Using Laravel Valet for Custom URL Generation and App Launch

Laravel has some outstanding packages for different aspects of web development. Among these packages is Laravel Valet for local development workflow for efficient project iteration and testing. But this package brings another usage and benefit. It provides a lightweight and intuitive solution, getting your Laravel projects up and running in minutes.

But Valet’s capabilities extend beyond just basic hosting. This blog delves into a lesser-known yet powerful aspect. I’ll explain to you how our Laravel development company uses Valet for custom URL generation and application launch. Let’s begin.

What is Laravel Valet?

Laravel Valet is a development environment specifically designed for Laravel web developers using macOS. It simplifies the local development process by automating tasks that would otherwise require manual configuration.

Here’s a breakdown of what Valet offers:

  • Lightweight and Efficient: Valet operates in the background using minimal resources (around 7MB of RAM). That makes it ideal for streamlining your workflow without bogging down your system.
  • No Complex Configurations: Forget editing intricate configuration files. Valet handles everything behind the scenes. So you can focus on development.
  • Seamless Local Hosting: Valet utilizes Nginx (a web server) and DnsMasq (a DNS server) to serve your Laravel projects on a *.test domain. This means you can access your application at a URL like your-project-name.test in your web browser.
  • Quick Project Startup: With Valet, setting up new Laravel projects becomes a breeze. Simply use the valet park command to designate a directory for your projects, and Valet takes care of the rest.

In essence, Laravel Valet provides a streamlined and user-friendly way to run Laravel applications locally on your macOS machine. So you can concentrate on building and testing your web applications.

Why Use Laravel Valet for Custom URL Generation and App Launch?

Laravel itself provides functionalities for generating URLs within your application. Moreover, Valet offers some distinct advantages for custom URL generation and application launch specifically for local development.

  • Effortless Custom Domains: Valet automatically creates a *.test subdomain based on your project directory name. This provides a clean and memorable URL for accessing your application during development, without needing to modify your system’s hosts file.
  • Simplified Sharing: Valet’s generated URLs make it easy to share your local development environment with colleagues or clients. They can access the application directly through the URL without any additional configuration on their end.
  • Streamlined Workflow: Launching your application becomes a one-step process. It navigates to the generated URL in your browser. So the server startup and routing handled in a better way. That means you can jump right into development.
  • HTTPS Security: Valet automatically generates and configures SSL certificates for your custom domain. That ensures secure communication within your local environment. This is particularly useful for testing features that rely on secure connections.

Overall, Laravel Valet can help manage custom URLs and launch apps locally, successfully. It streamlines the workflow, promotes collaboration, and adds a layer of security to your development process.

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How to Use Laravel Valet for Launching Applications with Custom URLs?

With Laravel Valet, you can launch the applications with custom URLs and efficient workflow.

But first, make sure you have installed Laravel Valet and configured it on your macOS machine. You’ll also need your Laravel project parked within Valet using this command.

valet park <project_directory>

This creates the necessary configuration and assigns a unique *.test URL to your project.

Step 1: Navigate to Project Directory

Open your terminal and navigate to the root directory of your parked Laravel project. You can use the cd command to achieve this.

Step 2: Laravel Artisan Commands

Laravel provides a powerful command-line interface called Artisan. To launch your application using Valet’s custom URL, you’ll leverage the valet serve command offered by the Artisan suite.

Step 3: Run the valet serve Command

Within your terminal, execute the php artisan valet:serve command. This instructs Valet to launch your application using the project’s unique *.test domain generated during the parking process.

Step 4: Access the Application

Once you run the valet serve command, your Laravel application should automatically launch in your web browser. You can access it using the custom URL associated with your project directory, typically following the format http://<project_directory_name>.test.

Incorporate the valet serve command into your workflow. That way, you can leverage Valet’s custom URL generation to seamlessly launch your Laravel applications directly within the development environment. It helps enhance the development experience.

You can also consult with our Laravel experts to make the best use of Valet and other packages in your project.

FAQs on Using Laravel Valet for Custom URL Generation

Can I customize the domain extension used by Valet?
By default, Valet uses the .test domain extension for custom URLs. Unfortunately, directly customizing the extension isn't possible. However, you can achieve a similar effect by modifying your computer's hosts file to point a custom domain to the appropriate Valet URL. This approach requires some technical knowledge and can be specific to your operating system.
What happens if I have two projects with similar names?
Laravel Valet attempts to create unique URLs based on project directory names. However, if you have projects with very similar names, conflicts might arise. To avoid this, consider using a consistent naming convention that incorporates additional details (e.g., my-ecommerce-app-v2). Alternatively, Valet allows specifying a port number during the parking process (valet park :). So you can create unique URLs even with similar project names.
Are there any limitations to using Valet for custom URL generation?
Valet's custom URL generation is limited to your local development environment accessible on your machine. These URLs won't be publicly accessible on the internet. Additionally, some advanced URL configuration options might be unavailable compared to manually editing server configurations.


Laravel Valet offers a powerful and convenient approach to managing custom URLs and application launches. It streamlines the workflow by automating URL generation. That means a more enhanced project organization with descriptive URLs and seamless app launch.

With Valet, you can dedicate more time and energy to crafting exceptional Laravel applications. And that is all within a secure and efficient development experience.

Need help with using packages like Valet in your project? Then consult with our Laravel development experts today!

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Chinmay Pandya is an accomplished tech enthusiast specializing in PHP, WordPress, and Laravel. With a solid background in web development, he brings expertise in crafting innovative solutions and optimizing performance for various projects.

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