How to Download Your Entire WordPress Media Library

  • By Darrel Wilson
  • Last Updated: November 21, 2019

WordPress makes it easy to add images, PDF files, and even documents to your website. However, once you’ve been blogging and adding files for a while, it can be quite tricky to find a specific image or a file. Another problem with WordPress Media Library is that if you need to download all your website images for whatever reason, you would have to manually download them one by one, which can be time-consuming.

The good news is that there is a plugin that makes it easy to edit, modify, and otherwise manage your WordPress files directly from your WordPress dashboard. The plugin in question is File Manager and in this post, I’ll go over the plugin’s features, discuss the plugin’s pros and cons, and share a video walkthrough of how to use it.

What Does the File Manager Plugin Offer

The File Manager plugin is a popular file management plugin for WordPress. It has a 5-star rating and more than 300,000 active installs. As mentioned earlier, the File Manager plugin allows you to upload or download new images to your WordPress website. It also allows you to edit other files such as CSS, PHP or JavaScript files. Some of the main features include:

  • You can easily share files via email which means you can send files to your developer if you need to make quick updates or adjustments to your code files.
  • The File Manager plugin also makes it easy to upload or download new themes and plugins to your website and if you have any PDF files uploaded, you can easily preview them using this plugin.
  • You can copy, edit, download, upload, and move files between folders on your server
  • File Manager can complete code reviews before saving files to ensure your site will not go down when updating code
  • You can see which files have been changed and when the change happened
  • And more.

File Manager Plugin Use Cases

The File Manager Plugin has a few different use cases:

  1. Instead of logging in to your cPanel every time you need to download or upload a file to your site (such as .htaccess file or perhaps you need to edit your stylesheet), you can use this plugin to accomplish the same thing.
  2. You don’t have to worry about installing and using an FTP program to access all the files related to your site.
  3. You can use it to download your WordPress files as a part of your manual backup process.
  4. You can use the File Manager plugin to download and backup your entire WordPress Media Library.
  5. Lastly, you can use this plugin to download your website files if you’re switching to another hosting company and need an easy way to access your website files

How to Use the File Manager Plugin

Now that we’ve covered what the File Manager plugin does and why you’d want to use it, let’s take a look at how to use the plugin. Start by logging into your WordPress dashboard and going to Plugins > Add new. Search for File Manager, install, and activate the plugin.

Once the plugin has been installed, go to WP File Manager in your WordPress dashboard. The plugin will automatically log you into your cPanel and you will be able to access all of your website files.

For example to access your images from a particular month, click on wp-content > uploads. The images and files that you have uploaded using WordPress Media Library will be stored in folders that are named by years. Simply click the desired year, find the month you want to download the images from, and then right click on the image you want to download.

You can also download multiple files and folders at once. All you have to do is select the desired folders, right click on them and then click Download.

The plugin also allows you to compress the files and folders before downloading them so you can easily create a .zip archive and download it to save space and speed up download time.

File Manager Plugin Pros and Cons

Like any other WordPress plugin, the File Manager plugin has its own set of pros and cons. Let’s go over them below.

File Manager Plugin Pros:

  • The plugin makes it easy to download all the images and other files uploaded to your site at once
  • You don’t have to log in to your cPanel or use an FTP program to download the files
  • You can also use this plugin to upload files such as images or to edit your CSS or theme files.

File Manager Cons:

When it comes to cons, the File Manager plugin comes with one potential security concern. If you have this plugin installed and your website gets hacked, hackers can easily access all the files that belong to your site. They can not only delete those files but also have an even easier time uploading malicious files as well as locking you out.

As such, I recommend you install this plugin when you need it, download or upload the files you need, and then deactivate and uninstall the plugin.

Another downside of File Manager plugin is the fact that you cannot access any of the plugin’s settings unless you buy the Pro version. If you only need the plugin for one-time use to download images or upload a new theme, you most likely won’t need to access the settings but if you plan to use the plugin for a longer period of time, this could be quite limiting so keep that in mind.

File Manager Plugin Pricing

The core version of the File Manager plugin can be downloaded from the official plugin repository. The free version offers quite a few features and will be more than enough for the majority of users. However, it’s worth mentioning that the File Manager plugin also has a pro version which offers a few more advanced features. These features include:

  • The ability to control what files can be uploaded and what file can be downloaded
  • Private folders for different user roles and different users
  • Admin can create and extract files (zip, rar, tar, gzip)
  • The ability to control file upload size
  • Admin Email Notifications
  • Google Drive and Dropbox Integration
  • And more

The Pro version of the plugin is available for $19 so if you need those premium features, the Pro version is definitely worth it.

File Manager Plugin Video Walkthrough

As promised, below is the video walkthrough that shows you how to use the File Manager plugin.

Final Thoughts

Downloading all the images and files from your website can be time-consuming if you’re using WordPress Media Library. With a plugin like the File Manager plugin, you can easily download all the files at once directly from your WordPress dashboard.

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