MySQL, and FTP. Start all of them, and you may be prompted for your OS X password.

After they are all started, go to your browser and type in “http://localhost/xampp/.” You should get a page Titled, “XAMPP for Mac OS X.”Now test your workbench installation by browsing to “http://localhost/xampp/workbench/“CONGRATS! But wait, you need to enable SSL before using it safely.

Enable SSL on XAMPP

In order to submit your Salesforce credentials securely through Workbench, you must enable SSL on XAMPP. You do this through the OS X terminal. Open the Terminal Application and type:sudo /Applications/XAMPP/xamppfiles/xampp enablesslPress enter. If you have a password on OS X, you will be asked to type it in. You should get a message stating that it is now enabled. After doing this you will be able to access workbench securely in your browser at:https://localhost/xampp/workbench/You may get a security warning about an untrusted certificate, but just ignore it. The untrusted source is YOU! So no worries.ENJOY!

NOTE: Never ever ever ever submit secure credentials through a simple http connection!

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7 thoughts on “Salesforce Tools: Running Workbench Securely on OSX

  1. Its a great tool, thanks for sharing this… unfortunatley I am still living in a world of “old IT” so don’t yet have a shiny desirable mac book!! But I managed to get it going on my cheap-as-chips Dell laptop… just swapped the xamp for a wamp.

    • Wes says:

      Yeah it’s very cool! I love the feature to save SOQL queries – amongst other things of course. Bashir is the one who deserves the thanks, you can get him at

  2. Thanks for the great write up! Mind if I link to it from the main Workbench site?

    –Ryan (developer of Workbench)

  3. rajib nandi says:

    Its a great tool, thanks for sharing this…

  4. KC Thiruchelvam says:

    Guys there’s an online version now :

  5. Bashir Qaasim says:

    Awesome! Online version!

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