How To Install Umbraco 7 Manually

I've talked previously about how to install Umbraco via the auto installer in, How To Install Umbraco 7 In Less Than 5 Minutes. Sometimes, however, you may want a bit more control over the installation process like configuring IIS or SQL.  In today's guide, we'll talk you through the whole process.

Download Your Files

First head over to the Umbraco download page here and get the latest copy of Umbraco.

Set-up IIS

Next we need to set-up a website to run Umbraco in.  After you have downloaded your Umbraco files, copy them somewhere on your computer. I usually put everything in 'inetpub' in thC drive installing_umbraco_manually_copying_files Next up is to create a new website in IIS and point it to your extracted files: installing_umbraco_manually_setting_up_iis To create a website in IIS, you need to create a website name (this won't be shown anywhere so it can be anything you want), the physical path to the location of the Umbraco files, and the hostname that you will use in the web browser to view the site. Next you will need to open up your host file and set-up your hostname entry, otherwise when you try and load the site in IIS you will get a 404 error. In File Explorer, go to, 'C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc' and open the host file (you will need to do this in notepad in administrator mode otherwise you won't be able to save it) and add an entry like this hostname in my example it would look like this: umbracowebsite


The next step is to create a database for the Umbraco installer to write to.  For this tutorial, I'm going to use the 'SA' account to access the database. When installing Umbraco for production, never use the SA account and create your own SQL user with correct read/write permissions to the database. installing_umbraco_sql_database


Now we are in the final furlong and can install Umbraco.  Open a browser and type in the host name you created in IIS (this should be the name you set in the hostname in IIS), if nothing loads remember to set the host file!  The Umbraco installation screen should now load: installing_umbraco_login_installer Enter your user account details (username, email and password) that you will use to access the CMS, then click the Customize button, to configure the SQL details: installing_umbraco_sql_installer Add in your SQL details so the installer can access the database we just created, e.g. the server, the database we created and the username/password combo to access it and click 'Next'. installing_umbraco_sample_site_installer Next, select the sample site you want to be installed.  This will be a demo website with a few web-pages to help you get started.  Click next and Umbraco will go off and do its thing. After a few minutes of waiting the Umbraco CMS should load. You are now ready to start developing!


In today's guide, we've covered how to manually install Umbraco. The process is slightly more complex than the automatic method, but, on the flip-side, you get more control as to where things are installed etc.. From a development point of view I would always recommend running and testing your project via IIS as this will be the same set-up as your production environment. Happy coding!

Jon D Jones

Software Architect, Programmer and Technologist Jon Jones is founder and CEO of London-based tech firm Digital Prompt. He has been working in the field for nearly a decade, specializing in new technologies and technical solution research in the web business. A passionate blogger by heart , speaker & consultant from England.. always on the hunt for the next challenge

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