In order to uninstall and delete your WordPress website, it is necessary to go through certain steps in which you delete data. You delete both the MySQL database and the files from your website. If your server is completely emptied, then your WordPress website is completely uninstalled and removed. Learn how to follow these steps.
What’s on my WordPress server?
In this article, we’ll learn how to remove everything from your WordPress server. For this it is first useful to know what has been set up. These are two main parts: the MySQL database and all files
On this database you will find the .wp-config file. This keeps track of all texts, settings, themes and plugins for your website. If you still want to save it for reuse, for example, first make a backup of this data and then download it externally from your server.
Files on your server
As soon as you install WordPress, a number of files will immediately appear on your server. These are called the ‘WordPress core files’. These belong to the current version of WordPress at that time and are therefore very easy to download again from WordPress.org. For these files, it is therefore no problem if you delete them; you’ve downloaded them again in a heartbeat.
In addition, under ‘Media’ you will find files of plugins, themes, images and other files that you have uploaded yourself. If you want to delete them, but don’t want to get rid of them, you need to back them up as well. This is easiest via FTP.
Each file can be found in a different place. They are usually stored in a folder called ‘uploads’, which you can find in the wp-content folder. This is organized by the month or year of addition. In the diagram below you can see which file you can find where.
Media files /wp-content/uploads
Deleting your MySQL database
Now that you know which files are stored where on your server, we can go to the next step: deleting it. So your database contains all the settings, page layouts, messages and more parts of your website. Once you have removed it, it is often very difficult to find it. So think carefully about whether and which files you still want to keep and make a timely backup of them. To delete your database, go to the control panel you received from your web hosting party. Here you go to the MySQL management menu. In this folder you will find a list of all databases. Select the database of your website and choose ‘Delete’ at the bottom. You have now deleted your database.
You can find the right database of your website by looking at the wp-config.php file. Look for the “define(DB_NAME)” rule. After this code you will find the name of your database that you need to remove in order to uninstall your website.
Deleting your files
Now that you’ve deleted the database, your website itself is offline. The files that have been on your website are still lying around on the server. To remove it, you need an FTP client. Once you’ve downloaded and opened it, look for the “root” of your website. this is often called ‘httpdocs’ or ‘public_html’.
If you have installed WordPress in a different way, you may need to click a folder further.
To then delete all files, select everything from the appropriate folder. If there are still subfolders or files in the selected folder that you do not want to delete, de-select them first. Then press ‘Delete’ to delete all files.
After reading this blog article, do you still have trouble uninstalling or removing your WordPress website? Please contact our WordPress specialists.
Also take a look at our WordPress Optimization service.
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