What is wp-config.php

The programming language used by WordPress is PHP, and the wp-config.php file is one of the most important, core files used by the WordPress software. As the name of the file suggests, wp-config.php is where critically important values or configurations are stored, including passwords and advanced options.

When you install WordPress, there won’t be a wp-config.php file, but there will be a file called wp-config-sample.php that can be renamed and configured to use with your WordPress site.

Every time your WordPress site is visited, the wp-config.php will be accessed and used to communicate between the database in order to retrieve or store information, including users, posts, pages, and settings.

Pro tip: Before making any changes to the wp-config.php file, make a copy first so that you can revert back to the original settings in case something goes wrong.

Below is one of the most important sections of the wp-config.php file:

 // ** MySQL settings - You can get this info from your web host ** //
/** The name of the database for WordPress */
define('DB_NAME', 'database_name_here');
/** MySQL database username */
define('DB_USER', 'username_here');
/** MySQL database password */
define('DB_PASSWORD', 'password_here');
/** MySQL hostname */
define('DB_HOST', 'localhost');

As you can see, it shows the name of your database, information about the administrator password and administrator password, and the address or location of the host.

Here is the other section of the wp-config.php file:

/** Database Charset to use in creating database tables. */
define('DB_CHARSET', 'utf8');
/** The Database Collate type. Don't change this if in doubt. */
define('DB_COLLATE', '');
/**#@+
 * Authentication Unique Keys and Salts.
 *
 * Change these to different unique phrases!
 * You can generate these using the {@link https://api.wordpress.org/secret-key/1.1/salt/ WordPress.org secret-key service}
 * You can change these at any point in time to invalidate all existing cookies. This will force all users to have to log in again.
 *
 * @since 2.6.0
 */
define('AUTH_KEY', 'put your unique phrase here');
define('SECURE_AUTH_KEY', 'put your unique phrase here');
define('LOGGED_IN_KEY', 'put your unique phrase here');
define('NONCE_KEY', 'put your unique phrase here');
define('AUTH_SALT', 'put your unique phrase here');
define('SECURE_AUTH_SALT', 'put your unique phrase here');
define('LOGGED_IN_SALT', 'put your unique phrase here');
define('NONCE_SALT', 'put your unique phrase here');
/**#@-*/
/**
 * WordPress Database Table prefix.
 *
 * You can have multiple installations in one database if you give each a unique
 * prefix. Only numbers, letters, and underscores please!
 */
$table_prefix = 'wp_';
/**
 * WordPress Localized Language, defaults to English.
 *
 * Change this to localize WordPress. A corresponding MO file for the chosen
 * language must be installed to wp-content/languages. For example, install
 * de_DE.mo to wp-content/languages and set WPLANG to 'de_DE' to enable German
 * language support.
 */
define('WPLANG', '');
/**
 * For developers: WordPress debugging mode.
 *
 * Change this to true to enable the display of notices during development.
 * It is strongly recommended that plugin and theme developers use WP_DEBUG
 * in their development environments.
 */
define('WP_DEBUG', false);
/* That's all, stop editing! Happy blogging. */
/** Absolute path to the WordPress directory. */
if ( !defined('ABSPATH') )
 define('ABSPATH', dirname(__FILE__) . '/');
/** Sets up WordPress vars and included files. */
require_once(ABSPATH . 'wp-settings.php');

These are advanced options, so be very careful when modifying these settings!

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Jamie

My name is Jamie Spencer and I have spent the past 5 years building money making blogs. After growing tired of the 9-5, commuting and never seeing my family I decided that I wanted to make some changes and launched my first blog. Since then I have launched lots of successful niche blogs and after selling my survivalist blog I decided to teach other people how to do the same.