How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

Learn how to update and delete WordPress plugins inside your WordPress dashboard …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In The WordPress DashboardIn another article, we provide an overview of what plugins are about and how you can use plugins to add new features to your web site without touching code.

To read the article, go here:

In this step-by-step tutorial you will learn the importance of keeping plugins up-to-date, how to safely upgrade and remove plugins, and discover some tools to help you better manage your plugins if you plan to own or manage multiple WordPress sites or blogs.

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

Why Your WordPress Plugins Need To Be Upgraded

The WordPress software is regularly updated (about every three to four months) to fix bugs and address security issues and vulnerabilities found in older releases, as well as to improve existing features or introduce new functionality to WordPress users.

Depending on how many plugins you use on your site, there will typically be new new update notifications for WordPress plugins when WordPress releases an updated version.

This is because most WordPress plugins are created by external developers, so sometimes code or features in the newly-released WordPress version conflict with plugins that were built for a previous version. Whenever this happens, issues can sometimes develop.

Fortunately, most WordPress plugin developers (and the WordPress developer community itself) are quite proactive when it comes to ensuring that plugins get updated when a new version of WordPress is released (if updating is needed). All you need to do as a WordPress user, is simply maintain your plugins up-to-date, which, as you will soon discover, is very easy and simple to do.

Important

Keeping your WordPress plugins up-to-date and deleting old plugins you no longer use is part of good WordPress management and helps to avoid potential conflicts or errors.

The step-by-step tutorial below explains how to automatically update and delete plugins safely from the WordPress admin dashboard without requiring coding skills.

How To Update And Delete Plugins – Tutorial

WordPress has a few methods of letting you know when plugins on your site need to be updated.

For example, you can see how many plugins are out-of-date as soon as you log into your Admin area just by looking at the main “Plugins” menu.

In the screenshot below, 9 plugins are out of date and need updating …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside Your WP Dashboard

You can also tell how many plugins need to be updated from your WordPress Toolbar (in the screenshot below, you can again see that 9 plugins should be updated) …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely From The WordPress Admin Dashboard

The Plugins section (Plugins > Installed Plugins) also notifies you about plugins that need updating …

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely

In addition to providing information about plugins that have available updates, the Plugins section provides links to the plugin developer sites and gives you the option to update the plugins with one-click …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely

Let’s start by showing you how to update individual plugins.

Upgrade Single WordPress Plugins

Warning

Always make a backup of your data and files before updating your website or blog.

In your dashboard menu, select Plugins > Installed Plugins

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In Your Dashboard

The “Plugins” area will display in your browser. This list of plugins can be quite long depending on the number of plugins you have added to your blog …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

(The WordPress Plugins Screen)

Tip

Useful Information:

If you have too many plugins installed and would like to reduce the number of plugins displayed on the page, then click on the Screen Options tab at the top of your Plugins screen and enter a smaller number of items per page (all plugins show on the page by default, i.e. “999”), then click the ‘Apply’ button …

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

Your Plugins area will now be made more manageable with a pagination feature added. You can find an installed plugin by scrolling through the pages or using the “Plugin Search” feature …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

WordPress displays information about plugins in different backgrounds depending on the status of the plugins (inactive vs. active and outdated vs up-to-date) …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In Your WordPress Dashboard

Plugins that require upgrading show the following notification message: “There is a new version of [Plugin Name] available”

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins In Your Dashboard

Locate the plugin that needs updating and click on the update now link …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins From Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

WordPress has done away with the loading screen when updating plugins and streamlined the plugin update process, so that the process of updating your plugins takes place “behind the scenes” without leaving your Plugins screen …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely

Repeat this process for any other plugins on your site that need to be updated, or refer to the section below if you have a number of plugins that are out-of-date and would like to update them all at the same time.

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Now that you know how to update one plugin at a time, it’s time to learn how to update several plugins simultaneously.

How To Bulk-Upgrade WP Plugins

To bulk-update plugins directly inside your dashboard, go to the “Plugins” screen and click on the Update Available link on the menu at the top of the page …

Updating And Deleting Plugins In Your Dashboard

Tick the checkbox in the Plugin column header to select all plugins at once, or select each plugin you want to update by checking its box …

How To Update And Delete Plugins In WordPress

In the Bulk Actions dropdown menu at the top of the page, select Update

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

And then click Apply

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

The plugins you have selected will begin to update automatically …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In The WordPress Dashboard

After your plugins have been updated, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to return to your Plugins screen, or select another option from the dashboard menu …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The WordPress Admin Dashboard

Once all plugins are up-to-date, the update reminders disappear (i.e. the “at-a-glance” indicators and “There is a new version of XYZ plugin available” messages no longer display on your screen, toolbar and menus) …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

All plugins are now up-to-date!

How To Update And Delete Plugins In WordPress

(When your site uses the latest version of all plugins, update notices do not display)

Now that you know how to upgrade your inside your WP dashboard, let’s show you how to delete plugins from your WordPress blog or website.

Deleting Plugins

Occasionally, you may choose to remove plugins that are no longer needed or being used on your site. This conserves server resources and help to reduce problems.

In this section, we show you how to safely uninstall unused plugins from your WordPress site or blog.

Warning

We strongly recommend creating a full back up of your WordPress site before installing, upgrading or deleting plugins, in case something goes wrong and you need to recover data or reinstall your site.

To remove a plugin, go to your dashboard menu and click on Plugins > Installed Plugins

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins

In the Plugins section, locate the plugin you want to delete and make sure it is inactive.

Hint: Inactive plugins have a different colored background than active plugins and display an “Activate” link below the plugin name …

Updating And Deleting Plugins In The Dashboard

If the plugin is active, click on Deactivate before continuing with your plugin deletion …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

Click Delete

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

If you would like to browse all the files that will be deleted before going ahead with the next step, then click on the “Click to view entire list of files which will be deleted” link in the “Delete Plugin” screen …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

All files belonging to the plugin selected for removalwill display on your screen …

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely

If you are positively sure about going ahead and deleting these plugin, then click on the Yes, Delete these files button …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

The selected plugins and related files will be deleted from your server …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

Deleting Multiple WP Plugins Simultaneously

You can bulk-delete all inactive plugins on your site, or select a combination of active and inactive plugins to be cleared.

Important

Note: To delete any plugins that are currently active, you must first deactivate them.

Go to the “Plugins” section and select all of the active plugins that you want to delete by either placing a tick next to their checkbox, or selecting the checkbox next to the Plugin column header to select all plugins (warning: this will deactivate all plugins) …

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins In The Dashboard

Once you have done this, choose Deactivate from the Bulk Actions dropdown menu …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

Click the Apply button …

Updating And Deleting Plugins

All selected plugins will be deactivated …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins From The WP Dashboard

To delete all or some of the inactive plugins, go to the “Plugins” page and click on the Inactive link on the main menu …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

Select all of the plugins you want to delete by either placing a tick next to their check box, or click on the checkbox next to the Plugin column header to select and delete all inactive plugins …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

Once you have selected all the plugins that you want to delete, select Delete from the Bulk Actions pull-down menu …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In The WordPress Admin Dashboard

Click Apply

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins

A list of all selected plugins will display in the Delete Plugins screen. Click on “click to view entire list of files which will be deleted” to review all the plugin files that you are about to delete, or click on the Yes, Delete these files button if you are absolutely sure that you want to proceed to the next step and remove all of the plugins listed …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

The selected plugins will be deleted and their associated files will be removed from your server …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The Dashboard

Tools For Managing Plugins

In addition to the methods shown above, you can use WordPress plugins that let you manage your WordPress plugins.

PLUGIN CENTRAL

Plugin Management For WordPress

Plugin Central is a Free plugin that helps you manage your plugins with options that let you install plugins directly, displays the status of plugins in need of update in your Admin area and lets you update many plugins at once in one click …

Plugin Central

To learn more about this plugin, go here:

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

When plugin updates are released, the best practice is to upgrde that plugin right away.

What if you have multiple WordPress sites using the same plugin? One option, is to login to each site individually and then go through the plugin update process from that site’s own dashboard. If you run multiple sites, updating the same plugin(s) can take quite a while!

WordPress Power User Tip: If you own multiple WordPress sites or blogs, you can install, upgrade or deactivate plugins on multiple sites automatically and simultaneously using a number of WordPress management tools.

Below are a few WordPress management tools you can check out:

Jetpack

Jetpack

The Jetpack plugin is a versatile plugin for WordPress that offers users a wide range of added functionality, allowing self-hosted WordPress site users to access WordPress.com’s infrastructure and take advantage of stats reporting, automated social sharing, and a host of other features.

Jetpack By WordPress.com - WordPress Plugin

(The Jetpack Plugin gives you access to range of powerful WordPress.com features)

One of these features is “Jetpack Manage”.

Jetpack Manage allows you to manage multiple WordPress sites from a central dashboard on WordPress.com.

With Manage, you can upgrade plugins, set plugins to automatically update, and activate or deactivate plugins on a site-by-site basis or all at once, whether you’re on your computer, tablet, or smart device.

To download and use this plugin, go here:

ManageWP.com

ManageWP.com

(ManageWP is a leading WordPress management tool for multiple WP sites)

ManageWP lets you easily manage all your sites from one dashboard, including updates, backups, security and more. The tool features easy and intuitive one-click updates and instant login access to your WordPress sites.

Visit this site to learn more about using this plugin:

WP Pipeline

WP Pipeline.com

(WP Pipeline lets you update all of your WordPress sites, plugins and themes from a single location)

WP Pipeline is very similar to ManageWP, but sells for a one-time purchase fee instead of recurring payments. It lets you control and organize your entire portfolio of WordPress sites and perform multiple updates from a central dashboard.

To learn more about this plugin, visit this site:

Congratulations! Now you know how to update and delete plugins without touching web code.

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"This is AMAZING! I had learnt about how to use WordPress previously, but this covers absolutely everything and more!! Incredible value! Thank you!" - Monique, Warrior Forum