We all love WordPress, it is the most popular and powerful blogging platform. A WordPress website can become anything and everything you want because it is fully customizable, and the WordPress dashboard lets you manage your website with ease and complete control over how your content looks like. What if you can build a complete WordPress website without any cost.
We are not talking about WordPress.com which, as we know, is free. But In this guide we will walk you through step by step method to create a complete self hosted WordPress.org website with Top Level Domain and Web-Hosting for free.
Let’s get right into the process…
Step 1: Register a Free Domain Name
First of all we need a domain name. Freenom is a great company which provides free ccTLDs for 12 months, and after that you can renew it unlimited times for free. The best part is that the domain extensions are comprised of only two letters, so the domain names look very catchy. Currently they are providing .tk .ml .ga .cf and .gq ccTLDs. To get your free domain name:
Go to freenom.com, type your desired name and click on ‘Check Availability‘.
Choose your favorite domain extension, then click on ‘Get it now!‘.
Once you have selected your domain name, click on the green ‘Checkout‘ button.
Then from ‘Period’ drop down, select ‘12 Months @ FREE‘ option. And click on ‘Continue‘.
After that, enter your email address and click on ‘Verify My Email Address‘. Then go to your email inbox and verify your email address.
After email verification fill out ‘Your Details’ form, tick the box for Terms & Conditions and click on ‘Complete Order‘ button.
Now after order confirmation you can see your active domain name by going to ‘My Domians‘ under ‘Services’ drop down menu.
Step 2: Choose a Free WordPress Web-Hosting
To install WordPress and make your website and content go live, you need a web hosting. There are many free web hosting services but on top of the list are 000webhost and x10hosting. First we will go with 000webhost and build a WordPress site and then with x10hosting. Later on we will do a comparison.
Go to 000webhost.com, and click on ‘Get Started For Free!‘ button.
Then fill out the sign up form and click on ‘Get Free Hosting‘.
Meanwhile, go to your email inbox and confirm your email address.
Then click on ‘Manage website‘ button and go to ‘Set web address‘ tab.
Linking Domain Name to 000Webhost
Now there are two ways to link the domain name to 000webhost. You can either park the domain name by changing name servers of domain name, OR point the domain by using DNS CNAME records without changing name servers. We are listing both methods below:
Method 1 – To park the domain name to 000webhost:
Click on ‘Use Domain‘ button to add your own domain name.
Then copy the given name servers. After that go to freenom’s ‘My Domains’ tab and click on ‘Manage Domain‘ button on your domain name.
Click on ‘Nameservers‘ under ‘Management Tools’ drop down.
Select ‘Use custom nameservers’ option. Then replace Nameserver 1 & Nameserver 2 with NS01.000WEBHOST.COM & NS02.000WEBHOST.COM respectively, as directed by 000webhost. And remove Nameserver 3 & Nameserver 4, and click on ‘Change Nameservers‘ button.
Then go back to 000webhost, type your domain name and click on ‘Park domain‘ button.
After the domain has been parked you need to wait for DNS propagation which is a long process and sometimes may take 24 – 72 hours.
To check the progress of DNS you can go to zonemaster.net, type your domain name and click on play button. If the DNS propagation is completed, it will show you data in green colored links including the ‘Nameserver’ where you will be able to see the name servers of 000webhost. Otherwise, you will see red colored links with no data which means you have to wait more.
Once the DNS propagation is completed, go back to 000webhost and click on ‘Recheck Nameservers‘ under ‘Manage’ drop down. (If you see an error saying ‘undefined undefined’, just refresh the page and the domain name will be parked)
Then again go to ‘Manage’ drop down and click on ‘Link website‘option.
Then leave the option ‘I want to use a subdomain’ unchecked and click on ‘Connect‘ button.
Method 2 – To point the domain to 000webhost:
Go to freenom domain management and then to ‘Manage Freenom DNS‘ tab.
Here you need to add two CNAME records, so first click on ‘+ More Records‘ to be able to add both records simultaneously.
Then leave the ‘Name’ field empty for the first one and add “www” for the second one, then select the type CNAME for both and paste your 000webhost website’s address in the ‘Target’ field for both records. Then click on ‘Save Changes‘ button.
Make sure that both records are saved, then wait for 30 – 40 minutes for DNS propagation.
If ‘Manage Freenom DNS’ gives you error ‘Zone not active yet‘, then go to ‘Nameservers’ under ‘Management Tools’ drop down and select ‘Use default nameservers’ option, and then click on ‘Change Nameservers‘ button. This will resolve the issue.
After adding CNAME records and DNS propagation, go back to 000webhost ‘Set web address’ tab. Scroll down and click on ‘Add domain‘ button.
Then select the option to point domain, and click on ‘Next‘.
Then type the domain name, select your website and click on ‘Save’ button. And the domain name will be linked.
Note: We personally recommend the first method because when we use any DNS management tool such as Cloudflare, we have to change the name servers anyway.
After the domain name is linked, you can now to install WordPress, go to ‘Build Website‘ tab, under ‘Build WordPress Website’ option, click on ‘Install Now‘.
In the next window type admin username and password that you want for your WordPress website.
From the ‘Url‘ Drop Down menu select the URL type you want (either www or non-www). Then click on ‘Install‘ button.
After the installation is complete you can see the WordPress login page by clicking on ‘Go to WordPress configuration page’ button OR by using the URL like “domainname.ml/wp-admin”. After logging in you will see the WordPress dashboard.
There will be a little banner of 000webhost on the bottom right hand corner of website but you can remove it by going to settings and turning the slider off for ‘Show banner‘ option. Now we will go through the procedure for x10hosting.
Go to x10hosting.com, and click on ‘Create My Account‘ button.
Then type the name of your website and click on ‘Continue‘.
Then enter your email address and click on ‘Continue‘.
Then choose a password for x10hosting account and click on ‘Continue‘.
View terms of service and tick the box ‘I agree’ then click on ‘Submit‘.
Then go to your email address for email confirmation. After email confirmation click on ‘Continue‘.
Wait until you see ‘Your Account is Ready!’ then click on ‘Continue‘.
Then type your name and click on ‘Continue’ and again click on ‘Continue‘ for one last time.
Finally you will see your account details, then click on ‘Open cPanel‘ button.
Then click on ‘Add Website‘ button.
Scroll down and click on ‘Add a Domain‘ button.
Copy the given DNS name servers.
Then go to Freenom’s domain management and then to ‘Nameservers‘ under ‘Management Tools’.
Select ‘Use custom nameservers’ option. Replace the first two lines with the name servers given by x10hosting, and remove the remaining two. Then click on ‘Change Nameservers‘ button and wait for DNS propagation.
Then go back to x10hosting, type your domain name and make sure that ‘Park a Domain‘ option is selected. Then click on ‘+ Add Domain‘ button.
Then go to ‘My Websites‘ tab and again click on ‘Add Website‘ button.
And select ‘Software / Script Installer‘ option.
Click on ‘Quick script selection..’ drop down menu and select WordPress from Blogging scripts.
Then from ‘Domain’ drop down select your domain name.
Change Admin username, password and email for your WordPress website. Then click on ‘Install Script‘ button.
After that your WordPress website will be good to go and you will be able to login to it by using URL like ‘domainname.ga/wp-admin’. And after logging in you will see your WordPress Dashboard.
Now you can write and publish your posts, change the theme of your website, install plugins … etc.
Comparison Between 000Webhost & x10Hosting
10 GB monthly bandwidth
Only 1 GB disk space
Limited file manager
Unlimited disk space
Complete file manager
FTP File Management
If you like, you can also manage your website using FTP client such as FileZilla.
For FTP account details, if you are using 000webhost:
Click on the ‘Details‘ button from the website list page.
You will see FTP details on the pop up window.
And for x10Hosting:
Click on ‘Quick FTP‘ link from the main page.
And the FTP account details will appear.
Renew The Domain Name
You can renew your domain if it is about to expire, you will receive a notice through email 14 days before the expiry date. To renew the domain name:
Login to your freenom’s account.
Then under ‘Services’ drop down menu, click on ‘Renew Domains‘.
Then click on ‘Renew This Domain‘ button next to your domain name.
From the drop down select ‘12 Months @ FREE‘ and click on ‘Order Now >>‘ button.
And your domain’s life will extend for another year. You can check the status from ‘My Domains’ section.
Is there anything left?
Oh yes, you can create custom email addresses for your website as well as add free SSL certificate to change the web address of your website from HTTP to HTTPS, this will make your website look more secure and professional.
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