Client deleted public_html folder

Client accidentally deleted their public_html folder: recovery story

“I have no idea how it happened!” or, perhaps, “I didn’t touch anything!” These are very frequent statements we hear from customers in our website maintenance work. We decided to describe one of these cases, so you know you are not alone and won’t panic if you accidentally break something on your website. Of course, everyone should be careful manipulating things you are not an expert at. However, if something happens, our website maintenance experts here to fix the mistakes.

In this particular case, our client accidently deleted their website’s public_html folder. We’ve included more details below.

The deleted public_html folder case

The public_html folder stores your website's HTML files and is responsible for what users will see when they visit your site on the Internet. No wonder that the deletion of such an important folder will result in a completely non-functional website. Unfortunately, that’s what our client got in the end.

The accidental deletion story we are telling you today is far from being unique. The World Wide Web is full of users’ complaints about it. This may happen in a number of scenarios. For example:

  • something went wrong during some new file installation
  • something went wrong during a website update
  • for no reasons at all — you don’t know how it happened and you didn’t touch anything ;)

The recovery of the public_html folder

Users attempt to restore the public_html folder in various ways. These include using the "Backups" function in cPanel, creating the public_html folder manually in File Manage, restoring it via the FTP client, or even getting their site’s content from Google’s cache, etc. These attempts are not always fruitful and do not always provide full recovery.

The most successful decision is to contact your hosting provider and ask them to restore your public_html folder from the backups. Of course, this only works if your hosting provider does backups.

Our customer who deleted their public_html folder could not explain why it happened — but that did not matter much. All attempts to restore it did not give any results.

This customer was hosted with us, so we easily restored their folder to its previous state from our latest backups. In addition, we changed the file mode to public_html folder to prevent random deletion in the future.

Even if you didn’t have the same luck with your provider, you can contact us anyway. We can try to find ways to restore your content even if you are not hosted with us.

For example, if you were our customer for website development or support tasks, the chances are very high that our developers still keep your site’s backups locally. In addition, there is GIT.

If you weren’t our client, we can try to restore your site from your GIT repository, or find other ways depending, on what is available. For every case, there must be a way out!


In any unclear situation, keep calm and contact WishDesk support team. We can quickly and safely restore your public_html folder or your entire website after some unlucky manipulations, a hacker attack, a crash, or anything else. Everything is going to work out smoothly!


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