Get the latest version of CakePHP (current version is 1.2)
A HTTP server (better if Apache) with session and mod_rewrite enabled.
PHP 4.3.2 or higher
A MySQL database (PostgreSQL is supported too)
If you want to install it in your PC (Windows), then read this article: http://frinity.blogspot.com/2008/05/installing-apache-php-mysql-in-windows.html
Upload the files
Unpack the downloaded file, and upload its content to your server. Make sure that it looks like this from your root.
Configure your database
Rename app/config/database.php.default to database.php. Open it and edit the details.
'connect' => 'mysql_connect',
'host' => 'localhost',
'login' => 'user',
'password' => 'password',
'database' => 'database_name',
'prefix' => '');
Now we can move to another article for creating your first controller!