Support » Localhost Installs » What credentials does WordPress use on Linux?

  • Resolved somervilletom


    Is there a resource somewhere that summarizes the various credentials that WordPress uses and what permissions/grants are needed for each?

    I’ve just installed WordPress v5.8.1 on an AWS EC2 instance running Rocky Linux v8.4 that I own and manage. Rocky Linux is equivalent, in this context, to CentOS 8. I’m reasonably proficient at most technical things. I’m running a recent version of php (v7.4.6)

    I prefer to use SSH for all credentials, but I can set a password on either the system or its db if needed.

    My immediate issue is that the “wp-admin” dashboard tells me that a new version of “Akismet Anti-Spam” is available (I’m at v4.1.12) and invites me to “update now”.

    When I attempt the update, a modal dialog opens that says “Unable to connect to the filesystem. Please confirm your credentials.”

    It asks me for the following:

    • Hostname
    • FTP Username
    • FTP Password

    and offers a choice of connection types:

    • FTP
    • FTPS (SSL)

    I don’t understand why updating a plugin has anything to do with FTP at all! Is there documentation that describes what is actually happening (or, in my case, failing to happen)? Is there a log file someplace that tells me what’s breaking?

    There is already a WordPress “user” (“wizard_user”) used to access WP itself. I’ve already supplied the WP-generated password for that user and attempted the upgrade with both “connection type” options. Neither works, and each fails with the same complaint:

    “Unable to connect to the filesystem. Please confirm your credentials.”

    What does THAT mean?

    Is the “the filesystem” the underlying filesystem of the host? I’ve already used chmod to make the entire install tree writable and executable by all (chmod -R 777 ...). No difference.

    What “credentials” is this demanding? Is is the linux user (‘wp:wp’) that owns the files? Is it the httpd user running php (‘apache:apache’)? Is is a mysql user that accesses the database used by WP?

    I’ve added a password to the host wp user in case that’s what’s being asked. So far as I know, there IS NO “ftp server” on my instance — is that something that WP needs?

    What is the best way for me to find my way around all this?

    FWIW, my purpose in doing this is to use the REST API, use WP as a content management system, and hide all this php behind a nodeJS service. I want all the front-end access to be through React.

    I’m doing all this to provide way for my small development team to manage our documentation and technical discussions.

    I appreciate whatever guidance the community can offer.

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  • Thread Starter somervilletom


    I resolved this using guidance from Digital Ocean — from 2014!

    The magic needed was to add the following to my wp-config.php:


    Is there WordPress reference documentation that I should know about to resolve questions like this?

    I really do NOT want to abuse this forum. I invite any guidance about how to resolve issues like this as I climb the WordPress learning curve.

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