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How To Change the Path for WordPress Media Upload Folder

How To Change the Path for WordPress Media Upload Folder

WordPress has made media utilization easy. You can make a blog in a few minutes and showcase the images or media files to your liking. When you upload these files to your site, WordPress by default saves them in a folder.

The old WordPress versions have a link through which you could change the WordPress media upload folder and thus making the process easy. However, WordPress 3.5 and above have removed the option of changing the folder path. In this case, we have come out some simple steps helping you change the uploading folder of the media files on WordPress beyond the version of 3.5 with ease.

Why You Need to Change the Default Uploader Folder

There are a number of reasons why you may want to have a new folder for the site uploads. Changing the folder improves the site performance as you can host your images on a subdomain. This makes the process of WordPress backup efficient. This way, you can also have a different file organization for your file by having a different URL.

However, hanging the media directory may have an effect on your site in terms of the changed URL structure. You should thus not try this if you are not aware of the repercussions of the change.

Change the Default WordPress Uploader Folder

If you are using the old WordPress versions, you can easily change the default folder from your Settings. There is an option for changing the folder path that has been removed in WordPress 3.5 since it is not commonly used, and removing it improves site performance.

Uploading Files Setting

As you can see from the screenshot, the default path is wp-content/uploads, and you can change by entering the new path manually.

However, it is different with WordPress 3.5. After going to WordPress Dashboard > Settings > Media, you can find that the option for folder path change is not available under the Uploading Files section.

Media Settings

Here, you need to edit wp-config.php file that is found at the base directory on your WordPress installation. Open that file and edit according to the folder you want to save your uploads in.

You may want to change from the default WordPress media upload folder to a new one. This requires you to use a shortcode on the configuration file as follows.

Define Upload Path

In the case that you do not want to save your uploaded content inside the wp-content directory, you need to use the shortcode as shown below.

Define Upload Path

The step is simple, and even newbies can carry out this, but it requires caution when you are implementing this on your website. There is a need to take care of the widgets and the plugins that may require your media files.

Use the Original Media Path Plugin for WordPress

This is the simplest method, and it does not involve any coding. You just need to use a simple plugin, and you are done changing the WordPress upload folder. The plugin WP Original Media Path provides you the same results as editing the wp-config.php. You can store your files in a different subdomain by the use of this plugin. This plugin changes the way you set up your media upload folder.

WP Original Media Path

You can get the plugin on wordpress.org. Download the plugin, install and then activate. Then, you can note more options on your Media settings after installing and activating the WordPress Original Media Path plugin. The additional options can be shown at the bottom of the page.

Secure Your Directory

You can secure the created WordPress media upload folder by using some shortcodes on your site or by the use of .htaccess to protect your information online.

If you are not good at coding, you can try some other methods of protecting your directory. You could use permissions with increased security until you find one that works. You can also deactivate the Safe Mode on PHP, disabling the auto-organization for month/year option, you can switch hosts or you can also try using different file paths.


Joyce is a professional writer & SEOer who loves trying new things and sharing the experience through blogging. She loves clean design, playing with different WordPress themes, SEO, etc. Very often, you could find her in various WordPress event as invited speakers.