Ubuntu – WordPress Installation Failed


I am trying to install WordPress on Lubuntu. I followed the instructions here. Including PHP Apache and MySQL setups. Apache and MySQL appear to be running fine.

However, when I go to http://localhost/blog/, I get the following error:

Neither /etc/wordpress/config-localhost.php nor /etc/wordpress/config-localhost.php could be found.
Ensure one of them exists, is readable by the webserver and contains the right password/username.

Best Answer

  • I have played that guide step by step. And I think in your case something went wrong and the file /etc/wordpress/config-localhost.php actually missing. But this isn't the worst thing. In the manual is missing a step, that describes how to create MySQL database and user for WordPress - the final result. How to do that, under consideration scenario, is described in the article WordPress from the Official Ubuntu Documentation. Another approach is shown under the step 1 below.

    However, in my opinion the approach, described into the already mentioned manuals, makes the things more complicated as they actually are. Additionally, both manuals doesn't provides enough explanations to be understand what is happen. Here's a guide for you:

    How to install the latest WordPress on Ubuntu 16.04 with LAMP


    The standard Ubuntu LAMP stack, that means we have working Apache2, MySQL, PHP. Refs:

    Along with next additional PHP extensions, also mod_rewrite for Apache2 must be enabled:

    sudo apt update
    sudo apt install libapache2-mod-php7.0 # of just: libapache2-mod-php
    sudo apt install php-curl php-gd php-mbstring php-mcrypt php-xml php-xmlrpc
    sudo a2enmod rewrite php7.0

    1. Create MySQL Database

    The steps are:

    • Login to the MySQL server from a terminal.
    • Create Database.
    • Create User.
    • Grant all privileges on the Database to the User.
    • Reload the privileges from the grant tables in the mysql database.
    • Exit MySQL.

    The commands are:

    # for MySQL 5 Ubuntu 16.04
    $ mysql -u'root' -p  
    mysql> CREATE DATABASE DataBaseName;
    mysql> CREATE USER 'DataBaseUser'@'localhost' identified by 'DataBaseUserPassword';
    mysql> GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON DataBaseName.* TO 'DataBaseUser'@'localhost';
    mysql> exit
    # for MySQL 8 Ubuntu 20.04
    $ sudo mysql  
    mysql> CREATE DATABASE DataBaseName;
    mysql> CREATE USER 'DataBaseUser'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED WITH mysql_native_password BY 'DataBaseUserPassword';
    mysql> GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON DataBaseName.* TO 'DataBaseUser'@'localhost' WITH GRANT OPTION;
    mysql> exit
    • Where DatabaseName, DatabaseUser and DatabaseUserPassword are subject of your decision.

      According to the example the User will be allowed to access the Database only from the localhost, this is enough (and safety) when Apache and MySQL servers are allocated on the same 'physical' machine.

    • Don't miss the semicolon (;) at the end of each sentence. If you are on Ubuntu 18.04+, where the socket authentication is the default authentication method for MySQL, use sudo mysql to login as root.

    2.A. Download the latest WordPress release

    The steps are:

    • Go to the directory where WordPress will be stored.

      The directory used here is /var/www - this is the default directory where the web content should be stored within nowadays Ubuntu versions.

    • Download the latest release.

    • 'UnZip' and 'UnTar' the package, then remove it.

    • Rename the folder. This step is not mandatory.

      I'm usually using the same name for the installation directory, the name of the data base and the name of the virtual host config file. Also these names are based on the Domain Name if there is dedicated one.

    • Create upload directory.

    • Create empty .htaccess file.

      WordPress will write some rewrite riles inside, depending on your preferences. For this purpose this file must be writable (or owned) by www-data, also mod_rewrite must be enabled and the usage of the .htaccess file must be allowed by the virtual host configuration - the directive AllowOverride All.

    • Change the WordPress directory ownership.

      WordPress has mechanisms for auto update and automatic installation of plugins, and I found that, play with permissions and ownership here is complicated task. Into the most manuals as owner of WordPress's content is suggested www-data.

    The commands are:

    cd /var/www/
    sudo wget https://wordpress.org/latest.tar.gz
    sudo tar xvfz latest.tar.gz && sudo rm ./latest.tar.gz*
    sudo mv wordpress wordpress-custom-folder
    sudo mkdir -p /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder/wp-content/uploads
    sudo touch /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder/.htaccess
    sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder

    2.B. Install WordPress from Ubuntu repositories

    Another way to install WordPress is through Ubuntu repositories, like it is described here and here. But (within Ubuntu 16.04) the command apt show wordpress shows that the version into the repo is 4.4.2 while the current version is 4.8.1. Because WP has an mechanism for automatic update it will force you to update this outdated version to the latest one. So you will end up with 4.8, but after few steps of updates where something could go wrong.

    The main advantage in this approach is that the installation process of WordPress will involve and some dependencies, as these, mentioned at the top of this post.

    3.A. Setup Apache2: Create Virtual Host, dedicated to the particular WordPress

    • Follow this section if there is dedicated domain or sub-domain name and the WordPress site will be accessible via URL as: http://my-domain.com or http://someprefix.my-domain.com.

    • If you don't intend to run other sites in the near future, just edit 000-default.conf instead of new Virtual Host creation.

    • If you don't have an registered domain name, but you want to access your WP site via domain name instead of IP address (or localhost), you can add line as next somewhere within the /etc/hosts file (more details are provided in this answer):    my-domain.com someprefix.my-domain.com

    Create and edit a new Virtual Host configuration file:

    sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/wordpress.conf
    • The first part of the name of the configuration file - wordpress. - is subjects of your decision.

    The content of the file should look as this:

    <VirtualHost *:80>
        ServerName someprefix.my-domain.com
        ServerAlias my-domain.com 
        # If this is the default configuration file we can use: 'ServerName localhost' or also 'ServerAlias localhost'.
        ServerAdmin site-admin@email.com
        ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/someprefix.my-domain.com.error.log
        CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/someprefix.my-domain.com.access.log combined
        DocumentRoot /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder
        <Directory /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder>
            Options None FollowSymLinks
            # Enable .htaccess Overrides:
            AllowOverride All
            DirectoryIndex index.php
            Order allow,deny
            Allow from all
            Require all granted
        <Directory /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder/wp-content>
            Options FollowSymLinks
            Order allow,deny
            Allow from all
    • Copy the above content and use in nano: Shift+Insert for paste; Ctrl+O and Enter for save; Ctrl+X for exit.

    Enable the configuration and restart Apache2:

    sudo a2ensite wordpress.conf
    sudo systemctl restart apache2.service

    3.B. Setup Apache2: Append WordPress to an existing Virtual Host

    • Follow this section if there is not dedicated domain or sub-domain name and the WP site will be accessible via URL as: http://my-domain.com/my-blog or http://localhost/my-blog, etc.

    • Within the two mentioned manuals (this and this) WP is appended to all enabled Virtual Hosts.

    Edit the existing Virtual Host configuration file in this way:

    <VirtualHost ...>
        Alias /my-blog /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder
        <Directory /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder>
            Options None FollowSymLinks
            # Enable .htaccess Overrides:
            AllowOverride All
            DirectoryIndex index.php
            Order allow,deny
            Allow from all
            Require all granted
        <Directory /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder/wp-content>
            Options FollowSymLinks
            Order allow,deny
            Allow from all
    • Explanation about the directive Alias. Let's assume that DocumentRoot is /var/www/html. In this case the directive Alias /my-blog /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder will serve as this symbolic link:

         ln -s /var/www/wordpress-custom-folder /var/www/html/my-blog

    Enable the configuration (if it is not enabled) and restart Apache2:

    sudo a2ensite 000-default.conf         # or type the name of your configuration file
    sudo systemctl restart apache2.service

    4. Proceed to the web installation of WordPress

    Go to the URL http://someprefix.my-domain.com or http://localhost/my-blog/ in your web browser. The WordPress installer will show up. The data about MySQL data base, created in step 1, must be provided there.

    That's it.

    Setup another instance

    To run another instance of WP, just do the steps one more time and use unique data according to the new instance:

    • Create new Database. You can create and new MySQL User.

    • Download WP in new directory within /var/www.

    • Create new Virtual Host if you using approach 3.A, or, if you using 3.B, setup new Alias path and new <Directory> definitions.

    • Proceed to the web installation of the new WP.


    Further Reading

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