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How to Fresh Install WordPress Without Losing Data

Installing WordPress can be for different reasons. It could be the first time you install and use WordPress for your web hosting. Or freshly installing WordPress as a reboot. This happens when an error occurs while using it and even after exhausting troubleshooting steps, your WordPress is still not fixed. As a solution, you can freshly install WordPress. If you want to learn how to do it, continue reading this article.

Reinstalling WordPress does not mean going back to square one. All of your contents, themes, plugins, etc. can be saved and restored once you have successfully installed the latest version of WordPress.

Once done, then follow the next steps in this guide to install WordPress without losing data.

Backup Your Website

Before making any changes on your website or anything on your web hosting, we always recommend to backup your files. Follow the steps in this guide to learn:

Export All WordPress Content

You can export your WordPress contents by creating an export file, which will contain your site’s comments, posts, categories, pages, and tags.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to creating an export file:

  1. Enter YourDomainName/wp-admin on a browser.

    Important:Replace YourDomainName with your actual website.

  2. On the left-hand corner, click Tools.
  3. Select Export.
  4. Under Choose what to export, select All Content.
  5. Click Download Export File.

Download All WordPress Content Files

You can download the wp-content folder to save your website’s themes, images, uploads, and plugins.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to download all wp-content files:

  1. Access your FTP Client, and provide the following on the necessary fields:
    Hostname ftp.yourdomain.com
    Username Hosting Username
    Password Hosting Password
    Port 21
  2. Go to public_html folder.
  3. Right-click the wp-content folder, and select Download.

    Important: Further steps need an FTP client. To save time, do not close your FTP client until you finish all the steps.

Uninstall Latest/Current Version of WordPress

To uninstall your WordPress site, it is necessary to delete your entire website files. However, you don’t need to delete existing databases. If your Hosting plan offers unlimited database, you may create a new one instead.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to delete your website files:

  1. Using your FTP client, select all website files (Ctrl + A), right-click, and then select Delete.
  2. Confirm the deletion by selecting Yes in case a pop-up box follows.

    Important: A new database is necessary once you have the latest version of WordPress. Please create a new one before you proceed.

Install Latest Version of WordPress

You can manually install the latest version of WordPress by downloading a fresh copy on WordPress.org and uploading its files to your site.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to reinstall a fresh copy of WordPress:

  1. Download latest version of WordPress.
  2. Double-click the zip file downloaded and Extract it.
  3. Open your FTP client.
  4. From your computer files, drag a fresh copy of WordPress to your public_html folder.
  5. After uploading all files, go to your website.
  6. Enter new database information you created earlier.
  7. Click Submit button to proceed.
  8. On the success message, click Run Install button.
  9. On the Information Needed page, enter the required information.
  10. Click Install WordPress.

Delete Default Contents

There are default contents under Posts, Pages, and Comments section of your WordPress site. These contents need deletion so it won’t overlap with your original contents.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to delete default contents.

  1. Enter YourDomainName/wp-admin on a browser.

    Important: Replace YourDomainName with your actual website.

  2. Enter new login credentials.
  3. Delete default post by following these steps:
    1. On the left-hand corner, click Post.
    2. Hover over Hello World! post, and click Trash link.
  4. Delete default comment by following these steps:
    1. On the left-hand corner, click Comments.
    2. Hover over default comment, and click Trash link.
  5. Delete sample pages by following these steps:
    1. On the left-hand corner, click Pages.
    2. Select all sample pages.
    3. From the Bulk Action menu, select Move to trash.
    4. Click Apply.
You've successfully deleted and reinstalled WordPress, you're ready to restore your content files to WordPress again. Continue reading this article and follow the steps below.

How to Fresh Install WordPress Without Losing Data

1. Restore WordPress Content Files

In this step, you will download the wp-content folder you have saved earlier to the server. This way, your themes, plugins, images and other uploads will be restored in your site.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to restoring wp-content files:

  1. Using your FTP client, click public_html folder.
  2. Go to the wp-content folder.
  3. From your computer files, select /wp-content/uploads/ folder, and drag it inside the wp-content folder of your website files.
  4. If you have changes in your theme or child theme, go to /wp-content/themes/ folder in your computer files, and drag it inside the wp-content folder of your website files.

2. Import WordPress Content

In this step, you will import the posts, tags, pages, categories and other content you saved earlier.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to import WordPress content:

  1. Go to your admin section.
  2. On the left-hand corner, click Tools.
  3. Select Import.
  4. Under WordPress, click the Install Now link.
  5. After installing the WordPress importer, click Run Importer link.
  6. Click Choose File button on the next page that follows.
  7. Select the Export File (XML file) you downloaded during Step 1.
  8. Click Upload File and Import to proceed.
  9. On the next page, assign all posts to you if you are a single author. Otherwise, leave Assign Authors blank.
  10. Tick box for Download and import file attachments to import images to the media library.
  11. Click Submit.

3. Install and Activate Plugins

After you have successfully reinstalled WordPress and restore your data, you can continue to activate plugins. It is recommended to install and activate plugins one at a time. You can install and activate the plugin by clicking the link below:

Congratulations! You have successfully reinstalled a fresh version of WordPress without losing your existing data. For further assistance in installing your WordPress or if you have any questions, please contact us and we will be glad to help you.

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