Every week I get emails from people asking me how to learn WordPress without buying hosting or domain. Let’s see how to do it with DesktopServer.
understanding the concept
Before going into the details of how to do this step by step, it’s important to understand what we’re doing. To understand us, this software creates a “local environment“, that is, a kind of “private Internet” on our computer, which only we will see. There we can create domains, websites, databases and everything necessary to simulate a hosting server.
If you want to see everything on video in real time in a complete step-by-step course, take a look at the . You will see this and more 🙂
In this case, DesktopServer will use a invented extensionthe “.dev” (of developerelopment) to create websites that we can use as if they were a WordPress installation on any server, with the advantage that we don’t have to buy a domain or hosting to learn how to use it.
The first thing is to go to the website of , the company that makes DesktopServer. There we will download the software that is available for both Mac and Windows.
DesktopServer is a freemium software. That means there is a basic free version and a paid version. I have the paid one, but the free one will be more than enough in most cases. The most important limitation is that with the paid version you can make unlimited websites, while the free version has a limit of 3. There are more differences that you can see in .
Once you install it (You know: OK, next, next, etc.)run it, and this screen will open:
It is a basic screen that asks you for permission to run the application as administrator, since you have to have privileges to modify the web services. Obviously you have to say yes, and hit “Next”.
Once we have done so, we will access the screen that lets us choose what we want to do, namely:
- Stop or reset web services.
- Delete, copy or move a website made in WordPress.
- Create a website made in WordPress.
- Create or edit subdomains and aliases.
- Export, import or share a website.
Depending on whether you have the paid or free version, more or less things will appear to you, but in both cases you can choose the one that concerns us and that is already selected by default: Create a website.
When we click “Next”, we find a new screen with three options. The first lets us choose our fictitious “.dev” domain from the web. In this case we will choose webdepruebas.dev.
WordPress “preconfigured” and multisite
The second option allows us to choose which “blueprint” we want to use. A blueprint is a kind of “instance” of WordPress with certain characteristics.
For example, let’s imagine that every time we install WordPress we do so with a personal selection of 6 or 7 plugins. Well, we incorporated that into that blueprint, so that when we create a new one, everything is already configured and we don’t have to set it all up again. We can even have several preconfigured “packs”, for example:
- basic WordPress
- WordPress with WooCommerce
- Membership site with WordPress
- WordPress for bloggers
- WordPress with user intranet
If you’re an end user who only needs a WordPress installation this doesn’t make much sense, but if you’re a developer, it saves you tons of hours throughout the year 🙂
The third box is not an option, it is purely informative, and it tells us in which directory of our computer the web will be saved, in case we want to know it or go to modify something.
And finally, an option box that allows us to set up a WordPress multisite. In principle, this is not necessary, unless you want to get involved in developing a multisite, that is, several WordPress websites from a single installation.
Once we click on create, DesktopServer will get to work and in a few seconds it will have everything ready:
And when we click “Next”, it informs us that we can now visit the newly created website:
In principle now the web is already created and working. But let’s think that it is a new WordPress installation, so when we visit it, the first thing we will see is the setup screen in which we will make the choice of language, web title, administrator user, password and email:
And once we complete this, we click on “Install WordPress”, and we already have our newly created website:
Uses and final conclusion
There are many reasons why we may want a local WordPress. One of them, as we have already said at the beginning of this tutorial, is that of to learn. In those cases, experiments with soda. We are not going to experiment with a live web, especially if we do not know what we are doing. Working locally will save us from a panic attack if we accidentally load the web.
On the other hand, we can also use DesktopServer as a clone of our real website, since we can import our hosting website to our hard drive, work with it and then upload it again. This is usually done in the case that we want to update several plugins or make modifications without putting the web that is in production at risk.
But we can also use it to clone sites, share them, create a website to test plugins, work without an Internet connection, or even, as I do, to record my online marketing courses. In short, imagination to power. I have already given you the tool, now you give it the utility.
And remember that if you want to set up a local WordPress to learn how to use it, my will fit you like a glove. All video tutorials in real time counting step by step web development and online marketing with WordPress in its right balance. Take a look!
Oh, and if you want me to prepare a DesktopServer course, you just have to tell me and I’ll be happy to prepare it, so that you can get as much juice out of it as possible. 😉