Creating a staging website (a clone of a live website) is a challenge for any web designer, no matter how many years’ experience they might have. The common problems surround absolute links, the ties between databases, media libraries not aligning and the mess of moving an entire website over FTP. Thankfully, this week I’ve had the pleasure of using WP Staging Pro to move websites without the headache.
WP Staging is a popular plugin from the WordPress directory that allows staging sites to be created in a click. It’s reliable, easy-to-use service saves a ton of time creating whole new WordPress instances and manually copying over the setup.
Opening WP Staging, you’re greeted with a one-click button to create a cloned staging site with a name of your choosing. After the click, you watch as the plugin works its magic and creates the directories needed for a complete clone of your existing site. Within seconds, a message will display to say its complete.
Follow its hyperlink to reveal the cloned site and you’’ find it operates just like the live site. You administer through ‘domain.com/staging/wp-admin’ and the site is inaccessible to those without a login, for example.
While I’ve been creating numerous redesigns this week, I often check that the live site is doing fine, and I’ve found WP Staging to simply do its job. The live site remains unaffected while I can work on a redesign in a subfolder. The magic is in how the plugin does its job with nothing breaking, and the amount of time saved beggars belief.
The Premium plugin is required for pushing the staging site back to the live environment, but I couldn’t build staging sites without this recommended plugin anymore. I perform a sweeping check of the newly pushed website and rarely find much requiring further attention.
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