How to Fix “Destination Folder Already Exists” Error in WordPress?

How to Fix "Destination Folder Already Exists" Error in WordPress?

One of the best things about WordPress is that it supports tons of plugins and themes. These plugins can enhance the features of the website and boost its effectiveness. The process of installing a plugin or theme is uncomplicated and can be done by beginners as well.

While this is the most widely used feature of WordPress, you can fail to install the plugin with a simple error. During the installation process, some users may witness Destination Folder Already Exists Error which hinders the user from completing the process.

During the process, WordPress database creates a folder for the theme or plugin you are installing where all the data will be saved. This error usually occurs when the same folder already exists in the WordPress directory. To identify this error, you need to check whether the plugin or theme you are installing has been already installed or not.

If you are constantly facing this error which is stopping you from installing a plugin or theme, then you need to follow the below mentioned steps, and you can fix the error in no time.

Step 1

As we have mentioned that the WordPress database creates a folder for every new plugin and theme installation, so you need to access those files. In the first step, you need to connect with your FTP client and open your WordPress root directory.

Step 2

This is the place where all the WordPress files will be located. Here, you need to open the wp-content folder and open the Themes or the Plugin folder whichever you were going to install. Afterwards, you need to look out for the folder named after the plugin or theme which you were installing and delete it from your server.

This was the folder which was stopping WordPress from creating a new folder of the same name. Once you have deleted the folder, you can try installing the plugin or theme and check whether the issue has been fixed or not. Now you will be able to install it effortlessly and without facing any errors.

If you don’t want to use your FTP client, then there is a plugin that you can use for the same.

File Manager

The File Manager plugin can replace your old school FTP client and will help you in accessing your WordPress root directory from your dashboard only. With this plugin, you can copy, move, create, rename or delete any of the files you want from your WordPress. In addition to that, you can also archive any of the files and create a compressed file and download it on your local system. With this plugin, you can control the types of the files which can be uploaded and downloaded from the server. Also, you can determine the maximum upload size of the file.

File Manager

These were the features of the free version of this plugin, but it has a premium version that comes with some advanced features. One of the best features of the premium version is the private folder where you can grant access to a specific folder to multiple users where only the selected users will be able to access the folder. In addition to that, whenever a new file is uploaded, downloaded or edited on the server using this plugin, the admin will be notified via the email.  Some other features of this plugin are edit files, user role, full-screen view, file system and many more.

After installing this plugin, you have to follow the same process that was mentioned in the FTP method and delete the folder which was causing the error. The plugin method is the easier way to do it as you can do all the work without even leaving your WordPress admin dashboard.

Causes of this Error

Now we know that this error causes when there is an existing folder of the same name in your WordPress root directory, but the real question is that how did that folder came to that location in the first place. There is a possibility that you have already installed that plugin earlier but are still trying to install it again. You can easily check that error by visiting your WordPress admin dashboard and navigating to the Plugins> All Plugins page.

If the plugin is not installed on your site, then you may have tried to install it earlier which was not completely installed and left the folder in the directory. The created folder will most probably be empty and is just there because of the unsuccessful installation.

Similar to unsuccessful installation, the unsuccessful deletion could also be a cause of this error. If you have installed the plugin earlier and deleted it, but was not completely deleted, then that folder can also clash with the WordPress directory and stop it from installing it again.

These were the two reasons behind this error. We have assumed the extension as a plugin, but it could be a theme as well. If you are having this error while installing any theme, then you can follow the same steps to identify the error.


The “destination folder already exists” error is one of the most common errors faced by a WordPress website owner. Now you know the cause of this error and how you can easily fix it. Undoubtedly, using the plugin is simpler than the FTP method, but it all depends on you that which method you want to choose.

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