Today I spoke to a friend with a WordPress site. They asked for help because they were testing a new test plugin on their main site. The plugin caused all kinds of issues which was not a good thing. I thought I would take some time and explain to people how you to set up a test environment. I think it would be worth talking about. You really should never test on a production website at all.
The following are things I do when setting up a test site:
1. Create a sub domain on your domain. Better still create a sub domain on a test domain. Domains are cheap these days.
2. Go into your CPanel on your hosting provider and create a MYSQL database.
3. I use Backup Buddy to make a copy of my MYSQL Database and my file structure.
4. Download the Backupbuddy backup and the importbuddy.php(in backup buddy) to your pc or mac.
5. FTP the files created in step 4 to your new test sub domain directory
6. Run //subdomain/importbuddy.php
7. You will need the password for your mysql database, username and database server name.
If you do these 7 steps you will have your test setup. This is a lot better then working with your production WordPress Site for testing.