How to install WordPress locally

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You can work with your WordPress development online or offline on your local machine. The best is to create a local environment in which it is easy to install and uninstall WordPress instances as you need. When the time comes and you are ready to publish your work, copy the site to an online server.

Why work locally?

Do you want to learn to use WordPress, create a new site, or develop your own theme or plugin? The best is to work locally. You do not need a hosting plan or a public webserver. It is free and efficient. It is much easier to edit the files and debug code.

You need an environment to run WordPress – “an internet of your own inside your computer“.

WordPress requirements

WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS) that runs on a webserver to create and publish a website or blog. WordPress is powering millions of websites with a market share of 60 – 70% of CMS systems (depends on what you count in the statistics).

But – WordPress needs a server to run, which your computer is not. WordPress requirements are:

  • a web server (Apache or Nginx)
  • PHP 7.4 or later
  • a database server (MySQL or MariaDB)
  • HTTPS support

WordPress requirements

I’m not getting any deeper into these requirements because if you do not understand them, you’ll be good by following my instructions and learning more later. And if you do understand them, there is no need to explain.

So, how to get all this installed on your PC? Be it Windows, Mac or Linux machine.

How to meet these requirements?

Life is full of choices. Others are better than others, and sometimes the best option is a personal preference. For most users, there is no point in installing all the server software and running it on their personal computers. There is too much to configure and too much to take care of. For ordinary human beings, the best option is to install software that packages the whole server environment in an easy-to-use application.

OK, I know there are alternatives. For example, you can install a web server on your computer. And it’s not even that complicated. Yes, you can install a database server and fulfill all the requirements. But if your job is not to maintain servers, why do it. Concentrate on the subject you are interested. Value your time and take the easy route. There is no glory to those that do everything the hard way.

Running the server software natively on your machine does not benefit you.

My recommendation is Local.

There is no need to comment about not mentioning Vagrant, Docker, or Staging environments. If you already know about them, you should understand better.

Get and install your Local server environment

Navigate to https://localwp.com and click download. Choose your platform (Windows, Mac or Linux). Install the application and start it.

What is Local WP?

Local is an application with everything you need to run your WordPress sites locally on your own computer. It even installs new sites to you with a couple of mouse clicks and giving your site a name.

It is easy to install new sites at will. Test a new idea, run a backup of your production site, develop a new site, learn to use WordPress, test an update or new plugin. There are a million reasons you would like to set up a new site, do something with it and dump it when you are done.

If you are developing a new production site for yourself or for your customer, do it locally. And when you are done, publish the site to the production server and make it public to the world.

With Local you get 100% genuine, true life, standalone website, running WordPress. This is the best alternative for creatives to design and create websites for their customers.

Your first site

When you start the Local application first time it prompts you to create a new site. With Local running, install your first site.

he procedure is simple. Just give your site a name which will also become the URL for the site (inside your computer) i.e., “siteone” will become “http://siteone.local”. 

The steps to create a new site:

  1. click “+” button or “Create a new site”
  2. give the site a name
  3. choose environment settings (just click continue)
  4. choose your username and password
  5. wait a moment for WordPress to install
  6. log in and enjoy
Installing WordPress on LocalWP.
No sites yet, Lets istall one
Giving a name for site on localwp.
Give a name for your site
Choose the environment (just click continue)
choose username and password for wordpress on localwp.
Choose your username and password (and remember them)
Localwp is installing WordPress.
Wait for it... wait for it.
Localwo interface.
Start your site and have fun

Next steps

OK, you have a WordPress site installed on your computer. What now?

Well, click the “Admin” button and log in to your new site. Set up all the necessary settings like; permalinks, media, comments, date and time formats, etc. and start using your WordPress.

WordPress post-install settings are essential, and they deserve their own article. So, until next time.
I’ll write my next article about the post-install settings.

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Kari Selovuo

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