There may be various reasons why you came to this article. Maybe you have problems with your WordPress website, you have detected errors that you do not know how to fix, or worse, maybe your site was hacked. Or you just want a fresh start for your site. No matter the reason, we will help you! Read on to find out how to reinstall WordPress.
There are two main ways to uninstall and reinstall WordPress. You can reinstall WordPress while saving all your existing content or delete all your files and install a fresh copy. We will examine the two ways of doing it, and then we will look at the different methods to achieve it.
Reinstall WordPress through the Administrative Panel
This method of reinstalling while keeping all your content is probably the easiest. You do this using your WordPress dashboard. If you can’t access the dashboard, don’t worry! You can do it manually using the FTP method that we will explain later.
In any case, using the board is very simple. All you need to do is go to the sidebar, then click Control Panel -> Updates and tap the Reinstall Now button.
The process is completely automatic, all you need to do is wait several seconds and you will be all set.
Reinstall WordPress using FTP
If annoying errors or anything else is preventing you from accessing your dashboard, you can use the FTP method (or maybe it’s just your favorite). It is a very similar method to the one mentioned above, the only difference is that using FTP you will perform the process manually instead of using a one-click installer.
Here is a list of the steps to follow to reinstall WordPress:
- Download a fresh copy of WordPress.
- Extract the ZIP file
- Load all files except / wp-content / folder
Now, let’s see how to do each step individually.
Get started by going to WordPress.org and downloading the latest version.
Once the download is complete, extract the contents of the ZIP file on your computer and delete the wp-content folder. This step is crucial as otherwise your content could be overwritten.
When you finish, you will have to connect to your account with an FTP client and upload your files where WordPress is installed. By default, it will be your root folder named public or public HTML. When you do this, a message will appear stating that the destination file already exists. You will need to overwrite the existing files at this point.
What you will do exactly is replace the main WordPress files, creating a fresh new copy. And since you delete the wp-content folder, your content files like themes and plugins will not be modified.
Reinstall WordPress using WP-CLI
WordPress can also be reinstalled using WP-CLI. It is a command line tool that is used to customize your WordPress installation. It is capable of adding / removing users, categories, posts, inserting test data, as well as replacing or simply searching the database. WP-CLI has more features, but we won’t cover them here.
Just below is a command line that you can freely use to reinstall WordPress without affecting themes and plugins. By the way, WP-CLI is fully installed and compatible with all WordPress optimized hosting plans.
How to completely reinstall WordPress (delete all files)
You might want to do this if you come across WordPress errors that you can’t fix, for example. Or maybe you just want a clean slate and start all over again.
With that said, there are only two steps involved in the process. First, delete all your existing WordPress files. Second, install a new copy using your preferred method. It really is that simple. To delete the files, use a file manager or connect via FTP and delete the files that way.
There is no need to delete your existing WordPress database, even if you plan to use a new one. However, if you want to start over completely, we don’t blame you! You can delete the database by navigating to the MySQL Databases section.
Similarly, you can use phpMyAdmin to delete the database, this will also delete your database completely.
Once this is done, there will be nothing left. Now you can go ahead and start installing a fresh copy of WordPress as if it were a brand-new website. As with reinstalling WordPress, there are a few ways to do it, either automatically or manually, depending on your host. If you’re with a host, there’s a 1-click ready auto-installer that installs WordPress in seconds. Alternatively, you can do it manually, which would delay you only about 5 minutes. We have covered all the ways you can install WordPress here.
Congratulations, at this point you should have an absolutely blank canvas for your website!
With all these things in mind, reinstalling WordPress is a fairly simple process. We leave you a quick summary:
- Using the Reinstall Now button from the built-in WordPress dashboard.
- Downloading and then uploading the WordPress files, while excluding the wp-content folder on your server.
And if you’re looking for the clean slate approach, you just need to delete all WordPress files and (or) the database. Then simply install a new copy with the method of your choice.