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WP Local Docker V2 is now available, please update to that version as v1 is no longer supported. Documentation available here.

WordPress Docker Development Environment

This is a Docker based local development environment for WordPress.

Support Level MIT License

Table of Contents


This project is based on docker-compose. By default, the following containers are started: PHP-FPM, MySQL, Elasticsearch, nginx, and Memcached. The /wordpress directory is the web root which is mapped to the nginx container.

You can directly edit PHP, nginx, and Elasticsearch configuration files from within the repo as they are mapped to the correct locations in containers.

A custom phpfpm image is used for this environment that adds a few extra things to the PHP-FPM image.

The /config/elasticsearch/plugins folder is mapped to the plugins folder in the Elasticsearch container. You can drop Elasticsearch plugins in this folder to have them installed within the container.



  1. git clone <my-project-name>
  2. cd <my-project-name>
  3. docker-compose up
  4. Run setup to download and install WordPress.
    1. On Linux / Unix / OSX, run sh bin/
    2. On Windows, run .\bin\setup.

If you want to use a domain other than http://localhost, you'll need to:

  1. Add an entry to your hosts file. Ex: docker.localhost
  2. Update WordPress Address (URL) and Site Address (URL).

Default MySQL connection information (from within PHP-FPM container):

Database: wordpress
Username: wordpress
Password: password
Host: mysql

Default WordPress admin credentials:

Username: admin
Password: password

Note: if you provided details different to the above during setup, use those instead.

Default Elasticsearch connection information (from within PHP-FPM container):

Host: http://elasticsearch:9200

The Elasticsearch container is configured for a maximum heap size of 750MB to prevent out of memory crashes when using the default 2GB memory limit enforced by Docker for Mac and Docker for Windows installations or for Linux installations limited to less than 2GB. If you require additional memory for Elasticsearch override the value in a docker-compose.override.yml file as described below.

Administrative Tools

We've bundled a simple administrative override file to aid in local development where appropriate. This file introduces both phpMyAdmin and phpMemcachedAdmin to the Docker network for local administration of the database and object cache, respectively.

You can run this atop a standard Docker installation by specifying both the standard and the override configuration when initializing the service:

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml -f admin-compose.yml up

The database tools can be accessed on port 8092.

The cache tools can be accessed on port 8093.

Docker Compose Overrides File

Adding a docker-compose.override.yml file alongside the docker-compose.yml file, with contents similar to the following, allows you to change the domain associated with the cluster while retaining the ability to pull in changes from the repo.

version: '3'
      - "dashboard.localhost:"
      ES_JAVA_OPTS: "-Xms2g -Xmx2g"


Add this alias to ~/.bash_profile to easily run WP-CLI command.

alias dcwp='docker-compose exec --user www-data phpfpm wp'

Instead of running a command like wp plugin install you instead run dcwp plugin install from anywhere inside the <my-project-name> directory, and it runs the command inside of the php container.

There is also a script in the /bin directory that will allow you to execute WP CLI from the project directory directly: ./bin/wp plugin install.

SSH Access

You can easily access the WordPress/PHP container with `docker-compose exec:

docker-compose exec --user root phpfpm bash

Alternatively, there is a script in the /bin directory that allows you to SSH in to the environment from the project directory directly: ./bin/ssh.

Useful Bash Aliases

To increase efficiency with WP Local Docker, the following bash aliases can be added ~/.bashrc or ~/.bash_profile:

  1. WP-CLI:
    alias dcwp='docker-compose exec --user www-data phpfpm wp'
  2. SSH into container:
    alias dcbash='docker-compose exec --user root phpfpm bash'
  3. Multiple instances cannot be run simultaneously. In order to switch projects, you'll need to kill all Docker containers first:
    docker-stop() { docker stop $(docker ps -a -q); }
  4. Combine the stop-all command with docker-compose up to easily start up an instance with one command:
    alias dup="docker-stop && docker-compose up -d"


MailCatcher runs a simple local SMTP server which catches any message sent to it, and displays it in its built-in web interface. All emails sent by WordPress will be intercepted by MailCatcher. To view emails in the MailCatcher web interface, navigate to http://localhost:1080 in your web browser of choice.

WP Snapshots

WP Snapshots is a project sharing tool for WordPress empowering developers to easily push snapshots of projects into the cloud for sharing with team members. Team members can pull snapshots such that everyhing "just works". WP Local Docker comes bundled with WP Snapshots and comes with a bin script to proxy commands from the host to the docker containers. To use WP Snapshots with WP Local Docker, follow the configuration instructions, substituting ./bin/ for wpsnapshots in the CLI.


./bin/ configure 10up

Once configured, you can use all of the WP Snapshots commands, again substituting ./bin/ for wpsnapshots in the CLI.


./bin/ push
./bin/ pull <snapshot-id>
./bin/ search <search-text>


Xdebug is a PHP extension to assist with debugging and development.

In order to use remote Xdebugging follow the instructions below according to your favorite IDE.

Visual Studio Code

  1. Install the PHP Debug extension.
  2. In your project, go to the debugger, click the gear icon and choose PHP. A new launch configuration will be created for you.
  3. Set the pathMappings settings in your launch.json. Example:
"configurations": [
        "name": "Listen for XDebug",
        "type": "php",
        "request": "launch",
        "port": 9000,
        "pathMappings": {
            "/var/www/html": "${workspaceRoot}/wordpress",

Updating WP Local Docker

WP Local Docker is an ever-evolving tool, and it's important to keep your local install up-to-date. Don't forget to git pull the latest WP Local Docker code every once in a while to make sure you're running the latest version. We also recommend "watching" this repo on GitHub to stay on top of the latest development. You won’t need to grab every update, but you’ll be aware of bug fixes and enhancements that’ll keep your local development environments running smoothly.

It's especially important to git pull the latest code before you docker pull upgrades to your Docker images, either as a potential fix for an issue or just to make sure they’re running the latest versions of everything. This will make sure you have the latest WP Local Docker code first, including the docker-compose.yml file that defines what Docker images and versions the environment uses.

Support Level

Archived: This project is no longer maintained by 10up. We are no longer responding to Issues or Pull Requests unless they relate to security concerns. We encourage interested developers to fork this project and make it their own!


This project is our own flavor of an environment created by John Bloch.