Ultimate Guide: Installing WordPress on Ubuntu

Step-by-step instructions for Ubuntu users


Importance of WordPress

WordPress is an incredibly popular content management system (CMS) that powers over 43% of all websites on the internet. It’s free, open-source, and incredibly versatile, making it an excellent choice for everything from personal blogs to large-scale e-commerce sites.

Overview of Ubuntu and its suitability for WordPress

Ubuntu is a Linux-based operating system known for its stability, security, and ease of use. It’s an excellent platform for hosting WordPress websites, as it provides a solid foundation and a wide range of tools and resources to make the installation and management process smooth.

How to install WordPress on Ubuntu

© Photographer Jane Doan

2. Prerequisites: Essential Tools for Success 🛠️

Before embarking on your WordPress installation journey, ensure you have the necessary tools in your arsenal. These prerequisites are the building blocks that will support your WordPress fortress. 🏰

  • System Requirements: WordPress thrives in a system with at least 1GB of RAM and 256MB of storage space. It’s like providing a cozy home for your website!
  • Tools and Software: You’ll need Apache2, MySQL, and PHP. Think of them as the three musketeers, working together to power your WordPress site. Installing these is like giving your website a sturdy foundation.

Step 3: Install LAMP Stack 💡

3. Installing PHP 💻

PHP is the programming language that WordPress runs on. To install PHP, run the following commands:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install php libapache2-mod-php

Once PHP is installed, you need to restart Apache2:

sudo service apache2 restart

And that’s it! You’ve now installed the LAMP stack, which is the foundation for running WordPress. 🏆

Step 4: Configure WordPress 🌐

4. Setting up wp-config.php 🔩

Imagine this: you’ve got a brand-new WordPress site, but it’s like an empty canvas. To make it come to life, you need to paint it with the right colors—and that’s where wp-config.php comes in. This file holds the secret sauce that connects your WordPress site to the MySQL database.

To set it up, follow these steps:

  • Open the wp-config.php file in your favorite text editor.
  • Find the following lines:
define('DB_NAME', 'your_database_name');
define('DB_USER', 'your_database_user');
define('DB_PASSWORD', 'your_database_password');
define('DB_HOST', 'localhost');
  • Replace the placeholders with the actual database name, user, password, and host.
  • Save the file.

And voila! Your WordPress site is now ready to talk to its database.

Step 5: Install WordPress! 🎬

Alright, it’s showtime! Let’s get WordPress up and running. Head over to the official WordPress website and grab the latest release. Once you’ve got it, unzip the files into your web server’s root directory (usually /var/www/html).

Now, let’s chat with the database. Open a terminal and run this command:

mysql -u root -p

Enter your MySQL root password when prompted. Once you’re in, create a database for WordPress using this command:


Next, we need a user who can manage the database. Let’s call them “wpuser” and give them a password of “wppassword”:

CREATE USER wpuser@localhost IDENTIFIED BY 'wppassword';

Finally, grant the user permissions to access the database:

GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON wordpress.* TO wpuser@localhost;

And… we’re done! 🎉 WordPress is now ready to shine on your Ubuntu server.

Step 6: Secure WordPress

6. Enable HTTPS

Protect your website and visitors’ data by enabling HTTPS. It encrypts the communication between the browser and the server, making it secure from eavesdropping and data breaches. “HTTPS is like a knight in shining armor guarding your website’s secrets!”

7. Install Security Plugins

Enhance your WordPress security by installing reputable security plugins. They provide additional layers of protection against vulnerabilities, malware, and hacking attempts. “Security plugins are like bodyguards for your website, keeping it safe from intruders!”

7. Optimize WordPress ⚡️

Speed Up Your Site for a Seamless Experience

Optimizing your WordPress site is crucial for providing a fast and enjoyable experience for your visitors. Here are some effective ways to do it:

  • Caching Plugins: These plugins store frequently accessed data in memory, reducing the load on your server and speeding up page load times.
  • Image Optimization: Large images can slow down your site. Use plugins to compress and optimize images without sacrificing quality.
  • Database Optimization: Regularly cleaning up your database removes unnecessary data, improving performance and reducing server load.

8. Securing WordPress 🔒

Protecting your WordPress site is crucial for keeping it safe from malicious attacks and data breaches. Here’s how to do it:

Enabling HTTPS 🌐

HTTPS encrypts data transmitted between your website and visitors, making it secure. To enable HTTPS, you need an SSL certificate. You can get a free one from Let’s Encrypt or purchase one from a trusted provider.

Installing Security Plugins 🛡️

Security plugins add an extra layer of protection to your site. They can block malicious traffic, scan for vulnerabilities, and monitor for suspicious activity. Some popular security plugins include Wordfence, Sucuri, and iThemes Security.

Other Security Measures 🔑

  • Use strong passwords and two-factor authentication.
  • Regularly update WordPress, plugins, and themes.
  • Back up your website regularly.
  • Limit login attempts to prevent brute force attacks.
  • Monitor your website for suspicious activity using tools like Google Analytics or Jetpack.

Nine: Optimize WordPress ⚡️🚀

WordPress optimization is crucial to ensure a fast, efficient, and user-friendly website. Here are some key strategies to optimize your WordPress site:

  • Caching Plugins: Caching plugins store frequently accessed data in memory, reducing the load on your server and speeding up page load times. Popular caching plugins include WP Super Cache and W3 Total Cache.

  • Image Optimization: Large images can slow down your website. Use image optimization plugins like Smush or Imagify to compress images without sacrificing quality.

  • Database Optimization: Over time, your WordPress database can accumulate unnecessary data. Regularly clean up your database using plugins like WP-Optimize or Advanced Database Cleaner.

Optimizing your WordPress site is like giving your car a tune-up. It runs smoother, faster, and provides a better experience for your visitors.


🎉 Congratulations! 🎉 You’ve successfully installed WordPress on your Ubuntu server. You’ve taken a giant leap towards creating a dynamic and engaging website.

Tips for Further Customization

Remember, WordPress is like a blank canvas that you can paint with your creativity. Here are a few tips to help you personalize your site:

  • Themes: Explore a wide range of free and premium themes to give your website a unique look and feel.
  • Plugins: Enhance the functionality of your site with plugins that add features like contact forms, social media integration, and e-commerce capabilities.
  • Widgets: Add dynamic content to your sidebars and footers with widgets that display recent posts, categories, and more.

As you continue to customize your WordPress site, remember to keep these principles in mind:

  • Simplicity: Keep your design clean and easy to navigate.
  • Content: Focus on creating high-quality content that engages your audience.
  • Security: Protect your site from hackers and malware.

With a little effort and creativity, you can transform your WordPress site into a powerful online presence that reflects your unique style and purpose. 🌍

About David Damstra

Business Leader and Business Developer, Project Manager and Full Stack Developer & Designer Creative Director, Brand Guardian, Minister of Company Culture Co-Author of Professional WordPress. Currently in Third Edition. Seasoned web developer using practical technology to rapidly create standards compliant dynamic websites. Experienced with web development, software development and systems and network management and consulting.