5 of the Best Local WordPress Development Tools Compared for 2021

Best Local WordPress Development Tools

WordPress development tools make everything easier for a WordPress developer. It lets you play around with themes, plugins, and so on without any hassle. However, once you begin to explore, you will see that there are tons of tools available online. In such a scenario, choosing becomes a tricky task. But don’t worry – we are here to help! 

In this article, we will explore some of the best development tools you can use for your WordPress site. Let’s get started!

1. Desktop Server:

Download Desktop Server here

Desktop Server is a Windows and macOS tool that allows you to create multiple local WordPress websites. It is one of the easiest WordPress development tools for beginners. When setting it up for the first time, Desktop Server installs all the software it needs to power WordPress locally. There on, you can re-run the program every time you want to create or delete a local WordPress website. You can also choose which version of WordPress you want to install for your website, as well as assign it a domain name. Although Desktop Server has a free version available, you still need to register to download it. There is also a premium version available for this tool which starts at $99.5. This comes with added features like multisite support, an option to create WordPress blueprints, the ability to export and archive your test setups, and many more.

The premium license for Desktop Server also lets you use it on multiple devices, and do unlimited updates throughout the year, 

Key Features:

    • Includes a step-by-step wizard to help you set up new local WordPress websites.
    • Allows you to map domains on your local websites.
    • Duplicate or delete your sites at any time.
    • The free version allows you to manage up to 3 local WordPress websites.
    • Supports MySQL, Apache, and PHP 5.5.


XAMPP wordpress development tool
Download XAMPP here

XAMPP is a WordPress development tools that come with all the software you need to run WordPress. The name is basically an acronym for Apache, MariaDB, PHP, and Perl. XAMPP comes in two versions – regular XAMPP, which just installs all the software in a directory on your device, and XAMPP-VM, which sets everything up on a Linux Virtual Machine. The regular version of this software is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux-based systems, whereas XAMPP-VM is only available for Mac OS. For installing WordPress with XAMPP, you will have to first set up the stack and make sure all the services are working. Once that is done, you will need to create a database for your WordPress site, download the CMS’s latest version, and configure a couple of files manually. XAMPP is a completely open-source package with no costs included whatsoever.

There are no premium versions with hidden features, so you can use them any way you want. 

Key Features:

  • Ability to set up a software stack that includes Apache, MariaDB, PHP, and Perl.
  • Option to choose from multiple versions, based on which PHP release you want to use.
  • Contains a simple dashboard tool to manage all new services.
  • Enables you to set up WordPress manually, or use a standalone installer if required.

3. MAMP:

MAMP wordpress development tools
Download MAMP here

MAMP is another acronym that stands for My Apache, MySQL, PHP. It is in many ways similar to XAMPP. It is also a software stack that allows you to create WordPress websites easily. The setup process is also just like XAMPP, where you set up the stack, create a database, and then go through setting up WordPress development tools manually. However, MAMP only works on Windows and macOS. Here, you also get access to a lot of additional software like Python, Perl, and many more. There is a free version as well as premium versions available for use. The premium version starts at $59 and comes with several additional features like the ability to set up Nginx servers, a built-in editor, a mobile editing tool, and many more.

Read More: WordPress Themes for Freelancers

Key Features: 

  • Ability to set up a software stack that includes MyApache, MySQL, and PHP.
  • Option to choose from different versions of the software, based on which PHP release you want to set up.
  • Supports additional languages.
  • Enables you to set up local WordPress websites manually.

4. Vagrant:

Vagrant WordPress development tools
Download Vagrant here

Vagrant is a WordPress development tools that are different from all the others we have seen above. It enables you to run multiple virtual machines on your device, and use them as environments for your projects. The setup process here is also very easy compared to most development tools. All you need to do is install the software and download one of the pre-configured boxes. With several pre-configured boxes to choose from, it gives you a chance to create exactly what you need from your website. Also, every environment exists separately on Vagrant. This allows you to have multiple servers running at the same time.

For example, you can have a server running Nginx, and another server running Apache on two different Vagrant machines without any trouble. And to top it all off, it is a free, open-source project, with no premium versions whatsoever!

Key Features:

  • Allows you to set up multiple virtual machines for your local development needs.
  • Allows you to configure each VM to your specifications.
  • Option to download pre-configured boxes.
  • Easy to manage all your VMs using the command line.
  • Enables you to keep your test environments separated.

5. Local by Flywheel:

WordPress Tool
Download Local here

Local is a highly user-friendly tool developed by Flywheel. It has an overly easy-to-use interface for beginners where setting up a website is as easy as clicking a button and choosing a few basic configurations. During the setup, you have an option to choose from Nginx, Apache, PHP 5, and PHP 7, based on your requirements. It is available for use on Windows as well as macOS. Furthermore, it is an entirely free tool that makes it even easier for beginners to develop their local WordPress websites on a minimal budget.

Key Features:

  • Extremely user-friendly.
  • Enables you to set up local WordPress websites with just a few clicks.
  • Allows you to monitor the status of your existing sites from a list.
  • Option to access your sites’ databases, dashboards, and local directories with just a click.
  • Option to create live links and share access to other local projects.

To conclude: 

So, there you go! These are the 5 topmost local WordPress development tools you can use! Have you used any of these before? Let us know your experience in the comments below! Thank you for reading. We hope this article has been helpful. 

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