Setup up a subdomain for my blog

There’s a great guide on how to set up a WordPress droplet on Digitalocean:

… but it stops short of indicating how to set up a subdomain that points to that WordPress instance.

What I’d like to do is set up a subdomain,, which points to the home page (index.html) of that WordPress instance.

Yes, there’s an article on how to set up a subdomain to a domain, but it’s unclear what modifications (if any) to this process are required when working specifically with WordPress:

Thanks for any help you can provide. And apologies in advance if this my question is already answered somewhere.

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June 1, 2023

Hey @alsargent,

First, as you mentioned you need to create a DNS record for your subdomain. Depending on where your DNS is managed at, go there and create two A records. One for and another for Both records should be pointing to your Droplet.

Once that is done, SSH to your Droplet. I’ll assume you’re using Apache or NGINX, as they are the most common web servers. Here are some basic steps for both.


  1. Create a new virtual host in your Apache configuration. This file could be located in different places depending on your OS, but commonly it’s in /etc/apache2/sites-available. You could create a new file such as
<VirtualHost *:80>
    ServerAdmin webmaster@localhost
    DocumentRoot /var/www/subdomain
    <Directory /var/www/subdomain/>
        Options Indexes FollowSymLinks MultiViews
        AllowOverride All
        Order allow,deny
        allow from all
    ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/error.log
    CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/access.log combined

In this case, the WordPress files should be located in /var/www/subdomain.

Please also note, you’ll need to update the settings inside accordingly to your domain.

  1. Enable this new site:
sudo a2ensite
  1. Reload Apache to apply the changes:
sudo systemctl reload apache2


  1. Create a new server block in your NGINX configuration. This file could be located in different places depending on your OS, but commonly it’s in /etc/nginx/sites-available. You could create a new file such as
server {
    listen 80;
    root /var/www/subdomain;
    index index.php index.html index.htm;
    location / {
        try_files $uri $uri/ /index.php?$args;
    location ~ \.php$ {
        include snippets/fastcgi-php.conf;
        fastcgi_pass unix:/var/run/php/php7.4-fpm.sock;
    location ~ /\.ht {
        deny all;
  1. Enable this new site:
sudo ln -s /etc/nginx/sites-available/ /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/
  1. Test NGINX configuration to make sure there’s no syntax error:
sudo nginx -t
  1. If the test is successful, reload NGINX to apply the changes:
sudo systemctl reload nginx

In both cases, don’t forget to adjust the paths, domain names and PHP versions according to your environment. Also remember to configure DNS for your subdomain to point to the correct server.

Before you start, make sure you have a backup of your server, or at least your current configurations. If something goes wrong, you can always revert to the previous state.

Next, you’ll just need to install WordPress in the directory you have configured in your webservice.

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