How to Roll Back WordPress Plugin to Previous Version

All of us love updates. Generally it is considered best practice to keep WordPress plugins and themes up to date. Every new update introduces new features, fills up the security loop holes and performs better. But all the updates do not have happy endings. Some update may bring side effect and malfunctioning in your site. There can be cases when new version of plugin conflicts with other plugin. Even worse it can completely break down your site. So how to roll back WordPress plugin to previous version? This article shows how you can do that.

Rollback is a term used for downgrade any software and undo any new updates. It is reverting back to previous version. If you already have a backup, you can restore your previous version from the backed of data and report the problem to the developers team so they can fix it in future updates. But what if you don’t have any backup of previous versions of your plugin. Well don’t worry because WordPress repository has a roll back feature. In this article we will see first how to do a manual rollback and then try out the easier rollback method using plugin.

How to Roll Back WordPress Plugin to Previous Version

Manual Rollback

If the used plugin has not made any significant database changes, you can simply remove the faulty new version of the plugin and install the stable older version. Here are the steps to manually upload a version.

1. First deactivate the new version of the plugin and then delete it.
2. To download older version of plugin visit the plugin page in WordPress plugin repository. Click the developers option in the right.
How to Roll Back WordPress Plugin to Previous Version

3. You can see the list of all versions of the plugin in the other version section. Download the files of the version of your choice by just clicking it.
other-version4. From the admin dashboard, go to Plugins > Add new. In the top of add new screen click the Upload Plugins

5. Upload zip format of the previous stable version of the plugin.
You can also upload the plugin from FTP.  Just use the login credentials to open FTP and connect to your website. Upload the plugin in the /wp-content/plugins/. If you find any folder made by malfunctioning version of plugin, make sure you delete it first.

6. Now you can go to Plugins > Installed Plugins and activate the plugin.

Rollback using WP Rollback Plugin

Manual rollback is tedious and takes extra effort. Using the WP Rollback plugin is one of the easiest and safest method for rolling back any plugin. The plugin allows you to easily change versions of themes and plugin. It is simple and intuitive with no any settings to configure. Follow the steps to use WP Rollback in your WordPress site.

1. In the admin dashboard go to Plugins> Add new. Search for WP Rollback plugin and install it.

Or, you can also manually download the plugin file and upload it to /wp-content/plugins/ folder in your website files.

2. Navigate to Plugins >Installed Plugin . Among the list of installed plugin, activate the WP Rollback plugin by clicking the activate link.

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3. Once activated. If you visit the installed plugins list you can see the new rollback link. Just click the link to rollback your plugins to other versions.

4. It takes you to a page where you can select any version number and rollback.

Rollback Themes

1. Go to Appearance > themes in the dashboard.

2. Select the themes that you want to roll back.

3. On the bottom of the theme you can see the new rollback button.

Use the rollback button to safely rollback to previous versions. To roll forward, use the same procedure but select the higher version number. WordPress rollback is only works for free plugins and themes from the WordPress Repository. It doesn’t support premium plugins or themes from other sources like GitHub and Themeforest.

Disable Update notice

When you revert back to an early version of a plugin or theme WordPress will automatically ask you to update to latest. To get rid of this disturbing message you can edit the plugin’s code to set the version number high. If it sounds unfamiliar you can try plugin called easy update manager. The plugin can be used to block WordPress core, theme and plugin update. You will need to configure the plugin to disallow update for individual item. Remember to turn back the update message on after the problem is fixed.

Roll back is a short term fix. It is always a good practice to use last updated items for security and performance. If you are using older versions of plugins or theme, make sure you hide version number by reading our article “Steps to Remove WordPress Version Number Easily”. You can also inform the theme or plugin developer about the problem so they can fix it in upcoming update. If the problem persists you can try a different plugin with similar functionality. I hope the article was useful to solve your problem.

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Kantiman Bajracharya

Kantiman Bajracharya is a freelance web developer. He is a computer geek who has a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering. He has earned lots of satisfied customers while working for numerous successful projects. He is also a WordPress theme creator and web article writer. On free time he likes reading philosophy books, traveling and playing chess.

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