Install WordPress on your hosted internet account to create a blog or website. You have decided to install WordPress on your own hosted account to allow you to sell products and services from your blog and maintaining control over your content. This guide will lead you through the complete process.

This guide assumes that you have already:

  1. Chosen and registered an internet domain
  2. Chosen a web host and purchased a hosting package that includes cPanel as the control panel.

Install WordPress

We will start by opening a new browser tab and logging in to your cPanel account (so you can flip between the two):

cPanel main page

Launching the install WordPress script

Scroll to the bottom of the page. In the SOFTACULOUS APPS INSTALLER section, click on the WordPress option to install WordPress:

Install WordPress

This will display the WordPress overview page, providing information about WordPress and allowing you to start the WordPress installation process.

WordPress installation process

The tabs along the top of the page provide additional information about WordPress.

To start the install either click the [Install Now] button or click on the Install tab.

Install WordPress dialog

I will explain each section and suggest field values as we scroll down the page:

If you completed the previous step to set up a digital certificate or one has been set up automatically by your host, you will be “http:// and “https://” protocol options, with and without “www.”. If a digital certificate has not been set up, only the “http://” options, will be available. I recommend setting up a digital certificate before installing WordPress.

Always select an “https://” option if available (Google favours security-conscious sites). Using “www.” before your domain name or not is a personal choice, there is no right or wrong.

In the next field choose your domain.

The next setting is important. You are extremely likely to want to change the default. There will be a default “wp” in the directory field. If you type anything in this box it will need to be entered in the browser URL to access your blog homepage:

Leave the default “wp”: Your blog URL in a browser will be
Delete “wp” (left blank): Your blog URL in a browser will be

Unless you have a good reason for the “wp” directory, leave this field blank (delete the “wp”). Your domain name will then go straight to your blog. WordPress is extremely flexible. It will allow you to have both a traditional website (containing pages) and a blog (containing posts) both at your domain name.

An example of a good reason to keep the “wp”, is if you have an existing website (non-Wordpress) that you’re domain goes to, without a blog, and are installing WordPress to create a blog. The “wp” causes WordPress to be installed in a “wp” sub-directory, preventing it from interfering with the original website (assuming it does not have its own “wp” sub-directory). In this case, it may be better to change “wp” to “blog”, to install WordPress in a “blog” sub-directory.

The name and site description that will be displayed on your WordPress site. They can be easily changed later in WordPress, but it is satisfying to see your new blog with a real name and description (slogan/catch-phrase).

Leave Multisite unchecked. If you are setting up WordPress for staff or student blogs, you would check this. It installs WordPress once but allows many people to then set up blogs using that one installation. Unless you need it, it will create issues for you, such as many WordPress add-ons don’t work with Multisite.

NOTE: Depending on your hosting package, you may be able to create several blogs/websites. You will do this by setting up additional domains and installing WordPress in each of them, not by checking this option.

Enter an admin username and password. The default username is “admin”, which anyone trying to break into your site will know. If you pick something else, they will need to guess that too.

Clicking on the key icon generates a password for you, in this case, rated as 60/100. It’s worth adding a few more upper and lowercase letters and symbols until it gets to 100/100.

Store your username and password somewhere safe.

Enter an email account to receive emails sent from your WordPress installation (does not need to be admin). WordPress will send administrator emails to this account. The first email will be your settings for accessing your WordPress site, at the end of the installation process.

Choose your preferred language for WordPress and your blog.

Hackers will attempt to break into your WordPress site within days, if not hours of you installing WordPress. This free plugin locks people out for a period of time, if they get the password wrong a number of times, making it harder to break in.

Leave the database settings. Do not share them with anyone as it will help anyone trying to break into your blog. The next three check-boxes are unchecked by default. There are pros and cons, having them on makes your site more secure, so I recommend turning them on, at least for now.

Set Automated backups to One a day or Once a week. And leave the Backup Rotation set to 4. This will result in regular backups. After four backups the oldest is deleted, always keeping 4. The good news is you will have backups for when you make mistakes. The bad news is that these backups will not protect you from many of the things that can go wrong. In the future, I discuss the essential WordPress plugins you need to have.

Here you can select a theme for your blog. If you hover over a theme, a Demo button will appear that will show you what your blog could look like. You can click on the image or [Select] button to chose one. The right arrow will show you more themes. The [Clear selection] button will clear any section, returning to installing the default theme.

If you like the look of the theme, select it. You are likely to change themes several times as you explore looks for your blog. Changing them is easy in WordPress. If you can’t decide, do not select one or click the [Clear selection] button and go with the default. Later I will provide links to many great free and commercial themes.

When you are ready, click the install button:

You will see a progress indicator at the top of the screen:

On completion you will see information like the following:

Your WordPress installation is complete

The WordPress install process is complete and you now have a blog!

Before you move on, right-click on the link in the success page and open them in new tabs. Bookmark the pages for easy access to your blog in the future.

The first URL will take you to your blog front-end (homepage), which your audience will use to access your blog:

New WordPress install homepage

Try clicking on the page links to see what happens. You can’t break anything.

The second URL, ending in /wp-admin, will take you to a login page to access the back-end of your blog where you will perform administration tasks.

Try clicking on the links down the left-hand side of the page to see what is displayed. To log out, hover over the top right-hand corner of the screen and select Log Out from the menu that drops down.

Tips and fixing issues with your WordPress install

Before leaving the SOFTACULOUS area within cPanel, note the options to the top right.

The first icon returns you to the main cPanel page. The last on the right logs you out of cPanel completely.

The storage box icon displays a list of All Installations:

On the Current Installations screen, you can use the options on the right to Clone, Backup, Edit or Remove the installation.

If you’ve made mistakes during the installation, click the red cross to remove WordPress and start again. Installing WordPress a few times will also increase your confidence.

If you get a warning message saying WordPress has been installed before, check the checkbox to allow the installer to overwrite any files left over from the first install.

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