How to Install WordPress

A chap on Linked In asked for my advice on how to install WordPress. I wrote out a quick email and thought I’d include© Temis | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images it here. This is our process, but it’s off the top of my head, so if you run across any discrepancies or errors, I’d so appreciate hearing about it.

  1. Create the database. I do this directly through cPanel. You don’t need to use PHPMyAdmin (is that the worst name EVER?) for WordPress installs, only for cleaning up botched messes, which I recommend against. The database name is totally wholly completely irrelevant. Feel free to call it Martha, if you like.
  2. Create a database user for WordPress. I call mine [it’s a secret!]
  3. Give the WP user full rights to the db
  4. Upload the WordPress install files to the folder where they’ll live. For your first install, put it in public_html or whatever your hosting company calls the web root. For other installs, create a folder named for the domain name, not because it matters (again, you could call it Martha) but because it’s easier to remember that lives in the folder “” than to remember it’s in x42m13.
  5. Modify wp-config.php by changing the database name, username, password, and table prefix. THE TABLE PREFIX MATTERS. Again, it can be anything, but why not make it memorable? For my website “Why We Lead” I used wwl_ and for “Someday Box” I used now_ because those are easy for me to remember. Yes, we’re using the same database for multiple WP installs. If you’re managing it, put it here. If you’re setting it up for someone else to manage WordPress, create a separate database so they can’t hose yours. But if you set up a site for someone else, and they’ll always have you managing it, make your life easier and just use one database. Think long-term, though. If they’re likely to take control in 2 years, set it up separate now.
  6. Upload wp-config.php and go to the URL of your site.
  7. If all is well, and you don’t get a “can’t connect to the database” message, but do get a “create a WordPress admin password” then fill in the blanks and click “H’ray” or “Go” or “OK” or whatever the button says.
  8. Enjoy your site.

Other notes:

Always back up the database before you do a core update.

Install Spam Free WordPress because it’s a good free spam killer.

Install JetPack and connect it to a free account (you don’t have to use but having an account there gives you access to lots of cool features.) Use JetPack for comments, contact form, and whatever else it offers.

Lemme know where you get stuck. Glad to help.

Photo Credit: © Temis | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images

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