How to Prevent Breaking your Live Website with the Staging Feature

What is Staging?

The staging environment is a copy of your production site where you can preview any changes or upgrades before you use them on your production website. This avoids any downtime or unexpected errors on your live website.

The Staging Tool makes the process easier and efficient

The brand-new Softaculous Staging feature will help you create and manage staging copies with one click.

You can produce a staging copy of your live site to test upgrades, set up plugins, themes, include new pages or any other changes to make sure you are satisfied with the modifications prior to pushing it to the live setup.

Softaculous lets you maintain a Staging environment and a live production site at the same time in case you want to make any modifications in the future.

Using Staging in WordPress

As an example, we will show you how to create a staging copy of a live WordPress installation in a sub-directory called "staging".

  1. Log in to your control panel - for example, your cPanel can be accessed through https://yourdomain.com/cpanel
  2. Click on the Softaculous icon or link to go to the Softaculous Enduser Panel
  3. Go to the Installations page as displayed in the screenshot below
    1. Installations page
  4. Choose the installation you want to create a staging copy of
  5. Click the Create Staging icon as displayed in the screenshot listed below
    1. Create Staging button
  6. The Create Staging page will appear with the live installation details and a form requesting details about the new staging copy
  7. Fill in the information and then click on the Create Staging button

That's it! Your staging copy is ready. You can visit it in the WordPress admin panel with the same credentials you use for the live installation.

Now you can make any changes you need, such as

  • Installing/Updating plugins
  • Installing themes
  • Updating your WordPress Core
  • Adding/Editing pages
  • Any other modifications you would like to make.

You can push the modifications to your live website as soon as you are satisfied with the changes in Staging copy.

Choosing the Staging Installation to Push to Live

Click the Push To Live icon next to the corresponding staging installation you want to push to live.

Push Installation to Live button

The Push to Live page will ask for information about how you want to merge the changes, for example, if you want to only update the files or upgrade the database.

You will see 2 tabs:

Default Options

If you want to push the current staging site as is to your production site, meaning submitting all the changed files to the same database, then use the Default option. This option will:

  1. Develop a backup of your live site
  2. Overwrite all the files from your staging copy to your live installation
  3. Eliminate the database of your live setup and change it with the one for your staging copy

Customize

This choice will let you pick the modifications you want to push from your staging copy to your live site. You can choose from:

  • Push the Files
  • Complete Database (includes structure changes as well as rows in the tables)
  • Only Database structure
  • Only data from the database tables

The Customize option will:

  1. Develop a backup of your live website
  2. If you chose the "Overwrite Files/Folders" option, the files from your staging copy will be copied to your live site
  3. Modify your database based on the option you chose

Once you have chosen the changes to push to your live website, hit the Push to Live button.

That's it - Softaculous will do the rest for you.

Once it is finished, you should see a success message appear, which means you should be able to go to your live website and see the new changes.


If you still have questions about the Softaculous staging feature, please contact us by opening a support ticket or by using our live chat feature.

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