Moving my wordpress install to a sub-folder

March 19, 2015 11.9k views
WordPress Ubuntu


I'm currently fiddling around with a droplet I created a few weeks ago. I followed the steps to put a default wordpress install on the droplet. However, Ideally I'd like to use the wordpress install for just my blog, and build my own home page.

I have had a little nose around for how to do this, and it seems to be that if I have my wordpress install in a subfolder (the 'index.php' file specifically?) then I can just point people at that from my homepage.

So I connected to my droplet using WinSCP and had a look, in 'root' all I have is what I suppose is a file, called 'WORDPRESS'. I have worked with wordpress before, through GoDaddy, and when using their file explorer it appeared that a wordpress install was actually a series of folders, so that got me wondering whether I even had worpress installed correctly?

In short, does it sound like I have wordpress installed correctly? And how would I go about using wordpress just for a blog page on my site?

(Also, I put distribution as 'Ubuntu', but to be honest I wasn't even sure what 'distribution' meant! Ubuntu is just what I appear to be running when I log in to the droplet using PuTTY: 'Welcome to Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS ')



  • Hi Jack.
    Yes, you are running Ubuntu.

    There are a couple of ways to do what you want:

    1. you can put your entire Wordpress site into a sub-folder and then build your main site in the top-level folder.
    2. you can work within your existing Wordpress and modify the files in your theme folder. This is more simple than it might sound. For example, if you create a file called front-page.php in your theme folder, that page will show up as your home-page.

    Either way will work. Each way has a few things you need to do first.

    Your Wordpress install is only in one folder at the moment: your web-root folder. This is usually in /var/www/

    Do you have access to command-line?

  • Hi,

    I do have access to the command line, yeah.

    Also, for reference, I'd prefer to have the wordpress install in a sub folder, as I've not got much experience with php!

    Also also, apologies for the double comment, I deleted my first comment and attempted to use the 'reply' link on your comment, but that didn't seem to do anything at all...

    Thanks for the quick response!

  • Okay, first thing: let's establish you can access your web-folder. Run these commands one by one:

    sudo usermod -aG www-data $USER
    sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www
    sudo chmod -R 774 /var/www
    sudo ln -s /var/www  ~/

    once you run those commands, you should be able to log in via sFTP and see a folder called www. Inside that folder should be all of your web folders and web files.

    It should be a bunch of files with wp- in front of each them. You can create a sub-folder and move all of those files and folders into your sub-folder.

    So now you should have ~/www/subfolder with all of your wordpress stuff in it.

    Does that work..things going okay so far?

  • Yep that all seems to have worked! I've moved all the files with the wp- prefix into a subfolder 'blog'.

    So now in ~/var/www I have;

    A folder called 'blog' and files called 'index.php', 'license.txt', 'readme.html' and xmlrpc.php'.

    And 'blog' contains all the other files that were present.

  • Okay, great. So that index.php and xmlrpc.php will need to be moved to blog as well. The license.txt and readme you can just delete.

    Next thing you will need to do is tell Wordpress that it is located in a subfolder. Do you have phpMyAdmin installed?

    If so, you can just log into and find the database, scroll down to the table named wp-options and find the option named "site url"

    it should have your domain as the option value, you can kind of double-click it real fast and it will let you edit it, or you can just click the little pencil icon to edit . Change your domain to

    save, and now you should be able to access your Wordpress site at

    and now you can build your home-page or whatever in your www folder.

  • Alrighty, have moved/deleted those files.

    I don't THINK I've got phpMyAdmin installed, I certainly don't recall installing it and browsing to '.com/phpmyadmin' gives me a 404 Not Found so I think it's safe to assume I don't. Shall I follow this guide to get it installed?

    by Justin Ellingwood
    While many users require access to a database management system like MySQL, not all users feel comfortable interacting with the MySQL prompt on a daily basis. In this guide, we'll discuss how to install and secure phpMyAdmin, a web management interface for MySQL, on an Ubuntu 14.04 server.
  • Brilliant, thanks for that, I will give it a go and let you know what happens!

  • Unfortunately I've fallen at the first hurdle, somewhat!

    Have followed the tutorial and installed apache2, the installation seemed to work correctly, it didn't raise any errors or anything, but upon browsing to my public ip address all I get is a '403 Forbidden: You don't have permission to access / on this server.' message.

    I followed on a bit further anyway and tried to install MySQL, but the tutorial mentioned that I should be asked to set a new password for the 'root user', and this didn't happen.

    Sorry this is turning into more of a problem!

  • Sorry you are having those issues; however, if Wordpress was running already on your site, then Apache2, php, and MySQL are already installed.

    All you should have to do is install phpmyadmin:

    sudo apt-get install phpmyadmin

    then restart apache with:

    sudo service apache2 restart

    Hang in there, you are getting it! It just takes a bit of dinkering with things.

  • Okay, had a go at doing that, when it got to the point where I was setting new passwords, I got an error message;
    'ERROR 1045 (28000): Access denied for user 'root'@'localhost' (using │
    │ password: YES)'.

  • Your MySQL username and password are the same for what you use to connect Wordpress to the database.

    You can find this by going into your folder ~/www/blog/wp-config.php

    open that file with any text editor, and you will find a section with this:

    // ** MySQL settings - You can get this info from your web host ** //
    /** The name of the database for WordPress */
    define('DB_NAME', 'yourwpdatabase');
    /** MySQL database username */
    define('DB_USER', 'yourusername');
    /** MySQL database password */
    define('DB_PASSWORD', 'yourpassword');
    /** MySQL hostname */
    define('DB_HOST', 'localhost');

    DBUSER and DBPASSWORD should get you in

  • Okay, well I've had a look at that file. In my case the contents are;

    // ** MySQL settings - You can get this info from your web host ** //
    /** The name of the database for WordPress */
    /** MySQL database username */
    /** MySQL database password */
    /** MySQL hostname */
    define('DB_HOST', 'localhost');

    If I try and run sudo apt-get install phpmyadmin again I get 'phpmyadmin is already the newest version' but if I browse to I still get a 404 Not Found message.

    Sorry, this really is turning into a real hassle! :P

  • Sorry, I assumed you had a working install of WordPress already. it looks like you installed WordPress, but have not set it up yet, nor have you set up Apache yet.

    Is that the case?

    If so, then you do indeed need to set up Apache and MySQL. Not a big deal.

    If you wanted to make life a tad easier, you could also destroy your droplet and and create a new one:

    choose Ubuntu 14.04 as the OS
    under applications choose WordPress and PhpMyAdmin

    If you would rather stick with what you have, that will also work fine. You just need to get Apache and MySQL working first, then do WordPress and PhpMyAdmin after.

  • I think that probably is the case yeah, sorry, I thought I had finished setting up when I could see the wordpress dashboard!

  • @sierracircle hi, sorry to chip in on this topic but the only thing I have in var/www is wp-config.php . Something went wrong I guess, any idea how to fix this? Kind regards

  • @wittersmaxime can you start a new thread and describe what has happened (did you create a new droplet with Wordpress, was it just a LAMP droplet? was wordpress working previously and now it is not?)

    use @sierracircle in your new thread so I can be notified.

    Be as descriptive as possible. Thanks!

4 Answers

yes, that will probably be easiest, and most likely you will find yourself using phpMyadmin for many other things.

Hmm.. if you can see the Wordpress dashboard, then you should have all that installed. I wonder what is going on.

Are you able to browse to

Okay, well, it really sounds like MySQL is installed, but I am not sure why your MySQL username and password are not on your wp-config file.

How about this:

move (just temporarily) all of your files from www/blog back to www

once you have that done..log in to your wordpress dashboard.

Go to and change your Wordpress Address and Site Address both to

click save

move all your files back into blog and then try to log in to

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