This FAQ covers both Duplicator Lite & Pro

Technical FAQs

Management Questions about post sales licensing and plugin updates
Packages Package creation in the WordPress Admin
Installer Installing your package on a new site
Troubleshoot General troubleshooting issues
Host Specific Special instructions for specific hosts
Resources Resources related to learning about and using Duplicator

Please read the changelog for important updates and security patches.

Plugin Management


How do I install/remove the Duplicator Pro plugin?
  1. Download the plugin from one of the following locations:
    • The link in the purchase receipt email you received when you purchased the product
    • The Snap Creek dashboard at
  2. Login to the WordPress Admin ❯ Plugins ❯ Add New ❯ Click "Upload Plugin"
  3. Click "Choose File" ❯ select the .zip file you downloaded ❯ click "Install Now" ❯ click "Activate"

  1. Goto Plugins ❯ Duplicator Pro ❯ click Deactivate
  2. After the plugin is deactivated then click Delete
  3. Note: Be sure the plugin does not have any active schedules or builds running when trying to remove
  1. Open a FTP Client or goto to your hosts control panel (cPanel) file manager.
  2. Navigate to the sites plugins directory. It might look something like this:
  3. Select the "duplicator-pro" folder and remove it and all of its contents
  4. Note: Be sure the plugin does not have any active schedules or builds running when trying to delete the "duplicator-pro" folder
I'm having issues installing or updating Duplicator. What can I do?
Problem A During an install or update of the plugin you receive the message:
  • "Uploaded file exceeds the upload_max_filesize directive in php.ini"
Then you can try the try the following options below:

Solution 1 Install the Upload Larger Plugins plugin and activate that first. Afterward, upload the Duplicator Pro plugin. In some cases this plugin may not work and return and error such as Error: the server sent us a response (JSON) which we did not understand. In these cases please see the other solutions.

Solution 2
  1. Change the file upload limit to 5MB or greater, by following these instructions.
  2. Restart your web server for the changes to take place
  3. To make sure the value has been updated and taken affect follow these steps:
    1. Install the PHP Info plugin and activate.
    2. Goto Settings > PHP Info and then search for "upload_max_filesize"
    3. Check to make sure the value is set to 8M
Alternatively: Contact your host and ask them to: "Change the php.ini setting for upload_max_filesize to 5MB"

Solution 3 If #1 doesn't work and your host won't do #2 (which is very uncommon) perform the following:

a) Extract the plugin .zip into a temporary directory on your local machine
b) FTP the duplicator_pro directory on your local machine to /wp-content/plugins/duplicator-pro
c) At that point the plugin will show up in your plugins list and you can activate from there.

Problem B During an update of the plugin you get the error message:
  • PCLZIP_ERR_BAD_FORMAT (-10) : Unable to find End of Central Dir Record signature
Try the following options below:

Solution 1 This error can pop up when PHP does not have the cURL module installed. Enabling the module could be as simple as editing your php.ini file or it may be more involved. Talk to your host if you are unsure.

Solution 2 If Solution 1 didn't help, then manually install the new version of the plugin by doing the following:
  1. Download the latest version of the plugin from
  2. Go to your website's plugin list
  3. Disable and then delete the old version of Duplicator Pro
  4. On the plugins screen, click Add New and upload the new version of Duplicator Pro
  5. Activate the new version

Problem C During an update of the plugin you receive a message saying "Unauthorized Access"

Solution 1 An unauthorized error normally means the your license has not been activated or has expired. Do the following:
  1. Go to Settings > Licensing
  2. Add your license key in the box
  3. Click the Activate button
  4. Go to the Plugins screen and update the plugin

Problem D The uploaded file could not be moved to wp-content/uploads.

Solution 1 Disable FTP Components in wp-config. For a full rundown of this process see this link.

Solution 2 Change your systems permissions to fix the issue.
Note: This option is a bit technical so contact your host if you don't want to mess with it.

Duplicator Pro will not update on Windows, what can I do?

This is a known issue involving path length restrictions on Windows we are working on resolving. In the meantime you may perform a manual update as follows:

  1. Download the latest version of Duplicator Pro from the Snap Creek Dashboard
  2. On your WordPress Admin, go to Duplicator Pro > Settings
  3. Ensure "Delete Plugin Settings" and "Delete Entire Storage Directory" are both unchecked
  4. Uninstall the old version of Duplicator Pro
  5. On the plugins screen, click Add New and upload the new version of Duplicator Pro
  6. Activate the new version
How to resolve 'Table' wp_duplicator* doesn't exist messages?

The following options can help resolve this message:

  1. Remove the plugin and try to re-install, if the problem persists continue to the next option.
  2. Make sure your database user has enough permissions to create the table. Try granting the db user full access.
  3. Contact your host and let them know the Database user doesn't have enough privileges to create tables


My licence will not activate what should I do?
  1. Validation: Log in to your Dashboard and check the licence key number and validate your license count. If your key is valid and you have the proper count then proceed to the next step.
  2. Networking: Check with your host to see if their servers can reach
    1. Contact your host and ask them to monitor what is happening when you click the license activate button. Specifically, ask if communication is getting blocked between your server and If they observe nothing getting blocked on their side then proceed to step 2.
    2. Specifically ask your host for your website's "Outbound IP Address" and then submit a ticket with this information. In most situations the "Outbound IP Address" can only be determined by the host's system network administrator, and may not be the IP address your site is hosted on. Please be sure this is provided by your host's technical staff. We can then check our end for any issue between the servers, but we will need the "Outbound IP" before doing so on our end.
How do licence upgrades and renewals work?


Snap Creek is very flexible with license upgrades and renewals. You can renew or upgrade your licence at any time.


To upgrade your license follow these instructions:
  1. You'll get an email a few weeks before your license expires.
  2. Click on the link in the email for a 40% off code.
  3. Continue through the checkout process.
  4. Once completed your licence expiration date will be extended for another year.


To upgrade your license follow these instructions:
  1. Go to the Dashboard
  2. On the Purchases tab click 'View Licenses'
  3. On the license detail click 'View Upgrades'
  4. Click on the appropriate 'Upgrade License' link
  5. Proceed to checkout

Upgrading and Renewing at the Same Time

At the moment, our shopping cart is currently not optimized to handle renewals and upgrades in the same transaction, therefore if you want to do both an upgrade and renewal at the same time, you will have to execute it in two orders.

Before performing an upgrade it's important that you renew your licence first then perform the upgrade second to get the best price. For example if you originally bought Freelancer and want to renew and upgrade to Business then your pricing would look like this:
  1. Renew while your license is a Freelancer for $47.40 (40% off the $79.00)
  2. Upgrade from Freelancer to Business for $50.00 as a second step.
Alternatively, if you upgraded first and then renewed, the upgrade would be the same ($50.00) but the renewal would jump to $77.40 (vs $47.40) since the renewal would now be based on the Business price.

Renewal Prices

Current Product Base Price Yearly Renew Price
Personal $59.00 $35.40
Freelancer $79.00 $47.40
Business $129.00 $77.40

Upgrade Prices

Current Product Upgrade Price
Personal ❯ Freelancer $20
Personal ❯ Business $70
Personal ❯ Gold $300
Freelancer ❯ Business $50
Freelancer ❯ Gold $280
Business ❯ Gold $230

How do I access the dashboard I forgot my password?

If you are unable to login to the dashboard or you forgot your password please follow these instructions.

Forgot Username
  1. Use the help ticket system
  2. Provide your licence key, first and last name of the purchaser of the product
  3. Submit your ticket and we will get back with you

Forgot Password
  1. Click on the Account link in the upper right corner
  2. Click on the "Lost Password?" link at the bottom of the login form.
  3. Enter the username/email used when purchasing the product and click the button.
    If the username/email is not found then the form will not submit; see "Forgot Username" above.
  4. An email will arrive shortly with a link that will let you reset your password.
    Be sure to double check your SPAM folder if you don't receive an email from snapcreek within 5-10 minutes.
  5. Click on the link in the email. This will take you to a form where you can reset the password.
  6. Enter in any password you like, this includes a previous password you may have used.
  7. Now enter in your username/email with the password you just updated into the login form.
The number one reason for having issues with getting your password reset deal with emails that is sent to your SPAM folder. Please monitor your SPAM folder as well when looking for you password reset link.
Why is the Duplicator/Packages menu missing from my admin menu?
To view the packages menu the current role of the logged in user must have the 'export capability'. This means the user your logged in as should have a role of 'Administrator'. Goto ❯ Users ❯ 'Select User' ❯ 'Role' setting ❯ set to 'Administrator', then logout and login. If this option still does not work consider these options below.

Other Options:
  • Try User Role Editor Plugin: Install plugin, then enable the 'export' capability on the current role (most commonly Administrator). Note: When editing Administrator you must enable "Show Administrator role at the User Role Editor" in the Settings ❯ User Role Editor menu.
  • Edit functions.php Add the following to your functions.php
    $admin_role = get_role( 'administrator' );
    $admin_role->add_cap( 'export', true );
Also see:
WordPress Form: Menu Tools - Export Missing
WordPress Codex: Roles and Capabilities



Why is a requirement check failing?
Before you create a new package a requirements check will show you the status of your system. The following are system checks that are performed before package creation can take place.
PHP Support
The Duplicator requires PHP 5.2.17+ or higher. Contact your host and have them upgrade to a stable secure version of a PHP Release. The plugin also requires either the ZipArchive extension or shell_exec for PHP with zip support. Contact your host and send them these links to make sure the plugin is compatible with your server.
Paths that are listed in this section should have permissions of 755 for directories and 644 for files. On some hosts the permission set requires 777. Setting items to 777 is a security issue and should only be set temporarily. Please avoid any hosting company that requires this kind of setup.

Also be sure to check the Owner/Group settings and validate they are correct and match other successful directories/files that are accessible. For more details contact your host or visit their help pages for more information on how they implement permissions and group settings.
Server Support
The Duplicator currently works with these web servers: Apache, LiteSpeed, Nginx, Lighttpd, IIS, WebServerX. However the best success we have seen with Apache

In order to complete an install the mysqli extension for PHP is required. If you are on a hosted server please contact your host and request that mysqli extension be enabled. For more information visit:
Reserved Files
If this check fails then a reserved file was found in the WordPress root directory. The following are reserved file names installer.php, installer-data.sql and installer-log.txt, installer-bak.php and database.sql. In order to archive your data correctly please remove any of these files from your WordPress root directory. Then try creating your package again.
How do I exclude tables and folders from being archived?
On the setup step of creating a package find the file filters and database filters. For file filters enter the full path of the directory(s) you want to exclude. You can separate additional exclusion paths with a semicolon. This process can be useful if you have large files such as images or videos that you don't want to package. However be careful which folders you exclude. Excluding the wrong folder or database table that has core WordPress or theme files will not allow your site to work at install time.

Adding too many filters slows down the package creation process. The more filters you add the more validation checks need to be made. The inverse is also true of larger files. Larger files can take a long time to archive. So the best solution is to only create filters that you truly need. If you don't have any .mov files in your application then don't add that filter. However if you have .mp3 files that are large then that filter should be added.
What can I do for issues with migrating a large site on a limited host?

Build Issues

DupArchive Format: Some budget hosts may prevent larger sites from properly building a package using zip formats. Snap Creek has a special format for Duplicator Pro which was developed specifically for large sites on restricted hosts. To use this format set: Settings ❯ Packages ❯ Basic Settings ❯ Archive Engine = DupArchive

Two Part Install: For Duplicator Lite use the Two Part Install technique on hosts that show a "Build Interrupt". If your on a budget host using Duplicator Pro and your site is over 2GB then you may also have to use the Two Part Install method, it will just depend on the quality of your hosts performance and any throttle limitations.

Upload Limits

If your on a budget host that has a size upload limit then there are a few ways to get around these constraints.
  • File Filters: Add any large files to the file filter creating a package to get your package down to your hosts limit. Then manually move those filtered files over via FTP. On most sites the easist process is to filter your wp-content/uploads/ folder (typically your images) then manually move those files over.
  • Two-Part-Install: This process has you simply move your files then it quickly runs the database part of the install finalizing your setup. For a full oveview see the Two Part Install technique
Also see:
What can I try for timeout Issues?
How do I run the installer in Database Only Mode?
What if I see warnings or errors during the 'Scan Process'?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
Why does the scan take a long time or just simply fail?
If the scan process is taking a long time (more than 3-4 minutes), hangs, or simply fails then there are several issues that can cause this to happen.

Symbolic Links

Issue: Links that point back to themselves can cause a recursive loop. Check your file system and look to see if there are any directory links that links back to another itself. For example if you have something like /public_html/mydir which points back to /public_html that would create a recursive loop in which case you would need to filter /public_html/mydir.

Solution: To check for symbolic links from within the plugin go to Duplicator ❯ Tools ❯ Diagnostics ❯ Scan Validator ❯ "Run Scan Integrity Validation" This will run a scan check that will look for sym-links and unreadable files. When the scan is complete add the full path(s) of the "Symbolic Links" to the directory filter list on Step 1 of the package creation process.

If the scan validator doesn't pick up any files then go into your host's file manager and look for anything that would cause this (for instance that may look like /dir1 and if you go into /dir1 it would contain the contents of / which would mean it would also include /dir1 etc). If you find one or more of these type of directories/links enable file filters and add the full directory paths to the directories box when you are creating a package.

Note: If this process seems too technical then simply contact your host and ask them if there are any symbolic or recursive links in your WordPress directory structure. There are some instances where the scan validator might not pick a symbolic link on your server.

Large File Counts

Issues: If you're on a budget host or you have your server setup with timeouts then too many files can cause the scan process to timeout. For example if you have your PHP or Apache timeouts set to 20-30 seconds and your trying to scan 250k+ files then the process may not be able to scan all the files.

Solution: To overcome this issue go to the directory filter list on Step 1 of the package creation process and add a filter to the directory where the large file count is. If the scan completes then there is a timeout constraint that is keep the process from finishing. The recommend approach is to increase your PHP and Web Server timeouts so the scan is allowed time to finish.

Unreadable Files

Issue: On some systems certain utf8 characters can cause the scan to have issues. This is a very uncommon issue and typically more prevalent on Windows operating systems running lower version of PHP.

Solution: To check for unreadable files from within the plugin go to Duplicator ❯ Tools ❯ Diagnostics ❯ Scan Validator ❯ "Run Scan Integrity Validation" This will run a scan check that will look for unreadable files. When the scan is complete add the path(s) of the "Unreadable Files" to the directory filter list on Step 1 of the package creation process.


Finding out where the scanner fails is the first step in isolating the issue. Try the following options below to see where the scanner fails.
  • Test 1: Goto Packages ❯ Create New ❯ Check the "Archive Only the Database" checkbox. This will build only the database and let you know if there is an issue with a specific file or directory. If the scanner completes then there is an issue with one of the files in your system. In this case you can follow these steps:
    1. Go back to step one "1-Setup" and click the [root path] quick link to add the WordPress root directory as a filter then run the scanner.
    2. If this works then continue adding and removing directories until you can locate the problem area. Start with the top-most directories and work your way down if not then see "Test 2" below.
  • Test 2: If you get a 403 Forbidden see: See the 403 section below
  • Test 3: If you try Test 1 & 2 and it still fails then check your PHP error log and contact your hosting provider.


Problem When clicking the 'Next' button from "Step 1-Setup" to "Step 2-Scan" you receive the message: Forbidden: You don't have permission to access wp-admin/xyz.php on this server. Additionally, a 403 Forbidden error was encountered...

Solution 1 A permission issue might be related to a file/directory or the .htaccess file. Try changing the permission of your hosts root .htaccess file to 755 and then try the request a few times to see if it starts the scan. If the issue persists then try and contact your host.

Solution 2 Check with your host for any mod_security rules which might be causing the issue and ask them to whitelist the rule causing the issue on your host.
Also see:
What can I do for issues with migrating a large site?
What can I try for 502/503/504 Gateway issues during the scan/build?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
What if I see warnings/errors when starting/running the 'Scan Process'?
Scan checks are not required to pass, however they could cause issues on some systems. If you see a 'Warn' status the package may still build on some system. All of the items on the scan page are simply warnings and you can still proceed to run the build. They are just placed there to give you a heads up should something go wrong when creating the package or installing it. You should always go ahead and try to build a package and see if it builds.


If you receive a 'Warn' status on the [Archive > Files > Invalid Names] line and the full path to the file is below 256 characters you should be good. A warning is shown at 250 characters to bring attention to the issue and warn users that their might be an issue if the path continues to grow.

Basically is what happens with zip programs like winrar/winzip and even the PHP library used to extract the files is that they work fine to package up the files, however when they are extracted on some operating systems such as windows they run into a path limit. One way to validate if the zip file is corrupt or unusable when extracted to its new destination, is to try and extract it with a program like winrar/winzip and it will throw errors about file length issues if they are present...


If the scanner shows warnings for larger files/databases you might have issues if you're on a shared budget host. Having access to your own server or VPS you should be able to easily follow the instructions for timeouts and get Duplicator running without any issues.

Budget Hosts: Its possible that you may run into timeout issues more so with Duplicator Lite on a budget host as it has a single threaded process. If the host kills the PHP process in the middle of trying to zip up your files then it will not be able to archive the file. Duplicator Pro has a mutli-threaded process that allows for larger sites but can still run into issues with sites above 2GB depending on your hosting provider and their limitations on PHP processes.

The best advice with this setup is to first just try to run the build. Running a build is safe and if the process is killed you will simply just see a timeout error message. In some cases your host may be configured to handle backing up that much data; it just depends on your provider. We have seen some shared hosts backup sites upto 4GB with the Lite version and timeout with a 100MB on others. It simply boils down to the constraints imposed by your hosting provider.

If you run into timeout issues when building a package see the FAQ question What can I try for Timeout Issues? there are several work-a-rounds that will allow you to successfully build a package no matter how large your site is. To quickly get going skip down to the section "MANUAL TIMEOUTS WORKAROUNDS" or the FAQ item above titled What can I do for issues with migrating a large site?.


If you run a scan and the results show up with no files being found. In your server could be configured with "server separation". You will need to contact your hosting provider for more details however this can be an issue on some systems.
Possible options in Domain Configuration window are:
  1. No forwarding
  2. Forward to subfolder without service separation
  3. Forward to subfolder with service separation
  4. Forward to IP/Host/URL
Switching temporarily to #2 will allow the Duplicator to run without issues for both the package and installer.
Also see:
What can I do for issues with migrating a large site?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
What can I try for 502/503/504 Gateway issues during the scan/build?
Most 500 web server errors can be difficult to track-down as they are being thrown from the web server and not PHP. Below are several options you can try for 504 and 502 errors.

OPTION 1 - Config Update:
Add the following to your .htaccess file

<IfModule mod_dtimeout.c>
<Files ~ ".php">
	SetEnvIf Request_URI "admin-ajax" DynamicTimeout=240

OPTION 2 - Cloudflare:
If you're using Cloudflare the below settings may help
1. Log in to Cloudflare
2. On the Overview page, click "Advanced"
3. Click "Pause"
4. Run installer deployment
5. Turn Cloudflare back on

OPTION 3 - Contact Hosting Provider:
Connect with your hosting provider and let them know your getting a 500 error. Many times your host will have access to the web server logs which can help isolate what is triggering the error on their server configurations. In some cases the host may be able to provide enough information to give you a status as to why the 500 error is being thrown, this information in some cases can help us try different configurations in the hosts environment.

Upgrade: Ask your host if they are running the latest version of a web server software such as Apache or nginx. Many times hosts will run very outdated version of software which will have patches and fixes for the issue you're experiencing.
OPTION 4 - General Troubleshooting:
There are several troubleshooting protocols you can implement to try and validate if the issue is indeed a networking issue between your browser and the server. If you have the ability to try from a different computer or even different browser that can sometimes isolate the issue. For a full run-down of various ways to fix this issue please see this article on Understanding and Fixing 502 Bad Gateway Errors

Also see:
What can I try for 502/503/504 Gateway issues during the install?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
What's the difference between "Shell Zip", "ZipArchive" and "DupArchive" Engines?
Shell Zip
Shell Zip uses PHP shell_exec to call out to your servers 'zip' executable to create the package using a zip format. This is generally a faster and more robust solution than using PHP ZipArchive code. We recommend you choose this option if it's available on your system.

The PHP ZipArchive engine uses PHP logic to create the zip package. This method is generally slower than the Shell Zip option and can have problems capturing files with non-western filenames. In some cases it will be better to use the ZipArchive, however generally speaking you should try to use the Shell Zip if its available.

DupArchive is a file format that creates an archive.daf file. This format is specific to Duplicator Pro. This format is designed around performance and scalability. Many budget hosting providers have very strict timeouts, cpu and i/o constraints that they configure into their servers. With DupArchive the format is designed to help get around these server constraints so that users can build larger packages.
Why is my DupArchive package failing to build?
The most common reason why a DupArchive-based package won't build is because the server is running 32-bit PHP and the site is very large, resulting in a package greater than 2.1GB. Unfortunately, 32-bit PHP can only process/create files less than 2.1GB so DupArchive fails.

Determine if your system is running 32-bit PHP by going to Duplicator Pro > Tools > Server Settings > PHP and see what value is in the "Architecture" setting.

If you have determined your server is running 32-bit PHP and the site is large enough that the package would be greater than 2.1 GB then you have a couple options:

1) Ask your host to upgrade your PHP version to 64 bit (64 bit PHP has a file size limit we would never hit. Also note that most hosts are running 64 bit PHP these days)


2) Perform a 2-step migration which minimizes the package size. This technique is described here.
Why is the Duplicator user interface (UI) not working?
Problem When logged into the the WordPress admin user interface (UI) parts of the Duplicator are not working correctly or behaving as expected. What are my options to resolve these issues?

Option 1 The most common reason why the plugin UI is not working is that other plugins or themes are having conflicts with the plugin. In order to solve this problem goto Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Advanced and check the checkbox for both "Other Plugins/Themes JS" & "Other Plugins/Themes CSS" and try to reload the page/view that was having issues.

Option 2 If option 1 does not work, consider deactivating your plugins or trying another theme temporarily. Then try to reload the page/view that was having issues.


Why is the package build stuck at 5% or Pending?
Possibility 1: The Plugin is configured for the wrong admin-ajax protocol.

If your wp-admin URL starts with https:// instead of http://, switching protocols may solve the problem (only switch if wp-admin is running https).

  1. Go to Settings > Packages > Advanced Settings
  2. Change the AJAX setting to 'https'
  3. Save settings and retry build
  4. If build is still stuck at 5% continue to possibility 2

Possibility 2: The host is blocking localhost traffic to admin-ajax.php.

Some hosts prevent the server from calling back into itself (localhost). The Fail2Ban service may also be responsible. To fix this problem:

  1. Go to Settings > Packages > Advanced Settings
  2. Enable "Client-Side kickoff"
  3. Save settings and retry build
  4. If build is still stuck at 5% continue to possibility 3

Possibility 3: Basic authentication is protecting the WordPress admin area.

If you get a login popup window asking for a set of credentials whenever you login to your WordPress admin area (wp-admin) it's likely the server has basic authentication enabled. The plugin must be configured for this.

  1. Go to Settings > Packages > Advanced Settings
  2. Set "Basic Auth" to the credentials you normally enter in the popup
  3. Save settings and retry build
  4. If build is still stuck at 5% continue to possibility 4

Possibility 4: A security plugin is blocking admin-ajax.

It's possible you have a security plugin running that's blocking things.

  1. Disable any security plugins
  2. Run a package build
  3. If build works, turn back on plugins and isolate the setting preventing the build
  4. Save settings and retry build

Possibility 5: The host is blocking admin-ajax.php

Some hosts have rules that block calls to admin-ajax.php. If you suspect this to be the case submit a support ticket.

Why does the build percent get stuck around 20%?
DB Script Engine
The 20% mark usually indicates there is a problem capturing the database. Go into Settings ❯ Packages and change the Database setting from PHP ❯ mySQL or vice-versa.

Optimize Tables
If you continue to get stuck around the 20% mark consider optimizing your database with a plugin like wp-sweep. Use this plugin to optimize your tables and get rid of unnessary data. Also look for tables that may have un-useful data when migrated. For example if you have a table that logs statistics/security logs in most cases that data will not need to be used after migration. Consider removing any extra data from your database.

Filter Table
If you have a very large table that your host will not allow for the plugin to process then you can filter it out on the archive database tab and then manually move the table over.
Why does the build percent keep going back to 40%?
This can happen on lower-end budget hosts. The zip process is getting killed by the server, due to limited resources. Below are some steps to follow to get around these constraints:

Filter Files: Try filtering out larger files/directories using the file/directory filter option and retry the build, both in 'Shell Exec' mode and 'ZipArchive' mode to get a package to complete. This will help you to identify if the issue is purely related to site size. And let you know which archive engine works best on your server.

Switch to DupArchive
  1. Go to Settings > Packages > Basic Settings
  2. Change 'Archive Engine' to 'DupArchive'

Switch to ZipArchive If you're building with the "Shell Exec" Zip Engine switching to the older ZipArchive engine can occasionally resolve the issue.
  1. Go to Settings > Packages > Basic Settings
  2. Change 'Archive Engine' to 'ZipArchive'

ZipArchive Settings: For ZipArchive use the Legacy setting. Set the "Max Worker Time" to the Recommended Max (see subtext). If your PHP max_execution_time was set to 300 then this value would be 210 seconds. Next adjust the ZipArchive Buffer Size. For every 2 seconds of Max Worker Time you can get around 1MB of data. So if your Max Worker is set to 210 then you should be able to set the Buffer to around 105MB. These rules are a general guidelines, if you find out that the build is working with the 2 seconds to 1MB ratio then it should be safe to slowly increment the buffer size by 10MB increments.
Also see:
What can I do for issues with migrating a large site?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
What should I do if a package gets stuck in the 'pending' state?

A package in the pending state often indicates that a package created by a schedule can't be processed due to an AJAX communication failure.

Do the following:

  1. Manually build a package (as opposed to using a schedule)
  2. If that package gets stuck at 5% that indicates something is blocking AJAX communication. See Why is the package build stuck at 5%? for details on how to resolve.
What should I do if I get the error 'Unable to read JSON from service'?

To resolve this issue please do the following:

  1. Go to Settings/Packages
  2. Change JSON to "Custom"
  3. Change Lock Type to "SQL"
  4. Retry building a package
What if I see warnings or errors during the 'Build Process'?
Open the log file associated with the package you tried to create and look for these items:
  1. Look for for warnings or errors, then check the Troubleshooting section below for the related issue
  2. Look for the text 'DONE PROCESSING' at the very end of the log file this indicates the package processed fully.
Turn off all cache plugins: Many of the popular cache plugins have been known to create issues when you go to create a package and re-install your system. It is highly recommended that you turn off all caching plugins while creating your package and add the cache directory to the directory filter list.
I'm having troubles building a package what are my options?

Build Issues

Problem The build process continues to fail or is having issues completing, what are my options.

Option 1 If build process is stuck and a certain percentage 5%, 20%, 40% this indicates that it is hung up at a certain phase. Please see the FAQ items above this one that addresses each of the percentages.

Option 2 The I/O and CPU constraints set up by the host may be causing the server to kill the zip process using the core PHP library functions. If this is the case try the DupArchive (.daf) engine format for packages. It has been specifically designed for large packages and/or tight budget host constraints. To use DupArchive:
  1. Update to the latest version of the plugin
  2. Go to Settings > General and click the "Reset All" (Duplicator Pro) and "Reset Packages" (Duplicator Lite) buttons.
  3. Go to Settings > Packages > Archive Engine > select "DupArchive" for the Engine and Save.
  4. Build the package
Option 3 If you continue to still have build issues with Option 2 above we recommend that you also perform the following:
  1. Create new package ❯ Expand 'Archive' ❯ Enable File Filters ❯ click the '[wp-content]' link by 'Directories'
  2. Build the package ❯ Install at the new location
  3. FTP the files from the source server's wp-content to the destination server's wp-content directory.
Option 4 If none of the options above work, we recommend doing a two-part install process. While this process takes a little bit longer it does stream-line the build process and solves 99% of most build issues.

Why is the package build slow?

There are several common reasons for a slow build:

Unnecessarily Files: Look for large file warnings during the scan report step. Go through the list and determine if you need to backup that file. Go back to the package creation screen and add the full path of any large unnecessary files to the ignored file list. Backups created by other backup plugins should not be backed up. Also look for larger log files and data that is not needed for a proper restore.

Note: If you have a larger database (over 20MB) consider using the mysqldump option also found in the Settings area. Be sure that your database has been properly optimized and consider using a free plugin such as wp-optimize to help clean up unnecessary data and optimize it for better performance.

System Zip: The zip routine built into the operating system is much faster in most cases then trying to use PHP. Go to the Settings/General page. Ensure "Archive Engine" is set to "Shell Exec" instead of "ZipArchive".

"Shell Exec" results in much faster builds but some budget hosts don't support it unfortunately. If your host does not support it you can ask them to enable shell_exec for PHP or consider using a recommended host that does.

Slow Server: If you've tried the options above but your builds are still slow, chances are if you're on a budget host then the server is currently overloaded. Please contact your host's support and ask to move servers or have the slowdown investigated. If you have access to your on server or VPS consider increasing the PHP memory_limit.

Also see:
What can I do for issues with migrating a large site?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
How to resolve "zip warning: No such file or directory"?

This usually indicates files are actively changing on the site while the package is being built. Plugins such as Backup Buddy Stash Live and Vault Press are two examples of plugins that do this.

  1. Determine what plugin is actively writing or removing files on your site.
  2. Deactivate that plugin temporarily.
  3. Build the package.
  4. Reactivate the plugin.

If you can't determine which plugin is causing the problem, add the cache directory to the file filter:

  1. Click Enable File Filters
  2. Click the cache link above the Directory box.
I'm getting a ZipArchive close failure when building. How can I resolve this?
The new DupArchive format is a good alternative to ZipArchive on many hosts. DupArchive is a robust archive format developed by Snap Creek specifically to work better on budget hosts or in restricted environments. To enable DupArchive, go to Settings > Packages > and set "Archive Engine" to "DupArchive". Note: in Duplicator Lite DupArchive only supports packages upto 500MB.

If you prefer to stick with ZipArchive (.zip format), then filtering non-required files may be an option. On the scan phase of the build, check if files are showing up in the "Size Checks" list and determine if there are any files/directories that can be safely excluded. Typically this would be backups created by other backup programs or even nested WordPress sites.

ZipArchive close problems can also be caused by lack of space on your account. Log in to your host panel and observe how much space you have left. If the amount of space left is less than 2x your site size, go through your account and look to eliminate unneeded files. If this is not an option, talk to your host about increasing your disk quota. Note: If you have Pro and Lite installed on the same site be sure that no Pro builds are running at the same time this can lead to close failures on Lite

OPTION 4 Lite Only
Go to Settings ❯ Package and turn off "Archive Flush". This setting forces a ZipArchive close response after so many files have been loaded. This process can help with fcgi setups, but can also slow down the build time. If your package is not building with this setting it is recommended to turn it off.

OPTION 5 Pro Only
Go to Settings ❯ Packages and change the Archive Engine to "Shell Exec" if it is available and then retry the build.

Also see: What's the difference between "Shell Exec" and "ZipArchive" Engines?
Some hosts are configured in such a way as to limit resources available which can lead to ZipArchive close failures. One way around this is to do a "Two-Part" install.

The process for doing is described here: How to do a Two-Part Install.

How do I resolve the error "Malformed UTF-8 characters, possibly incorrectly encoded"?
Package Creation Issues:
To resolve this issue go to Settings > Packages > Advanced Settings and set JSON to "Custom". After that, rebuild the package to see if the issue goes away.

Setting Migration Issues:
If you are using the settings migration export tool and see this error then data stored in the settings, templates, storage or schedule area has become corrupted. Check the data in the failed area to make sure the data is correct. If the data looks correct consider re-saving the data in that respective area. If the problem persists consider removing the items one by one to isolate the setting that is causing the issue.


Why can't I download files / see a 404.3 / get a corrupted installer?
Problem A When clicking to download the installer or archive files or other files types listed on the packages details page you get an error or the file just will not download properly.

Solution 1 Contact Host Provider: If trying to download the archive or installer is persistent, then we recommend you check with your hosting provider to see if they have any constraints or rules setup that might prevent certain file types such as .zip, .daf or .php files from downloading.

Solution 2 Disable .htaccess: On some systems the .htaccess file inside the storage directory can cause issues with downloads. To find out if this is the case on your system go to:
  • Duplicator Pro: Settings > Storage and check the box "Disable .htaccess File in Storage Directory" & save.
  • Duplicator Lite: Settings > General and check the box "Disable .htaccess File in Storage Directory" & save.
Then try to download the installer or archive file from the main menu or the package details screen.

Solution 3 Adjust Mime-Type: If you have issues downloading the these file types .sql, .log, .zip, and .daf it is likely the web server does not have the correct mime types setup. Check with your server administrator on how to make sure the correct MIME types are configured for download.

A quick setting for Apache web servers is to create or edit the .htaccess file following these instructions. Add the following text to your .htaccess
AddType application/octet-stream .zip .log .sql .daf
This tells the web server to treat the extensions files as download-able. Other web servers will have similar configurations. Please check with your server administrator for your proper setup. If you can not download the installer.php file then you will need to follow the directions below and get the file off of the server via FTP.

Solution 4 Download via FTP: You can always manually download any of the package files via FTP or cpanel by going to your builds directory which should be located in the following paths:
  • Duplicator Pro: See path: /your_site/wordpress_root/wp-content/backups-dup-pro (or the new storage path you setup) on your web-server.
  • Duplicator Lite: The path will be in only one of the following:
    • Content Path: '/public_html/wp-content/backups-dup-lite/'
    • Legacy Path: '/public_html/wp-snapshots/' folder (from your WP root)
If you continue to have issues then you might want to check with your hosting provider or server admin to find out why the server is having issues downloading the specified files.

Solution 5 Browser Settings: Check your browser settings to make sure that the save as dialog is designed to pop up for the the following mime types .php, .zip, .daf. For example in FireFox Under Options > General > Applications (Under Applications set zip files to "Always Ask"). More details here:

Problem B After downloading the installer the file it looks corrupted or is not working.

Solution See FAQ: Browsing to the installer displays PHP code or it won't download from the Packages screen.
Why did my scheduled build get cancelled yet manual builds work fine?

Scheduled builds getting cancelled when manual builds work fine can be due to the amount of traffic the site is receiving when the backup is scheduled combined with the build timeout value.

WordPress doesn't have an active thread running which means that in order for a scheduled package to build it has to be kicked off and run only when visitors are actually hitting your site

The simplified version you can think of is:

  1. Visitor hits site
  2. As part of WordPress page processing, Duplicator Pro determines package needs to build
  3. Package starts building

Because of the way things work, if there is very light traffic occurring when the schedule is supposed to run, the package build can actually time out.

To resolve this, do the following:

  1. In Duplicator Pro > Settings > Packages set Server Throttle to Low
  2. In Duplicator Pro > Settings > Packages set Max Build Time to 270 Minutes
  3. Set your schedule build time to a time when you will be getting a decent amount of traffic

Also, since you are setting the start time to occur during a period when you get more traffic we recommend Server Throttle be turned on - this will ensure your visitors are minimally impacted by the processing of the backup.

Why didn't my scheduled build run on time?

The plugin uses a mechanism similar to WordPress' standard cron scheduling which requires someone to visit the site for an action to occur.

This means if you don't have any visitors at the scheduled time, the package won't build until a visitor requests a page. It's designed this way because the web server only reacts to visits and doesn't have any active threads running.

To make scheduled builds more accurate:

  1. Move the scheduled time to a time when your site normally has visitors.
  2. To avoid bogging down your site during a busy time go to Settings/Packages and set "Host Throttling" to Low or Medium. This lessens the impact to site responsiveness but slows the backup a bit.

I'm having issues with SSL what are my options?

If your moving from https to http or vice versa and run into issues below is a check-list of possible work-a-rounds:

  1. Check Plugins: If you have an SSL plugin installed that controls SSL links on your site, try to deactivate/reactivate or temporarily remove the plugin to see if the issue persists. Plugins can be deactivated on step 3 of the installer under the options section.
  2. WP-Config: Check the wp-config.php file for the FORCE_SSL_ADMIN constant and try to toggle it true/false.
  3. Codex: Check the codex on Administration Over SSL to see if your site complies with the recommendations.



Getting Started

Where do I upload the package files to on the new server?
Problem You have successfully created the package files installer.php and or archive.daf but you don't know where to place the files on the new server.

Solution 1 Contact Host: This is by far the fastest way to locate the proper path. The physical path on a web server will map to a domain name and inside of your hosts control panel will be various ways to manage this process. Since there are so many hosts that do mappings differently and use different software its best to contact your host and ask them where "" maps to the physical folder structure on the server such as /public_html/yoursite/. Simply send the question below to your host:


I would like to install a WordPress site on my domain "", however I'm not 100% sure where this domain name maps to on the servers file structure. Could you please point me to the full path for where this domain name points to on the server?

Once you have received the path from the host, place the installer and archive in the path they have provided. Next open up a web browser and browse out to the installer file such as

Solution 2 Self Discovery: You can easily find the domain to server path location by simply following these easy steps:
  1. Create a file called test.txt on your local computer with the text "Hello World" inside the file and save it.
  2. FTP the test.txt file to your server and observe the path you place it in.
  3. Open a web browser and browse to you will get one of two results:
    • A message that says something like 404 file not found
    • The results of the text file with show "Hello World", meaning you found the correct path.
  4. Keep moving the file around in the various directories on your server until you can locate the test.txt file
  5. Additional for control panels that use the cPanel software can be found here.
How do I launch the installer & what should I expect?
  1. Make sure your server has PHP, Apache (or a similar web server) and MySQL.
  2. Duplicator Lite: Your site should not already have WordPress installed.
    Duplicator Pro: An existing site can be present since the Pro installer can overwrite sites.
  3. Copy both the archive file and the installer.php files to the appropriate folder on your web server (Again, if you are using Duplicator Lite, this directory must be empty). Make sure the directory they are copied to have the correct permissions. Then open a web browser and browse to the installer.php file.
  4. On "Step 1: Extract Archive" check the box to accept the Terms and click next to extract the archive file.
  5. On "Step 2: Install Database" click the "Test Database" button to make sure you can connect to the database. If you're on a host then you will need to manually create the database using a tool like phpMyAdmin.
  6. Continue with the rest of the installer until it is finished.

Restarting the install process:
1. Remove all files and directories from where you just installed your site (except the installer and package file).
2. Hit your web browsers back button or browse to the installer.php file again.
3. Run the installer again.
How long should I wait for the installer to run?
The installation process may take a few minutes (never hours) depending on the speed of your system and the size of your content. Be patient and wait for the process to complete. Once the installation starts an install-log.txt file is created in the same directory as the installer.php and package file. You can open up this file anytime during the install and see the progress of the install. You will have to refresh the page to see any process updates to the log file.
How do I create a new database and database user for install?
In step 2 of the installer you will need to connect to your database. You have three options when it comes to setting up the database:

1. Create a database and user with your host's control panel. Then assign the user full rights to the database.
- OR -
2. Create a database at install time using the cPanel optionPro within the installer (requires cPanel).
- OR -
3. Duplicator Pro Only: Overwrite an existing site and reuse that site's database. On step 2 you will be notified of the existing database. Simply click "apply" and the existing database settings will be used.

Basic Option: On most hosting providers the 'Basic' option does not support the action to create a new database, this is a restriction of your host not Duplicator. You will need to manually create the new database using your hosting providers cPanel or equivalent admin tools. Here are the basic steps:
  1. Login to your hosts control panel and find the section to create a new database
  2. Create the new database and copy down the name of the new database
  3. Create a new or assign an existing database user to the database and write down the database user name
  4. Open the Duplicator installer.php file and test the connection to the new database and proceed with install
With the Basic option you will need to manually type in the name of the database and user while the cPanel option will present the database and user within drop down boxes.

How do I install a Multisite in subdomain mode on localhost?
In short, you edit your hosts file to account for all subdomains that are contained in the Multisite package and then install to which you set up as an alias for localhost.

This is best explained through an example. Say you have a package with a multisite containing
subsites, and

To install this multisite on localhost do the following:
  1. Open your hosts file in a text editor.
  2. Add the following to the hosts file:
  3. Save the hosts file
  4. Browse to and proceed with the install.
After the installer completes you should be able to properly view, and
I don't have the original installer that came with the archive what can I do?
In the event you no longer have a copy of the installer.php file you should always be able to get a backup of the installer from within the file. Follow these steps to get the installer file.
  1. Download the file to your local computer
    • Extract the to a temporary location or simply open the zip viewer to the root of the
    • If your using the archive.daf format see this link to extract files.
  2. Inside of the archive will be an exact copy of the original installer file in the root of the archive file.
  3. The file is named in the format '[name]_[hash]_[date]_installer-backup.php' or 'installer-backup.php'
  4. Copy the installer-backup.php and archive to the location where you would like to install the WordPress site
How can I host multiple sites on one server or in my public_html root?
In the event you want to host multiple WordPress sites on one hosting account a little bit of planning and setup is needed. This outlines how the majority of most hosts work. If the setup does not match your hosts options, its recommended to contact your host for the exact instructions.

STEP 1: Web Root Directory: Locate your hosts web root directory either through your hosts cPanel or FTP. On most hosts this is named "public_html". Make sure it is empty of any Core WordPress Files files such as "wp-admin", "wp-content", "wp-config.php" etc. It is ok if you see files like 404.html or .htaccess just be on the lookout for an existing WordPress setups. If any core WordPress files do exist back them up and remove them.

STEP 2: Create Site Directories: Each WordPress site you setup will need to have its own directory off of the Web Root Directory. Typically this is representative of a seperate directory for each domain name you own, but is not always the case. Below is an example of how you might create the directories. /public_html/mysite1/(wp files)
/public_html/mysite2/(wp files)
/public_html/mysite3/(wp files)
STEP 3: Create Databases Each site will needs is own database. Typically the best practice is to name the database similar to the directory (which is most cases is the domain name).

STEP 4: Create Add-on Domain The bulk of most major hosts will have a feature called "Add-On Domain". This simply lets you map a domain name you own to a specific directory in your "Web Root Directory" created in step 1. A simple search on your hosts web-site will show you how to enable this. The process for most hosts is typically very straight forward. For a list of approved Duplicator hosts click here.

STEP 5: Install Duplicator Package Once you have the directory and database created and mapped. You are ready to run install a Duplicator package to the new location. For a quick start on this process click here.

Custom Installs

How do I do a 'Manual Extraction' or run installer without Zip enabled?
The 'Manual Extraction' option in the installer allows for users to manually extract the archive file vs having the installer try to extract it. This can be helpful if you are experiencing timeouts when installing or other extraction issues. The following steps explain the process:
  1. Place the installer.php & {archive}.zip/daf files in an empty directory where you wish to install your site.
  2. Open your hosts cPanel file browser and navigate to the {archive}.zip/daf file
    For localhost open your computers file browser and navigate to the archive file
  3. Extract the contents directly into the same directory as the {archive}.zip/daf file
  4. Open a web browser and browse to the http(s)://yoursite/installer.php file
  5. Goto Installer-Step 1 > Options > Extraction > select 'Manual Archive Extraction' and continue the install.
Also See:
Video: How to extract zip file on cPanel
How to do a zero downtime migration (install site to new host while old site is still up) ?

It's highly desirable to have little to no downtime when moving a site - but how exactly can you install the new site while the DNS is still pointing to the old site?

In short, you trick the machine running your browser into thinking the DNS has already been changed by editing its hosts file and then install.

Just do the following:

  1. Change your hosts file* to make your domain name point to the new location
  2. Browse to the installer.php and install the site
  3. Test to ensure everything is working
  4. On your domain registrar, switch to your new host's DNS servers
  5. After you are confident the DNS changes have propagated remove the entry in your hosts file

*This site explains how to edit the hosts file on different operating systems.

How do I run the installer in Database Only Mode?
Running the installer in "Database Only Mode" can come in handy when you only have database changes to make or you have a large site where all the files were moved manually. Below are the steps you can take to use the database only mode when you manually move the files.

  1. Copy all WordPress [Location-A] files via cPanel or FTP to an empty directory at [Location-B]
  2. On [Location-A] goto Duplicator > Create Package > Archive > Files Tab > Check 'Archive Only the Database'
  3. Create package and transfer the and installer.php to [Location-B] where all files were copied in step 1
  4. Browse to the installer.php file at [Location-B] via a web browser (i.e. http://mysite/mypath/installer.php)
  5. In the right hand corner should display Database Only Mode
  6. Run through the installer steps as normal and the site should be restored when complete
  7. This option works for both Duplicator Lite & Pro
How can I remove the installer password protection?
Problem You have launched the installer and there is a password screen of which you don't know or have lost.

Solution 1 Go back to the server where the package was created and goto Duplicator ❯ Packages ❯ Details ❯ Installer Section and toggle the password to see the password that was assigned to the package.

Solution 2 To override the password screen simply do the following for each version:
  • Duplicator: Open the installer.php with a text editor. Find the variable and set to zero such as: $GLOBALS['FW_SECUREON'] = 0
  • Duplicator Pro: Open the /dup-installer/dup-archive__[hash].txt with a text editor. Find the setting "secure_on": 0 and set to zero.
  • Refresh the browser installer.php page after the edit has been made and saved.

Pre-Install Issues/Errors

Browsing to the installer displays PHP code or it won't download from the Packages screen.
When you open a web browser and browse to the installer.php file such as http://yourserver/installer.php you are asking the web server to process the PHP file. If you see a bunch of text and code then the web server you placed the installer file on is not setup correctly or the installer file was corrupted when the web server served it up as part of the download process. Below outlines a few different scenarios you might run into when trying to run the installer.php file.


If you just seeing plain text/code on the screen the simple fix most of the time is to open the httpd.conf or .htaccess file and add the following lines:
AddType application/x-httpd-php .php .htm .html
AddHandler x-httpd-php .php .htm .html
It will be different on your setup so Google whatever platform your using XAMPP/MAMP/SUSE etc. along with the term AddType php and there should be some posts that explain exactly how to set it up.

In order to run WordPress you will need a web server such as Apache, PHP and a database like MySQL. For instruction on how to setup your own WordPress server see this article. There may be others issues you run into. Below are various suggestions/fixes for this possible scenarios.


If you are just seeing binary text/code on the screen such as:
1f8b 0800 0000 0000 0003 ecfd 7b57 1bb9 d228 0eff 9dbd d6fe 0e8d 7706 ecd0 3636 09b9 d8e9 7813 7012 26dc 8221 2401 86a7...

- OR -

Warning: Unexpected character in input: '?' (ASCII=17) state=0
Then the web server may have some issues with pushing the file down to your computer. The easiest way to get a good copy of the installer is to try the following:
  • Direct FTP Download:
    1. When transferring the package files from your FTP client be sure it is in binary mode since ASCII mode can/will corrupt the zip file.
    2. In Duplicator Pro FTP to '/public_html/wp-content/backups-dup-pro'.
      In Duplicator Lite FTP to:
      • Legacy Path: '/public_html/wp-snapshots/' folder (from your WP root)
      • Content Path: '/public_html/wp-content/backups-dup-lite/'
    3. Find the installer file name associated with the correct package and download it.
    4. Open in an text editor such as Notepad++. The file at this point should be a normal PHP file.
  • Use backup installer: Another option is to open the file and find the installer-backup.php file it will be an exact copy of the original installer.php file.
  • Contact Host: Let your host know that the download of files needs to be set in binary mode not ASCII.


If you browse to the installer and get a download prompt then you may have a .htaccess file that is corrupt or not configured to work correctly. To validate this simply create a blank file called test.php and place it at the same location as the installer.php file. If you also get download prompt when browsing to it via a web browser then your web configuration setup is not correct. Here are a few options:
  1. Non-Technical Route: If your not technical or just don't have time to mess around with server setups contact your host and tell them your site is not properly processing PHP files. They should be able to get you going quickly.
  2. Technical Route: Try to explicitly set PHP5 in your .htaccess file: AddHandler x-httpd-php5 .php or with CGI
    AddHandler x-httpd-php5-cgi .php Consider these handlers for your version of PHP.


If you see an error such as:
Parse error: syntax error, unexpected $end, expecting T_VARIABLE or T_DOLLAR_OPEN_CURLY_BRACES or T_CURLY_OPEN in ... installer.php on line 1300 Then the encoding on your file is not being accepted by your web server correctly. Below area few options.

In many cases the transfer of the file from one server to another can cause the installer to get corrupted. To solve this issue see the section above titled "BINARY TEXT". In many cases changing the FTP mode from ASCII to binary can fix this issue.

If option 1 does not solve the issue then open a program like Notepad++ and play around with the "Encoding" setting found in the top toolbar. Change from ANSI to UTF-8 try to convert from one format to the other and then save the file and then re-upload the installer file to the server to see which version works.

Additional Search Links:
Stackoverflow | Google Search
Also see:
Why can't I download files / get a corrupted installer / see a 404.3 message?
The installer is showing blank/white, 403, 404 or a 500 error?

403 Forbidden

Problem When browsing to the installer.php file you get a 403 Forbidden message.

Solution 1 The quickest solution for this issue is to contact your hosting provider and let them know the folder path and URL you are getting the 403, they will be able to quickly update the rules on their servers.

Solution 2 If you would like to try and fix the issue yourself there are many different techniques you can try, but remember every host is setup differently so some of these options may not properly work on your hosts and others will.
  1. How to Fix the 403 Forbidden Error in WordPress
  2. Apache giving 403 forbidden errors - Stack Overflow

404 Not Found

Problem When browsing to the installer.php file you get a 404 or page not found message.

Solution 1 Contact Host: This error indicates that your web server is not setup to serve up web pages. If your not familiar with setting up web servers such as Apache, then the quickest way to fix this issue is to work with your hosting provider and tell them you get a 404 at "XYZ" URL. They should be able to get you up and running in minutes. This is not something the plugin will be able to handle or fix as its a web server configuration issue.

Solution 2 Apache Setup: When setting up the web server (typically Apache) one of the common overlooked setup parameters is the <Directory> directive. The following configuration will work on most setups but check with your server admin to be sure on their server: <Directory />
Options Indexes FollowSymLinks Includes ExecCGI
AllowOverride All
Require all granted
Allow from all
Solution 3 Troubleshoot: To troubleshoot this issue place two files called test.html and test.php in the same directory as the installer.php file. Then try to browse out to both of them via a web browser. If neither work then your site is not setup to server from the location at which they are placed. If only the test.html file works then PHP may not be properly enabled on your web server. If your not sure about how to configure your web server to server from the proper path or serve up PHP files then contact your hosting admin as these are not issues the plugin will be able to fix.

Blank/White or 500

If the installer is not showing up at all then there are a series of tests that you can try.

  1. Web Server: Check to make sure the web server is setup properly. Create a new file named test.php in the same location as the installer.php file. Inside the test.php file place the following code:
    <?php phpinfo(); ?>
    If this works and you see the text "PHP Version" at the top followed by other PHP settings info then continue to the other options below, if not then something is wrong with the web-server setup and you will need to contact your host or server administrator.
  2. Server Logs: Examine the server error log as explained here. Also you may access all server error logs by going to cPanel > Statistics > Error Logs or using your host-specific control panel. If you don't have direct access to the server logs ask your host support to look for any errors in the logs for you.
  3. Permissions: Check the permissions on installer.php file and its parent directory. On most hosts it should be 755 and files should be 644. Be sure to double check with your hosting provider or server admin as to how they want permissions setup on their servers.
  4. Change Browsers: Open another web browser and check for the white screen. If it works in the new browser then it may be a browser cache issue. You can usually fix this by holding down ctrl+F5 or manually deleting your browser cache.
  5. Config Files: Backup and remove hidden configuration files such as .htaccess, web.config and .user.ini files (Apache, Microsoft IIS, WordFence). These files under certain circumstances have have configurations that prevent the installer from running. Simply remove them from the same directory that the installer.php file is in and try to again. If the problem persist try and backup and remove the files from your root web directory, in most cases public_html.
Also See:
How do I handle "Internal Server " messages?
I can't download or install an archive on my Mac. How can I fix this?
In Mac OS systems running Safari files may be set to automatically unzip upon download. This will cause issues with the Duplicator because the installer looks for a zipped up package file. To turn this feature please follow these steps: Go to: Preferences > General > Open Safe files after downloading -- leave this box unchecked.

Archive Integrity: If during the install process you notice that the archive is extracted with a directory named the exact same as the archive, and in some cases a folder named '__MACOSX' exist then the archive file as been modified. The archive should have files such wp-config.php, index.php, wp-login.php and directories such as wp-admin, wp-includes etc. at the root of the file, not inside a nested folder.

To get a raw copy of the file check the following locations:
  • Duplicator Pro: See path: /your_site/wordpress_root/wp-content/backups-dup-pro (or the new storage path you setup) on your web-server.
  • Duplicator Lite: The path will be in only one of the following:
    • Content Path: '/public_html/wp-content/backups-dup-lite/'
    • Legacy Path: '/public_html/wp-snapshots/' folder (from your WP root)
To repair an archive that has been reconfigured by your operating system or some other process follow these steps:
  1. Extract the archive file onto your local computer and navigate to the installer-backup.php file.
  2. Select all the files/folders and re-create the so that installer-backup.php is at the root of the archive.
  3. In some cases you may need to rename the archive created in step 2 to the same one extracted in step 1
  4. Place the newly re-organized archive file in the same location as the installer.php file and try again.
IMPORTANT: Even though a re-archive will work in most cases, the key to solving the issue is to prevent your browser/operating system or external program from changing the structure of the archive file when its downloaded to your computer.
The installer shows "Can't extract installer directory" or "Archive config not found error". How to fix?
These problems usually indicate the web server it not allowing files to be written to the directory. A common solution is to edit the Apache virtual hosts file and include the "AllowOverride All" instruction.

    <VirtualHost *:80>
      {various instructions}
      <Directory /var/www/html>
        AllowOverride All


Step 1

What can I try if I get a 500 error during the install?
A 500 error in Step 1 processing on Duplicator Lite can be due to a timeout during zip extraction or on Duplicator Lite or Pro when file permissions are being set.

To get around this, first do a Manual Extraction then uncheck the Files and Directory permissions boxes on Step 1 of the installer.

What can I try for 502/503/504 Gateway issues during the install?
The 502/503/504 are HTTP status codes that a server can send back when it was unable to complete a request. There can be several different causes for the error. Below are some common fixes when using Duplicator.

Note: The quickest way to isolate this error is contact your hosting provider or server admin. They will be able to monitor the web server logs for clues much quicker that our support staff can with logs only generated by PHP.

Problem During the install process you receive an error with a 502/503/504 status.

Solution 1 Check to make sure your host does not have a mod_security rule that gets tripped. On some servers running allot of database commands or even unzipping a file can trigger a mode_security black list rule. This simply means the host your on is blocking your IP from doing certain operations. This can easily be solved by contacting your host and making sure they don't have a mod_security rule that is blocking you from accessing the installer properly.

Solution 2 There are a few issues around WordFence and Cloudflare that can cause these codes. See the FAQ What can I try for 502/503/504 Gateway issues during the build? for details.

Solution 3 If your wanting to try and resolve the issue your-self without your hosts assistance then check out the article How to Fix 504 Gateway Timeout Error in WordPress

The installer is having issues extracting the file what should I do?
When the installer is extracting your file you could receive an error. Below are the step by steps options you can take to get around an archive that is not extracting correctly.

1. Validate Archive
The process of moving the files across servers can corrupt the file. You can quickly determine if the archive is valid by trying to extract it on your local computer with a client side program such as winzip, winrar, 7zip etc..

If the client side program errors during extraction then the file has become corrupted either during the download or the creation process. Proceed to step #2 if the client side program also errors. If the client side program works without issues then proceed to step #3.

2. Validate Download Process
If you transferred via FTP make sure that the FTP client is in binary mode when transferring down to your local box and then also when it's transferring back up to your host or destination server. If you downloaded straight from the plugin interface then try the download one more time to make sure that the http transfer is clean.

3. Change Archive Engine
On Step 1 of the installer under "Options" you can change the engine (Pro Only) which tries to extract the archive. On some hosting providers you will have the ability to use multiple extraction engines. By default almost every server will support "ZipArchive", however some hosts also support "Shell Exec Unzip". If you run into issues during the extraction process try to switch the archive engine from one format to the other.

4. Manual Extraction
If for some reason the client side program works fine (see step #1) and neither of the archive engines work from step #3 then you may want to try a manual extraction of the archive file.

Why are some of the files from the not extracting correctly?
This behavior should NOT happen and is usually caused by either a corrupted zip file or a zip file that was created with filenames that are too long. Below is a list of items/plugins that create file names that are too long.

WP-Minify Plugin
  • Path: plugins\bwp-minify\cache
  • Fix: Flush the cache in the plugin settings or remove all files from cache directory
WP-Super Cache Plugin & W3 Total Cache Plugin
  • Path: wp-content\cache
  • Fix 1: Exclude the directory with the "Exclusion Filter" in the options dialog.
  • Fix 2: Flush the cache in the plugin settings or remove all files from cache directory.
  • Fix 3: Temporarily remove and delete the plugin then create a new package set from the Duplicator

To validate files are not correctly extracting. Download the package to your desktop and try to manually extract with a desktop program like winrar, winzip or any other zip extracting software. During extraction you will receive and error message if there is a corrupt file in the archive.
How to fix the installer when it shows an empty page with a date/time at the top?
This behavior is often due to a conflict with the WordFence plugin in the site 'above' the site you're installing to (e.g. if installing to /public_html/mysite WordFence may be installed in the site at /public_html)

To resolve: While you install, temporarily disable WordFence. Additionally you may also need to temporarily comment out the line that begins with 'auto_prepend_file' in .htaccess and .user.ini files in the parent site's directory.
Why does the PHP version change after clicking next on step 1?
During step 1 of the installer if a .htaccess file is found in the directory where the installer and archive are placed then that file will be renamed and backed up. A new .htaccess that is blank will be laid down. This behavior can be skipped by check the option to skip config file updates under Step 1 options section or you can follow these steps:

You can try to do this:
  1. Perform a manual extraction.
  2. Once extracted the zip make sure that the htaccess file exists with the following setting
    # Use PHP7 Single php.ini as default
    AddHandler application / x-httpd-php70s .php
  3. Start the installation program and in step 1 Select ❯ Extraction: Manual Archive Extraction ❯ Config Files: Ignore all
    In this way, the htaccess should not be touched.
  4. At the end of the installation, check the wp-config.php and .htaccess configuration files and manually edit what is needed.

Step 2

How to fix timeouts or various 50X errors on step 2 on the Duplicator installer?
If users run into timeouts or various 500 (50X) web server responses on step 2 there are a few different options for the various Duplicator version Pro/Lite.

Option 1 Duplicator Pro Only
Enable SQL Chunking: On Step 2 ❯ Check Options ❯ "Stream the SQL file in chunks". If Option 1 didn't work or the SQL chunking option wasn't available then try option 2.

Option 2 Duplicator Pro Only
Do a Manual insert of the database data as follows:
  1. Build a full package with no database table filters (capture everything)
  2. Download the package to your local PC
  3. Extract the file /dup-installer/dup-installer-data__{hash}.sql from the package
  4. Compress the dup-installer-data__{hash}.sql file into its own zip file
  5. Go to your host's phpMyAdmin or equivalent database management tool
  6. Delete all tables from the database you've been using on the destination to ensure you won't accidentally insert duplicate data in the next step. How to do this is explained here:
  7. Import the zipped database file from step 4 (For details see
  8. Clean out the installer directory other than the installer.php and archive .zip
  9. Browse to installer.php Step 2 ❯ Action Drop-down ❯ "Manual SQL Execution"
  10. Continue with the install

Option 3 Duplicator Lite Only
Typically most budget hosts will work with databases under 100MB. Some shared hosts can support databases upto 200MB+. The Lite version only supports a single concurrent thread when trying to create the database. If your host throttles requests or you're on a shared server that is being heavily utilized by other sites then they might be draining your resources. If step 2 is having issues on Lite we recommend trying some of these options.
  • Try running the installer at different times of the day if your on a host that is currently being heavily utilized.
  • Change Build Mode: WordPress Admin ❯ Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages ❯ SQL Script. Some hosts work better with a PHP built SQL Script and others mysqldump.
  • Contact your host to see if you can increase their PHP/Web Server timeout limits
  • Consider upgrading to Duplicator Pro and trying the SQL file chunk option

I'm running into issues with the Database what can I do?
If you're running into connection issues or other database problems during the install process there are several things to consider. Please view the various items that may pertain to the issue your seeing:

Connection Issues:

Problem On Step 2 of the installer you click "Test Database" and get a fail status.

Solution 1 Validation Checklist: Double/triple check your user-name and password, this is often overlooked. Make sure the database user has the correct permissions. For example: a read only privilege can't add data to the database. Check the following list to validate permissions.
  • Be sure the database and database user have been created
  • Be sure the password matches the database user being used
  • Be sure the database user is assigned to the database with the correct permissions
  • Temporarly change the database user password to 'test123' to validate character input
  • Contact your hosting provider for the exact required parameters
Solution 2 Hostname Validation: The host input 'localhost' works in most cases however it may not on your host so double check with your hosting provider for the exact settings. Often it's something like or Sometimes it may even have a port number like "" If you ask your hosting provider they can point you in the right direction. Please see this site for other various combinations.

If the error message contains something such as "Can't connect to local MySQL server through socket '/var/lib/mysql/mysql.sock' (2)" then it is most likely that you don't have the hostname correct. Please see this forum thread for an example of how to locate the correct hostname.

Quickest Fix: If you're on a hosted server contact your provider to make sure your using the exact credentials they need for their servers. Many hosting providers have different ways for how to connect to their databases. Here are the help files to some of the major providers:
GoDaddy | Hostmonster | Bluehost | HostGator | DreamHost | Google: "[Your host] database setup"

Access Denied:

Problem A message such as "Access denied for user 'myuser'@'localhost' (using password: YES)" is showing when trying to test the database connection.

Solution 1 In order for the database connection to properly take place a database user but be assigned to the database and granted 'full privileges' to the database. The codex covers various setups in this article. For a cPanel demo follow along in this Step-By-Step Video .

Solution 2 If solution 1 still does not work then try and create a new database user granting full permissions and assigning it to the database. This process can sometimes alleviate any cache issues stored on the database. If the problem still persists contact your host and have them perform the "Basic Troubleshooting" section below to find out why the hosting environment is having issues with database user permissions through PHP.

Solution 3 When moving a site from one mysql server to another the destination server may not have the correct privileges enabled. In other cases when moving across different versions of mysql/mariadb one version may not support the directives of the other version where the database package was built. In those cases you might see a message like this: sql=mysqldump: Error: 'Access denied; you need (at least one of) the PROCESS privile ... To work-a-round these issues you have a few options:
  1. Build in PHP Mode: To avoid any directives that mysqldump generates you can change the build mode to PHP which uses the minimal amount of mysql/mariadb directives. Simply goto Settings ❯ Packages Tab ❯ SQL Script ❯ "PHP Code". Then rebuild the package and re-install.
  2. Modify SQL Script: Advanced In a web browser browse to the installer.php. Then check the file system (via FTP, cPanel, Explorer etc.) a directory named "dup-installer" should be present. Open the database.sql file found inside the dup-installer directory and modify this file so that the directives support the new mysql/mariadb server your on. To do this typically you can remove settings that look like the code block below. Typically its best to only remove the line where you are seeing the errors. ...
    /*!40111 SET @OLD_SQL_NOTES=@@SQL_NOTES, SQL_NOTES=0 */;
    /*!40101 SET @saved_cs_client = @@character_set_client */;
    /*!40101 SET character_set_client = utf8 */;
    So in the event the installer reported an error such as: 'Variable 'character_set_client' can't be set to the value of 'NULL'' - [sql=/*!40101 SET character_set_client = @saved_cs_client */;...] Then you might simply try to remove the last line, save the dup-database_[hash].sql file and run the installer again. If the issue persists check the errors till the version of msyql/marida is satisfied with the directives set. If the database engine versions are too far apart then it would be recommend to work with your host or server admin to bring the version closer together.

MySQL Server has gone away, out of memory, or 500 Error:

Problem To get around the SQL connection timing out or memory/5xx errors on step 2, you have a couple options when using Duplicator Pro. Currently timeout issues for large database on Duplicator Lite are not supported.

Solution 1
  1. Rebrowse to the installer and proceed to Step 2.
  2. Check Options > Chunking > "Enable multi-threaded requests to chunk SQL file".
  3. Continue with the install.
Solution 2
  1. Extract the database.sql from the zipped archive.
  2. Go to phpAdmin or the equivalent.
  3. Remove existing database tables. The phpMyAdmin procedure is described here.
  4. Import the database.sql into the chosen database. The phpMyAdmin import procedure is described here
  5. Browse to the installer fill in values, choose "Manual SQL Execution" in advanced options and run

Write Errors:

If the destination server is running MySQL 5.7 or above and the Duplicator log shows errors such as: **ERROR** database error write '...' then you may have issues when running on MySQL in strict mode. If this is the case try the following options:
The quickest solution for this problem is option 1, however for the option to be a permanent setting on the server consider using option 2.
  1. On "Step 2" of the installer goto Advanced > SQL Mode > select Custom and enter NO_ENGINE_SUBSTITUTION in the text box.
  2. Continue with the install.
  3. If this does not work see OPTION 2
If OPTION 1 didn't work for you, do the following:
  1. Open this file in notepad: C:\wamp64\bin\mysql\mysql5.7.9\my.ini
  2. Add the final line to the file: [mysqld]
    port = 3306
  3. Restart the MySQL Server (budget hosts may need to contact hosting provider)
If the above procedures do not work, do the following:
  1. SSH into your server as root and create the file /etc/mysql/conf.d/disable_strict_mode.cnf
  2. Open the file and enter these two lines: [mysqld]
  3. Restart MySQL by executing: :$ sudo service mysql restart
  4. If the above procedure is from

Creation Failure:

If your error message contains the text "Unable to create database..." this means your host does not support creating databases through PHP code. In this case you will need to create a database through the tools they provide. On most hosts you can do this through the cpanel. Please contact your host for how to create a new database.

Duplicator Pro users should be able to use the cPanel connection tab to login to there cPanel accounts and create the database through the cPanel installer interface.

Compatibility Issues:

In order to avoid database incompatibility issues make sure the database versions between the build and installer servers are as close as possible. If the package was created on a newer database version than where it is being installed then you might run into issues.

It is best to make sure the server where the installer is running has the same or higher version number than where it was built. If the major and minor version are the same or close for example [5.7 to 5.6], then the migration should work without issues. A version pair of [5.7 to 5.1] is more likely to cause issues unless you have a very simple setup. If the versions are too far apart work with your hosting provider to upgrade the MySQL engine on this server.

If the current MySQL server version detected is below 5.5.3 (release on April 8th 2010) then support for utf8mb4 tables will not work. The utf8mb4 format is only supported in MySQL server 5.5.3+. It is highly recommended to upgrade your version of MySQL server on this server to be more compatible with recent releases of WordPress and avoid issues with install errors.

If non ASCII characters are detected as part of the database connection string and MySQL server is not configured correctly then you will not be able to connect. This issue can be resolved by updating the MySQL my.ini configuration. Add the setting 'character_set_server=utf8' under [mysqld] and restart the database server. This value may just need to be uncommented.

If a version of 10.N.N shows then the database distribution is a MariaDB flavor of MySQL. While the distributions are very close there are some subtle differences. Some operating systems will report the version such as "5.5.5-10.1.21-MariaDB" showing the correlation of both. Please visit the online MariaDB versus MySQL - Compatibility page for more details.

Please note some messages are simply notices. It is highly recommended to continue with the install process and closely monitor the installer-log.txt file along with the install report found on step 3 of the installer. Be sure to look for any notices/warnings/errors in these locations to validate the install process did not detect any errors. If any issues are found please visit the FAQ pages and see the question What if I get database errors or general warnings on the install report?

Basic Troubleshooting:

The installer uses a very simple PHP function called mysqli_connect to talk to your database. If you believe all the parameters your entering in the installer are correct, you can validate them by creating a simple file in the same directory as the installer called db-test.php. Then place the following code in the file and fill out the parameters in the mysqli_connect section. This will help isolate if your params are in-deed correct, if you're unsure of how to use the script send it to your host and ask them for help.

// Update the 4 parameters to match your server requirements

// Create connection
$conn = new mysqli($servername, $username, $password, $dbname);

// Check connection
if ($conn->connect_error) {
    die("Connection failed: " . $conn->connect_error);
echo "Success: A proper connection to MySQL was made! The my_db database is ready to use ." . PHP_EOL;
echo "Host information: " . mysqli_get_host_info($conn) . PHP_EOL;

* Note: This script is also available in the Duplicator Pro tools directory /plugins/duplicator-pro/tools/db-test.php
Also See:
What is Compatibility mode & 'Unknown collation' errors?
What is Compatibility mode & 'Unknown collation' errors?
There are 4 options you can take to solve this issue. Option 1 belows is the quickest, easiest and most importantly the safest way to resolve this issue. The quickest answer to this issue is "OPTION 1 Best Fix" below.

Unknown Collation Overview:

An 'Unknown collation' error means the MySQL server being installed on (target server) is older than the MySQL engine you created the package on. An error message such as:

**ERROR** database error write 'Unknown collation: 'utf8mb4_unicode_ci'

will be triggered because the MySQL version being used does not support this table format. You can view the MySQL server version comparison by clicking on the 'Test Connection' button in the installer or by viewing the installer-log.txt file. The output will look something like:

MYSQL VERSION: This Server: 5.4.22 -- Build Server: 5.7.10

OPTION 1: Update Database Software

The cleanest and safest way to fix 'Unknown Collation' issue is to update your target MySQL server to the same or newer version than where the package was built. The most common format errors include:
  • utf8mb4_unicode_ci: Mysql server 5.5.3+ is required.
  • utf8mb4_unicode_520_ci: Mysql server 5.6+ is required.
Best Fix: The best and easiest way to solve this issue is to ask you're host to move your account to a MySQL server that supports the collation type you need (see example above). Simply give them the error message your getting and they can help move you to the correct server.

Most host will not upgrade the current server your site is on, however they should be able to easily move your account to a newer server. This is a very common practice and a good host should be able to help out pretty easily.
If you're running any version lower than 5.5.3 then your using a very outdated version of MySQL server. 5.5.3 was released in 2010 which means the version of MySQL server you're using is even older. We strongly encourage users to work with their hosts to use up-to-date software for improved security and performance and to stay in compliance with updates from WordPress core. Don't let a crappy host use outdated software on your site.

OPTION 2: Enable Legacy Check

On the installer in step 2 under options is a setting titled "Legacy" and labeled "Apply legacy collation fall-back support for unknown collations types". Check this check box to apply a fall back legacy collation and continue with the install.

When creating a database table, the Mysql version being used may not support the collation type of the Mysql version where the table was created. In this scenario, the installer will fall-back to a legacy collation type to try and create the table. This value should only be checked if you receive an error when installing the database.

For example, if the package was built on MySQL 5.7 with a table collation type of 'utf8mb4_unicode_520_ci' and your runing the installer on an older MySQL 5.5 engine that does not support that type then an error will be thrown. If this option is checked then the legacy setting will try to use 'utf8mb4_unicode_520', then 'utf8mb4', then 'utf8' and so on until it runs out of options. While this option does work on most setups, option 1 above is still the recommended and safest option.

OPTION 3: Run Compatibility Mode

Mysqldump Compatibility mode helps produce a database sql script output that is more compatible with other database systems or with older MySQL servers. The Duplicator supports several compatibility modes all of which are only available when mysqldump mode is enabled in the plugin. Compatibility mode can be enabled when building a package using the mysqldump option.

The Duplicator will only allow compatibility mode during the creation process. It is not allowed when creating templates or with schedules. The reason for this setup is to discourage using these settings and fix the real issue which is to update your database server.

Database Upgrades: Compatibility Mode should only be used as an last resort. The recommended approach to fixing database issues is to make sure that both database servers are up-to date and very close in version numbers (see OPTION 1). For example if the database server where you create the package (database) is 5.7.5 then the database server where you install the package should be at least in the 5.7.N range. Ask your host or server admin to upgrade the mysql server to a newer version if possible. If your host will not upgrade to a recent upgrade ask them to upgrade to as high of a version as possible.

Data Preservation: While there are several work-a-rounds on the internet (Option 4) explaining how you can modify the current SQL file or use mysql dump compatibility mode, the main underlying issue is that you stored data in one format and are now going to convert it. These techniques can lead to data loss and incompatibility issues later down the road. The correct approach is to upgrade the MySQL software.
Consider trying both Modes:
Duplicator currently supports two different modes. Mysqldump and PHP Mode. See Settings > Packages option. If you are running into character issues and running out of options you may consider trying to build the database in both modes to see if one or the other solves the issues.

OPTION 4: Manual Configurations

These options are for advanced users and should be performed with caution. The options require updating the database.sql script or updating the source database table collation types. Below are three different approaches but only one option is required to address the issue.

Update database.sql:
For 'unknown collation' issues you can try the follow the steps below:
  1. Extract the archive zip file manually
  2. Open the database.sql file with notepad and Search & Replace on the collations for example you might :
    • replace: 'utf8mb4' with 'utf8'
    • replace: 'utf8_unicode_520_ci' with 'utf8_general_ci'
    • Always try these options in a sandbox first and never on a production site until your content with the results
  3. Then browse to the installer.php file on the server and choose Advanced & check 'Manual Extract'
  4. This can also be attempted with other collations i.e. replace 'collation_type_1' with 'collation_type_2'

Update Source Database with Code:
This options requires that you really understand your system and have made backups ahead of time. The script will allow you to alter the collation on the build server so that it can be supported by the target server. The full script can be seen on stackoverflow at:

Update Source Database with IDE:
If you don't feel comfortable running the code above you can also use an IDE or GUI tool that will allow you to manually change the tables collation either with SQL statements or through and interface. Again these options requires that you really understand your system and have made backups ahead of time. Below are some easy to follow step by step for updating the collations via an IDE such as phpmyadmin:
Also see:
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?

Step 3

Why does the installer not finish or error (403, 500) before the last step?
While these issues are not common, they can occur on budget hosts or hosts that may not be properly configured for the installer to run. Below is a list of "QUICK OPTIONS" and "ERROR RESPONSES" and recommendations for each. For error codes please jump directly to that code number.


Timeout Issues
The web server is not configured to run long enough to extract the archive and install the database.
  • The quick & easy workaround is to perform a manual extraction.
  • Its also recommended to use mysqldump for larger databases and shell_exec for large archives if possible and your host supports them.

Disable Plugins
If you have security or caching plugins installed its recommended to temporarily disable them to avoid conflicts at install time. Some security plugins can reach outside of a WordPress and monitor external folders, while others once enabled in a new environment need additional configuration.
  • During Build: This can be done by creating your package with all cache and security plugins temporarily disabled and add all cache paths to the directory filters list.
  • Before Install: If you're already too far into the install process and don't want to create a new package you can always perform a manual extraction and temporarily remove or rename the plugin folder of the plugin you suspect to be causing issues. Finish up the install process and then restore the plugin.
  • During Install: On Step 3 of the installer under options is a select box where you can disable plugins. Check the option to disable all plugins and continue with the install. Once you have the site installed you can then re-activate all the plugins.

Wordfence Plugin
Wordfence is an excellent plugin, but moving a WP site with it enabled can cause issues when initially trying to get the site re-deployed.
  • The quickest fix is to disable the plugins firewall temporarily until you get your site deployed.
  • Wordfence has a firewall feature that filters php code. So when running the installer.php, it could be blocked by Wordfence. This is more relevant for users with multiple WordPress installations. For example if you're attempting to duplicate a WordPress install while another WordPress site existed in another directory, then you may get an "403 Access Denied" error since Wordfence works across multiple directories. Below are some the steps to whitelist the installer:
    1. Go to your Wordfence Live Traffic page.
    2. Look for a red highlighted section saying installer.php was blocked. Click the "Whitelist param from Firewall" button and see if the installer.php works.
    3. After installation if you remove the rule, but be sure to white list it again when you go to run the installer.

Check .htaccess file
Improper web server configurations can cause issues such as:
  • Missing directory Index: To fix add DirectoryIndex index.html index.php to .htaccess
  • Check with your host for mod_security rules for example the following rule on Siteground hosting will lift a server security rule for the installer to properly:
    <IfModule mod_security.c> SecFilterRemove 001838 </IfModule>

  • 500 Internal Server Error
    If you get this error from any log or response please see:
    "How do I handle 'Internal Server 500' messages?"
  • 403 Forbidden/Access Denied
    If you get this response it can be related to permissions, below are a few options:
    • Give your root WordPress folder permissions (such as 755)
      Note: Step 1 Advanced options will allow you to recursively set permissions on directories or files
    • Contact your host with the error and ask them about any firewall rules they enforce.
    • Check the .htaccess file see "Check .htaccess file" above...
    • Temporarily disable any firewall/security plugin see "Disable Plugins & Wordfence Plugin" above...
Also See:
How do I handle "Internal Server 500" messages?
Wordfence documentation
ModSecurity Site | ModSecurity Reference
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?

Step 4

What if I get database errors or general warnings on the install report?
The Step 4 install report section is designed to show were there might be issues with the installation. Please note that in some cases you will receive errors/notices however they may not effect the overall functionality of your site. If you have done a good overview of your newly installed site with no observable issues and the Deploy/Update results count is low (under 10); then you can typically ignore any errors/notices provided by the report.

Step 2 - Install Results

Install errors are related to data that was written to the installer-data.sql data dump file, and had issues getting inserted into the new database. These errors are generated during step 2 of the install phase and are important because missing data from the original database did not get copied.

Database write error: Queries that error during the deploy process are logged to the install-log.txt file. To view the error result open the log file and find the section titled 'DATABASE RESULTS'. If errors are present they will be marked with '**ERROR**'. There are a few reasons why these errors are generated:
  1. Database Versions: If the MySQL Database versions are different across servers then you can run into issues. The further apart they are the more chances of having issues. Be sure that the destination server MySQL version is close to the build server version or higher.
  2. MySQL Mode: The MySQL Mode can have an impact on how the MySQL engine runs. Applying NO_ENGINE_SUBSTITUTION and other MySQL modes is built into the installer. We recommend first just trying to apply NO_ENGINE_SUBSTITUTION if you are seeing large amounts of database errors. To do this simply follow these steps:
    1. On Step 2 of the installer under Advanced options locate the "MySQL Mode" setting
    2. Check the 'Custom' radio button and enter in NO_ENGINE_SUBSTITUTION
    3. Continue with the install
    4. When install is done, check the installer log for errors (link in upper right-hand corner of installer)

    You may have to try various combinations to get it to work specifically on your server. Once you find a series of settings that work you can work with your host or server admin to set the values indefinitely in the my.ini. A quick example of the process can be found here.

    Important:Seeing the text "database error write 'Invalid default value.." in installer-log.txt is an indication you need to set the MySQL mode to NO_ENGINE_SUBSTITUTION.
Query size limit If you see errors with 'Query size limit' you will need to manually post the values or update your mysql server with the max_allowed_packet setting to handle larger payloads. If you're on a hosted server you will need to contact the server admin, for more details see the MySQL packet size docs.

Step 3 - Data Replacement

There are 3 types of update error/notices:

  1. Update Errors: This is a basic query statements that had issues running on the new server. It can be caused by data integrity issues and incompatibilities between database engine versions. If you get an error in this portion then you will need to inspect the query and debug why it may have issues with migration.
  2. Table Key Notices: These issues are basically tables where the new URL value was found but can not be updated because their is no table key to update from. These values will need to be located manually and updated.
  3. Serialization Notices: PHP serialization can have issues when one of its internal values are update. Duplicator will repair these updated strings, however in some rare cases they don't get updated correctly. Serialization errors can happen for a number of reasons and can be looked at by running the provide query from the report. See the section below for how to manually fix a serialized string.

    How to repair a serialized string:
    1. Locate the string that was unrepairable by using the provided install report query.
    2. Visit this page:
    3. On URL above you should see this sample serialized string: a:1:{s:4:"Test";s:17:"unserialize here!";}. Take a piece of it-- s:4:"Test";. That means "string", 4 characters, then the actual string. Then change "Test" to "Tes", for example and press the Execute button. This will generate an error. This is basically what happens to most string values. The numeric character count to gets out of sync with the string.

      What you need to do it get those character counts to match your new strings count. This will fix the serialized string. This is pending it was not corrupted by any of other type encoding. If that is the case then encoding issues will need to be evaluated.

Quick Check: If you do receive any errors on the install report follow these steps:
  1. Check your site for any possible issues. If your site is solid and stable and the error counts are low then in most cases you have nothing to worry about. You may have to just resave the settings for a particular theme/plugin/widget.
  2. If you're still concerned about the error. Run the SQL queries provided by the install report and check the error log to evaluate the queries that had issues running. Also you can perform the checks yourself by using phpmyAdmin.
Also see:
What is Compatibility mode & 'Unknown collation' errors?
I'm running into issues with the Database what can I do?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
Do I need to do anything after step 4 is completed?
Yes. After install, be sure to do the following:
  1. Test the site. If you observe problems, review the Post-Install section for possible resolutions.
  2. Clean up all installer files to ensure the site is secure. See Which files need to be purged after an install? for instructions on how to do this.
Which files need to be removed after an install?
It's critical you remove the installer files after an install to ensure your site is secure. Removing the plugin does not remove the installer files nor do you need to remove the plugin after the install unless you want to.

Post-install file cleanup can be done by one of three ways:

1. Log into the newly installed site admin and click "Remove Installation Files Now!" link at the top.


2. From the wp-admin, go to Duplicator > Tools > Stored Data > "Remove Installation Files" button


3. Delete the files shown below using either FTP, SFTP, or your host's file manager.

The following files below should be removed after install. The location of these files will reside at the root of the wp site normally where the wp-config.php file exists or folders like wp-includes and wp-amdin.

PRO and LITE 1.3
  • dup-installer (directory)
  • installer.php
  • installer-backup.php
  • installer-bootlog_[HASH].txt
  • [HASH]

LITE 1.2
  • installer.php
  • installer-backup.php
  • dup-installer-data_[HASH].sql
  • dup-installer-log_[HASH].txt
  • dup-database_[HASH].sql
  • [HASH]
Note: In older version the file names may have been named installer-data.sql, database.sql, installer-log.txt

Note: Even though the installer has a password word protection feature, it should only be used for the short term. All installer files should and must be removed after the install is completed.


Access/Login Issues

Why do I get a 403 Access Denied message?

A 403 error means the web server has restriced access to a specific path. This directive is controlled by the web server and Duplicator has no control or ability to fix this issue directly from the plugin. The fixes for this issue are below:

Problem After the install is complete a "403 Forbidden" or "403 Access Denied" message shows for either the site or admin.

Solution 1 If your not technical or used to working with web server config files then contact your host or server admin and they can usually fix this issue for you in a few minutes. Just give them the URL where you are seeing the message.

Solution 2 Edit the web server config file and add the following to the httpd.conf or httpd-ssl.conf if running SSL.
# The Directory path below should match your server the following is a SAMPLE
<Directory /var/www/html/>
    Options Indexes FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride All
    Require all granted
Solution 3 For a full detailed troublshooting overview on this issue please visit this URL:
WPBegginer: How to Fix the 403 Forbidden Error in WordPress.

Also See:
Why do I get a 404, redirected, path errors or unable to login after installing?
WPBegginer: How to Fix the 403 Forbidden Error in WordPress.
Why do I get a 404, redirected, path errors/issues or unable to login after installing?

OPTION 1: Redirect Issues

This can be caused by a redirect on your server. Here are several places a redirect can be triggered from:
  • Mis-configured config file such as: wp-config.php, .htaccess or themes/functions.php
  • A redirect plugin that maybe installed. Disabling the plugin at install time see Option 3 below.
  • Inside an html file via a meta refresh tag or a JavaScript redirect
  • Check your cpanels for redirects or contact your host
  • Follow these steps for fixing perma links
  • Check the installer-log.txt file for warnings or errors.
  • Try to remove your .htaccess file and start with a fresh one
URL Trace
There are a many tools online to test URL redirects, just Google for it. If you're testing on a localhost you can find tools online that will help.
A Mac/MAMP solution
1) open terminal and type defaults write AppleShowAllFiles YES
2) open the folder where the site is and look for a hidden htaccess file and delete it
3) test and check your site (apache restart maybe required)

OPTION 2: Path Issues

To prevent the index.php appearing in the address bar or attached to each request the following can be added/changed in your httpd.conf file.

To allow permalinks on Apache you need to instruct Apache to allow individual sites to update the .htaccess file, by adding the following options to the Directory section in your hosts Apache httpd.conf configuration file:
  1. Add the following to the httpd.conf
    # The Directory path below should match your server the following is a SAMPLE
    <Directory /var/www/html/>
        Options Indexes FollowSymLinks
        AllowOverride All
        Require all granted
  2. Restart Apache
  3. If you're on a budget host with no access to the httpd.conf file you will need to send this FAQ item to your host

OPTION 3: Plugin/Theme Issues:

Sometimes plugins or even themes can cause redirect issues. Below is an option to help isolate the issue with plugins and themes. If the issue still persists after trying the options below consider investigating your themes functions.php to make sure there is not custom code causing a redirect. Also consider looking at some of the options in this FAQ.

Safe Mode: To quickly isolate common issues with your site try the settings below:
  • Installer: Step 1 ❯ Options ❯ Advanced ❯ Safe Mode.
    • Basic Mode: This option will disable all plugins at install time.
    • Advanced Mode: Runs "Basic Mode" and re-saves theme settings during wp-admin login.
  • Installer: Step 3 ❯ Options ❯ Active Plugins to disable individual plugins one-by-one.
Note: Its recommended to first try "Basic" and then the "Advanced" option if the issue persists. If you suspect the plugin(s) causing the issue then just disable those specific plugins on step 3. After logging into your wp-admin re-enable each plugin one-by-one and resave any settings if applicable till the problem is isolated.

OPTION 4: Browser Cache

Google Chrome and other browsers will cache your 301 redirects. To get around this, and to keep the tabs open, you'll just need to clear your browser cache.

Chrome Menu Chrome Menu > Settings > Search for "history" > See option "Clear browsing data". Whatever else you select, make sure "Cached images and files" is a checked option. Then click Clear browsing data and you should be able to retest again. If you've just followed the redirect, you only need to delete data from the past hour. Alternatively, test and develop in incognito mode. There the cache is flushed after the browser is closed.
Also See:
How can I fix my site when the home page shows but no sub-pages work?
Why are some of my plugins/images/links/styles not updating? Forums: 404 Errors on all pages but home page?
I cannot login to my WordPress admin dashboard, what can I do?

OPTION 1: Admin Password:

There are several different options to get logged into your WordPress admin if you lost the password or logging in does not seem to be working. The password should be the same as the site you duplicated. The installer does not update any passwords or user names, however moving data to a new location can sometimes disturb other plugin settings such as security or login plugins that were configured at the previous location. In these cases you can try the following the options:
  1. Try to login a few times and try having the password emailed to you
  2. On the installer in step 3 under options create a new Admin account and use that to login
  3. On the installer in step 3 under options disable all plugins in-case you have a plugin conflict
  4. You may have to reset the password by following these instructions
  5. If all other options fail you can use the emergency password reset script

OPTION 2: Redirect Issues:

If you are trying to login to the WordPress admin dashboard, but keep getting redirected back to the login without any notice of invalid username/password. Then the URL link might be messed up. Try changing the URL address in your browser to either of the following addresses and then try to login:

Display Issues

How can I fix my site when the home page shows but no sub-pages work?
Problem Your home page shows but nothing else works. In most cases this is a permalinks issue which can be fixed with the solutions below.

Solution 1 In some cases simply re-saving the permalinks will fix the issue. In your WordPress admin Go to Settings ❯ Permalinks, and click on save changes button. Check a sub-page to see if the issues is fixed.

Solution 2 Another common cause is that the 'mod-rewrite' module has not being enabled. To enable mod_rewrite or its equivalent see the instructions below.

Apache 2.x on Linux
In a terminal, execute:
a2enmod rewrite
/etc/init.d/apache2 restart
WAMP Instructions here

IIS Instructions here

All Other Systems
Google for how to enable mod-rewrite or permalinks on your particular system.

Solution 3 If solution 1 or 2 do not work you may also need to adjust the "AllowOverride" setting (Apache Only). If your not sure what the value should be for your hosts environment, then please contact your hosting provider to be sure. The full run-down for how to work with this setting can be found here.

Also See:
Why do I get a 404, redirected, path errors or unable to login after installing?
Why are some of my plugins/images/links/styles are not updating?
Why do I get a blank/white screen on my site?
WPBegginer: How to Fix WordPress Posts Returning 404 Error.
Why do I get a blank/white screen on my site?
With millions of possible configurations it can be difficult for the Duplicator to catch every setup configuration during a migration. If you see a blank screen it may be related to some of the issues below. Also it's important to isolate the area that you're seeing the blank screen on and do a bit of research to see what might be causing the issue. For example if your WordPress administrator comes up blank then it will be best to do a quick Google of the issue. Searching for something like "wp-admin comes up blank" will help point you in the right direction and get you a quick answer.
Safe Mode: To quickly isolate common issues with your site try the settings below:
  • Installer: Step 1 ❯ Options ❯ Advanced ❯ Safe Mode.
    • Basic Mode: This option will disable all plugins at install time.
    • Advanced Mode: Runs "Basic Mode" and re-saves theme settings during wp-admin login.
  • Installer: Step 3 ❯ Options ❯ Active Plugins to disable individual plugins one-by-one.
Note: Its recommended to first try "Basic" and then the "Advanced" option if the issue persists. If you suspect the plugin(s) causing the issue then just disable those specific plugins on step 3. After logging into your wp-admin re-enable each plugin one-by-one and resave any settings if applicable till the problem is isolated.
Please consider trying these options:
  1. WP-CONFIG: Make sure your wp-config.php file is correct and view the wp-config.php codex
  2. SERVER LOGS: Examine the WordPress error log as explained here. Also you may access all server error logs by going to cPanel > Statistics > Error Logs or using your host-specific control panel. If you don't have direct access to the server logs ask your host support to look for any errors in the logs.
  3. BROWSER CONSOLE: Detect JavaScript errors by viewing your browser's console while refreshing the page.
  4. VALIDATE PLUGINS: Disable all other plugins temporarily and see if the issue persists. If so then enable each plugin till you see where the plugin conflict occurs.
  5. PERMISSIONS: Check the permissions on plugins files. Directories should be 755 and files should be 644. You may need to reinstall and enable Advanced > Permissions Files (644) and Directories (755).
  6. CHANGE BROWSER: Open another web browser and check for the white screen. If it works in the new browser then it may be a browser cache issue. You can usually fix this by holding down ctrl+F5 or manually deleting your browser cache.
  7. CHECK THEME: Change to a new theme temporarily to validate a conflict may be theme specific.
  8. LOGIN/LOGOUT: Try to login or out of your admin to check and see if your session maybe got messed up.
  9. CACHE PLUGINS: Clear all your cache plugins. Sometimes they can cause issues.
  10. TROUBLESHOOT: Check the WordPress Troubleshoot Codex
Also see:
Why can't I download files / get a corrupted installer / see a 404.3 message?
How can I fix my site when the home page shows but no sub-pages work?
Why are some of my plugins/images/links/styles not updating?

OPTION 1: Plugin/Theme Issues

With over 100k+ plugins/themes available for WordPress it is difficult to know how they store data. Minor modification may need to be made after you have ran the installer. If your site is not working correctly its best to try and disable plugins and themes and re-save the settings if applicable.

If you're unsure of the plugin that may be causing the issue try and run the installer again and disable the plugins at install time. This can be done on step 1 or step 3 of the installer (see below). After the install is complete you can login to your wp-admin and individually enable each one to find out which plugin is causing the particular issue.

Safe Mode: To quickly isolate common issues with your site try the settings below:
  • Installer: Step 1 ❯ Options ❯ Advanced ❯ Safe Mode.
    • Basic Mode: This option will disable all plugins at install time.
    • Advanced Mode: Runs "Basic Mode" and re-saves theme settings during wp-admin login.
  • Installer: Step 3 ❯ Options ❯ Active Plugins to disable individual plugins one-by-one.
Note: Its recommended to first try "Basic" and then the "Advanced" option if the issue persists. If you suspect the plugin(s) causing the issue then just disable those specific plugins on step 3. After logging into your wp-admin re-enable each plugin one-by-one and resave any settings if applicable till the problem is isolated.

OPTION 2: Install Setup

Validate the install URL: On step 3 of the installer you are asked to enter a new URL. This step is very important as it will define the replace logic used to update all of your links. The 'Old URL' (see advanced options on step 3) is replaced with the 'New URL'. This replace is an exact match.

If you find that a link did not get updated correctly, you will need to validate that the link was exactly the same as the 'Old URL' found in step two of the installer, if for any reason it was different then you will need to manually update that data for that link.

Also pay close attention to the report in step 3 of the installer as it will help show you errors or warnings in data that may have issues. Here are some checks you can make:

Additional Checks

  • Check out the write up on permalinks at
  • Temporarily disable any hot-linking restrictions. For cpanel users here is a quick rundown.
  • Duble Check your wp-config.php to make sure you don't additional logic which points to an old URL
  • Validate you don't have any plugins installed that mess with how your URLs work.
  • Check the install report on step 3 of the installer and make sure no errors or warnings were found attention to the report in step 3 of the installer as it will help show you error or warnings in data that may have issues.
  • Check your themes functions.php file to see if there are any hard-coded values or any theme files that may have been altered for custom work.
  • Duplicator Pro users: On step 3 under custom replace be sure your terms are not too general, otherwise you may inadvertently replace data that should not be replaced.
If an individual theme or plugin is missing data you will be able to resolve your issue much faster by contacting the theme author or plugin author. Explain to them that you just migrated a website and the settings to their theme or plugin is not working correctly. They will be able to much better assist you with the issue and help you isolate how to fix their theme or plugin than we can. However we are still here to help if you need us...
Also See:
How can I fix my site when the home page shows but no sub-pages work?
Why do I get a 404, redirected, path errors or unable to log-in after installing?

Data/Setup Issues

Why is the WordPress installer showing up after I install?
This behavior should not happen and is usually caused by a corrupted database or data that was not transferred properly. Here are a few things you can perform if you see this issue:

OPTION 1: Re-run the installer
- Running the installer again can help validate if the issue is persistent.
- Be sure that ONLY the archive and installer.php files are present in the install directory.
- Clear your browser cache and re-run the install process
- Pay close attention to the install report and look for any possible errors or notices
- If the WordPress installer screen shows up a second time consider looking into options 2 & 3 below.

OPTION 2: Check log file
- After completing step 3 in the installer check the installer-log.txt
- Look for lines with **ERROR**. This indicates that data was not properly transfered to the new/existing database
- The installers MySQL server may not fully support the SQL script from the MySQL server where it was built
- See the following question for more details:
    What is Compatibility mode & 'Unknown collation' errors?

OPTION 3: Repair DB
- Run a repair and optimize on your database.
- Create a new package again
- Start over with a new install
Non-English characters have been changed in some filenames. How to resolve this?

Depending on the source web server configuration, non-English characters in filenames can occasionally be stored incorrectly within the .zip archive. The resolution to this varies depending on how the characters were changed.

If filename characters have been replaced with a hash sign, 'U' and number (e.g. file_ü.txt => file#U00fc.txt):

  1. Using FTP or your host's File Manager copy wp-content/plugins/duplicator-pro/tools/file-renamer.php to the destination web site's root directory.
  2. Browse to the tool (I.e.
  3. Use tool to rename the files.

How does Duplicator manage .htaccess files and what are my options?
Problem 1 How can I keep the original .htaccess file or prevent Duplicator from doing anything with the .htaccess files?

Solution 1 On the Installer ❯ Step 1 ❯ Options ❯ Config Files: "Restore Original".

Solution 2 On the Installer ❯ Step 1 ❯ Options ❯ Config Files: "Ignore All".

Please note: That the solutions above could have issues so you will need to manually open your .htaccess file and update all the settings to match your new server.

Problem 2 What if I use a plugin that updates the .htaccess file how should I get those settings back?

Solution In the vast majority of these situations you can simply deactivate and reactivate the plugin in question. If you are not sure, just contact the plugin author.


The Apache .htaccess file is very robust and capable of providing a multitude of settings for your web server, PHP, WordPress and more. In order to properly install/migrate your site this file needs to be reset to a very basic state in order to prevent install issues.

When working across multiple hosts, PHP, MySQL, Apache and WordPress versions, the possible combinations of configuration settings is almost unlimited. With this many options Duplicator has chosen to keep the process simple and allow users to safely update their own configuration files vs trying to parse millions of different combinations. Below is a quick outline for how .htaccess files are managed during the install process.

  1. Build Process: When an is created it will copy the .htaccess file into the archive in a hashed format .htaccess_[original-hashed] example: .htaccess_048063d-14160036.
  2. Installer Step 1:When the installer extracts the file in Step 1 it will lay-down the file in this .htaccess_[original-hashed] format.
    • This is by design so that the .htaccess file from the old system is not executed by the server with parameters that do not correlate to the new enviroment.
    • Trying to run the .htaccess file from the original server can and does cause issues on the new server in many cases. So a .htaccess file is only made available till the install is completed in step 4.
    • The .htaccess_[original-hashed] will be temporarily available until step 4 is ran. This allows for the advanced options in step 1 to considered if needed.
  3. Installer Step 4: After step 3 is ran either the .htaccess_[original-hashed] will be used if you enabled the option in step 1 or a new basic one will be created.
    1. If the advanced option is chosen then the .htaccess_[original-hashed] file will be renamed to .htaccess at the end of Step 3 and start of Step 4
    2. If no option is chosen then the default mode of creating a new streamlined .htaccess file is performed and the .htaccess_[original-hashed] is removed.
  4. Existing .htaccess: If you have a .htaccess file in the directory with the file before step 1 is ran then that file will be backed up and look something like: .htaccess-200314160148-5e6cffec5ff52-duplicator.bak


Log Files & System Access

How do I read the package build log?
The package build log shows every step of the package creation process. Follow these steps to see a package log file:
  1. In the "Packages All" screen under the Package column click the "Details Button" .
  2. Under the Files section click the "Log Button"
  3. Copy all of the contents of this log and save it to a .txt file
  4. ATTACH the package build log file to your ticket
Help Tickets: Please DO NOT post any log data on public support forums such as unless you remove/mask out all meta-data that is secure as it contains sensitive data. If you are not sure of what data to mask out then do not post it; just use the private secure help ticket system.

All Pro users will get first round priority support. If you're a free user, support questions may be delayed up-to 1-3 days depending on availability.
How do I read the package trace log?
The package trace log shows a detailed real-time overflow of the Duplicator Pro application. Follow these steps to see a package trace log file:
  1. Upgrade to the latest version of Duplicator Pro
  2. Go to Duplicator Pro > Settings > Set Trace Log to "On"
  3. Re-run the build and wait for it to fail
  4. Immediately click "Download Log" button in the lower right hand corner
  5. Save the .zip file to your local machine and turn off tracing
  6. ATTACH the .zip file to your help ticket
Note: The trace log is only available in Duplicator Pro and is used to gain granular detail of the over-all application runtime.
How do I read the installer log?
The installer log (installer-log.txt) logs the installation process. Follow these steps to properly see the log:
  1. Run the installer.php file as far as possible until you run into an issue.
  2. Click on the installer-log.txt link in the upper right corner of the installer.php
  3. ATTACH the dup-installer-log__[hash].txt log file to your ticket
  4. If there is no dup-installer-log__[hash].txt please attach the installer-bootlog.txt file

Click the download link in the installer to download the installer file

Location of Installer Log
  • Before installer files have been cleaned up: http://yoursite/dup-installer/dup-installer-log__[hash].txt
  • After installer files have been cleaned up:
    • Duplicator Pro: See path: /your_site/wordpress_root/wp-content/backups-dup-pro/installer/ (or the new storage path you setup) on your web-server.
    • Duplicator Lite: The path will be in only one of the following:
      • Content Path: '/public_html/wp-content/backups-dup-lite/installer/'
      • Legacy Path: '/public_html/wp-snapshots/installer/' folder (from your WP root)
Help Tickets: Please DO NOT post any log data on public support forums such as unless you remove/mask out all meta-data that is secure as it contains sensitive data. If you are not sure of what data to mask out then do not post it; just use the private secure help ticket system.

All Pro users will get first round priority support. If you're a free user, support questions may be delayed up-to 1-3 days depending on availability.
How do I share system access for package build issues?
VERY IMPORTANT! Please read all instructions to help diagnose your issue quickly. Copy the text from the box below into your help ticket using the exact format.

Test Logins: Please test ALL usernames and passwords and make sure you can login to the specific system yourself. This will help avoid having to resending the data.

Accounts: Create temporary admin level WordPress account and control panel account (cPanel) or FTP accounts. If you can't create a temporary account then temporarily change the password while we diagnose your system. You can easily change your password back once we are complete. Do not send your current password!
Problems Building Package
Copy ALL text in box below into your help ticket and update values
Copy to Clipboard =========== SENSITIVE INFORMATION START ===========

url:  http://full-url-to-yoursite/wp-admin
user: [temporary wp-admin account]
pass: [temporary wp-admin password]

FTP ACCESS* -or- Your Hosting Control Panel
user: [temporary ftp/control panel account account]
pass: [temporary ftp/control panel account password]

=========== SENSITIVE INFORMATION END ===========

* Please make sure FTP account has visibility of and write access to WordPress directory. We recommend setting up a temporary account if possible. FTP is preferred over control panel account (cpanel)

How do I share system access for installation issues?
VERY IMPORTANT! Please read all instructions to help diagnose your issue quickly. Copy the text from the box below into your help ticket using the exact format.

Test Logins: Please test ALL usernames and passwords and make sure you can login to the specific system yourself. This will help avoid having to resending the data.

Accounts: If you can not create a temporary FTP/control panel account (cpanel) account then change the password while we diagnose your system. You can easily change your password back once we are complete. Do not send your current password!

Please note the information being requested here is optional but could speed up and simplify the support process.
Problems Installing a Package
Copy ALL text in box below into your help ticket and update values
Copy to Clipboard =========== SENSITIVE INFORMATION START ===========

WORDPRESS ADMIN:   (where package was created -- OPTIONAL)
url:  http://full-url-to-yoursite/wp-admin
user: [temporary wp-admin account]
pass: [temporary wp-admin password]


path: [/public_html/path_to_my_site/installer.php]

FTP SERVER -or- Your Hosting Control Panel:  
(Where installer.php is located)

user: [temporary ftp/control panel account]
pass: [temporary ftp/control panel password]

NEW DATABASE SETTINGS:   (values used in installer.php setup)
host:     [localhost-or-hosts-requirments]
database: [The database name]
user: [database user that has access to create tables]
pass: [database user password]
validate: yes I followed the <Install Preparations> below

=========== SENSITIVE INFORMATION END ===========

<Install Preparations>
Please make sure these items are completed before sending your information
  1. The installer.php and file are in a web directory that can be browsed to via "http"; with no other files or folders unless you wish to overwrite an existing site. If you have other files in the directory then the extraction process WILL overwrite those files/folders.
  2. Be sure you can connect to the database, via the 'Test Connection' button, with the credentials you sent.
  3. I have tested all usernames/password and can login via FTP/Control Panel with the credentials above.

Caution: The database settings that you give is what we will use to populate the database with. If this database already contains important information then it WILL be overwritten with the new package data. Please double check the credentials you send us as we will not be responsible for lost data. We also strongly recommend that you have a backup of all databases and important files ahead of time.
How do I share my package file?
When support needs to validate a package file please choose only one of these options:
  • Share Button: Goto Packages > Details > "Share" Button > "Select & Copy". Paste links into your ticket. Note: Personal computers (localhost) or sites that are not internet accessible will not work.
  • Firefox Send: This free service allows secure file sharing from any browser (Firefox not required).
    1. Browse to
    2. Upload your package file
    3. Copy the generated link and paste it into your help ticket
  • Other Cloud Service: Use Dropbox, Google Drive or other services by following these steps:
    1. Upload the to a shareable location on your cloud service.
    2. Copy the shared link provided by your service into the ticket
    3. After we have responded to ticket please remove your files
In order to avoid any delay with your ticket please be sure you are also able to download from the link provided when using the "Cloud Service" option.

General Issues

What are some common issues with WAMP, XAMPP, MAMP and CPanel?
If you are new to setting up a web server locally such as XAMPP or the like we ask that you go through the online documents of those products. While we will try our best to point you in the right direct our support does not include time training users on other systems. If you have general setup questions for other software out-side of Duplicator specific questions they will be moved to the bottom of the priority queue.

Below are some resources that will get you started. If you're having trouble getting your local environment setups please use the general WordPress forums to ask your question(s). If you receive errors from the Duplicator on your local development box please contact support and we will get looking at you're issued right away.
XAMPP Resources
- WordPress setup instructions to configure a local web server
- View the Website
- Ask a question on the Forums
- Review this WordPress item Install Basic XAMPP
- Watch this video localhost your wordpress
WAMP Resources
- View the Website
- Ask a question on the Forums
- Resolving Permalink Problems
MAMP Resources
- View the Website
- Ask a question on the Forums
- Ask Paal
Paal is a contributor to the WordPress Duplicator and a very experienced Mac user.
CPANEL Resources
- View the Website
- Ask a question on the Forums
How do I handle "Internal Server 500" messages?
500 errors are generic in nature and can be difficult to isolate. These errors can be related to file permissions, ownership rights, firewall/proxy configuration constraints or a server that is not configured correctly. Below is a list of starting points to isolate the issue:

In many cases error logs are critical with 500 errors. The best place to start is by checking to see if there are any clues in the error logs.
  1. WordPress Error Log: Occasionally there are incompatibilities with the new web server and the site itself (PHP version changes for instance). To track down the problem capture an WordPress error log while you refresh the page causing the error. See this article for how to capture the WordPress error log.
  2. cPanel Error Log: If your host is running cPanel, click on the "Errors" icon to review the latest errors experienced on the server.
  3. Web Server Logs: These include the PHP error log and your web server error log such as Apache or Nginx. To find these files consult your hosts documentation. To find the latest errors match the correct time stamp in the error log with the time for which you were attempting to use the Duplicator. Sometimes error log messages can be vague and a quick Google search for the actual error message many times will lead to a quick resolution, especially if you include your hosting providers name.

A 500 error can be experienced either during the package build process, during the install process or post-install. Below are some helpful tips depending on where you experience a 500 error.
  1. During Package Build:
    • Disable Plugins: In some cases certain plugins (especially security and caching) will prevent certain actions from happening. If you have a security or caching plugin installed its recommended to temporarily disable it to make sure its not conflicting with anything.
    • Create Filter: Sometimes creating a root directory filter will allow the package to skip any files or directories that are problematic to how PHP is able to process and read them. This test step can help you isolate which directory (if any) might be triggering a 500 error.
    • open_basedir: The php.ini setting can cause all kinds of issues if not properly configured. See question: What is PHP Open Base Dir or "open_basedir restriction in effect"?
  2. During Install:
    • Disable Plugins: If the 500 error is present on the installer side then its recommend to create your package with all cache and security plugins disabled and add all cache paths to the directory filters list.
      Note: The directories filter has a quick add link for cached WordPress data.
    • If you receive a 500 error during the installation process see the FAQ item below:
      Why does the installer not finish or error (403, 500) before the last step?
  3. Post-Install:
      If you experience a 500 error or blank screen when loading a site after installation, please review one of the logs mentioned in the "ERROR LOGS" section above.

A good hosting provider can usually better help pin-point or isolate what is causing the issue because they usually have elevated access to logs and monitors that general users can not view. In many cases these issues will need to be worked-out with your hosting provider. Make sure they are helping you to pin-point the issue. If you're on a budget host you may have to try several different techs.

If one technician can't help you then ask to speak to another, there can be a wide range of skill level between each technicians and their willingness to help you out. We will try our best to help you resolve the issue, however 500 errors tend to be on the web server and normally are not issues we can solve through adding code to the plugin.
Also See:
Why does the installer not finish or error (403, 500) before the last step?
How to Fix the 500 Internal Server Error on Your WordPress Website
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
What should I do when I see a warning in the log about " disk quota issues"?
Check your disk quota on some of these popular systems
[GoDaddy] [BlueHost] [cPanel Systems]

If you're not sure about your Disk Quota contact your host. Typically they will give you a canned response like you have "unlimited space". The truth is a quota is placed on every account according the the Terms and Conditions of the account. Many hosting control panels or cPanel accounts give you an unlimited number of domains you can setup. With each domain they create a new directory and hosting control panels or cPanel silo for that domain which usually has a quota on how much space you can allocate to that directory see the link above.

Most web hosts control panels will have a progress bar on the main dashboard that shows how much space you have for the specified domain. If you're not using a cPanel setup ask your host where you can find out your disk quota. So in short try to get a real answer from your host and if they still give you a canned response then try to upload a file which should be 5 times the size of your 'Pre-Scanned' site size. So if the pre-scan shows 50MB then try to upload a file that 250MB add see if it allows the file to upload. If it does not then you definitely have a disk quota issue.
How can I fix strange characters, unicode symbols, emoji icons?
Strange characters such as " � " or "????" are a sign of encoding issues when you move from one server to another. If the database version changes across servers then scripts may not work as expected. By default WordPress sets your character encoding to UTF-8 or UTF8MB4. Adjusting the database charset and collation can help clear up these issues on some servers. Here are some items you can try:

OPTION 1 - wpconfig.php:

Online Overview See: DB_CHARSET, DB_COLLATE

Try changing the DB_CHARSET option define("DB_CHARSET", "utf8");
define("DB_COLLATE", "");
Try using no options or commenting them out define("DB_CHARSET","");
//define("DB_CHARSET", "some_value");
//define("DB_COLLATE", "some_value");
Try various options UTF8MB4 to UTF8

Try utf8mb4 or vice-versa: define("DB_CHARSET", "utf8mb4"); Try just utf8: define("DB_CHARSET", "utf8");

OPTION 2: Installer

  1. On step 2 of installer under options
  2. Set charset: utf8mb4
  3. Set collation: utf8mb4_unicode_ci

OPTION 3: Misc.

Update Meta Tag: This is usually something you can do in your header.php file.The server is not sending the charset in the Content-Type header and the HTML meta fallback is broken:
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8?>

Note the invalid curly quotes instead of straight quotes. That means there's no valid declaration for what encoding the page is in and hence the browser takes a guess. Some browsers guess wrong.

Fix Database: Encoding issues can get complex and if the above solutions don't work then you may need to perform a deeper dive into fixing the issue.

Consider an Upgrade: In some cases we have seen that updating to PHP 7+ along with a the latest MySQL server can solve some of these character encoding issues. After updating to these new and improved platforms be sure to re-build a new package.

Also see: How can I fix international characters issues?
How can I fix international characters issues?
Support for international character can vary across systems. The process of converting/retaining a character set when moving across different operating systems, web servers & database servers has many complexities, especially when the various versions are different across the build location and install location. If you run into character conversion/encoding issues below is a list of things you can try:


  • Check wp-config.php
    Look for the DB_CHARSET and DB_COLLATE constants, these values can affect how WordPress handles your character encoding. If DB_COLLATE and DB_CHARSET do not exist in your wp-config.php file, try adding/editing either definition to your wp-config.php file. Please be sure to read the following article to better understand Converting Database Character Sets.
  • Advanced Options
    In step one of the installer under advanced options there are two character values that you can try to enable which are "MySQL Charset" and "MySQL Collation" indirectly these values work with mysqli_set_charset. These values may not work on all systems.
  • Database.sql File
    Open the database.sql file in Notepad++ and selected "Encode in UTF-8" from the Encoding menu, without changing the contents at all. In some situations this can be more important than changing the DEFAULT CHARACTERSET, as it determines how the file is read by the operating system.


On some operating systems and version of PHP there are known issues with working with international characters. This is a limitation with the underlying PHP ZipArchive and json_encode logic used in both Lite and Pro.
  • Filter Files
    A common work-a-round at this point is to filter the international files and then manually move them later. The scanner process will help you to spot these files.
  • Shell Zip
    In Duplicator Pro there is a new process option called shell_exec which is supported by most hosts. This process can on most systems better handle international characters in file names. Please use this option in Pro if you're running into file/directory names with unicode characters.
  • PHP 7
    PHP 7 has been improved to better handle unicode issues. If you can migrate or get your host to upgrade to the improved/faster performing version of PHP 7 this can solve the issue for internal characters issues at many levels.

Please note if you do run into an issue please feel free to submit a ticket and we will do our best to help you work through any know fixes. However if the process involves upgrading your database or performing data conversion migration scripts then we recommend you work with a qualified developer to help research and diagnose your particular issue.

Duplicator only moves, it does not have the ability to repair and convert data when moving to a different server setup that does not support the environment it was created on. Please checkout the Duplicator Partner Page for a list of resources that specialize in data conversion.
Also see: How can I fix strange characters?
How do I work with DAF files and the DupArchive extraction tool?
Problem You need to extract the archive.daf file, how do you go about doing this?

Solution 1 Use installer.php: Just use the installer.php like you normally would with the file. The process is exactly the same except the installer uses a custom engine to extract the archive.

Solution 2 Windows/Mac Client Tool: Should there ever be a case where the installer.php is having issue with extracting a '.daf' then you can use the DupArchive extractor tool. Below are the steps for running the tool. If you don't have access to a Windows or Mac based PC operating system then just submit a ticket and we can extract the contents for you.

Option 1: Extract all files and perform a manual extract install
  1. Download the DupArchive Extractor program [Windows] [Mac].
    Note: This is not a WordPress plugin, it is zip containing files that can execute on your home computer.
  2. Extract the .zip containing the extractor into a subdirectory named 'extractor' within the directory that holds your .daf file (e.g. if the .daf is in /htdocs, the extractor files should be in /htdocs/extractor)
  3. Double click on the DupArchiveExtract executable to proceed with the extract.
  4. Open a web browser and browse to the installer.php
  5. On step 1 of the installer choose 'Manual Archive Extraction' under options area and proceed with the install
  6. After installation, remove the extractor directory

Option 2: Extract just the backup installer and perform a standard install
  1. Download the DupArchive Extractor program [Windows] [Mac].
    Note: This is not a WordPress plugin, it is zip containing files that can execute on your home computer.
  2. Extract the .zip containing the extractor into a subdirectory named 'extractor' within the directory that holds your .daf file (e.g. if the .daf is in /htdocs, the extractor files should be in /htdocs/extractor)
  3. Execute "DupArchiveExtract -i" from the commandline.
  4. Open a web browser and browse to the installer-backup.php
  5. After installation, remove the extractor directory

Permission & System Issues

I get an error/warning about permissions what should I do?

General Tips:

  1. Full Perms: Temporarily set your permissions to 777 on the path in question to see if this resolves the issue.
  2. Owner/Group: Check the owner/group (chown command) of the PHP process for the correct permissions.
  3. Suhosin extension: Check if the suhosin extension is enabled by checking the following areas:
    • WordPress Admin ❯ Duplicator ❯ Tools ❯ Diagnostics ❯ Server Settings ❯ PHP ❯ Sushosin Extension
    • When running the installer see the instaler-log.txt file
    If the extension is loaded contact your host or server admin and let them know you're having permissions issues and you believe it might be related to the suhosin extension. See if they can help you adjust the settings of the extension or turn it off.
  4. SELinux: If Security Enhanced Linux is running on your server it may be possible that it is preventing even a 777 set from working. If chaning the permission and owner still has no effect then contact your host or server admin about the issue.
  5. Help Videos:
    How to change your file permissions in cPanel
    How to change file and folder permissions using FileZilla

Root Folders:

Some hosts prevent PHP from writing to the root folder of public_html directory. In this case you have a few options:
  1. Contact your host and see if this is a restriction for PHP to write to your web servers root and if they allow a work-a-round. Some hosts will provide you with a custom directive specific to their environments. Some will allow you to change owner (chown) on the root via ssh. Check with your host to be sure.
  2. If the root is off-limits then you will need to create sub-directory off of your root directory and place the installer and archive file in the sub-directory and run them from there.

Installer Tips:

When the plugin archives a file from "System A" to "System B" it can retain the permissions such as "644" from "System A" to "System B". If you want to change the permissions on "System B" at install time them follow these instructions:

Duplicator Pro
  1. Browse to the installer.php "Step 1 of 4: Extract Archive"
  2. Under "Advanced Options" find the sections "Permissions"
  3. Set the Directories/Files to the permission sequence such as "644" and check the checkbox
  4. Click "Run Deployment" this will recursively set the permissions for Directories and Files
  5. For individual directories/files login via FTP/SSH/cPanel and manually change the files.
Duplicator Lite
  1. Open an FTP client such as Filezilla
  2. On the folder where the installer.php is placed set all directories to "755"
  3. Then set the files to the permission sequence such as "644"
  4. Be sure to choose the recursive option
Note: If you still have issues temporarily try 777 on both files and directories, then be sure to change back. If 777 does not work then you will need to change the owner (chown) of the directory where the installer files are and the installer and archive files as well.

Windows Permissions:

  1. Open Windows Explorer and locate the root folder that Wordpress is installed in.
  2. Right click this folder, select Properties and click the Security tab.
  3. Choose Edit then Add. The following users must be added and given FULL ACCESS permissions: IUSR & IIS_IUSRS.
  4. After completion change FULLACCESS back to standard configuration of IUSR & IIS_IUSRS for security

Permissions can be difficult to understand how a particular host or personal web server might need to be configured. The best way to alleviate permission issues is to have a general grasp of how permissions work. Check out this article for a full rundown on how permissions can be set up in WordPress and then consult your hosting company or personal web servers documentation. Please contact your hosting provider for more details on this issue if you're not familiar with the concepts.
There is no additional code that can be added or changed to get permission to work in your environment should you receive a permission error. The plugin uses standard PHP calls for accessing the file system. If the PHP process that runs under your web server is unable to access a file or folder it's because PHP does not have enough privileges.

You will need to modify your permission setting to get the plugin to work. Because there are so many different possible configurations, web-servers and operating systems you will need to consult the documentation of your hosting provider or your personal web server you're using. One of the most helpful places to check is the forums for these particular services and software as permission issues is what they are used to dealing with.
Popular Host Docs: [HostGator] [GoDaddy] [HostMonster] [BlueHost]
Also see:
Permissions set to 777 and file still not writeable
How to change file Permissions with FTP clients like Filezilla
What if I get an "Allowed Memory Exhausted" message?

Increase Memory

Some hosting providers limit PHPs ability to use additional memory or cap the limit very small. This issue tends to be more common on low-end budget hosts. The options below can help you increase PHP memory.

Contact your host with the memory error and have them increase PHP memory for you or get an alternate approach.

Edit your .htaccess file in your WordPress root
<IfModule mod_php5.c>
    php_value memory_limit 500M

- OR -

Edit the php.ini and set:
memory_limit = 500MB

If the memory error occurs when creating a package then edit your wp-config.php file and add this:
define('WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '500M');

Validating Memory
After updating any of the options above be sure to make check that the setting are updated. You can do this by going to: Duplicator/Pro ❯ Tools ❯ Diagnostics ❯ Server Settings ❯ PHP Section ❯ "Memory Limit" and make sure the value matches the value in one of the above options.

For the first two options on some system the web server will have to be restarted. The example values above are not required just a general guideline. Its recommend to set the value 20-30MB above the allocated warning. For example if see Fatal error: Out of memory (allocated 65839452) then your recommend settings would be 85-95MB and so on until the cap is removed.

Package Builds

When building a package try to use the following settings if available on your host:
  • Duplicator: Settings ❯ Packages ❯ SQL Script ❯ Mysqldump
  • Duplicator Pro:
    • Settings ❯ Packages-Basic ❯ SQL Script ❯ Mysqldump
    • Settings ❯ Packages-Basic ❯ Archive Engine ❯ Enable "DupArchive" or "ShellZip"
      These engine options consume much less memory than ZipArchive
    • Settings ❯ Packages-Basic ❯ Server Throttle ❯
      This prevent resource complaints on budget hosts. The higher the value the slower the backup

Running Installer

If running into memory issues on the installer, Pro users you can also use the 'Manual SQL Execution' option by following these steps:
  1. Have your host or server administrator run the database.sql file for you. In some cases you may be able to use phpmyAdmin if the memory options to run it are different than how your web server is setup.
  2. After the database has been installed go to step 1 of the installer and choose 'Manual SQL Execution' from the Action drop-down.
  3. Continue to finish out the installer as you normally would.
Also see:
What can I try for timeout issues?
What can I do for issues with migrating a large site?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
Working with PHP ZipArchive
When creating Packages the Duplicator requires the ZipArchive class to be installed. For installing a package it is not required. Below are instructions for getting the ZipArchive working in your environment if it is not already setup.

You can easily validate the installation of ZipArchive by checking with phpinfo. These settings can be viewed by going to Duplicator > Tools > Diagnostics > PHPinfo. Within the phpinfo output search for "Configure Command" within the results of this command look for "--enable-zip". If that is not present then talk with your hosting provider.


Just contact your hosting provider and tell them you want PHP with Zip support so that the "ZipArchive Class" will work. This is a very common feature and is available on almost all shared hosting environments.

Duplicator says the Zip Archive extension fails, but my host says it's enabled. What should I do?
Be sure your host is looking at the same thing as there are several versions of doing Zip compression in PHP. Have your host visit this link for instructions on how to enable the Zip Archive class. This extension is enabled on almost all major hosting platforms by default.


On your own computer you will to to make sure the Zip extensions are enabled for PHP. Check your php.ini file for the following:
On Windows: extension=php_zip.dll
On Mac and Linux:


When upgrading to PHP 7, make sure to install the PHP 7 versions of you libraries as well. On some linux distributions PHP 7 also provides a php7.0-zip package. You can install it with: sudo apt-get install php7.0-zip To see additional PHP 7 libraries that are available, run: sudo apt-cache search php7.0-*


PC (XAMPP, WampServer, ect...) resources:
PHP manual | XAMPP Forums | WampServer Forums | Google Search

Mac (MAMP) resources:
PHP manual | MAMP Forums | Article 1 | Article 2 | Thread 1 Thread 2

Also see: How do I do a 'Manual Extraction' or run installer without Zip enabled?
What is PHP Open Base Dir or "open_basedir restriction in effect"?
The php.ini setting open_basedir limits file access for PHP scripts to designated directories. A limited number of hosting providers feel that without this setting your site is less secure, while this can easily be disputed it's still a fact that some hosts will not disable it. Below are two options that you can work with your hosting provider on to get around this security setup configuration:
  1. Disable: Work with your host to see if they can disable or temporarily disable this option on your account, to see if its conflicting with Duplicator.
  2. Configure: Work with your host to add all the 'concerned folder path' where open_basedir is restricting access this should include all files and the root folder where your WordPress install is located; for example:
    open_basedir = /public_html/mysite/
The package process may still work if this check fails, however because this setting tends to introduce other possible side effects it's desired to have it disabled.

Also See:
How can I configure PHP open_basedir?
How can I relax PHP's open_basedir restriction?
A scanner says that a security issue/malware/threat was detected. Is this valid?
Problem A You got a notice from a virus scanner that something in the plugin is a possible thread. How can you handle this?

Solution 1 A warning by a Malware scanner may not provide you with the details needed to pin-point a possible threat. The scanner should report why it thinks the file is a risk and what it thinks the issue might be. Be sure your scanner does more than just say XYZ file is a threat. It needs to give details and say exactly what line(s) of code are an issue and why. For example "Heuristic logic has detected something unsafe..." is entirely to general to determine if a file is a threat.

The base install of the Duplicator is known to be safe and continually scanned by third party security companies. You can be assured that the original install of the plugin is safe and if any items are reported that a patch will be applied promptly. However because WordPress systems can and do become compromised it is your responsibly to evaluate any type of possible compromise to your system.

If you want to be 100% sure the file reported by the malware scanner is not a threat please submit a help ticket with the file in question and we will do a compare on the original to determine if a threat is present. Be sure to provide the version number of the plugin you're using.

Solution 2 If you do receive a virus scan that reports as true be sure to validate the integrity against other scanners. In the vast majority of most cases we are quite confident there is nothing to worry about for a few reasons:
  1. For example if you receive a threat from a virus scan be sure to check the virustotal site. Check the total virus scan counts. If the count is say 50 virus scanners on all files and Duplicator passed 49 of them with nothing detected and only 1 or 2 of them showing a "possible" threat, then the chances are very low there is a possible corruption or hack of the plugin on your site.

  2. Virus signatures can be tricky and it is not uncommon for certain byte or code patterns to set them off. The virus-total site is also aware of false positives and addresses these types of issues on their website.

  3. The Duplicator has been on the WordPress forums years with over 4 million downloads. We work very closely with the WordPress team and other third party companies to make sure the plugin stays safe for the community.

False Flags Example:
In the world of malware detection it is common for companies to release scanners that do in fact report a false positive. This has happened on several occasions with Duplicator and in some cases the companies are quick to respond with an update to their software and it other cases they are not. Below is an example of a company who was very quick to respond to let users know it was a false flag.

From the forums

... My name is Jelmer Verkleij, CTO at Patchman. This issue was brought to our attention about 30 minutes ago and after some quick research we noted that these detections are the result of an error in our definition development process. All detections of the installer/build/assets/inc.libs.js.php file in the duplicator plugin folder seem to be false positives at this point. My sincere apologies for the confusion - this should of course not have happened and naturally we have immediately started looking into how and why this went wrong, and what needs to be done to prevent this from happening again in the future.

In the meantime, we have deployed a definition update to all our Patchman customers that rolls back any automated quarantine actions that took place for these files, and retracts the associated detections. This should automatically restore all websites to their original state without problems.

Once again, I sincerely apologize for this inconvenience, and I would like to reiterate that we are taking this matter very seriously. If you have any further questions or comments you have regarding this incident, please don't hesitate to let me know here or by sending an e-mail to I will make sure to address each response as soon as possible.

Best regards,

Jelmer Verkleij
Patchman B.V.

Problem B WordFence Notices
WordFence can trigger false positive results. If the WordFence scanner is in High sensitivity mode then users might might see warnings about the installer.

Solution 1 To mitigate these results users can do the following:
  1. Disable High sensitivity scanning and return to recommended settings.
  2. If you don't want to disable High sensitivity scans, you can click ignore on the individual results and they won't be bothered by them again (until one of the file hashes changes at least)
  3. Under their scanner's Advanced settings, they can exclude any specific filepath or a wildcard path from being scanned (See for some detail).

The Duplicator currently includes several large minimized JavaScript libraries that have been detected as a false positives on some system scanners. In most cases these notices can be ignored, however if other plugins or portions of your site also show positive readings for Malware then you should probe deeper into the issue.
How should I handle plugin conflicts?
Plugins make sites more secure and enhance overall usability, however they can cause issues when you're working with plugins that require access to the file system or modify your web server's configuration. Below is a list of common issues that we've seen with other WordPress plugins and work-arounds for working with them.

All Plugins

Make sure that you're using the most recent version of the plugin. Some companies work together to isolate and solve cross plugin issues and many issues can be easily resolved by just making sure you have the most recent version of the plugin and WordPress itself.


Problem You get an error saying something like Fatal error: Unknown: Failed opening required '/some_path/wordfence-waf.php' (include_path='... in Unknown ...

Solution 1 Check your .htaccess and remove the following or anything with # Wordfence WAF:
php_value auto_prepend_file "/path_to_file/wordfence-waf.php"

Check your php.ini or user.ini and remove the following:
auto_prepend_file = '/home/username/

Solution 2 Contact WordFence or Online Resources


Problem You are using NinjaFirewall and running into issues durning the install.

Solution 1 Consider the steps in this thread.
Also See:
Why does the installer not finish or error (403, 500) before the last step?
My host disabled my website what are my options?
These are very rare cases, but can happen on some budget hosts. If your host notifies you that your site was using too many system resources from running the plugin you have a few options:

Adjust Settings
  1. Go to: Duplicator Pro ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. Check "Client-side Kickoff"
  3. Set Server throttling to "low" or "medium"

Adjust Backups
  • Create file filters to keep your overall package size smaller
  • For scheduled backups consider only backing up the database daily and the full site on a weekly basis.
If you have control over the hosting package and you're using the lowest/cheapest package consider upgrading to a more performant level or switching to a better host overall.
Also see:
What can I do for issues with migrating a large site?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
What is happened to the old domain where I created the package?
This is an uncommon senario but can happen if you're moving sites on the same server and do not pay attention to the database or even the location where you're installing the file.

Forum Thread:
Below is a forum thread that lays out this issue with several different users, and should address most of these scenarios.

What is happening to the site on the old domain?

What can I try for timeout issues?
Timeout issues typically arise on shared budget hosts that limit the time in which a PHP or Web Server process can run. Timeouts are spotted by Duplicator log files (package or installer) that do not finish.

All log files that finish completely will have text saying 'DONE PROCESSING' or 'COMPLETE'. If your log file just suddenly stops and does not complete; then in most cases your hosting provider or server has a restriction for how long a process can run.

Some hosting providers allow for you to increase the process runtime beyond most defaults of 30 seconds. If you need a list of approved hosting providers please check out the Duplicator approved hosting resources page. The sections below show various adjustments you can make on some hosts to get around timeout issues.


Quick options for timeout issues when building a package on Duplicator Lite
  1. MysqlDump: For databases above 5-10MB enable Settings ❯ Database Build ❯ 'Use mysqldump' option.
  2. Try Again: Try more than once with the 'Try Again' button. The first pass on a build request is very slow as it has to cache the IO scan. The second pass is much faster as on some servers the IO seek is cached.
  3. Archive Flush: On some web servers if the server doesn't flush a response after a specific amount of time then the process will be killed even if the timeout was increased. In the Settings menu check the 'Archive Flush' option. This will try and keep your connection open via a flush response. Note: This option is only available in Duplicator Lite
  4. Enable Filters: Many times you can get a package to finish building simply by creating multiple directory filterS on a large data source such as your wp-content/uploads folder which contains larger files such as images/movies/pdf etc. For details see the section below titled "MANUAL TIMEOUTS WORKAROUNDS".
  5. Enable DupArchive: A new format known as DupArchive has been Developed by Snap Creek to overcome problems experienced on large sites and restricted host environments. Using DupArchive greatly diminishes the changes you will experience a timeout on package build. When using DupArchive on Duplicator Lite there is a 500MB limit for the size of you package.

    To use new format set:
    Duplicator Lite > Settings > Packages > Archive Engine = DupArchive
    Duplicator Pro > Settings > Packages > Basic Settings > Archive Engine = DupArchive


All of the options below can help solve timeout issues on both Duplicator Lite and Pro. The settings will help with both package creation and package installation. Timeouts can be controlled at three different layers so you will need to visit each one and work with your server administrator to validate them.


    The PHP processor will time your script and then kill the connection after a specific time (normally 30 seconds). This value can be changed if your hosting provider allows it. The Duplicator will try to adjust this value if it has privileges to do so, if not then you will need to work with your host to resolve the issue. We would love to help but this level of control is outside of our control.

    The quickest way to resolve a possible PHP timeout on your server is to contact your hosting provider and see if they offer a way for the PHP processes to run longer than the default timeout of 30 seconds. Many hosts offer a way to make this happen and you will need to consult their documentation. On some hosts you can place the following inside a .htaccess file in your web sites root folder or inside the plugins/duplicator folder.

    php_value max_execution_time 0  
    0 means no limit
    Because every hosting provider is different, you must contact your hosting provider to find out how to adjust this value properly on their systems. If they do not provide you with a solution then in most cases you will not be able to fix timeout issues on that server. In this case you may have to upgrade to a package on their system which gives you more processing power such as a VPS. Otherwise you can try working with filters as described below, to get the overall size of your package lower.

    Also note that if your hosting provider tells you that there is no PHP timeout limits set or they have adjusted it to a very high number, yet you continue to experience timeout issues (your log file continues to still get cut off) then the hosting provider may have timeouts set at the web server level. Please see the section Web Server below...


    The web server can also place a timer on your script and then kill the connection based on a specific time. This value can only be changed by your hosting provider or server administrator. Please contact your host to find out if this is true for their setup. Please do not email or submit a request for this issue as there is nothing we can do to fix the restriction.

    Some web servers allow timeouts to be updated by the end user without the help of a server administrator.

    The following might work on your Apache or Litespeed server.
    The key for this is workaround is RewriteRule ^$ - [E=noabort:1]
    # Example .htaccess file Inserted By Customer Control Panel
    SetENV PHPRC /home/username/public_html
    # BEGIN WordPress
    <IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
    RewriteEngine On
    RewriteBase /
    RewriteRule ^$ - [E=noabort:1]
    # END WordPress
    EXAMPLE 2 fcgi setup
    <IfModule mod_fcgid.c>
    AddHandler fcgid-script .fcgi
    FcgidIOTimeout 900
    ProcessLifeTime 7200
    IPCConnectTimeout 180
    IPCCommTimeout 7200
    EXAMPLE 3 litespeed setup
    <IfModule litespeed>
    RewriteRule .* - [E=noabort:1]
    <IfModule Litespeed> RewriteEngine On
    RewriteRule .* - [E=noconntimeout:1]
    SetEnv noabort 1

    If you are trying to create a package and the package log suddenly stops on a table and you see something like:
    02:55:06 done: wp_posts
    02:55:06 start: wp_stats (1435897)
    followed by no additional logging, then the SQL generation has failed.

    There are few things you can try:

    Database Workarounds

    Option 1: Install a plugin like wp-sweep and be sure to clean out all unused data and run the repair and optimize settings. You can also run a repair and optimize on the database, from a tool like phpmyadmin.

    Option 2: If your hosting provider supports 'mysqldump'; then this option will improve the overall package creation time and installer time for the database. Under the settings menu look for the 'Database Build' option and check the box that says 'Use mysqldump' this option works great for larger databases. This option applies only to the build phase and not the installer phase.

    Option 3: Most tables that we see fail are logging and statistical data with records into the millions. We strongly recommend to use free tools like Google Analytics vs. a stats plugin. Custom plugins tend to slow your site down with additional requests and don't offer the same reporting capabilities of tools like Analytics which has almost no performance impact on your site.

    Option 4: Temporarily backup the larger tables and exclude them from the build process (see step 1 when building a package). Then manually re-import the table(s) if the data is needed, in many cases log table data doesn't even need to be migrated and can be removed.

    Option 5: Work with your host to increase the timeout or script processing for Apache, PHP and MySQL. We highly recommend these approved hosts which will allow your scripts to finish running in most cases.

    Also be aware that you can also run out of disk space on your server, which can also show itself as a timeout issue. Be sure that you have plenty of space to create your file when creating a package.
  4. Cloudflare

    If Duplicator is having issues with Cloudflare active and kepts getting server timeouts. It could be related to the time out on Cloudflares Railgun. See the feature here:

    Try turning off this feature temporarily to see if Duplicator works. Also consider these steps:
    1. Log in to Cloudflare
    2. On the Overview page, click "Advanced"
    3. Click "Pause"
    4. Run installer deployment
    5. Turn Cloudflare back on


Package Timeouts
If the log indicates that you made it past the database script process then you may experience timeouts with backing up all your files. Below are a few items you try to if you run into issues with backing up all your files:
  • Try to exclude large files such as movies, large images or other backup files (like .zips or .tar files) from the file filters section
  • Exclude your wp-content/uploads folder by adding it to the directory filters option. Then after the install is complete at the new location you can manually copy/FTP those files back over.
  • Perform a Two-Part Install

Installer Step 1 Timeouts
  • If possible try to rebuild a smaller package by excluding larger files/directories that can be moved over manually see "Package Timeouts" above.
  • On Step 1 under options try the "Manual Extraction" step. For a step by step of how to perform a Manual extraction see these steps:
    Also see How do I do a 'Manual Extraction' or run installer without Zip enabled?.
Installer Step 2 Timeouts
  • If your database is too large for your servers configuration see the steps/options above for "Database Timeouts".
  • Pro Users Only enable Options > Chunking > multi-threaded requests to chunk SQL file.
  • Pro Only Users enable Setup > Action > Manual SQL Execution (advanced) option. This requires that you have manually imported the database ahead of time. This can be done by your host or a tool like phpMyAdmin if it supports larger sites.


Duplicator Lite is a single threaded design which will only run as a continuous process until the site is archived. While the Lite version can build packages upto 4GB it will depend on your hosting provider and how long they will allow a process to run. Most budget hosts have limits as to what you're trying to process.

If you're tyring to use the Lite version to archive a full 2GB site on a budget host it most likely will not be able to perform this process, even the Professional version can run up against constraints on budget hosts all-though with its multi-threaded framework it does have a better chance of building your package. If you want to have a strong guarantee that your larger sites will not run into timeout issues we recommend that you get a virtual private server or dedicated server that gives you full control of your environment.

If upgrading your hosting package or server is not possible then we recommend that you use a directory/file filters to keep your overall package small and portable. This will allow for more consistent and reliable backups. The you can manually port over directories such as your "/wp-content/uploads" folder manually when the time comes.

Additional Resources...
With thousands of different permutations it's difficult to try and debug/diagnose a server. If you're running into timeout issues and need help we suggest you follow these steps:
  1. Contact Host: Tell your host that you're running into PHP/Web Server timeout issues and ask them if they have any recommendations
  2. Dedicated Help: If you're in a time-crunch we suggest that you contact professional server administrator. A dedicated resource like this will be able to work with you around the clock to the solve the issue much faster than we can in most cases.
  3. Consider Upgrading: If you're on a budget host then you may run into constraints. If you're running a larger or more complex site it might be worth upgrading to a managed VPS server. These systems will pretty much give you full control to use the software without constraints and come with excellent support from the hosting company.
  4. Contact SnapCreek: We will try our best to help configure and point users in the right direction, however these types of issues can be time-consuming and can take time from our support staff.
Also see:
What can I do for issues with migrating a large site?
How do I run the installer in Database Only Mode?
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?
How can I restore my site from a previous backup?
Problem You need to restore your site from a previous backup. Before doing so consider that purpose of your restore. For example if your site has been hacked, has crashed or something has gone wrong, what are your options?

Solution 1 Contact Professional Restoration: Depending on the severity of your site going down there are alternatives you can take before trying to restoring a previous backup. It is recommended to take these approaches first because you won't loose any data that may have been added to your site since the previous backup. In some cases if you do restore of a previous backup that may not fix the issue permanently.

For example in the case of a hacked site if the security patch was not applied to the back up you want to restore then the security breach can easily happen after the site is restored if the threat is not properly identified. Below are some options to consider before trying to restore a site.
  1. Hire a professional developer to troubleshoot your issue.
  2. Have your site cleaned by a service like WordFence
  3. If your in a hurry or not familiar with Duplicator, we recommend to hire a professional developer initially.
Solution 2 Restore Site: If you choose to restore a site here are some recommended steps to take. We recommend cleaning out the directory and starting with a brand new database, this way you can be sure the issue you where having before will not show back up due to a corrupted file or database table. Starting with a clean environment always helps to lower your risk for issues. Follow these steps to restore a site.
  1. Clean out Directory: Delete all the exiting files of your WordPress site. If your not sure contact your host.
    Its not required but having your host backup all the current files and database is a good idea.
  2. Copy Package: Place the file and the installer.php file inside of the directory you just cleaned out.
  3. Run Installer: Open a web browser and browse to http://yoursite/installer.php and run through the setup.
How can I resolve “WordPress Asking for FTP Credentials” Message?
Problem The WordPress admin is asking for FTP Credentials, how can I resolve this?

Solution 1 Edit wp-config.php:
  1. Open the sites wp-config.php file with a text editor.
  2. Add the following to the file
Solution 2 Reference Article: See the following reference article.

Multisite Network (MU)

What can I do for issues with Network (MU) sites.
  1. Network Site Redirect Loop Solution:
    The quick answer is to check the varible below and make sure it matches your database entry:
    define( 'DOMAIN_CURRENT_SITE', '' );
    For more details visit this forum thread.

  2. Duplicator Lite:
    Duplicator Lite does have some basic support for MU, however it is not designed to cover more in-depth MU setups. Do to the complexities involved with MU sites Duplicator Lite does not officially support MU setups. Duplicator Lite is really designed to be fast and lightweight with minimal processing for single WordPress sites.

    While Duplicator Lite will help facilitate the overall move process and help with a few trivial settings, it is not designed or intended to support MU migrations fully. If you do decide to use Duplicator Lite to move an MU site you will need to follow some additional steps found in this article and possibly other steps based on your full MU configuration.

    Moving a WordPress Multisite with Duplicator
Update notification are not showing in the network dashboard. How can I upgrade?
There is a quirk with the Duplicator Pro update system that causes notifications to not show up when viewing the Network Dashboard plugin list. Instead, go to the first subsite's plugin list and you should see the upgrade notification there. Simply click "update now" and the plugin will be updated for the entire multisite.
How can I install a Multisite subsite as a standalone site? (Multisite Plus+)
To install a subsite as a standalone site:
  1. Build a package on your multisite server
  2. Copy package files to the new site
  3. When you bring up the installer you'll see a new multisite option to either install the full network or restore a single subsite as a standalone. Select the second option.
  4. Select the subsite to restore in the dropdown
  5. Continue with the install
After everything is done you will have a new standalone site based on the subsite. Note that all plugins will have been disabled so you will have to reactivate those.

Remote Storage

Why can't I connect to my SFTP/FTP connection?
For full step-by-step details visit each guide below:


Problem When clicking the 'Test FTP Connection' button from plugins Storage ❯ Mode: FTP; the response continues to produce a FTP file test failed message.

Solution 1 Double check all settings and test in a client side FTP client like: Filezilla, Cyberduck, CuteFTP to make sure you can also login from another source. If neither client or Duplicator Pro work then contact your server admin for the FTP endpoint to make sure all credentials are setup correctly. If the client side connection works see Solution 2 recommendation.

Solution 2 If you are able to successfully connect to the FTP endpoint from a client side client application and the credentials match exactly those of what your using in Duplicator Pro, then a networking issue is most likely causing the issue. If possible try to create the Duplicator Pro Storage FTP item on the same computer that your FTP client is on. This will help pin-point the issue down to a network level.

Since the hosted server your uses different firewalls/routes than your local computer it is possible that your hosted server is not able to properly connect to the FTP endpoint. If the Duplicator Pro Storage FTP works on your local computer then contact your hosting provider and let them know their is a network level issue where their servers are unable to connect to your FTP endpoint.
I keep having to re-setup my Google Drive connection. How do I fix this?
If you have many copies of Duplicator Pro connected to the same Google Drive account, you may be running out of connections - Google only permits around 20 connections per App per account. Per the Google documentation you can get around this limitation by using different accounts or by using a GSuite account with different admin users.

From the Google documentation:
If you need to authorize multiple programs, machines, or devices, one workaround is to limit the number of clients that you authorize per user account to 15 or 20. If you are a G Suite admin, you can create additional admin users and use them to authorize some of the clients.

Host Specific

1&1 --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. Change Archive Engine to ZipArchive, Change Max Worker Time to 10
  3. Rebuild package and filter out any unnecessary large files/directories such as backups from other plugins.

Duplicator Lite

What can I try for Timeout Issues?

Crocweb --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. Check the ZipArchive options as it appears to have reported as working better (Shell Exec however is available). Throttling should be active or it will peg the CPU on shared hosts and they will kill the process.

Duplicator Lite

What can I try for Timeout Issues?

DreamHost --

Duplicator Pro

Running Installer:
If the installer fails immediately and you have WordFence installed on your site then this might help:
  1. See FAQ: The installer is shows an empty page with a date or time at the top. How to fix?
  2. Be sure the settings are updated in a file called phprc. See:
    Dreamhost php.ini overview

Duplicator Lite

- Same solution as Duplicator Pro
GoDaddy --

ZipArchive Issues

Problem A requirement message for ZipArchive is showing in the installer or plugin admin.

Solution 1 If upgrading PHP versions on GoDaddy gives you issues with ZipArchive then check a box to enable ZipArchive support. If you don't see that please talk to GoDaddy support and ask them to enable the ZipArchive PHP module.

Duplicator Pro

Package Build Issues:

GoDaddy may be the most resource-constrained of all the major web hosts. Because of this, if your site is over 150MB you may have to switch from the zip format to the DupArchive format which was developed to work on restricted hosts.

To build a package using DupArchive:

  1. Go to Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. Set Archive Engine to DupArchive.
  3. Set the "Max Build Time to 270 if your site is over 1GB.
  4. Attempt to build.
  5. If still encounter an error set the following values in Settings > Packages and rebuild:
    • Server Throttle: Medium
    • Client-side Kickoff: Enabled
  6. If you still have problems:
    • Increase your GoDaddy plan's resource level to level 3. By default, All GoDaddy shared plans start at level 1 or 2, even Ultimate. Resource levels are described on GoDaddy's resource page.
Installer Timeout Issues:

When installing to GoDaddy you may experience a timeout. To avoid a timeout perform a manual extraction install as described in the answer to FAQ question How do I do a Manual Extraction?

Duplicator Lite

What can I try for Timeout Issues?

HostGator --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. Host Gator shared hosting is incredibly sensitive to CPU usage. If you are on this host be sure to turn on 'Server Throttle' on the General Settings page.
Ask host to whitelist these ModSecurity rules (rarely required):
  1. Rule 340464 (affects admin.php)
  2. Rule 340465 (affects admin.php)

Duplicator Lite

What can I try for Timeout Issues?

InstantWP --
How to Install a Package:
  1. On the UI click Themes Folder (opens a Web UI)
  2. On the left side of the UI click the wordpress folder
  3. Click the upload files icon a the top and upload both the installer and the archive
  4. Launch the installer by browsing to
  5. Proceed to step 2 of the install and click apply to overwrite the database
  6. Continue with the install
Linode --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. Make sure you set "Thread Lock" to "SQL" on the settings page. The default setting of "File" doesn't work with Linode hosting.
Local by FlyWheel --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages ❯ Advanced Settings
  2. Make sure you set "Thread Lock" to "SQL" on the settings page. The default setting of "File" doesn't work with Local by Flywheel.
Overwrite a local site using a DupArchive or Zip Package:
  1. On 'Local by Flywheel' UI, right click the local site you wish to overwrite
  2. Click Show folder
  3. Go to {site name}/app/public in your file browser
  4. Copy the installer.php and archive to that location
  5. Browse to {site name}.local/installer.php and proceed with install. On step 2 click apply to use existing database parameters.
Media Temple --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. Make sure you set "Thread Lock" to "SQL" on the settings page. The default setting of "File" doesn't work with media template hosting. --

Duplicator Pro

The message 'Blocked' is displayed on newly installed site: has a special policy to reduce spam on WordPress websites which can interfere with migrated sites.

To get around this, add the following to your .htaccess file:
RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} ^/
RewriteRule .* - [CO=wordpress_test_cookie:WP+Cookie+check:%    {HTTP_HOST}:1440:/]
Reference: Guide on
OVH --

Duplicator Pro

Build Problems:
  1. Go to Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages ❯ Advanced
  2. Set "Thread Lock" to "SQL". The default setting of "File" doesn't work with OVH hosting.
License Activation Problems:
  1. Talk to OVH host support about configuring mod_security firewall to allow https traffic to communicate to
PCextreme --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Go to Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. ZipArchive Single Thread mode, 18 seconds, SQL Lock
SiteGround --

Duplicator Pro & Duplicator Lite

Scan Problems:
If you have an SSL certificate setup you may encounter a Scan timeout error. This is due to two symbolic links SiteGround creates in the root of the site that point back to the site directory and cause a recursive loop.

To resolve this problem do the following:
  1. On the Packages screen, click the Create New button
  2. Click Enable File Filters
  3. Above the Directories box, click the root path quick link.
  4. Append '/www' to that path. For instance if the root path is /home/myhome/public_html the path should now look like /home/myhome/public_html/www
  5. Perform the same 'root' quick path procedure shown above but this time append the name of your domain (for instance if your domain is append /mydomain so it would be /home/mydomain

  6. Note: If you are unsure about the proper paths to filter, load the SiteGround filemanager and observe the symbolic link paths.

    If you continue to have the problem, please talk to SiteGround support. If you do not need SSL for subdomains they should be able to remove the symlink without affecting the operation of your website.
TSOHost --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages
  2. Make sure you set "Thread Lock" to "SQL" on the settings page. The default setting of "File" doesn't work with Tsohost's cloud hosting.

Licensing Activation Problems:

License activation from TSOHost may not work for you. TSOHost has a many spam sites running off of some of their shared IP addresses so those IP addresses have gotten added to black lists which our provider blocks.

Important:Even though your product will not be activated it will still fully function (licensing just controls auto-update).

To minimize this impact:

1) Enter your license key in the license key area and click activate - the plugin won't activate but it will save the license key in that spot - this will prevent a very large nag bar at the top from popping up in 30 days (right now you'll get the smaller one that tells you to activate a license)

2) Periodically check for a new copy of the plugin - once a month is adequate. If/when you see a new copy download it, uninstall the old one and install the new one.

Connectivity with TSOHost is an ongoing problem with our and other providers who monitor misbehaving sites. If you have an account with TSOHost we recommend you talk to them about removing these bad-apple sites since they impact all of TSOHost's customers.

WPEngine --

Duplicator Pro

Build Processing Settings:
  1. Go to Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages.
  2. Set "Archive Engine" to "DupArchive"
  3. Go to Duplicator ❯ Settings ❯ Packages ❯ Advanced.
  4. Set "Lock Type" to "SQL".
  5. Set "Installer Name" to "Installer.ph1". The default setting of "Installer.php" doesn't work because WPEngine prevents creation of PHP files.

Important: When you install, be sure to rename the Installer.ph1 file to Installer.php before browsing to the installer.

Duplicator Lite

WP-Engine currently does not support Duplicator Lite. Let them know this is a product you like and ask them to help support the product.


How should I get help for each Duplicator Product?
Issue I'm having some issues with Duplicator Pro/Lite where is the best place to get started.

Solution 1 Get started with Duplicator Lite:
  1. Search the WordPress Forums for answers to already asked questions.
  2. If the question is basic then ask in the the WordPress Forums.
  3. If it requires server analysis then we suggest you submit a help ticket.
  4. We also recommend our Knowledge-base which has all the links for help.
Solution 2 Get started with Duplicator Pro:
  1. For any issues with Duplicator Pro submit a help ticket and you will get top priority in our ticket queue.
  2. We also recommend our Knowledge-base which has all the links for help.

Please Note: Duplicator Lite tickets will not get answered right away as Pro tickets take precedence. Pro tickets are usually answered within 8 hours while Lite can be anywhere from 1-2 business days depending on ticket load.
Does Duplicator (Snapcreek) offer custom services?

Custom Services:

While our support staff is very helpful and can solve 99% of most issues. There are some situations in which custom services are needed to full-fill the migration needs when using the product. Snapcreek currently does not contract out for custom services but we have partnered with Codeable which has helped over 8,000 businesses of all sizes and they have excellent track record. After you post a project, it usually takes 10 minutes for responses to arrive.

Full Service Migrations: If your looking for a developer to use Duplicator to perform a "Hands off Migration" for your site please visit All of the developers on Codeable will be able to use the Duplicator to migrate your site. These scenarios might be useful for:
  • For users of the plugin who want the guarantee of a developer to validate the work-flow
  • For newer users who don't have time to learn the plugin.
  • For advanced WordPress users who just want the process done for them.

Complex-Migrations: Issues that might require custom services are:
  • Large or Complex WordPress sites
  • Complex Database collation issues that have to be manually supported
  • Older WordPress sites
  • Complex server setups or hosts that don't follow traditional standards

How can I help contribute to the plugin?
There are a few ways to help out with the progress of the plugin which are listed below:

Developers: Help fix/improve things by checking out the plugin on Github.

Localizers: The Lite version of the plugin has been localized and any support with various languages can help the entire community. To learn more about localizing WordPress plugins check out the translation page.

Users: By purchasing a copy of the Professional version you help continue in the effort of maintaining and supporting the lite version, which is has been downloaded millions of times by users all over the world.

Does Duplicator work with other Software?
Duplicator work very well with the popular ServerPress software. The pro version of server press software allows you to easily import Duplicator packages.
What host providers are recommended for Duplicator?
Duplicator and Duplicator Pro both require a decent amount of CPU and memory to run smoothly. The larger your site the more resources it will take to backup that site. If your using a budget host to manage a large complex site, we recommend upgrading to a provider or plan that will more smoothly handle your site.

Shared & Dedicated Hosting

Please see our WordPress Hosting Page for a full overview and recommendation table for choosing a solid, reliable host that will work properly for your site.

Personal Computer

WordPress on your local computer made easy.
Video Demo Using ServerPress: ServerPress to install Duplicator packages.

MAMP: My Apache - MySQL - PHP is a great option for Macs.

Also see: Snapcreek recommended WordPress Hosting
What services and products complement the Duplicator?
Duplicator Lite is uniquely designed for smaller WordPress migrations. This has been the primary function of its success. Duplicator Pro takes the Lite version several steps forward with a suite of tools to help the professional better manage and migrate WordPress sites. Duplicator Lite may not work with every scenario or provide the exact features you're needing, this is why we have partnered with similar products to cover more scenarios.


Duplicator Pro: A commercial version of Duplicator, with new features such as: scheduling, cloud support (FTP, Dropbox. Google Drive, Amazon S3), multisite, large site support and more. Duplicator Lite vs Pro Comparison


WP Migrate DB: A free database sync plugin with pull/push data syncing.

Service Solutions

Developer Help: Check out Codeable for help with moving a site.

Hosting: Check out our recommend hosts Bluehost and Siteground.

MainWP: A free self-hosted management tool for maintaining all your WordPress sites.

Are there articles I can read covering duplicator?
Duplicator has dozens of articles covering its usage. A quick Google of "How to use WordPress duplicator" will provide many links. Below are some articles we have come across:

Online Article Tutorials

Articles - newest first
  1. How to Clone a WordPress Website by: SASA STOJANO
  2. How to Move One Web Host to Another in 2019 (No Downtime!) by:
  3. How To Move WordPress Site in 7 easy steps by:
  4. How to Move/Backup Your Website with the WordPress Duplicator Plugin by:Rachel Adnyana
  5. How to Move a Live WordPress Site to Local Server by:
  6. 3 Plugins For Easily Migrating A WordPress Site, Tried & Tested by: James Bruce
  7. How To Move WordPress From Localhost To Live Host Server by:
  8. A series of videos and overviews for how to Duplicate a WordPress Site by: Paal Joachim
If you have a good article you have written please let us know
Also See:
Are there videos I can watch covering duplicator?
Are there videos I can watch covering duplicator?
Duplicator has dozens of videos covering its usage. A quick Google of "How to use WordPress duplicator" will provide many links. Below are some articles we have come across:

Duplicator Walk-through Series

  1. Duplicator Step By Step
    Version 1.2.40 | Time: 5:27 | By: Themelsle
  2. How To Use Duplicator WordPress Migration Plugin
    Version 1.2.36 | Time: 29:27 | By: Pixemweb
  3. Complete Migration Overview
    Version 1.2.32 | Time: 9:27 | By: Paal Joachim
  4. Transfer/Migrate a WordPress Site in 10 minutes
    Version 1.1.20 | Time: 10:00 | By: Jakson
  5. How to Backup and Clone a WordPress Website - 2017 (Siteground)
    Version 1.1.32 | Time: 14:00 | Web Monkey
  6. Complete End to End Overview
    Version 1.1.8 | Time: 1:01:00 | By: Timothy Meyers
  7. Working with Subfolders
    Version 0.5.4 | Time: 8:55 | By: Paal Joachim
If you have a video you have made please let us know!
Also See:
Are there articles I can read covering duplicator?