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When I install new plugins in the Admin, Wordpress asks for FTP access although the file permissions should be correct. I want to enable plugin installation without ftp access.

How should I debug this problem?

One special thing about my installation:

  • I do not use the usual location for the wp-content folder and instead

    define('WP_CONTENT_DIR', realpath(ABSPATH . '../wp-content/')); define('WP_CONTENT_URL', WP_HOME . '/wp-content');

What I've tried up to now:

  • Find out who the apache user is:

    $ ps aux |grep apache
    www-data 9040 0.0 1.8 280912 9160 ? S 10:49 0:00 /usr/sbin /apache2 -k start

  • Adjust the permissions and ownership of the plugins folder such that

    $ ls -ld wp-content/plugins
    drwxr-xr-x 12 www-data myself 4096 Aug 10 20:31 wp-content/plugins

How should I search for the reason why this does not help?

  • Why the downvote? Is there anything wrong with this question? – Philipp Zedler Aug 12 '16 at 9:55
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I've found the answer here.

In brief, Wordpress performed some checks to see if it has enough write permissions, and those checks failed.

To skip those tests and simply create the files, one must place this somewhere in the wp-config.php file:

define('FS_METHOD', 'direct');

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