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What is Softaculous

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Some web-enabled applications, like WordPress, need little introduction. Powerful and easy to use, many blogging and eCommerce applications have become immensely popular. Of course, there’s still that small matter of their installation.

In WordPress’s own description of its “Famous 5-Minute Install,” users are instructed to unzip the WordPress package, create a database with a MySQL user with correct privileges, rename and edit a .php file, upload the WordPress files to the right web directory, create a blog directory, and (finally) run a WordPress installation script. And that (says WordPress) is the quick version! Isn’t there a less painful option to get applications like this installed? YES! That is what Softaculous sets out to do.

Softaculous automates the installation of web applications to a website through the use of predefined scripts. Installations are launched from the website administration area.

Softaculous runs within the cPanel control panel.

To install an application using Softaculous:

Log into your cPanel
Click the Softaculous link, which is located under the Software/Services section
Click on the program you would like to install:
Click the Install button (located above the description of the software)

Important! If you get an error stating that there are conflicting files (such as robots.txt, .htaccess, etc.) You can go through your File Manager and delete the files from your public_html. Then the Softaculous installer will go through with the install.

Fill out all of the installation details and then click the Install button at the bottom of the page. If you want to email yourself a copy of these installation details for later reference, enter your email address next to Email installation details to (located towards the bottom of the page). While the installation details may vary from program to program, generally the same information is asked for. In our testing, we are using softaculous to install WordPress. Below is a summary of the settings being asked for.

Installing to the ‘Preview URL’ with Softaculous:

You may want to develop your site on the testing domain (which is similar to – you are able to install applications such as WordPress directly to this URL which will allow you to develop your site without any DNS records. However, once you are ready to go live with your site, you would need to change your application (for example, WordPress) to use the correct domain name for the site to display correctly. In WordPress, this is easy – simply go to Settings -> General then change both URL’s to the correct domain name.

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