Save Time Setting Up WordPress by Creating Your Own Installation Profiles

Setting up WordPress sites can be a time-consuming process when you factor in installation, plus adding all the plugins you’ll need to be up and running. WP Install Profiles is a plugin that was created to save you time when creating new sites. It automatically downloads groups of plugins that you specify.

When I first saw this plugin it reminded me of Drupal installation profiles, which provide a set group of modules for site features in a single download. I’ve used these quite a bit over the past few years and they always save so much time. That’s why I was excited to discover a way to create my own installation profiles for WordPress.

What is an installation profile?

An installation profile helps you put together a certain type of site by including some of the most commonly-used plugins. You can use it over and over again to set up similar sites.

Here’s how it works…

After you create an installation profile, the plugin calls to the WordPress Plugin Directory, downloads the plugin files and unzips them to the installation’s plugins folder. WP Install Profiles also saves the profile in a downloadable format. You can then use this to upload to your next site and download all of the plugins you need with a single click.

For example, let’s say that you want to create a BuddyPress installation profile that includes the following plugins:

  • BuddyPress
  • Achievements for BuddyPress
  • BuddyPress Registration Groups
  • Welcome Pack
  • Restrict Group Creation

Go to each plugin page and grab the slug from the URL:

Add the exact slug to the installation profile creator for each plugin:

After you create your installation profile(s), you can import or export them as needed.

Another cool feature of this plugin is that it allows you to download the profile of the current site you’re working on. The profile is created using the currently active plugins. So, for example, let’s say you’re working on a site and you see that it has all of the necessary plugins needed for the basics of a small business website. You can instantly create a profile to use over and over again by using this plugin.

Hopefully WP Install Profiles will take off and people can find a way to share the installation profiles they’ve created. It would be very cool if there was a central place for people using this plugin to list their profiles and offer them to others for import. Download WP Install Profiles for free from the WordPress plugin repository. Let us know in the comments which profiles you’d be interested in creating or importing from others.

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Comments (15)

  1. Well I don’t know if I will use it vs. just using FTP to move things around, it does proves to cut down on the time spent with installing your most favorite plugins on multiple sites. Thanks for sharing – it’s the first I’ve heard of this plugin.

  2. I use Plugin Central which has the same ability to create a list and have it install all the plugins on that list. It uses the actual plugin name instead of the Slug which I like, but it doesn’t have the ability to save a list. I will check out your suggestion for that reason!

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