Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely Inside Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

Learn How To Use WPIn a previous article, we explain what plugins are and how you can use plugins to enhance your blog’s functionality.

You can read this article here: Using WP Plugins To Enhance Your Blog’s Capabilities

In this tutorial you will learn why plugins need to be kept up-to-date, how to easily upgrade and delete plugins, and discover some plugin management tools if you plan to own or manage multiple WordPress sites or blogs.

Why Many WordPress Plugins Need Upgrading

The WordPress software is regularly updated (about every three to four months) to fix bugs and address security issues and vulnerabilities discovered in earlier software releases, and to improve existing features.

Depending on how many plugins you have installed on your site, you can expect to see at least some new updates for WordPress plugins every.

The reason for this, is because most WordPress plugins are created by third-party developers, so sometimes code or features in the newly-released WordPress version conflict with plugins that were developed for a previous version. When this happens, conflicts can 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 required). All you have to do on your end, is keep your plugins up-to-date, which, as you will soon discover, is really easy to do.

Important 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 problems or errors.

The step-by-step tutorial below explains how to automatically update and delete plugins without touching web code.

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins – Step-By-Step Tutorial

WordPress uses a few methods to inform users when plugins need to be updated.

For example, you can immediately see how many plugins are out-of-date as soon as you log into your WP Dashboard simply by looking at the “Plugins” menu.

In the example below, nine plugins have older versions that need to be updated …

Updating And Deleting Plugins

You can also tell how many plugins need to be updated from your WP Admin Toolbar (as shown below, a number of plugins require updating) …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Inside The WP Admin Dashboard

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

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely

As well as providing information about which plugins have available updates, the Plugins section provides links to the plugin download pages and gives you the option to update the plugins instantly …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In WordPress

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

How To Update WordPress Plugins Individually

Warning

Always make a full backup of your data and files before updating your website.

In your admin menu, go to Plugins > Installed Plugins

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

You will be taken to the “Plugins” area. The list of plugins can run down your screen for some length, depending on how many plugins you have installed in your site …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely

(Plugins Page)

Practical Tip

Useful Information:

If you have too many plugins 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 screen and type in a smaller number of items per page (all plugins show on the screen by default, i.e. “999”), then click the ‘Apply’ button …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

Your Plugins area 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” field …

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your Dashboard

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

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins From Your WP Dashboard

WordPress provides smooth & simpler plugin updates, so that the process of updating your plugins happens with just “one click” without leaving your Plugins screen …

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

Repeat the above process for any other 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 in bulk.

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Now that you know how to update one WordPress plugin at a time, let’s show you how to upgrade many plugins simultaneously.

How To Bulk-Update Plugins

To upgrade multiple plugins in a single operation 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 …

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely In WordPress

Click on the check box in the Plugin column header to select all plugins at once, or select each plugin you want to upgrade by checking its box …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins

In the Bulk Actions pull-down menu above the list of plugins, choose Update

How To Automatically Update And Delete Plugins

And then click Apply

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins From The Dashboard

The plugins you have selected will automatically begin updating …

Updating And Deleting Plugins

Once all updates have completed, you can click on the Return to Plugins page link to go back to the Plugins area, or select another option from the sidebar menu …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely From Your 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) …

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins Safely

You have updated all plugins on your site to their latest version!

Updating And Deleting Plugins Safely In Your WordPress Dashboard

(When your site uses the latest version of all plugins, the notification icons no longer show)

Now that you know how to automatically upgrade plugins, it’s time to learn how to remove plugins from your WordPress site.

Deleting Plugins

It’s a good idea to uninstall plugins that are no longer needed or being used on your site. This reduces resources on your server and also help to eliminate causes of problems.

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

Warning

We strongly recommend creating 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 dashboard menu and select Plugins > Installed Plugins

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins

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

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

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete WordPress Plugins

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In WordPress

Click Delete

How To Update And Delete Plugins

If you need to have a look at 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 Update And Delete Plugins

A complete list of files belonging to the plugin selected for removalwill display on your screen …

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

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

How To Upgrade And Delete Plugins Inside Your Dashboard

The selected plugins and related files will be deleted …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely

Deleting Multiple WP Plugins Simultaneously

You can bulk-delete all inactive plugins on your site, or select a combination of active and inactive plugins to be removed.

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 check box, 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 WordPress Plugins Safely

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

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins Safely In WordPress

Click the Apply button …

Updating And Deleting WordPress Plugins

Your selected plugins will be deactivated …

How To Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

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

How To Automatically Upgrade And Delete Plugins In WordPress

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 Update And Delete Plugins

Once you have ticked all the checkboxes next to the plugins that you want deleted, choose Delete from the Bulk Actions drop-down menu …

How To Update And Delete Plugins Safely Inside The Dashboard

Click Apply

How To Automatically Update And Delete WordPress Plugins

A list of all selected plugins will be displayed 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 absolutely sure that you would like to go ahead and remove all of the selected plugins …

Upgrading And Deleting Plugins In The WP Admin Dashboard

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

Upgrading And Deleting WordPress Plugins Safely

Plugin Management – Tools

As well as the methods shown above, you can install a number of tools to manage your plugins.

Plugin Central

For example, Plugin Central helps you manage your plugins with options that let you install plugins directly, displays the status of plugins in need of update in your Dashboard and lets you update many plugins at once in one click …

Plugin Central - WP Plugin

To learn more about this plugin, go here: Plugin Central – WordPress Plugin

Managing WordPress Plugins On Multiple Sites

Whenever plugin updates are released, the best practice is to upgrde that plugin right away.

What if you have multiple sites using the same plugin? Typically, you would have to login to every site and then update the plugin manually from that site’s own WP dashboard. With multiple sites, this process can take quite a while to complete!

WordPress Power User Tip: If you own or manage multiple WordPress sites or blogs, you can install, update or uninstall plugins on multiple sites automatically and simultaneously using various WordPress management tools.

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

Jetpack Plugin By WordPress.com

Jetpack By WordPress.com

The Jetpack plugin is a multifunctional plugin for WordPress that offers users a powerful range of features, allowing self-hosted WordPress site users to benefit from WordPress.com’s infrastructure and take advantage of things like robust stats, easy social sharing, and a whole lot more.

Jetpack Manage - Single WordPress Dashboard Management

(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 a central interface.

With Manage, you can upgrade plugins, set plugins to update automatically, and activate or deactivate plugins on a per-site basis or all at once, whether you’re on your laptop, tablet, or mobile phone.

To download the plugin, visit this site: Jetpack By WordPress.com

ManageWP – Manage All Your WordPress Plugins From One Dashboard

ManageWP.com - Update All Your Sites From One Dashboard

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

ManageWP lets you manage all your WordPress sites from one place, including upgrades, backups, security and more. This tool features easy one-click management and instant login to your WP sites.

To learn more about the plugin, visit this site: ManageWP.com

WP Pipeline.com

WP Pipeline - WordPress Management Software

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

WP Pipeline is very similar to ManageWP, but has 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 one central location.

Go here to download the plugin: WP Pipeline.com

Congratulations! Now you know how to update and delete plugins safely without editing web code.

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Disclaimer: We are not associated with WordPress or any of the WP products written about on this site. We may derive a financial benefit from sales of products advertised, reviewed or linked to from this site. The product images used in this review have been sourced from the plugin’s own website and websites that provide Premium WordPress Services

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