WordPress Plugins: Roll Back to a Previous Version
WordPress is a web management system that thousands of developers contribute to by creating plugins, which help improve its functionality. But, is it all sunshine and rainbows? No, because sometimes, updating these plugins can lead to compatibility issues with your website. In addition, sometimes the act of updating introducing new bugs which negatively impact your site’s performance.
What exactly is a WordPress Plugin?
A WordPress plugin is a software program that extends the range of functionalities a WordPress site can possess. Made by developers, plugins can be added to your WordPress site to add up and often enhance your site’s already existing features. Plugins have the capability to provide a variety of features like contact forms, image galleries, social media sharing buttons, etc. The unique thing about plugins is that they are free to use while other times, they are paid services.
When to Roll Back a Plugin
If an update on a plugin causes any issue with your website, then the most convenient resolution is to roll back the plugin to an earlier version. You could also do this if you are unsatisfied with the most recent update, or if you are experiencing compatibility issues. The two golden rules you need to keep in mind while rolling back a plugin are:
- Always back up your site before making any change.
- Disable automatic WordPress updates before rolling back a plugin.
Step-by-Step Guideline on How to Roll Back a Plugin
- Deactivate the Plugin.
- Download the Plugin File.
- Uninstall the Current Plugin Version.
- Upload the Previous Plugin Version.
- Verify that the Roll Back was Successful.
Step 1: Deactivate the Plugin
The first step in rolling back a plugin is deactivating the plugin to prevent it from running on your website while you’re making changes. To do this, head to your WordPress dashboard, navigate to the “Plugins” section and scroll to the plugin that you want to roll back.
Click on the “Deactivate” button or toggle to disable the plugin.
Step 2: Download the Plugin File
To roll back a plugin, you need to download the previous version of the plugin file. To do this, head to the plugin’s WordPress.org page or the site where you initially downloaded the plugin. If you’re not sure where to find this file, a quick Google search of the plugin name and version number should suffice.
Look for the specific version of the plugin that you want to roll back to and download the .zip file.
Step 3: Uninstall the Current Plugin Version
Once you have downloaded the previous version of the plugin, navigate back to the WordPress dashboard. In the “Plugins” section, hover over the plugin that you need to roll back and click on the “Delete” button.
WordPress will ask you to confirm that you want to remove the plugin, click “Yes” to proceed. Once you have deleted the plugin, WordPress will take you to the “Plugins” page. You will notice that the previously deleted plugin will still appear on this page, but its status will have changed to “Inactive”. This indicates that the plugin has been deleted but is still in the WordPress database
Step 4: Upload the Previous Plugin Version
The next step is to upload the previously downloaded .zip file of the plugin. To do this, navigate back to the “Plugins” section and click on the “Add New” button.
Next, click on the “Upload Plugin” button and navigate to the .zip file of the previous plugin version. WordPress will start uploading the previous plugin version, and once it’s done, click the “Activate” button to enable the previous version of the plugin.
Step 5: Verify that the Roll Back was Successful
Lastly, you need to verify that the roll-back was completed successfully. Head over to your website to ensure that the plugin is running without any issues. If the plugin is functioning as expected, congratulations! You have successfully rolled back your plugin. If the plugin is still causing problems, you may need to roll back to an even earlier version or utilize a different plugin altogether.
Rolling back WordPress plugins is an effective trick to handle compatibility issues, bugs, or if you’re not satisfied with the latest update. With our step-by-step guideline, we believe that you now have a better understanding of how to roll back WordPress plugins and avoid potential issues. Remember to always back up your website before making any changes, and if you’re unsure, always consult a WordPress professional.