If you have a WordPress.com account, there will come a time when you may feel constrained by the limited number of themes, plugins, and widgets that you have;or may want to extend the functionality of your site, for example the ability to add adsense adverts. Should this time come, you will need to move to a self hosted site where your site is hosted on an external server. There are some requirements you will need for this and I hope to summarise those requirements in this post:
REQUIREMENTS FOR MOVING TO SELF HOSTING
- You will need a webhost that supports PHP script and MySql
- You will need the latest, cleanest build of WordPress from wordpress.org
- You will need a basic understanding of file handling, management and editing
- You will need a code editor such as Notepad plus-plus which is free to download
- You will need an FTP client application such as Filezilla for uploading your files onto your server
TIP- One of the best pieces of advice I was given was to set up a local testing environment on your computer first before uploading your content onto your 'live' server. Here are your options for local testing:
- BitNami WordPress Stack- this is my personal favourite. I'm a big fan of lazy and the Bitnami installation is a piece of cake. Bitnami works on Windows, Mac an Linux and has WordPress installation included . Go to http://bitnami.org to download the latest version. It's pretty much a 5-click installation and you're good to go
- WAMP for Windows: WAMP stands for Windows, Apache, MySql and PHP. Apache is the Webserver environment MySql is the database where your content will be housed and PHP is the language WordPress is written in. Installing WAMP server is a little more involved than installing BitNami, as it requires you to first install WAMP server then install WordPress under that.
- MAMP for Macs. Similar to the above in that WordPress needs to be installed separately.
- Other options: XAMPP; which is a cross platform application which works on Mac, Windows and Linux and LAMP for Linux
Local testing is the best way to prevent problems further down the line because if something goes wrong-for example a broken plugin is installed, at the very worst it is your local installation that is broken and not your 'live' website.
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