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How to Create a Staging Website with Softaculous

Once your website is live, you will get to a point where you want to update the design or functionality. Softaculous offers you the ability to create a duplicate of your existing website so that you can test out changes before you commit to making them to your live site.

Having this ability allows you to test whether your website is compatible with the latest version of WordPress or PHP. You can also test out new themes, plugins, or layouts so that when you are ready to update your live site, you already know how it will look and function.

Create Staging

  1. Log into your cPanel.
  2. Select Software from the left-hand menu.
    cPanel Left-Hand Menu - Software
  3. Click on the Softaculous icon.
    cPanel - Software - Softaculous Apps Installer Icon
  4. At the top of the page, you see options for your installed scripts. Click on the Installations box.
    cPanel - Softaculous Apps Installer - Installations
  5. Locate the domain that you want to stage and click the Create Staging icon.
    cPanel - Softaculous Apps Installer - Create Staging Button
  6. Across from Choose Installation URL, select the domain you want to use for your staging site or enter a directory name in the last box labeled In Directory.
    cPanel - Softaculous Apps Installer - Create Staging Options
  7. If you do not want your staging site to show up in search engine results, check the Disable Search Engine Visibility box.
  8. If you want your staging site to be an exact duplicate of your live site, leave the Site Name box blank and click the Create Staging button.
  9. A progress bar will appear while it creates the staging site.
    cPanel - Softaculous Apps Installer - Building Staging Progress Bar
  10. You will then be presented with a Congratulations message and links to the staging site and its admin dashboard.
  11. Click on the link next to the Administrative URL to begin editing your staging site.
    cPanel - Softaculous Apps Installer - Navigating Staging Site GIF

Note: While the staging function will allow you to test out your changes, there is no way to push the changes to your live site automatically. This process is called site cloning, which is a service HostGator is not offering at this time. You, or your web developer, will need to follow the steps for Changing the Domain of Your WordPress Site to copy the staged website to your live site.