There’s nothing wrong with WordPress.com—it’s cheap, relatively powerful, and has a thriving community of blogs. But the most serious WordPress fans aren’t satisfied unless they can run WordPress on their own web hosts.
This approach, called self-hosting, gives you a world of new opportunities. You can, for example, choose from a dizzying range of plug-ins to add new features to your site. You can put a WordPress blog in the same domain as your traditional website (for example, you can have a site at www.HandMadePaintBrushes.com and a blog at www.HandMadePaintBrushes.com/news). You can slap ads on your blog, and—most usefully of all—create a site that doesn’t look like a blog at all.
This chapter assumes that you know, deep down in your heart, that you are a WordPress self-hoster. You aren’t willing to settle for a merely convenient WordPress.com blog when you can design exactly what you want with a self-hosted WordPress site. In the following pages, you’ll learn how to get started.
Before you dive into a self-hosted WordPress setup, you need to tick off a few requirements. The first is setting up an account with a web host. (If you’ve already done that, you can safely skip ahead to the next section, starting on Deciding Where to Put WordPress.)
If you’re just starting out, choosing a good web host may seem more daunting than it actually is. Technically, your host needs to meet two requirements to run WordPress: ...