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Sometimes, even with a WordPress site, it is necessary to upload and/or download files to/from the web server directly. This can be quickly and easily done via FTP (File Transfer Protocol), and there are many free FTP clients (apps/programs) out there for all available operating systems, but my personal favorite is FileZilla. I have been using FileZilla for over 10 years and it has never failed me! Whether you have a Mac, a Linux machine, or a Windows laptop/PC, you’ll be able to install FileZilla, which is your first step towards transferring files back and forth over FTP. From there, no matter what web hosting provider you have, you should have access via FTP – you’ll just need to know your credentials, which include your hostname (usually your domain – something like, your username, and your password.

Step 1: Download and Install FileZilla

  • Go to the FileZilla download page and make sure you choose the right version for your operating system
  • Run the installation file and install FileZilla on your computer

FileZilla - Client Download

FileZilla - install

Step 2: Connect to Your Web Server via FTP

  • You will need your hostname (FTP server address), a username, and a password
  • If you’re not sure what these are, contact your hosting provider’s support team and they should be able to provide you with this information
  • If you’re using a hosting provider that offers a CPanel, you can double-check your FTP account(s) from the CPanel itself.
  • Enter in your credentials and click the Quickconnect button

FileZilla - connect

Step 3: Explore Your Web Server

  • Your public website files are usually located in a subfolder – CPanel-based providers usually keep public website files in the public_html folder, and I’ve also seen the website files folder be called web – look for something similar to these names, and double-click the folder name
  • This folder is considered to be the root folder for your website, unless you’re access an add-on domain; once you see folder names starting with “wp”, you’ll know you’re in the right place
  • Now you can explore your web server’s files/folders, choose the one you want to transfer files to and/or from, and away you go! This is how you can manually upload WordPress theme, plugins, audio files, videos, and just about any other file directly to your web hosting server.

FileZilla - choose public_html folder

  • If you are going to upload a WordPress Theme or Plugin, you will want to go to the wp-content folder, and then you’ll see the themes and plugins folders
  • If you add a file to your website’s root folder (the same folder containing the wp-admin, wp-content, wp-includes folders) – for exampl, an html page you’re adding to your website – then you can access that file by going to in a browser to see how it looks!

Was this helpful? I’d love to hear from you – leave a comment to let me know!