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 In The DashboardIn a previous article, we provide an overview of what plugins are all about and how you can use these to easily extend your blog’s functionality.

You can view the article here:

In this tutorial you will learn the importance of keeping WordPress plugins up-to-date, how to safely update and uninstall plugins from your site, and discover some tips to help you better manage your plugins.

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

Why Some Plugins Need Updating

New versions of WordPress are regularly released (about every three to four months) to fix bugs and address security issues and vulnerabilities found in previous versions, as well as to improve existing features.

Depending on how many plugins you have installed on your site, there will typically be new new update notices for WordPress plugins whenever WordPress releases a new version.

This is because most WordPress plugins are created by third-party developers, so sometimes the code in the newly-released WordPress version conflicts with plugins that were developed for a previous version. When this happens, problems can sometimes develop.

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

Info

Keeping your plugins regularly updated and deleting old plugins you no longer use is part of good WordPress management and helps to avoid any conflicts or errors.

The step-by-step tutorial below explains how to automatically update and delete plugins safely in WordPress without web programming knowledge needed.

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins – Step-By-Step Tutorial

WordPress employs several methods to notify users when plugins need updating.

For example, you can immediately see how many plugins are out-of-date as soon as you log into your Admin area simply by looking at the main “Plugins” menu.

For example, in the screenshot below, you can see that nine WordPress plugins are out of date and need to be updated …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

You can also tell how many plugins need updating from your WP Administration Toolbar (in the example below, you can see how many plugins should be updated) …

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

The Plugins section (Plugins > Installed Plugins) also tells you which plugins need to be updated …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins From The Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely In Your WordPress Dashboard

Let’s start by learning how to update plugins one at a time.

Update Plugins One At A Time

Warning

We recommend performing a complete backup of your data and files before upgrading your blog or website.

From your main menu, select Plugins > Installed Plugins

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Inside Your WP Admin Dashboard

You will be taken to the “Plugins” page. The screen can be quite lengthy depending on the number of plugins you have installed on your blog …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins In WordPress

(The WordPress Plugins Page)

Tip

Useful Information:

If you have too many plugins and would like to make this section more manageable, then click on the Screen Options tab at the top of your Plugins screen and type in a smaller number of items per page (by default, all plugins display on the screen), then click Apply …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

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 “Search Installed Plugins” field …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In WordPress

Plugins that require updating have a distinctive notification message: “There is a new version of [Insert Plugin Name] available”

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your WP Dashboard

Locate the plugin that you want to update and click on the update now link …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

WordPress provides streamlined plugin updates, so that updating your plugins happens with just “one click” without leaving your Plugins area …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Inside The WP Dashboard

Repeat the above process for any other plugins on your site that need to be updated, or see the section below if you have several plugins that are out-of-date and would like to upgrade them all at once.

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Now that you know how to update individual WP plugins, the next step is to learn how to bulk-update WP plugins.

How To Bulk-Update WP Plugins

To bulk-update WordPress 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 …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In The WordPress Admin 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 above your plugin list, choose Update

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

And then click Apply

Updating And Deleting Plugins

The plugins you have selected will begin to update automatically …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In WordPress

Once your plugins have been updated, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to return to your Plugins section, or visit a different section of your dashboard …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins In Your WordPress Dashboard

You have updated all plugins on your site!

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Now that you know how to automatically update WordPress plugins, let’s show you how to safely uninstall plugins from your site.

Deleting Plugins

Occasionally, you may decide to remove plugins that are no longer needed or being used on your site. This can help decrease resources on your server and helps to eliminate causes of problems.

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

Warning

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

To delete a plugin, go to your admin menu and click on Plugins > Installed Plugins

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your WordPress Dashboard

In the Plugins screen, find the plugin you want to remove and make sure it is inactive.

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

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely In The Dashboard

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely From The WP Dashboard

Next, click Delete

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

If you need to review a list of all the files that will be deleted before proceeding any further, then click on the “Click to view entire list of files which will be deleted” link in the “Delete Plugin” page …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

A complete list of files associated with the plugin selected for removalwill be listed on your screen …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

Your plugins and related files will be removed from your server …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

Deleting Multiple Plugins At Once

You can bulk-delete all inactive plugins, or select a combination of active and inactive plugins to be deleted.

Useful Info

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 check box, or selecting the check box next to the Plugin column header to select all plugins (warning: this will deactivate all plugins) …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

Once you have done this, choose Deactivate from the Bulk Actions pull-down menu …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely Inside Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

Click the Apply button …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your WP Admin Dashboard

The selected plugins will be deactivated …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

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 Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

Once you have ticked all the checkboxes next to the plugins that you want deleted, choose Delete from the Bulk Actions drop down menu …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins In The Dashboard

Click Apply

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

A list of all selected plugins will show up 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 would like to go ahead and remove all of the plugins listed …

How To Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins

All selected plugins will be deleted …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely

WordPress Management Tools For WordPress Plugins

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

PLUGIN CENTRAL

Plugin Central

Plugin Central helps you manage your plugins by allowing you to install plugins directly, displays the status of plugins in need of update on your Dashboard and also allows you to update multiple plugins with one click …

Plugin Management For WordPress

To learn more about this plugin, go here:

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

Whenever plugin updates get released, the best practice is to update that plugin as soon as possible.

What if you have multiple WordPress sites using the same plugin? Typically, you would have to login to each site individually and then update the plugin manually from that site’s dashboard. If you manage multiple sites, updating the same plugin(s) can take quite some time!

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

Here are a few WordPress management tools that are worth knowing about:

Jetpack Manage

Jetpack By WordPress.com

Jetpack is a single WordPress plugin that provides users with a powerful range of added functionality, allowing self-hosted WordPress site users to access WordPress.com’s infrastructure and take advantage of things like robust stats, automated social sharing, and a whole lot more.

Jetpack

(Jetpack lets you access a range of powerful WordPress.com features)

One of these features is “Jetpack Manage”.

Jetpack Manage allows you to manage multiple self-hosted WordPress sites and WordPress.com sites from one simple dashboard.

With Manage, you can upgrade plugins, set plugins to update automatically, 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 this plugin, visit this site:

ManageWP

ManageWP - Manage All Your WordPress Blogs From One Central Location

(ManageWP is a very popular management tool for multiple WordPress sites)

ManageWP helps you manage all your WordPress sites from one dashboard, including updates, backups, security and more. This application features easy and intuitive one-click updates and instant login to all of your sites.

To learn more about this plugin, go here:

WP Pipeline – WordPress Management Tool

WP Pipeline

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

WP Pipeline is very similar to ManageWP, but has a one-time license fee instead of monthly payments. It lets you control and organize your entire online WordPress presence and perform multiple upgrades from a central installation.

For more information about the plugin, go here:

Congratulations! Now you know how to automatically upgrade and remove plugins.

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