When working on a client site, sometimes you will have to upload files to the WordPress theme directory. Since the WordPress dashboard doesn’t allow you to upload files to the theme directory, you will need to have FTP access to the site. 

wordpress dashboard ftp


If you’ve been working as a web designer or developer for a while, I bet you might have faced it at least once; in some occasions, clients couldn’t get you FTP access when you really need it. The reasons can be many. Maybe your client is not really aware of what FTP access is, especially if he’s a novice blogger. Maybe the client is too slow in responding to your queries, so you won’t get the access immediately when you need it.

In such cases, it will be really helpful if you could access the theme directory right from the WordPress dashboard. In this post, let’s see how to get FTP kind of access to the theme directory from your WordPress dashboard.   

1. WP File Manager plugin - upload and access any Wordpress fileswp file manager

WP File Manager is the best file management plugin available in the free WordPress directory that allows you to easily change, delete, organize and upload files to the root folder. It is also very user-friendly.

Although this plugin hasn’t been updated for last 3 years, it still works on the latest version of WordPress. In fact, while writing this post I couldn’t find any reliable alternative solution to this plugin in official WordPress plugin directory that does the same job. The plugin is priceless.


  • Multi-upload: You can upload up to 20 files at a time.
  • User-friendly: If you’ve ever used an FTP or cPanel, you can easily use it.
  • Functions: You can view, edit, upload, rename and delete a file. It also allows you to move a file from one folder to another.


  • Copy: Though you can move a file, you can’t copy it to another directory.
  • Overwrite: While uploading a file, it overwrites an existing file with the same name without warning the user.
  • Compress/ extract: It doesn’t allow you to compress or extract a file.

2. WPide - edit Wordpress code files


WPide is a code editor plugin that lets you browse and edit all of the directories and files in your wp-content folder through WordPress admin area.

Though both WP File Manager and WPide gives you access to the theme directory, the main difference is that WP File Manager is focused on managing backend files whereas WPide is focused on editing the code. In fact, the long-term goal of WPide is becoming ‘the ultimate environment to code/develop WordPress themes and plugins’.

Cool features

  • Create new files and directories
  • Automatic backup of every code you edit
  • Syntax highlighting
  • Tabbed interface for editing multiple files


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About the Author
David Attard
Author: David AttardWebsite: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dattard/
David has been working in or around the online / digital industry for the last 18 years. He has vast experience in the software and web design industries using WordPress, Joomla and niches surrounding them. As a digital consultant, his focus is on helping businesses get a competitive advantage using a combination of their website and digital platforms available today.

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