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Install and run WordPress on a local server

If you’re new to WordPress and still in the learning phase, you’ll definitely need to experiment with the ideas and topics you’re learning. You know that WordPress needs hosting and a domain to work, but what if you want to try WordPress without paying for hosting and a domain?

You might search for free hosting and domain, don’t bother yourself, here’s how if you intend to do so. How do I get free hosting and domain?

If you’re new to this field, I recommend you to know some basic information before continuing reading this article:

What is WordPress platform and how to start with it

What does hosting and domain mean in the web

Key features of a local server

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  • Easy to use.
  • No additional cost required.
  • Can be used without an internet connection.
  • Suitable for learning, no harm done in case of errors.
  • Works without using a domain to access the website.

How to get a local server

A local server is simply a software like any other program that runs on your computer. It is installed in the same way, and through it, you can manage databases and host various websites.

Since WordPress is developed using the PHP programming language, we need to use a local server that supports PHP.

Some popular software for local servers

Here are the main programs used for this purpose. Of course, there are many paid and free programs.

1- XAMPP Server

XAMPP is one of the most popular open-source PHP servers for hosting applications locally.

It allows web developers to easily test applications as it comes with pre-installed web tools like MySQL, PHP, PERL, FileZilla, and others. It’s also the first platform of its kind, which is why many developers recommend using XAMPP.

XAMPP is very easy to install and doesn’t require any additional technical knowledge to set up web applications. Additionally, the core system has a user-friendly interface where you can easily start and stop required web services including Apache, MySQL, and FileZilla.

2- LAMP Server

LAMP stands for Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP. The core system was specifically developed to aid in PHP application development on the Linux operating system, which includes the Apache web server. Due to its Linux foundation, the PHP web server provides strong security. It can be installed on any device. For beginner developers, installing LAMP is somewhat complex and requires some technical knowledge.

3- WAMP Server

WAMP Server is an open-source PHP server for hosting web applications locally and may be the best alternative to XAMPP.

For developers looking for a core system with a robust Apache server, WampServer is the first choice on Windows as it allows developers to create dynamic web applications using Apache2, PHP, MySQL, and MariaDB.

Quickly start and stop web services without affecting manual processes. The inclusion of PhpMyAdmin in the core system allows for easy management of MySQL databases connected to the Apache server. This helps developers to easily install external platforms like Magento, WordPress, Joomla, etc.

Installing WordPress using WAMP Server

You can choose the local server program that suits you best. We will explain the process using WAMP Server, but don’t worry, you’ll get the same result with any other program.

Download a compatible version of WAMP Server for your system from the official website http://wampserver.com/.

  1. Install the local server program like any other software. Make sure during installation that you install MySQL and select it.
  2. Open the WAMP program.
  3. Wait until the program icon turns green (indicating that your server is running).
  4. Open your web browser and type the address localhost/phpmyadmin into the URL bar.

You will see the following screen. Enter the username root and the password you set during installation. Leave it blank if you didn’t set one.

Make sure you have selected the MySQL server and then click on the “Go” button.

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You will then be shown the main phpMyAdmin control panel.

Create the database

Go to the “Database” tab and type the name of the new database you want to create, let’s say “firstdb” in our example. In the second field, choose the encoding utf8_general_ci, then click on the “Create” button as shown in the following image.

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With this, we have finished creating the database for our WordPress website. This is the most important step because WordPress cannot function without a database.

Downloading WordPress and placing it in the right location

  1. Now, go to https://wordpress.org/download/ and download a copy of the WordPress system to your computer by clicking the “Download WordPress” button.
  2. Transfer the downloaded WordPress file to the following path on your computer: C:\wamp64\www
  3. Unzip the file and rename the folder to a suitable name for your project, for example, “firstwebsite”.
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Installing WordPress

Open your web browser and type the following URL in the address bar: localhost/firstwebsite

Remember to replace “firstwebsite” with the name of the folder you named for your project.

After navigating to the link, you will see a welcome screen informing you of what you need before starting the setup.

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Remember that we have previously set up the database. Click on the “Continue” button and fill in the data as appropriate.

account

After submitting the data, you will receive a message informing you that everything is okay. You can now start the installation process. Click on the “Run the installation” button to proceed.

On the next screen, you will enter the site name, username, which is the site administrator. A strong password will be suggested, and you can change it. Don’t forget to add your email address as well. Finally, click on the “Install WordPress” button.

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Congratulations! You have successfully completed the process. Now, click on the “Login” button to be directed to the login page. Then, enter your username or email address and password to access the dashboard.

dashboard

This is your WordPress dashboard, where you will spend most of your time.

Explore it thoroughly and go through each section. Try out all the options and learn from the experience.

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