Cannot get a previously deleted WP website back inside Local

When trying to get an older site from my Local Sites folder on my pc back into Local as a new site or import, I am met with a message after giving Local the path to the folder on my pc that the folder contains Local data and please choose a different path. I have tried moving the folder from Local Sites to Documents on my PC but it seems Local will always look in Local Sites so that didn’t work. I opened a new folder in Local Sites with a different name and copied the app, config and log files into that newly named folder. Still got the same message. I’ve looked through the site folders and files and cannot see a mention of ‘local’ anywhere that Local might be tracking. Can anyone help with this?

Hi @Jewel

To get an older site re-imported you simply have to bundle the files up into a zip and then drag and drop them into Local. Or if you want to spin up a new, blank site you can manually import the WP-Content and SQL over top of it.

Is that what you’re trying to accomplish? More details on all of this here:

Thanks for your response, Nick. I think the link with Local was broken when I deleted the site from it and the site went to my recycle bin. I had read about zipping the sql and moving wp-content into a fresh install but zipping the sql file but just at the end of compression, it says it’s unable to complete the zip, and access is denied. Edit: I discovered it was Windows 10 not giving me access and didn’t find a way around that. So I installed WinRAR and will now try your suggestion of moving wp_content and the zipped sql file into a fresh install on Local.

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I moved the wp_content folder into a fresh site but when I dragged and dropped either the zipped or unzipped local.sql file, Local said it didn’t know what to do with it. Then I tried zipping the whole site as in your first suggestion and I got the same response. I tried dropping the old zipped site over the Local interface then created a new site and dropped it over that. Same response. I think I’m going to have to give up.

Hi @Jewel

If you’re manually moving in the SQL file you can’t just drag and drop it no matter whether it’s zipped or unzipped. Dragging and dropping only works when your whole site is included in the zip (WP-Content and SQL). Check out our manual steps here for importing your database.

After deleting the site from Local and restoring it back to Local Sites on my PC, Local wouldn’t open it and kept asking for a different path to the file. This is how I FINALLY got around this problem:

I’ll call the original site I was trying to get back into Local the name of Site A and the newly created site in Local the name of Site B. I had to create a new site in Local whose name bore no resemblance to Site A’s name in order to put in place a brand new installation of WP. I copied all the folders and files from Site A across to Site B replacing the newly installed folders/files.

Then I had to get Site A’s database into Site B. I had tried importing this from the sql folder I had copied across to Site B in my localhost but Local ignored it. It occurred to me I could try using the local.sql from Site A to achieve the import and that worked. I learned I had to have started the site in Local while importing the database.

Now I had to change the Site Domain in Local to Site A’s name and as I changed it there the SSL was automatically changed too and the host files automatically changed. (Thank you Local).

When I opened the site in the browser I could see the home page but clicking on links too me to an Oops this page can’t be found page. I realised I hadn’t been able to actually log in to the site. I added wp_admin to the domain name in the browser. Wouldn’t work. So I changed that to wp_login.php and that brought up the login box. I had retained the username and password for Site A and used those to enter Site B. First thing I did was go to Permalinks in the dashboard and click Save and now I have a working copy of Site A in Site B. It was a frustrating journey but I’m glad I persevered.

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Thank you for sharing your notes here @Jewel - Glad to hear that you’re back in and working :slight_smile:

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