How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Inside The WordPress Admin DashboardIn another blog post, we explain what plugins are and how you can use plugins to easily increase your blog’s capabilities.

You can read this article here:

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

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

Why Your WordPress Plugins Need Upgrading

New WordPress versions are regularly released (about every 3-4 months) to fix bugs and address security issues and vulnerabilities found in earlier software versions, as well as to improve existing features.

Depending on how many plugins you have installed on your site, you can expect to see at least some new new update notifications for plugins when WordPress releases an updated version.

This is because most plugins for WordPress are created by 3rd-party developers, so sometimes the code in the newly-released WordPress version conflict with plugins that were built for a previous version. Whenever this happens, problems can sometimes occur.

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 this is needed). All you need to do as a WordPress user, is keep your plugins up-to-date, which, as you will soon learn, is really easy and simple to do.

Useful Info

Keeping your WordPress plugins regularly updated and removing old plugins you no longer use is an essential aspect of good WordPress management and helps to avoid any potential errors or problems.

The tutorial below explains how to update and delete plugins safely from your dashboard without requiring coding skills or knowledge.

Updating And Deleting Plugins – Step-By-Step Tutorial

WordPress employs several methods to alert you when plugins need updating.

For example, you can tell immediately how many plugins are out-of-date inside your Admin area simply by looking at the main “Plugins” menu.

For example, in the screenshot below, you can see that nine WP plugins are out of date and need to be updated …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

You can also view how many plugins need updating from your WP Toolbar (as shown below, a number of plugins need updating) …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

The Plugins screen (Plugins > Installed Plugins) also notifies you about plugins that need to be updated …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins In Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

As well as providing information about plugins that have updates available, the Plugins section provides links to the plugin download sites and gives you the option to update the plugin individually or in bulk …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

How To Update WordPress Plugins One At A Time

Warning

We strongly recommend making a full backup of your website before making any updates to your blog or website.

From your dashboard menu, go to Plugins > Installed Plugins

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins From Your WP Dashboard

The “Plugins” area will display in your browser. The table of plugins can run down your screen for a while, depending on how many plugins you have installed on your site …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely

(The WordPress Plugins Page)

Tip

Additional Info:

If you have too many plugins and would like to reduce the number of plugins displaying 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 screen by default), then click the ‘Apply’ button …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins In WordPress

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

WordPress has done away with the loading screen when updating plugins and streamlined the process, so that updating your plugins takes place with just “one click” without leaving your Plugins area …

Updating And Deleting Plugins

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

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Now that you know how to upgrade plugins one at a time, let’s show you how to bulk-upgrade WP plugins.

Bulk-Updating Plugins

To bulk-upgrade WP plugins using the automatic upgrading feature, go to the “Plugins” screen and click on the Update Available link on the menu at the top of the page …

How To Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely In Your Dashboard

Tick the check box next to the Plugin column header to select all plugins at once, or select each plugin you want to update by checking their individual boxes …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins From Your Dashboard

In the Bulk Actions pull-down menu above your plugin table, select Update

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Inside The Dashboard

And then click Apply

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely In The Dashboard

The plugins you have selected will automatically begin to update …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In Your WP Admin Dashboard

After all upgrades are finished, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to return to the Plugins area, or select another section of your dashboard …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In The Dashboard

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” messages no longer display on your screen, toolbar and menus) …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely From The WP Admin Dashboard

All plugins have now been upgraded!

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

(When your plugins are up-to-date, update alerts disappear)

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

Deleting WP Plugins

Occasionally, you may decide to remove WordPress plugins that are no longer needed or being used on your site. This can help to conserve resource usage and help to reduce problems.

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

Warning

Always create 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 WP admin menu and click on Plugins > Installed Plugins

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins In Your Dashboard

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

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins From The Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins

Once you have deactivated the plugin, click Delete

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

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

How To Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins

A complete list of files associated with the plugin that you are about to delete will be listed on your screen …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In Your Dashboard

If you are sure that you would like to proceed and delete the plugin, then click on the Yes, Delete these files button …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From The WordPress Dashboard

The selected plugin(s) will be deleted from your server …

How To Automatically Update And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely

How To Safely Bulk-Delete WordPress Plugins

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

Info

Note: To delete any plugins that are presently 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 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 Your Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins In The WordPress Admin Dashboard

Click Apply

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

Your selected plugins will be deactivated …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

Once you have deactivated these plugins, click on the Inactive link on the menu at the top of the page …

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely From The WordPress Dashboard

Click on the check box next to the Plugin column header to select all plugins at once, or select each plugin you want to delete by checking their individual boxes …

How To Automatically Update And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely Inside Your WordPress Dashboard

Once you have selected all of the plugins that you want deleted, choose Delete from the Bulk Actions drop down menu …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your WP Admin Dashboard

Click the Apply button …

How To Update And Delete WordPress 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 sure that you would like to go ahead and delete all of the plugins listed …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Inside The Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In WordPress

Managing WP Plugins

In addition to the methods shown above, you can install Free and Paid WordPress plugins to manage your plugins.

PLUGIN CENTRAL

Plugin Central

Plugin Central is a Free plugin that helps you manage your plugins by allowing you to install plugins directly, displays the status of plugins in need of update in your WordPress Admin and lets you update many plugins at once with a single click of the mouse …

Plugin Management For WordPress

For more details about this plugin, go here:

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

When a plugin update gets released, the best practice is to update the plugin right away.

What if you run multiple WordPress sites using the same plugin? One option, is to login to every site and then go through the plugin update process from that site’s own admin dashboard. With multiple sites, this process can take quite some time to complete!

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

Below are a few WordPress management tools you may want to check out:

Jetpack Plugin By WordPress.com

Jetpack Manage - Single WP Dashboard Management

The Jetpack plugin is a versatile WordPress plugin that offers users a powerful range of added functionality, allowing self-hosted WordPress site owners to access WordPress.com’s infrastructure and take advantage of things like robust stats, easy social sharing, and many other features.

Jetpack Manage

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

One of these features is “Jetpack Manage”.

Jetpack Manage allows you to manage your WordPress sites and plugins from a central dashboard on WordPress.com.

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

Go here to download and use the plugin:

ManageWP – Multiple WordPress Site Management Software

ManageWP.com - Multiple WordPress Site Management Tool

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

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

Visit this site to learn more about using this plugin:

WP Pipeline.com

WP Pipeline.com

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

WP Pipeline works in a similar way to ManageWP, but sells for a one-time purchase fee instead of monthly payments. It lets you control and organize your entire online WordPress presence and perform multiple updates from a single dashboard.

To download and use this plugin, go here:

Congratulations! Now you know how to automatically upgrade and uninstall your plugins using your WP admin 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