Ubuntu + Wordpress not accessible anymore

May 19, 2015 2.4k views
One-Click Install Apps WordPress


After creating a droplet (with the included one-click installation for wordpress) it's impossible for me to access Wordpress again.

It all started with installing a Wordpress theme from Themeforest that got denied by Wordpress auto theme installer, so I had to upload the files manually by (s)FTP in the provided Wordpress dir.

I had to fix SSH (login with SSH keys).

After login I did "ls" => WORDPRESS and checked the cd /var/www => this dir only contains a wp-config.php file

but when I try to access Wordpress on site I get the following error

Not Found

The requested URL /wp-admin/ was not found on this server.

and when visiting the website without /wp-admin/ I get


You don't have permission to access / on this server.

I really have no clue what went wrong, anyone could help me out to get wordpress up & running again? ( @sierracircle )

Kind regards.


  • Hi Maxime,

    First thing to check might be permissions. You could run these two commands:

    sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www
    sudo chmod -R 774 /var/www

    then try to access your site. Does that make any difference?


    Do you have an sftp client you can use to access your droplet folders?
    What OS is your computer running?

  • Hi @sierracircle ,

    I use Mac OSX (Yosemite). And I have a SFTP client I can use.

    sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www
    sudo chmod -R 774 /var/www

    These are applied and don't make any difference

  • OK.

    do you have a user (other than root) that you use to log in via sftp?

    if so, run this (which will make a link to the web folder)

    ln -s /var/www ~/
  • Hi @sierracircle , I don't have any other user than root.

    The "troubles" started when I was playing around with adding SSH key to perform SSH from Mac OSX Terminal.

  • I see. It is difficult to know exactly what happened, so I am sort of going down a list to see where how things stand.

    Worst-case scenario is that you accidentally deleted your Wordpress files, but I don’t think it is that.

    Okay, what do you see when you sftp into your droplet and view the folder /var/www

22 Answers

@sierracircle => cd /var/www => this dir only contains a wp-config.php file

  • ok. I have never used the one-click wordpress install, but there might be a different folder that DigitalOcean uses.

    In your root folder, is there a folder called WORDPRESS? /root/WORDPRESS
    if so, what is in there?

another question: is this a fairly new Wordpress install? Did you add a lot of content?

If it is a new install we could just hose everything and re-install WP...not a huge job to do that. Your db is probably still intact, so the only thing you would lose is any images or files you uploaded.

@sierracircle it was a fresh install. and there is a dir /root/WORDPRESS

can you see the contents of /root/WORDPRESS

I wonder if that is where it is installed at?

@sierracircle if I try to do CD WORDPRESS I get

-bash: cd: WORDPRESS: Not a directory

ah. It is a file, not a directory.

@sierracircle aha. So there must have gone something wrong?

so, a few options here: we can spend more time investigating if your files might be somewhere.

you can do a clean install of Wordpress on your existing server (I can install Wordpress in about 5 minutes.

you can nuke your entire droplet and create a new one.

You can do a quick search like so:

find / -type d -name "*wp-admin*" -print

should tell you if there is a folder named wp-admin anywhere

@sierracircle I did the

```root@BELPOLTEX:~# find / -type d -name "wp-admin" -print

So there is not a folder to be found.

I prefer to do a clean install of Wordpress but want to be sure it will be very good secured installation.

Any ideas? Or How-Tos? (not really my strongest field)

Thanks already for the help!

I am willing to spend a little time walking you through some steps, if you have the time now. Otherwise I can point you to a few tutorials

@sierracircle I have time now ! You are a gods gift!

thanks! happy to help people who are willing to learn and try...which is how most of us are developing our computer skills nowadays.

first things first, your server needs to be tightened up. A bare-bones install is not the most secure thing.

you will need both your sftp client, and your terminal to run commands.


you will want a user other than root. it is good to have root access, but we want root tucked away for emergenices. Not for a regular user.

to create a new user, from terminal (where I type in ALL_CAPS you will make up your own thing):

adduser USERNAME

addgroup USERNAME

usermod -aG sudo USERNAME



on the last one I received

usermod: no changes

All still gooD?

I wonder if we should switch to a chat application...do you have google hangouts or something?

I dont have skype anymore...

if you have a gmail account there is a built in chat client

I think Firefox has some built in chat client ..I have never used it but it is there.

google hangouts is also good. just put a . between S & M @gmail.com ;) one word!

@sierracircle the best help you can have, thanks for helping me out. Big thumbs up!

@sierracircle could you come on Google Hangout for a second?

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