How to extract (unzip) a file in WordPress without FTP or cPanel

For WordPress users, uploading files and downloading them can be confusing. That happens especially for beginners, it’s not only about knowledge, but also, a question of web hosting features.

As an example, WordPress hosting companies may disable FTP access or browsing, So, users find themselves in the need to manually extract files without FTP access or file manager.

What I’m talking about today is a simple, but great WordPress Unzip plugin that lets you extract any compressed Zip file easily.

Zip and Unzip files directly in the WordPress dashboard

FTP is the easiest and the best way to upload, download, and manage the server files. You only need the FTP login details and everything will be easy with tutorials and documentation.

Unfortunately, if you have a dedicated, VPS, or even be shared hosting account, without FTP or cPanel access, then, follow these steps to extract any file.

Step 1: Download File Manager plugin

File Manager is a free WordPress plugin with powerful functions. Unlike the other plugins, this one comes with advanced file management functions. That includes upload, download, rename, delete, Zip, Unzip, Move, and duplicate options.

You can download the plugin from the WordPress directory, and then, upload and activate it in your dashboard. On the other side, you can install it from WordPress directly, all you have to do is to click on “Plugins”, then, “add New”. Next, search for “file manager”, and click the “install now” options as the following screenshot.

Extract a File in WordPress without FTP

Now, you have the plugin installed, next, activate it.

Finally, you need to find the plugin’s menu in the main WordPress menu area. Just find the File Manager and click on it.

Browse the exact file you want to extract and click the right button, then, select “Extract file from archive” or just use the top menu to have the same option.

 File unzip

Now, you’ve extracted the file content, and you should be able to view its content in WordPress. Make sure to delete the zip file if you don’t need it. That’s helpful for saving disk space and making WordPress clean from files you don’t use anymore.

The same thing applies to compress files. For example, you can create an archive file from any folder in WordPress. Just select the exact folder, and then right-click the button, and select “create archive”. That’s it, you can extract and create an archive of zipped files directly in your WordPress admin area.

You don’t need any FTP login, and you don’t need any cPanel File Manager.

That’s great for WordPress users without cPanel and FTP access, however, remember to disable and remove the plugin after its use. You need to keep WordPress safe and free from junk files. If you’re not using the plugin, deactivate and delete it completely. That way you make WordPress secure and better.

That’s exactly how to upload, compress, extract, and manage files in WordPress without FTP or cPanel access. The plugin works normally, however, if you find issues, you can use another one.

The best alternative is a good, but not updated WordPress plugin called File Browser. It’s a WordPress file management plugin that works in the Backend. Don’t worry about this plugin update time, it works fine without problems.

I hope that this helped, share this tutorial with your friends or link to it from your website. If you have comments you can use the comment section below.

Avatar for Fathi Arfaoui
About Fathi Arfaoui

Fathi Arfaoui is a Physicist, Blogger and the founder of He shares Business, WordPress and Blogging tips to build a better blog and succeed online.

Disclosure: The recommendations on this page are my own based on my tests and analysis. We may earn a small commission from web hosts and other partners if you use my referral link to make a purchase. That’s what helps us to maintain the site and add fresh content, Thanks for your support.

Leave a Comment