WordPress: Enabling SSH/SFTP Updates

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26 Responses

  1. Palletje says:

    This is just …………AMAZING.. thanks a lot, the easiest solution by far

  2. saiyajin says:

    I think the WordPress SSH SFTP Updater Support plugin makes the whole process a ton easier:


  3. Aaron says:

    Thanks a million for this. Really didn’t want to use FTP.

  4. Matthew Irvine says:

    Thank you so so so very much! :)

  5. Thanks for this great post ! This should be set on wordpress first page ;)

  6. Will says:

    THANK YOU!!!!

    I know this is an old post but it’s still relevant today, I know because I have just done this like 10 minutes ago to sort my updates. Works a treat.

    After spending ages looking through config files because I have FTP running on non default ports WordPress just wouldn’t connect no matter what I done and then when I managed to get it to connect there were permission issues caused by Plesk’s quirky user groups so I used this method to do away with all that palava and it’s working a treat!

    I’m writing a post about this on the website I linked in this comment, you can check it out if you want, I’m crediting you with this amazing little trick.

    • Jon says:


      Glad to help. It’s old, but some stuff never goes bad. Unfortunately FTP has not died the death some of us would have liked. No way in hell I’m installing it on my server just for wordpress. Persevere!

      • Will says:

        That is so true, ftp reigned supreme for a long time but it should now lay it’s hat to rest.

        I’ve now just now used this again for another friend who had similar user/group issues as I had and he’s well chuffed. He’s also closed his ftp ports and only opens them once a week during his back-up routine, and I’m working on shifting that to SFTP too now that libssh2 is installed.

        More than a dozen of my other friends have also been happy for me to switch them (although to be honest I’m not sure some of them knew what I done, all they heard was ‘it’s safer’ and told me to go ahead haha!) to SFTP too, one of which runs a hosting server with over 2000 WordPress installs on it. You have helped so many people be just that little bit safer alround with this post. I recommended this to my VPS provider and they are considering adding it to their default install too as they have been plagued recently with support tickets regarding the user/group issues after a failed update.

        This, my friend, has been one hell of a find for me. Thank you very much!

        • Jon says:

          “Upgrade” to SFTP is good, in fact I refuse to install FTP on any of my servers – point blank. Frankly, I’m surprised this information is so hard to find. WordPress should have the sftp option greyed out (but visible) on ALL installs with some alt text like “please install libssh for PHP to enable this”. Then at least people would know they have the option.

          Good luck!

  7. pconwell says:

    Man, I know this is a little old, but holy crap is this awesome. Thanks a million! I really HATED HATED HATED having to run FTP/FTPS on my server just to update plugins.

    • Jon says:

      I hear you 100%. When I first started with WordPress I was all “Oh HELLLLLL Nawwww (am I running FTP just to update wordpress)”. And it updates so often too, the manual solution is not favorable either… had to find something.

  8. Takiyah says:

    Does this automatically enable this option for a WordPress subdirectory in a WordPress main site (multisite installation) ?

    • Jon says:

      I have not used this plugin in a WP-MU environment. Since the process is “involved” (IE it’s not totally automated), I don’t know if I’d recommend using it in a MU enviroment.

  9. Mark says:

    Yep have to agree with the others just made running WP from a CLoud server much easier, many thanks.

  10. Michael says:

    I love you, after 2 hours of searching complicated tutorials, I did this in 10 seconds.

  11. Nacho says:

    This saved my day!!!! Thank you very much.

  12. Rich says:

    Awesome, many many thanks!

  1. 2010-06-29

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jon, John. John said: RT @ShakataGaNai: [Blog] WordPress: Enabling SSH/SFTP Updates http://bit.ly/d2DQdU […]

  2. 2010-12-24

    […] A major shout of thanks goes to Jon for his WordPress post entitled Enabling SSH/SFTP Updates. […]

  3. 2011-06-21
  4. 2011-12-08

    […] I have an FTP server running on my web server to easily update plugins via the web admin page since the default WordPress install only allows updates to be made via FTP and FTPS. FTP is an old protocol that is insecure. To update via sftp (ssh), install libssh2-php in Ubuntu and restart apache (credit here). […]

  5. 2012-03-06

    […] Draft I’ve never liked the ftp or ftps options for upgrading wp. Recently I genius blog told me that there is indeed a hidden ssh […]

  6. 2012-05-22

    […] in my WordPress install. After a little bit of thought and some searching I found that Jon over at Snowulf had found the exact solution that I was looking for. He even had the exact commands to issue in a […]

  7. 2012-08-09

    […] in my WordPress install. After a little bit of thought and some searching I found that Jon over at Snowulf had found the exact solution that I was looking for. He even had the exact commands to issue in a […]

  8. 2013-06-26

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