XAMPP is an awesome web development tool that allows you to transform your PC into a web server. This is useful especially if you want to test a CMS like WordPress before deployment on a live environment. This way, you have a real, fully functional website hosted locally that you can tweak to perfection before launching.
If you haven’t downloaded XAMPP, you can get it here. Install it on your PC and from there you can install WordPress on its htdocs folder. Also, to fully replicate the process in customizing a website hosted by a commercial web server, you can link it to an FTP client like Filezilla. This is the a safe way in modifying the template files of your CMS since it allows you to backup them up and restore if necessary.
Here are the steps on how to connect Filezilla to XAMMP:
1. Run XAMPP and start Apache, MySQL and Filezilla.
2. Click “Admin” on Filezilla module (see image below).
3. Click OK and the Filezilla server panel would appear.
4. Click ‘Edit” and then click “User”. On the user section, hit “Add” and type the entry for user. Click “OK” then click “Add”.
5. When the pop-up appears, click OK.
6. Below the Shared Folders section, click “Add.” Navigate to your XAMPP installation and click on the htdocs folder. If you have installed XAMPP on drive C:, the path would be C:\xampp\htdocs. Tick all eg. “Write” , “Delete”, “Read” “Append” on Files and in Directories.
7. Click OK.
8. To test if your setup is working type ftp://email@example.com on your web browser. Since, the username I supplied in this example is ‘sonny’, I will put this on my web browser address bar, ftp://firstname.lastname@example.org. If you get it right, you should be able to see this.
9. Open Filezilla then go to File>Site Manager.
10. Click “New Site” then type the name of your site. I name mine “Localhost.”
11. Supply the field with these information:
Logon Type: Normal
User: the username you created.
Password: the password you created. If you did not create one, leave this blank.
12. Click, “Connect” and click “OK” once the “Establish connection in a new tab” appears.
13. If you are successful, you should be able to see the contents of your XAMPP’s htdocs folder.
Now you can transfer files from your computer’s storage to your localhost and vice-versa. How to do it is the same with how you do it on a live server.