WordPress Local Development for Beginners
Creating local WordPress websites is a common practice among developers and website owners. It allows you to test Word Press without creating an actual website on the internet.
Local websites are only visible to you on your computer. You can try different WordPress themes and plugins, test their features, and learn the WordPress basics.
The great thing about running a localhost install is that your test website will run much more quickly than it otherwise would online. A localhost install is also more secure and provides an ideal testing environment on your computer, away from prying eyes or hackers.
Having said that, let’s check out how to install WordPress locally on Windows, Mac, or Linux using XAMPP.
What is XAMPP?
XAMPP stands for cross-platform, Apache, MySQL, PHP and Perl. It’s a simple and lightweight solution that allows you to create a local web server for testing purposes.
PHP is a programming language and MySQL is database management software. Both of them are required to run WordPress.
XAMPP makes it easy for you to build WordPress websites locally. It is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux based computers.
Installing XAMPP on Your Computer
1. Go To the XAMPP website and click on the download button for your operating system.
The XAMPP file is 109MB. Once downloaded, launch the installer.
1. After downloading XAMPP, you will need to click and run the installer.
2. In the next window, you will be asked to select which components of the software you would like to install and which ones you don’t want. Some options, such as Apache and PHP are essential to running the software and will at automatically installed, so they are greyed out so you can’t select them.
It’s up to you which components you want to install. Since we want to run WordPress in our localhost environment, leave MySQL and phpMyAdmin checked and uncheck the remaining options.
3. Next, select the folder where you would like to install XAMPP on your machine. I’m going to create a new folder in C:\XAMPP.
4. After going through all those initial installation steps, XAMPP is now finally ready to install. Click Next.
5. After finishing the wizard, check the ‘start the control panel now’ option and then click on the finish button.
6. This will launch the XAMPP control panel. Go ahead and click on the start button next to Apache and MySQL.
Once both applications are started their names will be highlighted in Green.
You have successfully installed XAMPP on your computer.
Now you are ready to create a local website and install WordPress using XAMPP.
Local WordPress Site with XAMPP
1. First, download the latest version of WordPress from WordPress.org.
2. After downloading WordPress, you need to extract the zip file, and you will see a wordpress folder. You need to copy this folder.
3. Goes to the XAMPP installation folder. C:\Xampp\htdocs folder. Paste the wordpress folder you copied earlier inside htdocs.
4. Next, you need to open web browser and visit localhost/websitedemo. You will see a page like this you can choose your language:
5. After clicking Continue button You will see a page like this :
This page will tell you that WordPress needs a database name, database username, password, and host information.
Create wordpress Database
a) Need to open a new browser tab and visit localhost/phpmyadmin/. This will launch phpMyAdmin app that comes pre-installed with XAMPP. It allows you to easily manage your databases using a simpler interface.
b) click on Databases, provide a name for your database, and then click on the create button to continue.
Now that you have created a database, you can use it for your WordPress site.
6. Switch back to localhost/ websitedemo/ browser tab and click on the ‘Lets Go‘ button.
7. Enter the database name. Your username is ‘root‘ and you should leave the password field blank. For the database host field, you need to use localhost.
8. After that you need to enter a username, password, and an email address for your admin account.
WordPress will now run the installation and prompt you to login once it’s done.
You can login to your website by going to localhost/websitedemo/wp-admin and use the username / password that you entered during installation to login.
Now that you have created your local WordPress site using XAMPP, you can work on it like you would do on a live WordPress site.
Hope this helps!
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