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 WordPressIn another blog post, we explain what plugins are and how you can use plugins to easily increase your site’s capabilities.

You can view the article here:

In this tutorial you will learn why WordPress plugins need to be kept up-to-date, how to safely update and uninstall your WordPress plugins, and practical tips to help you better manage your plugins.

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

Why Some Of Your WordPress Plugins Need To Be Updated

The WordPress software is constantly updated (about every three to four months) to fix bugs and address security issues and vulnerabilities discovered in earlier software versions, as well as to improve existing features or introduce new functionality to users.

Depending on how many plugins you have installed on your site, there will typically be new new update notifications for plugins every.

This is because most plugins for WordPress are created by third-party developers, so sometimes the code in the newly-released WordPress version conflict with plugins that were developed for a previous version. Whenever this happens, there is a potential for issues to sometimes develop.

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 this is needed). All you have to do on your end, is simply keep your plugins up-to-date, which, as you will soon learn, is really easy to do.

Important Info

Keeping your plugins up-to-date and deleting old plugins you no longer use is part of good WordPress management and helps to avoid errors or conflicts.

The tutorial below explains how to update and delete WordPress plugins in the WordPress admin dashboard without requiring web programming knowledge or skills.

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

WordPress utilizes a few ways to inform you when plugins need updating.

For example, you can see how many plugins are out-of-date as soon as you log into your Admin area by looking at the “Plugins” menu.

For example, in the screenshot below, you can see that nine plugins are out of date and need updating …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins From Your Dashboard

You can also see how many plugins need updating from your WP Admin Toolbar (the example below shows that nine plugins need updating) …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely Inside The Dashboard

The Plugins section (Plugins > Installed Plugins) also provides information about plugins that need to be updated …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins

Let’s start by showing you how to update individual plugins.

How To Update Plugins Individually

Warning

We recommend making a backup of your site files and database before updating your blog or website.

In your admin menu, select Plugins > Installed Plugins

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

(WordPress Plugins Section)

Tip

Useful Information:

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 page and enter a smaller number of items per page (by default, all plugins display on the page), then click Apply …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In The Dashboard

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely

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

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins In Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

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

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

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 them all at once.

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Now that you know how to update individual plugins, let’s show you how to update multiple plugins simultaneously.

How To Update Multiple WP Plugins

To bulk-update WP plugins 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 …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The WordPress Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

And then click Apply

How To Automatically Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

The plugins you have selected will begin updating …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins In Your Dashboard

After all plugin updates are completed, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to go back to the Plugins section, or select another option from the WP admin menu …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins From The Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins In Your WP Admin Dashboard

All plugins have now been updated to their latest versions!

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

(When your site or blog uses the latest version of all plugins, notification icons disappear)

Now that you know how to upgrade your plugins, let’s show you how to safely remove plugins from your WordPress site.

How To Safely Remove WordPress Plugins

It’s a good idea to uninstall inactive plugins. This reduces resource usage and eliminate problems.

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

Warning

Always create 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 WP admin menu and choose Plugins > Installed Plugins

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins

Next, click on Delete

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely

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” page …

How To Update And Delete Plugins In WordPress

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Inside Your WordPress Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In WordPress

The selected plugins and related files will be deleted …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely Inside Your Dashboard

How To Safely Bulk-Delete Plugins

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

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins In The Dashboard

Next, choose Deactivate from the Bulk Actions drop down menu …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Inside The Dashboard

Click Apply

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

The selected plugins will be deactivated …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins In Your WordPress 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 …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins

Once you have ticked all the check boxes next to the plugins that you want deleted, select Delete from the Bulk Actions pull-down menu …

How To Automatically Update And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

Click the Apply button …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely Inside The Dashboard

A list of all selected plugins will show up 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 go ahead and delete all of the selected plugins …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins

All plugins will be deleted …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Inside The Dashboard

Managing WP Plugins

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

PLUGIN CENTRAL

Plugin Management For WordPress

Plugin Central is a Free WordPress plugin that helps to improve the management of your plugins with features that let you install plugins directly, displays the status of plugins in need of update in your Admin area and also allows you to update many plugins at once with a single click of the mouse …

Plugin For WordPress

For more details about using this plugin, go here:

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

As discussed earlier, when plugin updates get released, the best practice is to update that plugin right away.

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

WordPress Power User Tip: If you own a number of WordPress sites, you can install, update or deactivate plugins on multiple sites automatically and simultaneously using various WordPress management tools.

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

Jetpack – Plugin For WordPress

Jetpack Manage - Single WP Dashboard Management

Jetpack is a versatile WordPress plugin that provides users with a wide range of features, allowing self-hosted WordPress site users to access WordPress.com’s infrastructure and take advantage of robust stats, easy social sharing, and a host of other great features.

Jetpack Manage

(Jetpack gives you access to range of powerful WordPress features)

One of these features is “Manage”.

Jetpack Manage allows you to manage your WordPress sites from one interface.

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

To download and use this plugin, go here:

ManageWP

ManageWP.com

(ManageWP is a leading management tool for multiple WordPress sites)

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

For more information about using the plugin, go here:

WP Pipeline

WP Pipeline

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

WP Pipeline works in a similar way to ManageWP, but you only have to pay once to access the software. It lets you manage your entire portfolio of WordPress sites and perform multiple upgrades from one central location.

To download this plugin, visit this site:

Congratulations! Now you know how to upgrade and remove your plugins in WordPress via your WordPress dashboard.

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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

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Author: Martin Aranovitch

Martin Aranovitch is the founder of WPCompendium.org and has authored hundreds of FREE WordPress tutorials for non-techies and beginners. WPCompendium.org provides detailed step-by-step tutorials that will teach you how to use WordPress with no coding skills required and grow your business online at minimal cost!