How to Install WordPress Manually Using cPanel – A Step-by-Step Tutorial

WordPress, the Content Management System (CMS) can be installed on a web server in two different ways: One being the easier and simpler way which most of the beginners, noobs or people who don’t want to get their hands dirty use – they use custom scripts like Fantastico, Softaculous, SimpleScript, etc. provided by their web host to install WordPress automatically on their web server; all they need to do is enter some information and KABOOOOM!! It’s all done; a new self-hosted WordPress Blog is live and running.

But what if this easier way doesn’t work for you or you yourself want to install WordPress manually for higher level of security or some other reason. This tutorial will guide you in setting up a WordPress site manually in such cases. Before we begin, you need to have a few things handy:

  • Your cPanel credentials
  • An FTP client
  • Your FTP credentials
  • A text editor

Before we begin, I would like to tell you that installing WordPress manually isn’t that tough; it only requires some technical and practical knowledge. So here we go with the manual WordPress installation.

Step 1: Download WordPress

Visit the official WordPress site and download the latest version of WordPress to your PC. You’ll get the software in the form of a compressed file. This is the CMS (Content Management System) your site will run on.

Step 2: Login to Your cPanel

Log in to your cPanel with the cPanel credentials (username and password) provided by your web host. Once logged in, look for the MySql Database Wizard icon, and click on it.

MySQL database in cPanel

You’ll be taken to a page where you would be asked to create a new database.

create database

Enter the database name and click on the “Next Step” button. You’ll be asked to enter a new username and password. Once entered, confirm the password and click on the “Create User” button.

create database user

The next page would ask you to specify the privileges for the user you are about to create.

db user privileges

Click on the ‘All Privileges’ radio button in order to give the user full privileges and move on to the “next step”. You’ll see that you have successfully created a new user and a new database.

Step 3: Edit the WordPress Files

Go back to the compressed WordPress file you downloaded in step 1. Extract the contents to a particular location/destination. Go to the extracted files and search for a folder named ‘WordPress’. Open it; you’ll see a file called “wp-config-sample.php”. Rename it to “wp-config.php” (without quotes, of course). Now open this wp-config.php file in your text editor (preferably Notepad) and start editing the file. Search for the following entries and edit them as described:

wp config edit

DB_NAME – Enter the database name you just created.

DB_USER – Enter the database username you just created.

DB_PASSWORD – Enter the database password you just chose.

DB_HOST – The hostname is usually “localhost”. So enter “localhost” here.

DB_CHARSET – This is database character set option. Normally you should NOT be editing this.

DB_COLLATE – This stands for the database collation which normally should be left blank.

Step 4: Upload the WordPress Files

Once you are ready with the edited files, you should prepare for uploading all the WordPress files to the server. Open your FTP client (e.g. FileZilla), login using your FTP credentials, and connect to your FTP account on the server (web host).

You’ll require:

  • Your FTP username
  • Your FTP password
  • Your hostname (this usually is your domain name)
  • Port number

For instance, I would enter wordpres as my username, WordPressAdmin as my password, webdesigning101.com as the hostname, and 21 as the port number.

  • Once connected to the host, you’ll see the folder with / symbol in the right pane.
  • Click on the + sign and you will see a public_html folder.
  • Click on it.

This is the root folder where we will upload the contents of the WordPress folder. Remember! Don’t upload the folder WordPress. Instead upload all the files present inside this folder. (If you upload it along with the WordPress folder, your blog address will be: yourdomain.com/wordpress instead of yourdomain.com).

How to upload: Well this is quite simple. The left pane in FileZilla shows the contents of your PC whereas the right pane shows your server’s folders. Browse to the WordPress folder in the left pane, select all its content and copy it over to the public_html folder in the right pane. That’s it, all your WordPress files have now been uploaded to your server.

Step 5: Run the Installation Scripts

Open your web browser (Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, or whichever you use). Enter the following path in the address bar:

http://yourdomain.com/wp-admin/install.php

(Replace yourdomain.com with your domain name) and hit enter.

You’ll be taken to a page where you will find a button saying “Run The Install”, click on it.

WP installation script

On the next page, enter the title of your blog and your email address, check the radio button saying “Allow my blog to appear in search engines like Google and Technorati” (unless and until you want to hide your blog from search engines), and click the “Install WordPress” button.

You’ll then be redirected to your WordPress Login page. You can use this page to login to the admin panel of your site using your WordPress username and password.

Oh yeah you have successfully installed WordPress.

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