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How to Manually Install PrestaShop

Sometimes a manual install of PrestaShop is ideal depending on the situation. It’s not as difficult as some of the other systems you can use, and it’s a relatively straightforward system.

This means you don’t need a tech dictionary to understand the jargon. In fact, the developers made it so that even the most novice of developers can build an online store quickly.

In this tutorial, I’m going to show you how to manually install PrestaShop. It’s a bit longer of a process than using Softaculous, but you should still be able to get started selling right away.

Downloading PrestaShop

The first thing you’ll need to do is download PrestaShop. From the website, click the “Start Now” button under the version information.

Start Now

Fill out your information and click, “Download Now.” Your computer will probably prompt you to save the ZIP file or it will do so on its own, depending on your browser settings. Personally, I try to save things like this to the desktop as it makes it easier to find when I need them.

After downloading, unpack the ZIP file into a folder on your computer. Again, this is much easier if you unpack it into a desktop folder. For this instance, I am simply going to name a new folder “PrestaShop” and extract the ZIP files into it.

Unpack ZIP

You will see you have another ZIP file of PrestaShop along with an Index and an Install_PrestaShop file. Don’t extract this second ZIP file. We are going to leave it for now and unpack it later in cPanel’s File Manager.

Uploading PrestaShop

With the files ready, now we’re going to upload them to your web host. From cPanel, click the “File Manager” tool.

File Manager

Access your domain by going into the “public_html” directory.

Public HTML

The only thing that should be in this directory is the “cgi-bin” folder. If anything else is present, you need to delete it. This directory should be empty.

Click the “Upload” function from the top tool bar.

Upload

Upload the files you extracted earlier from the PrestaShop ZIP. You can drag and drop them onto the page or click the “Select File” button to add the PrestaShop files.

Select File

Once the files are uploaded, click the link to “Go Back to” your website.

Go Back To

Select the “prestashop.zip” file and click, “Extract.”

Extract

Make sure the folder is correct and click, “Extract File(s).” The default folder should be aimed at your website’s directory already, so you shouldn’t have to change anything.

Extract Files

This process may take a few minutes to complete. When it does, you’ll see a results screen. Click the “Close” button on the bottom right.

Close

You’ll have to reload your browser’s view to see your files.

Using FTP

If you don’t want to upload the ZIP file, you can always use FTP programs like FileZilla. These applications connect your site to the computer. From there, you can literally drag and drop files from your computer directly into the website.

Using FTP as opposed to the File Manager method takes quite a bit longer, but it gives you a tool that is excellent when it comes to troubleshooting problems later. However, it may require a bit of advanced site coding to truly get the most out of it.

Setting Up the Database

One last step we need to do before actually installing PrestaShop is to set up the database. Don’t worry, this is pretty quick and easy.

From cPanel, click the MySQL Database Wizard. This is by far the fastest method for setting up a database for any content management system like PrestaShop.

MySQL Wizard

Input a new name for your database. For this tutorial, I’m just going to keep it simple and use “prestashop01.” However, you can name this virtually anything you want. You’ll want to write this database name down as you will need it when setting up PrestaShop.

Once you have a name, click the “Next Step” button.

Next Step

Create a username and set up a password. This is also going to be used by PrestaShop to connect to the database. Make it unique and hard to crack. Don’t forget to write them down as well.

Click the “Create User” button when you’re ready.

Create User

In the next screen, click the check box for “All Privileges.” You want to make sure that PrestaShop has complete control over the database. Otherwise, you may have problems trying to operate the site correctly.

All Privileges

Scroll down and click the “Next Step” button.

Next Step Button

Now, you can click the “Return Home” link.

Return Home

Installing PrestaShop

Visit your website by going to your domain URL from a web browser.

Choose your preferred language and click, “Next.”

Language Next

Click the terms and conditions check box and click, “Next.”

Terms Next

PrestaShop will then check for compatibility. Click the “Next” button after it has been verified.

Verify Next

Input your shop’s information and your administrator account details. This username and password is not for the database. It’s for when you access PrestaShop as the administrator.

When you’re done, click the “Next” button to continue.

Next Continue

Input your database information and click, “Next.”

Database Next

PrestaShop will now begin to install all of its software components.

PrestaShop Install

After the installation, type your domain and add “/admin” in a web browser. So, the address would look something like, “http://www.yourwebsite.com/admin.”

You’ll see an error screen immediately. This is PrestaShop telling you to delete the install files from your site’s directory. This is to prevent anyone from vandalizing your site.

PrestaShop Error

This screen will also show you the link to access your PrestaShop admin screen from now on. Leave this browser window open for a moment and go back to your File Manager in cPanel.

Find and select the install file and click, “Delete.” It will be the file, “Install_PrestaShop.html.”

Delete Install

Find and select the install folder and click, “Delete.”

Delete Install Folder

Go back to the PrestaShop error screen. Click the link for the admin URL.

Admin URL Click

Now, you’re ready to log in and start selling.

Log In PrestaShop

Once you’re in the admin screen, you can start doing things like changing your theme or adding products to sell.

I would suggest bookmarking this screen so you can easily find it later on.

Start Selling Goods Today

The PrestaShop installation is only part of the eCommerce experience. After it’s complete, the fun part begins. Customize your store with everything from various shipping platforms to your favorite payment gateways. Before long, you’ll be raking in the money…as long as you have some good marketing behind you.

Author: Josh Dargie

My name is Josh Dargie and I’m the Operations Manager at GreenGeeks. I’ve been with the company since 2009. I have over 16 years of experience working with and for various web hosting providers specifically in development, day-to-day operations and customer service.

Updated on October 6, 2017

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