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Troubleshooting Wordpress Plugins

  • Applies to: WordPress Hosting
    • Difficulty: Easy
    • Time Needed: 15
    • Tools Required: AccountCenter Access, SSH Access
  • Applies to: Grid Hosting
    • Difficulty: Easy
    • Time Needed: 15
    • Tools Required: AccountCenter Access, SSH Access

Overview

 

This article is designed to help you troubleshoot basic issues with WordPress plugins. Media Temple has provided this info as a courtesy to help you troubleshoot common WordPress issues. Please keep in mind that Media Temple does not support third-party applications in any capacity. This is outlined in greater detail in our Statement of Support

One of the most useful aspects of building a site with WordPress are the thousands of third party plugins. There's a plugin for just about everything you might need to do. Unfortunately, this massive ecosystem of plugins also creates a lot of variation across items like versions and security. By far, the most commonly reported WordPress specific issues are plugin related. Follow the instructions in this article to troubleshoot many of the most common problems. Please keep in mind that Media Temple maintains a list of plugins that are not allowed for various reasons. 

 

Important: The best way to avoid issues with WordPress plugins and themes is to keep everything up-to-date. Not only will your site be more stable overall, but it will be much more secure. Outdated themes and plugins are a major source of security vulnerabilities in WordPress. If you're using a plugin that's no longer supported, you may want to consider finding an alternative. The good news is that there almost certainly is one. To quickly apply updates, use the WordPress Dashboard update tool for both themes and plugins.

 

Instructions

The easiest way to troubleshoot WordPress plugin issues is to disable active plugins, either all at once or sequentially. If disabling plugins fixes your problem, check for an update or alternative.  

The 2 most common issues:

"All I see is a blank page"

A blank page that results from navigating to your domain is very often a problem with either a faulty plugin or theme. If you follow the plugin troubleshooting instructions and are still having issues, consider reinstalling your theme. Also, make sure that the version of WordPress that you are using is compatible with your theme. This information is usually found in the theme's documentation. 

"My site is very slow"

Faulty plugins can use up server resources very quickly in a variety of ways. This can result in a slow site. In addition to the troubleshooting instructions found here, you may also want to consider using a WordPress caching tool such as the popular WP Super Cache plugin. This can be especially helpful for sites that have a large amount of images or other types of resource intensive media. 

Disabling Plugins to Fix Errors

If you're able to log into your WordPress dashboard, disable plugins one at a time. After you disable a plugin, clear your browser's cache and attempt to reload your site.  

  • From the WordPress dashboard, select Plugins. 

 

 

  • Deactivate any plugins that you believe may be causing issues. If you are unsure of where the problem is coming from, it is best to deactivate them one at a time. This menu is also where you can update plugins. If deactivating a plugin fixes the issue, check to see if it has an update available. 

 

 

 If you're unable to log into the WordPress dashboard, use either SSH access or the Media Temple file manager (Grid users only) to disable your plugins folder by temporarily renaming it. You may also deactivate individual plugins by renaming their respective folders.

SSH to your WordPress server and rename the plugins folder. Make sure you replace YourUsername with the username found in your WordPress account center under SSH + SFTP:

 

 mv /home/YourUsername/html/wp-content/plugins /home/YourUsername/html/wp-content/pluginsTemp
  • To disable individual plugins, replace SomePlugin with the name of a plugin's folder:
 mv /home/YourUsername/html/wp-content/plugins/SomePlugin /home/YourUsername/html/wp-content/SomePluginTemp

Once you have done this, clear your browser's cache and attempt to load your site. Following these steps will solve most plugin issues. Don't forget that you will have to either rename pluginsTemp back to plugins or create a new folder of the same name for any plugins to work again. For help with basic SSH commands, see this article. If you have additional questions, please don't hesitate to contact our award winning 24/7 support team.

The Media Temple file manager makes it very easy to manipulate individual files. To disable the plugins folder, open the file manager via the account center and navigate to the plugins folder:

domains/YourDomain.com/html/wp-content/

Once there, you can either rename the entire plugins folder, which will disable all plugins, or enter the folder and disable particular plugins by renaming their respective folders. Once you have done this, clear your browser's cache and attempt to load your site. Don't forget that you will have to either rename the folder back to plugins or create a new folder of the same name for any plugins to work again. Following these steps will solve most plugin issues. If you have additional questions, please don't hesitate to contact our award winning 24/7 support team.

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