How To Update WordPress Plugins

Learn how to easily update all of your plugins inside your own WordPress dashboard …

How To Update And Delete Plugins In WordPressIn another article, we provide a detailed explanation of what WordPress plugins are about and how you can use plugins to easily extend your web site’s functionality.

To view this article, go here:

In this tutorial you will learn why plugins need to be kept up-to-date, how to safely upgrade and uninstall plugins, and some tips to help you better manage your plugins if you need to run multiple WordPress sites or blogs.

Why Many WordPress Plugins Need Regular Updating

New versions of WordPress are frequently being released (about every 3-4 months) to fix bugs and address security issues and vulnerabilities found in older releases, and to improve existing features or introduce new functionality to users.

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

The reason for this, is because most WordPress plugins are created by external 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. When this happens, problems can sometimes occur.

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

Info

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

The WordPress tutorial below explains how to update and delete plugins safely in WordPress with no web coding skills necessary.

How To Update And Delete Plugins In The Dashboard – Tutorial

WordPress uses several methods to let you know when your plugins need to be updated.

For example, you can see how many plugins need updating as soon as you log into your Site’s Dashboard just by looking at the “Plugins” menu.

In the screenshot below, you can see that nine plugins need updating …

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely In The Dashboard

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely In Your Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins In The WP Admin Dashboard

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

How To Upgrade Single Plugins

Warning

Always make a complete backup of your website before making any updates to your website or blog.

In your main menu, select Plugins > Installed Plugins

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

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

(WordPress Plugins Page)

Useful Tip

Additional Info:

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The WordPress Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In The WordPress Dashboard

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins From The Dashboard

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

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins

WordPress provides smooth and fast plugin updates, so that the process of updating your plugins takes place with just “one click” without leaving your Plugins area …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

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Now that you know how to update individual WP plugins, the next step is to learn how to upgrade multiple plugins simultaneously.

How To Bulk-Upgrade Plugins

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

Tick the checkbox in the Plugin column header to select all plugins at once, or select only the plugins you want to update by checking their individual boxes …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins From The Dashboard

In the Bulk Actions drop down menu at the top of the page, choose Update

Updating And Deleting Plugins

And then click Apply

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins In WordPress

Your selected plugins will begin updating …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

Once all updates have completed, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to go back to the Plugins screen, or choose another option from the WP admin menu …

How To Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins In Your Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins

You have updated all plugins on your site!

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins

(When your plugins are up-to-date, the notification icons no longer display)

Now that you know how to automatically upgrade in your admin dashboard, let’s take a look at how to remove plugins safely from your WordPress blog or website.

How To Delete Plugins

It’s a good idea to delete plugins that you no longer plan to use. This helps to decrease resources on your server and will help you avoid problems.

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

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 restore your site.

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

How To Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins

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

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely In The Dashboard

If the plugin is active, then click on Deactivate before going any further …

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

Click on Delete

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The Dashboard

If you want 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” screen …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

All files belonging to the plugin that you are about to delete will be listed on your screen …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In Your Dashboard

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

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

The selected plugin(s) will be deleted …

Updating And Deleting Plugins From The Dashboard

How To Safely Bulk-Delete WP Plugins

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

Important Info

Note: To delete any plugins that are currently active, your will 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 Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

Next, select Deactivate from the Bulk Actions pull-down menu …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

Click the Apply button …

How To Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins In The Dashboard

All selected plugins will be deactivated …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your WordPress Dashboard

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Inside The Dashboard

Tick the check box in the Plugin column header to select all plugins at once, or select only the plugins you want to delete by checking their individual boxes …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Inside The Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

Click the Apply button …

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins In Your Dashboard

A list of all selected plugins will display in the Delete Plugins area. 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 want to proceed to the next step and delete all of the plugins listed …

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins

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

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins

Managing WordPress Plugins – WordPress Tools

In addition to the methods shown above, you can use a number of 3rd-party tools that let you manage your plugins.

PLUGIN CENTRAL

Plugin Central - WordPress Plugin

Plugin Central improves the management of your plugins by allowing you to install plugins directly, displays the status of plugins in need of update on the WordPress Admin and also allows you to update many plugins at once with a single click …

Plugin For WordPress

For more details about using this plugin, go here:

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

As discussed earlier, when a plugin update gets released, the best practice is to upgrde the plugin as soon as possible.

What if you have multiple WordPress sites with the same plugin installed? Normally, you would need to login to your sites one by one and then go through the plugin update process from that site’s own WP dashboard. With multiple sites, updating the same plugin(s) can take quite a while!

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

Below are a couple of WordPress management tools that are worth knowing about:

Jetpack Plugin By WordPress.com

Jetpack By WordPress.com  - Plugin For WordPress

The Jetpack plugin is a versatile WordPress plugin that provides users with a powerful range of features, allowing self-hosted WordPress site users to access WordPress.com’s infrastructure and take advantage of things like stats reporting, automated social sharing, and many other great features.

Jetpack By WordPress.com

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

One of these features is “Jetpack Manage”.

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

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

To download and use this plugin, visit this site:

ManageWP

ManageWP.com

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

ManageWP helps you manage all of your sites and blogs from one place, including upgrades, backups, security and more. This application features easy one-click upgrades and instant login access to your sites.

To learn more about using the plugin, go here:

WP Pipeline – WordPress Management Software

WP Pipeline

(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 license fee instead of monthly payments. It lets you control and organize your entire online WordPress presence and perform multiple upgrades from one central installation.

To download and use this plugin, go here:

Congratulations! Now you know how to automatically update and safely uninstall your plugins.

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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