How To Update WordPress Plugins

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

Get Thrive Leads for WordPress

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPressIn a separate article, we explain what plugins are and how you can use these to easily expand your blog’s capabilities.

To read the article, go here:

In this tutorial you will learn the importance of keeping your WordPress plugins up-to-date, how to easily update and uninstall your WordPress plugins, and discover some tips to help you better manage your plugins if you run multiple WordPress sites.

Why Plugins Need To Be Frequently Upgraded

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

Depending on how many plugins you use on your site, you can expect to see at least some new new update notifications for plugins every.

This is because most plugins for WordPress are created by external developers, so sometimes code in the new WordPress version conflicts with plugins that were built for a previous version. Whenever this happens, there is a potential for problems to sometimes occur.

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

Useful Information

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

The WordPress tutorial below explains how to automatically update and delete plugins without requiring coding skills.

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard – Tutorial

WordPress provides several ways to alert users when plugins need to be updated.

For example, you can tell immediately how many plugins are out-of-date as soon as you log into your Admin area just by looking at the main “Plugins” menu.

In the example below, you can see that 9 WP plugins are out of date and need updating …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins In WordPress

You can also view how many plugins need updating from your WP Toolbar (in the screenshot below, you can again see that nine plugins need updating) …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins In WordPress

The Plugins screen (Plugins > Installed Plugins) also tells you how many plugins need to be updated …

Updating And Deleting Plugins

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

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

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

Update Individual Plugins

Warning

Always make a backup of your data and files before making any upgrades to your blog or website.

In your main menu, go to Plugins > Installed Plugins

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins In WordPress

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

(The WordPress Plugins Section)

Practical Tip

Tips:

If you have too many plugins installed and would like to make this section more manageable, 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 Apply …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins In The WordPress Dashboard

Repeat the above process for all 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 update them all in one simple operation.

***

Now that you know how to update plugins individually, let’s show you how to upgrade a bunch of plugins simultaneously.

How To Bulk-Upgrade Plugins

To update multiple plugins in one go from your admin area, 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

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins In WordPress

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins In The Dashboard

And then click Apply

Updating And Deleting Plugins From Your Dashboard

The plugins you have selected will begin to update automatically …

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

Once all plugins have been updated, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to return to the Plugins section, or choose another option from the main menu …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In The Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

All plugins have now been upgraded!

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your WP Dashboard

(When your site uses the latest version of all plugins, update messages no longer appear)

Now that you know how to update WP inside the admin dashboard, it’s time to learn how to remove plugins from your site.

How To Remove WP Plugins

It’s a good idea to remove inactive plugins. This helps to conserve resource usage and help to minimize potential problems.

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

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins In Your WP Admin Dashboard

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

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

Next, click on Delete

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins

If you need to browse 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 …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In The Dashboard

The entire list of files associated with the plugin selected for deletionwill display on your screen …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The WP Admin Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely

How To Safely Delete Several WordPress Plugins Simultaneously

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

Important Info

Note: To delete any plugins that are presently 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 check box, or selecting the checkbox next to the Plugin column header to select all plugins (warning: this will deactivate all plugins) …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins In Your Dashboard

Click the Apply button …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Inside Your Dashboard

Your selected plugins will be deactivated …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Inside Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

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 …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

Click the Apply button …

How To Upgrade 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 certain that you would like to proceed to the next step and delete all of the selected plugins …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins From The WP Admin Dashboard

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins From Your WordPress Dashboard

Plugin Management – Tools

As well as the methods shown above, you can install a number of third-party tools that help you manage your WordPress 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 in the WP Dashboard and also allows you to update multiple plugins with one click …

Plugin Central - WordPress Plugin

To learn more about this plugin, go here:

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

Whenever a plugin update gets released, the best practice is to upgrde the plugin as soon as possible.

What if you run multiple WordPress sites using the same plugin? Typically, you would have to login to every site and then go through the plugin update process from that site’s own WP admin dashboard. With multiple sites, updating the same plugin(s) can take quite some time!

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

Here are just some WordPress management tools that are worth knowing about:

Jetpack Manage

Jetpack Manage - Single WordPress Dashboard Management

The Jetpack plugin is a single 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 stats reporting, easy social sharing, and so much more.

Jetpack

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

One of these features is “Manage”.

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

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 laptop, tablet, or smart phone.

Go here for more information about using the plugin:

ManageWP.com

ManageWP.com

(ManageWP is a very popular management tool for multiple WP 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.

Visit this site to download this plugin:

WP Pipeline

WP Pipeline - WordPress Management Software

(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 recurring payments. It lets you control and organize your entire portfolio of WordPress sites and perform multiple updates from one central WP installation.

Go here to download the plugin:

Congratulations! Now you know how to automatically update and safely delete WordPress plugins.

***

"I am beyond impressed with what you have put together. I can tell that you put a ton of hard work into building what you have. You have the absolute best content on WordPress I have ever seen!" - Robert T. Jillie

Originally published as How To Update WordPress Plugins.