How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

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

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely Inside The DashboardIn another article, we provide a detailed explanation of what WP plugins are all about and how you can use these to easily expand your website’s functionality.

You can view the article here:

In this tutorial you will learn the importance of keeping your plugins up-to-date, how to easily upgrade and delete plugins from your site, and discover useful tools to help you better manage your plugins.

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

Why WordPress Plugins Need Updating

New WordPress versions are constantly being released (about every three to four months) to fix bugs and address security issues and vulnerabilities discovered in earlier versions, as well as to improve existing features or introduce new ones.

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

This is because most plugins for WordPress are created by external developers, so sometimes the code in the newly-released WordPress version conflicts with plugins that were created and tested to work with a previous version. Whenever this happens, problems can sometimes occur.

Fortunately, most WordPress plugin developers (and the WordPress developer community itself) are very proactive when it comes to ensuring that plugins get updated when a new version of WordPress is released (if required). All you need to do as a WordPress user, is just keep your plugins up-to-date, which, as you will soon discover, is really simple to do.

Important Info

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

The tutorial below explains how to automatically upgrade and delete WordPress plugins in your WP dashboard without coding skills or knowledge necessary.

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely – Tutorial

WordPress provides a few ways to inform users when plugins need to be updated.

For example, you can see how many plugins need updating as soon as you log into your Admin area by looking at the main “Plugins” menu.

In the screenshot below, you can see that nine WordPress plugins are out of date and need updating …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

You can also see how many plugins need to be updated from your WP Notification Toolbar (as shown below, nine plugins need updating) …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

In addition to providing information about which plugins 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 Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely From The Dashboard

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

Upgrade Individual WordPress Plugins

Warning

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

From your main menu, go to Plugins > Installed Plugins

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins

(Plugins Page)

Practical Tip

Useful 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 enter a smaller number of items per page (all plugins show on the screen by default, i.e. “999”), then click the ‘Apply’ button …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside The WP Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

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

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins Safely Inside Your Dashboard

WordPress provides smooth & simple plugin updates, so that the process of updating your plugins happens “behind the scenes” without leaving your Plugins screen …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

Repeat this process for all plugins on your site that need to be updated, or see the section below if you have many 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 update one WP plugin at a time, it’s time to learn how to upgrade many WordPress plugins simultaneously.

How To Bulk-Update WP Plugins

To bulk-upgrade 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 …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins In Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

Click Apply

Updating And Deleting Plugins Inside The WordPress Dashboard

Your selected plugins will begin to update automatically …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely

After your plugins have all been updated, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to go back to your Plugins section, or visit a different section of your dashboard …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins

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) …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely In The Dashboard

You have updated all plugins on your site!

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

(When plugins on your site are all up-to-date, update notices no longer display)

Now that you know how to upgrade WP inside your admin dashboard, it’s time to learn how to uninstall plugins from your blog or website.

Deleting WordPress Plugins

At times, you may decide to delete plugins that are no longer needed or being used on your site. This helps to decrease resources on your server and help to minimize potential problems.

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

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 admin menu and choose Plugins > Installed Plugins

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins

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

Hint: Inactive plugins use 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 proceeding …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely Inside The Dashboard

Next, click Delete

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

If you want to browse 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” section …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins In The Dashboard

A complete list of files belonging to the plugin that you are about to delete will display on your screen …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

The selected plugins and related files will be deleted …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In The Dashboard

Bulk-Deleting 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 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 checkbox next to the Plugin column header to select all plugins (warning: this will deactivate all plugins) …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In The Dashboard

Next, choose Deactivate from the Bulk Actions dropdown menu …

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

Click Apply

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In The WordPress Dashboard

The selected plugins will be deactivated …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins From The Dashboard

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins From The WP Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely

Click Apply

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 absolutely certain that you would like to proceed to the next step and delete all of the plugins listed …

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins From Your Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your WordPress Dashboard

WP Plugin Management – Useful WordPress Tools

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

PLUGIN CENTRAL

Plugin Central - WP Plugin

Plugin Central helps you manage your plugins by allowing you to install plugins directly, displays the status of plugins in need of update on the WP Admin and lets you update many plugins at once in one click …

Plugin For WordPress

For more details about using this plugin, go here:

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

Whenever plugin developers release a new plugin update, the best practice is to upgrde that plugin to the latest version as soon as possible.

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 go through the plugin update process from that site’s own admin dashboard. If you own multiple sites, this process can take quite a while!

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

Here are a couple of WordPress management tools you should check out:

Jetpack

Jetpack Manage

The Jetpack plugin is a single WordPress plugin that offers users a powerful range of added functionality, allowing self-hosted WordPress site users to benefit from WordPress.com’s infrastructure and take advantage of robust stats, automated social sharing, and so much more.

Jetpack Manage - Single WordPress Dashboard Management

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

One of these features is “Jetpack Manage”.

Jetpack Manage lets you manage your WordPress sites from one dashboard on WordPress.com.

With Manage, you can update 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 computer, tablet, or mobile phone.

Go here to download and use the plugin:

ManageWP

ManageWP.com

(ManageWP is a very popular management tool for multiple WP sites)

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

To download the plugin, go here:

WP Pipeline.com

WP Pipeline

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

WP Pipeline works in a similar way 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 updates from one single dashboard.

Go here to download and use this plugin:

Congratulations! Now you know how to automatically upgrade and delete plugins inside your WordPress dashboard with no coding skills necessary.

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Originally published as How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins.