Did you know that you can install WordPress on your own Windows computer for learning and testing? Working with WordPress for Windows is a great way to test plugins, updates, and other website changes before pushing them live to your audience. In this article, we’ll show you how to install WordPress locally using WAMP.
The process of installing WordPress on your personal computer is also known as setting up a local server environment or localhost. Often theme designers and plugin developers install WordPress on a local server environment to speed up their development process.
It’s a good idea to use WordPress for Windows in order to test any major changes to your site. This way you can catch and fix any issues before they affect your audience.
Note: If you install WordPress locally on Windows, then the only person who can see that site is you. If you want to create a WordPress blog that is available to the public, then you need to have a domain name and web hosting. We recommend that you follow this guide on how to install WordPress.
Having that said, let’s take a look at how to install WordPress on localhost using WAMP.
What is WAMP?
WAMP, also called WampServer, is a compilation of Apache web server, PHP and MySQL bundled for Windows computers. You need WAMP to setup your own local server environment and install WordPress on Windows. There are other clients for Windows such as XAMPP, but we use and recommend WAMP. It is free and easy to use.
Installing WampServer on your PC
The first thing you need to do is go to the WampServer website and download the latest WampServer. You will be presented with various options on their download page. Simply choose the one that applies to your Windows (64-bit or 32-bit). When in doubt, select the 32-bit version because it will also work on 64-bit versions of Windows.
Once you have downloaded WampServer, run the installation program and carefully follow on-screen instructions.
At one point during the installation, WampServer will ask for the location of the default web browser.
By default it will use Internet Explorer, but you can change that to Google Chrome or Firefox by locating the browser in Program Files.
Once you are done with the installation, launch WampServer.
Setting Up a Database for WordPress
Next, you’ll need to create a blank MySQL database WordPress can use.
WampServer comes with phpMyAdmin, a web based application to manage MySQL databases. Click on the Wampserver icon in windows taskbar and then click on phpmyadmin.
The phpMyAdmin login screen will open in a new browser window. By default, the Username will be root, and you can leave the password field blank.
Once logged in, click on Databases in phpmMyAdmin to create a new database for WordPress. You will be asked to choose a name for your database (we named ours test_db). After that click on the Create button.
Installing WordPress on Windows with WAMP
The next step is to install WordPress. You will need to download a copy of WordPress from WordPress.org. Go ahead and extract the zip file and copy the wordpress folder.
After that, you need to navigate to the folder where you installed WAMP.
In our tutorial, we installed it in C:\wamp64, so we’ll refer to that folder going forward. But keep in mind, it may be different for you depending on where you installed the program.
Paste the wordpress folder into the C:\wamp64\www folder.
You can rename the wordpress folder to anything you want, such as mysite, wpbeginner, etc. This will be the URL of your local WordPress site, so be sure to choose something you’ll remember easily. For the sake of this tutorial, we renamed our wordpress directory to mysite.
Now open your web browser and go to http://localhost/mysite/
The WordPress database setup will start automatically. First it will ask you to select your language. After that it will show you some information about setting up your database. Click the Let’s Go button when you’re ready.
On the next screen, you’ll need to provide your database information. The database name will be the one that you entered in the last step. In our case, we called it test_db.
Your default database username will be root and you can leave the password blank.
Next, click on the submit button and WordPress will create a configuration file for you.
After this you will see a screen informing you that WordPress has successfully connected to your database, and you can proceed with the installation.
Go ahead and click the Run the install button.
On the next screen, you can fill out the installation form. You need to provide a title for your website, choose an admin username / password, and provide admin email address.
Once you’re ready, press the Install WordPress button.
WordPress will quickly run the installation and create database tables. Once done, you will see a success message after the installation is complete.
You can then proceed to your WordPress dashboard by clicking on the Log in button.
Congratulations, you have successfully installed WordPress on a windows computer using WAMP.
Below are some additional notes that might help.
Troubleshooting WAMP Skype Error
If you have Skype installed and running, then WampServer may not be able to work properly due to a conflict with Skype. The conflict is caused by both Apache and Skype using the same port 80. There is a simple fix for this problem. Open Skype and go to Tools » Options. Click on Advanced and then Connections. Uncheck the box that says Use port 80 and 443 as alternatives for incoming connections. Save options and restart Skype.
Enabling Pretty Permalinks in WAMP
Pretty permalinks will not work by default on your local server environment. All your URLs will look like localhost/mysite/?p=18. If you go to Settings » Permalinks and use one of the other options, then it will show you “page not found” errors. We have already written about a solution here that will show you how to enable custom permalinks in WAMP.
Migrating from WAMP to Live
We’ve also written a separate guide on how to move WordPress from WAMP local server to a live site. Hopefully you’ll find it helpful when you are ready to deploy your local site to production.
We hope that this article helped you install WordPress on your Windows computer using WAMP. Having a local server environment is great for learning and testing purposes.