Word Press

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Learn how to install and use WordPress.


There are three different flavors of WordPress:

Hosting Sites

You can rent a site that will host your instance of WordPress, as described here:


The sites listed at the above link are not your only options. Many sites providing web hosting for third parties. If you build a site on one of those platforms, you may well have the option of installing WordPress.

Installation on Linux

There are various places on the web where you can find instructions on how to install Wordpress on Linux. I offer my own version of the primarily automated install below.

Install Linux

The simplest way to get started is to install Ubuntu Desktop. Though I don't recommend it for beginners, you can choose the Ubuntu Server instead. During the install of the server, you will have a chance to install the LAMP stack. This means you will have Apache2, MySQL and PHP/Python/Perl installed by default. If you already have Ubuntu up and running, or if you used the desktop version of Ubuntu, then you need to add LAMP yourself. Here is a description of how to proceed:


After you have installed the LINUX server, you need to install Wordpress:

 sudo apt-get install wordpress php5-gd
sudo ln -s /usr/share/wordpress /var/www/wordpress

Next type the following to run a script that will install WordPress for you:

sudo bash /usr/share/doc/wordpress/examples/setup-mysql -n wordpress localhost

NOTE: If you are installing on server that has a known public DNS, then you should put that public DNS in the place of localhost. For instance, if I were creating this file for Elvenware, the last bit would look like this .../setup-mysql -n wordpress elvenware.com. If you are working on EC2, and you don't have domain name of your own, then you might write something like this .../setup-mysql -n wordpress ec2-16-67-000-00.compute-1.amazonaws.com, where the DNS is associated with an elastic IP.

Due to a bug in the WordPress install script, you may get an unfound error on this command:

sudo bash /usr/share/doc/wordpress/examples/setup-mysql -n wordpress localhost

The problem is that sometimes the WordPress install script does not decompress the setup-mysql script. To fix the problem, you need to unzip it yourself. In particular, you can type the following command:

gunzip /usr/share/doc/wordpress/examples/setup-mysql.gz


cd /user/shar/doc/wordpress/examples
gunzip setup-mysql.gz

Now you should go to http://localhost/wordpress and fill in the form that appears in your browser.

Last step of the WordPress

Figure 01: The last step of the WordPress install

Now you can just browse to the following page to view your site:


And browse to this page to administer your site, and to begin adding in new pages:


Installing WordPress on AWS

Much of what is written here is summarized in this script: JsObjects/Utilities/InstallScripts/WordPress:

I had some trouble setting up WordPress on AWS when using an Elastic IP. I had to use the long form of the public DNS for the elastic IP. After install LAMP, I did this:

sudo apt-get install wordpress php5-gd
sudo ln -s /usr/share/wordpress /var/www/wordpress
sudo bash /usr/share/doc/wordpress/examples/setup-mysql -n wordpress ec2-32-23-173-11.compute-1.amazonaws.com

Due to a bug in the WordPress install script, you may get an unfound error on this command:

sudo bash /usr/share/doc/wordpress/examples/setup-mysql -n wordpress ec2-12-34-567-89.compute-1.amazonaws.com

The problem is that sometimes the WordPress install script does not decompress the setup-mysql script. To fix the problem, you need to unzip it yourself. In particular, you can type the following command:

gunzip /usr/share/doc/wordpress/examples/setup-mysql.gz


cd /user/shar/doc/wordpress/examples
gunzip setup-mysql.gz

When you are done, try rerunning the command which gave the error. it should work.

I found ec2-23-23-170-11.compute-1.amazonaws.com in the elastic ip page of the EC2 console. It is also available on the Instances page at the bottom, after you place a check mark before your running instance. It may be slightly easier to block copy the address from the Instances page.

WordPress get long form of public DNS for Elastic

Figure 0X: When installing WordPress on AWS, get the long form of public DNS for the Elastic IP. (Click to expand.)

Setting up the Database Manually

cd ~/temp
wget https://wordpress.org/latest.tar.gz
tar -xzvf latest.tar.gz
mysql -u root -p -e 'create database wordpress;'
mysql -u root -p -e 'GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON wordpress.* TO "root"@"localhost" IDENTIFIED BY "foobar";'
mysql -u root -p -e 'FLUSH PRIVILEGES;'
mysql -u root -p -e 'use wordpress; show grants for 'root'@'localhost';'

Sometimes it is nice not to run the automatic install shown above, but instead to get one's hands dirty and handle at least parts of the install yourself. This gives you more control, and a better understanding, of how WordPress works.

To get started, ,ake sure you can log into the mysql tool:

$ mysql -u root -p
Enter password:
Welcome to the MySQL monitor. Commands end with ; or \g.
Your MySQL connection id is 39
Server version: 5.1.58-1ubuntu1 (Ubuntu)

Now create a database called wordpress:

mysql> create DATABASE wordpress;
Query OK, 1 row affected (0.00 sec)

mysql> show databases;
| Database |
| information_schema |
| mysql |
| wordpress |
3 rows in set (0.00 sec)

To check your work with a GUI based interface to MySQL, install myphpadmin. To install this handy database adminstration tool on Linux just issue this command:

sudo apt-get install phpmyadmin

For more details, or for the Windows install of phpmyadmin, go to the PHP page:


$ mysql -u adminusername -p

GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON wordpress.* TO "wordpressusername"@"hostname" IDENTIFIED BY "password";



Understanding wp-config.php

Perhaps no part of the WordPress install is more important than properly configuring wp-config.php. This file is stored in the root of your WordPress site. This file is set up for you automatically during the install; nevertheless, it is important that you understand at least the core portions of this file. In particular, you should open up your copy of this file and find this section:

// ** MySQL settings - You can get this info from your web host ** //
/** The name of the database for WordPress */
define('DB_NAME', 'wordpress');

/** MySQL database username */
define('DB_USER', 'userName');

/** MySQL database password */
define('DB_PASSWORD', 'password');

/** MySQL hostname */
define('DB_HOST', 'localhost');

Here is where you define your database name, your user name, your password, and your host site. Where I have typed in userName, you should type in your user name, such as Lisa, Jerry or Miguel. You should also type in your custom password. It is typical, but by no means mandatory, to create a database named wordpress and to host your first site on your localhost.

Moving WordPress

 My web hosts does not give me root access to my site, so I was at first unclear how to set up this site. I ended up setting it up on Windows, using the Microsoft Web Platform Installer, which automated the entire process. I then simply copied the site over to Elvenware using SFTP. I set up a MySQL database on Elvenware, edited the wp-config.php file, then browsed to my admin site for the blog. It asked me to set up the site, which meant in this case that it would create the necessary tables in the database for me. I had to fill in a few simple fields, and then I was up and running.

After I moved my WordPress site from a local machine to my web host, I found I had put it in the wrong folder. The problem is that the folder I placed WordPress in becomes, by default, part of the URL to my blog:


My initial mistake was to put the project in a folder called wordpress, when I wanted to have it in a folder called elvenblog. So how did I make the change? It turned out to be a two step process:

It turns out that this change was fairly easy to make using a tool called PhpMyAdmin. That tool automated the process for me, but it did display the actual SQL created to perform the update, which looks like this:

UPDATE `MyWordPressDatabase`.`wp_options` SET `option_value` = 'ElvenBlog' WHERE `wp_options`.`option_id` =4 LIMIT 1 ;

Having completed this task, however, I found I was not quite done yet. I could browse my site and use wp-admin, but some of the minor features, such as comments, were not working correctly, in that they kept trying to access .../charlie/wordpress rather than .../charlie/elvenblog. To fix this, signed into to wp-admin, and went to the Settings page. On that page I changed the Site Address, so that both the WordPress address and Site Address read:


After making that change, comments on my blog posts started working again. (It is posssible that I could also have simply left the Site Address field blank, but I have not yet tried that experiment.)

Here is a link that can help you understand more about this subject, and how to handle some special cases I don't cover here.



If you have been accessing a site through localhost, and then you try to access it from another machine, you may see the text for your site but not the CSS. To fix this:

Editing with WordPress

There are various bits of markup you can use to help you edit the documents you create.


Insert a Post with Code

Use the wp_insert_post method: