How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your DashboardIn a separate post, we explain what plugins are and how you can use plugins to easily add new features to your web site with no coding knowledge required.

To view this article, go here:

In this step-by-step tutorial you will learn why WordPress plugins need to be kept up-to-date, how to easily update and remove plugins from your site, and discover some great plugin management tips.

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

Why Your Plugins Need Regular Updating

WordPress constantly updates its software (about every three to four months) to fix bugs and address security issues and vulnerabilities found in earlier software releases, as well as to improve existing features.

Depending on how many plugins you use on your site, there will typically be new new update notifications for plugins whenever WordPress distributes a new version.

The reason for this, is because most WordPress plugins are created by 3rd-party developers, so sometimes code or features in the new WordPress version conflict with plugins that were created and tested to work with a previous version. Whenever this happens, there is a potential for problems to 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 have to do on your end, is just keep your plugins up-to-date, which, as you will soon discover, is really simple, quick and easy to do.

Important

Keeping your WordPress plugins regularly updated and removing old plugins you no longer need is part of good WordPress site management and helps to avoid errors or conflicts.

The WordPress tutorial below explains how to automatically update and delete plugins safely without requiring web programming knowledge.

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress – Tutorial

WordPress has several ways to let you know when plugins on your blog need to be updated.

For example, you can tell immediately how many plugins are out-of-date as soon as you log into your WordPress Dashboard simply by looking at the “Plugins” menu.

In the example below, nine plugins need updating …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely In Your WordPress Dashboard

You can also view how many plugins need to be updated from your WordPress Administration Toolbar (the example below shows that several plugins need updating) …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

The Plugins section (Plugins > Installed Plugins) also provides information about plugins that need updating …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

In addition to providing information about which plugins have updates available, the Plugins page provides links to the plugin developer sites and gives you the option to update your plugins instantly …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

Let’s start by showing you how to update one WP plugin at a time.

How To Upgrade WordPress Plugins One At A Time

Warning

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

In your WP admin menu, go to Plugins > Installed Plugins

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins From Your WordPress Dashboard

You will be taken to the “Plugins” area. The screen can be quite lengthy depending on how many plugins you have added to your site …

Updating And Deleting Plugins

(The WordPress Plugins Screen)

Practical Tip

Tips:

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

Your Plugins page will now be reduced in size with a page scrolling feature added. You can find an installed plugin by scrolling through the pages or using the “Plugin Search” field …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete WordPress Plugins In Your Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

WordPress provides simpler plugin updating, so that updating your plugins happens “behind the scenes” without leaving your Plugins screen …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins From The Dashboard

Repeat the above process for all plugins on your site that need updating, or see the section below if you have several plugins that are out-of-date and would like to update them all in bulk.

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Now that you know how to upgrade individual WP plugins, the next step is to learn how to upgrade a bunch of plugins simultaneously.

How To Bulk-Update Plugins

To upgrade multiple plugins at the same time from your admin area, go to the “Plugins” page and click on the Update Available link on the menu at the top of the page …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins In Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

In the Bulk Actions drop down menu above the table of plugins, choose Update

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins

And then click Apply

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

Your selected plugins will update all at once …

How To Automatically Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

Once all upgrades are finished, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to return to the Plugins area, or visit a different section of your dashboard …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely

You have updated all plugins on your site to their latest version!

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From The WordPress Admin Dashboard

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

Now that you know how to upgrade your plugins, let’s take a look at how to safely uninstall plugins safely from your WordPress site or blog.

How To Delete WordPress Plugins

At times, you may choose to remove WP plugins that are no longer needed or being used on your site. This helps to decrease server resources and will help you avoid problems.

In this section, you will learn how to delete unused plugins from your WordPress site.

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 restore your site.

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The WP Admin Dashboard

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

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

Next, click on Delete

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

If you would like to have a look at 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” page …

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins In The Dashboard

All files associated with the plugin selected for removalwill display on your screen …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside Your WP Admin Dashboard

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely

The selected plugin(s) will be deleted …

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

How To Safely Bulk-Delete WordPress Plugins

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

Useful Info

Note: To delete any plugins that are currently active, you first need to 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 check box next to the Plugin column header to select all plugins (warning: this will deactivate all plugins) …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Inside The WP Admin Dashboard

Next, choose Deactivate from the Bulk Actions dropdown menu …

How To Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

Click Apply

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The Dashboard

The selected plugins will be deactivated …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins In The WordPress Admin Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Inside The Dashboard

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

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins In WordPress

Click Apply

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

A list of all selected plugins will be displayed 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 …

Updating And Deleting Plugins

All plugins will be deleted …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The Dashboard

Management Tools For WordPress Plugins

As well as the methods shown above, you can install WordPress plugins to manage your WordPress plugins.

PLUGIN CENTRAL

Plugin Central - WP Plugin

Plugin Central improves the management of your plugins with options that let you install plugins directly, displays the status of plugins in need of update on your Admin area and lets you update many plugins at once in one click …

Plugin Central - WP Plugin

For more details about this plugin, go here:

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

As discussed earlier, when plugin developers release a new plugin update, the best practice is to update the plugin to the most recent version ASAP.

What if you have multiple WordPress sites using the same plugin? Normally, you would have to login to every site and then go through the plugin update process from that site’s own WP dashboard. If you plan to run multiple sites, this process can take quite a while!

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

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

Jetpack Manage – Single WP Dashboard Management

Jetpack Manage

The Jetpack plugin is a multifunctional WordPress plugin that offers users a powerful range of features, allowing self-hosted WordPress site owners to benefit from WordPress.com’s infrastructure and take advantage of things like stats reporting, easy social sharing, and a whole lot more.

Jetpack Manage

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

One of these features is “Manage”.

Jetpack Manage lets you manage your self-hosted WordPress sites and WordPress.com sites from one dashboard on WordPress.com.

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

Go here to learn more about the plugin:

ManageWP.com

ManageWP

(ManageWP is a widely used management tool for multiple WordPress sites)

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

To download this plugin, visit this site:

WP Pipeline – WordPress Management Tool

WP Pipeline - WordPress Management Tool

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

WP Pipeline is very similar to ManageWP, but has a one-time purchase fee instead of recurring payments. It lets you manage your entire online WordPress presence and perform multiple updates from one single installation.

To download and use this plugin, visit this site:

Congratulations! Now you know how to update and remove your plugins in WordPress using the dashboard.

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"Wow! I never knew there's so much to learn about WordPress! I bought one of the WordPress for Dummies three years ago, such authors need to be on this course!" - Rich Law, Create A Blog Now