If you use Coda 2 to build WordPress websites, you can use their built-in local root to test changes before updating the live site.
Make a local website
- Website Files: download a copy of your website onto your computer or local environment. You’ll need the folder where wp-content, wp-admin, etc. are stored.
- Database File: do a mysql dump and drop the .sql file directly into the /wp-content/ folder.
Make a local website from WP Engine
On WP Engine, go to Backup Points > Production > Download ZIP button.
Pick “Partial backup” and check everything except “Media uploads.”
Unzip the downloaded site-archive…zip.
- Install Docker on your Mac.
- Download and unzip the docker file.
Open the site archive folder in Terminal (or equivalent). Meaning, drag the folder into terminal.
In terminal, run
The first time, it will take a while to complete.
Stop and Start
If you need to rename your site files or move them to a new location, you should probably run
first, then after you’ve rename and moved it, run
Look for the site at http://localhost:9980
In the site listings, click the i icon beside your live WordPress website.
Under Site, add these fields:
Local URL: http://localhost:9980
Remote Root: /wp-content/themes/your-theme
Local Root: “Set” to the site files you just downloaded. You’ll want to select “/theme/your-theme” to just sync your theme if you have other things set up for media files, etc. Otherwise, the remote root and local root should be corresponding folders.
Check: Use Publishing (so your changes on local won’t auto update live, defeating the purpose of local dev)
Set Local Files
In bottom center of Coda, click Split Screen.
Then click the last folder listed in breadcrumbs, and click Choose… in the dropdown menu. Select the correct local theme folder that you just downloaded.
Compare Local and Live files
Distinguish between local and live : circle and cloud icons
Update local files
In Coda’s split screen, simply drag and drop the live theme over to the local theme. Click Replace to overwrite the folder.
Move/rename/update local site
To move or rename local site
docker dev first. (note that docker was renamed to dev) In Terminal, run:
Move or rename your local site folder. I moved it out of Dropbox, because it was suggested to me not to keep Git repositories in Dropbox as its sync system can cause conflicts. I put the folder into a folder on my computer:
Then in Terminal, change the directory:
On your desktop, restart Docker:
In Terminal, start dev again:
In a browser, access http://localhost:9980 or your local site url to see if it works correctly.
To update database of local site
Download a copy of the live database in phpMyAdmin.
Rename file to mysql.sql
Drop it into your local site’s /wp-content/ folder, overwriting the old one.
In Terminal, rebuild the database from the SQL file:
Robert Freytag says
Thank you very much for this setup!
I used the “full backup” of wp engine, which now includes the sql file.
Also, if you update the dockerfile to use
image: “wordpress:php7.1″” and
it will pull the current wordpress (5.3).
Sarah Moyer King says
You’re welcome, Robert! Glad to be of help. Also, thanks for the info!