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How to Easily Deactivate WordPress Plugins


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Do you want to find out how to turn off WordPress plugins? One of the best features of WordPress plugins is that you can temporarily disable them by deactivating them. WordPress plugins can also be completely removed by uninstalling them.

You’ll need to know how to deactivate one or all of your WordPress plugins if you’re a WordPress newbie. This knowledge will aid you in troubleshooting and resolving common WordPress errors.

In this article, we’ll show you how to deactivate WordPress plugins quickly and easily. Our goal is to assist you in better understanding how to manage WordPress plugins on your website.

The following is a summary of what you’ll learn in this article:

  • How to deactivate a plugin in wordpress
  • How to deactivate WordPress plugins in bulk
  • How to use FTP to deactivate all WordPress plugins
  • How to use phpMyAdmin to deactivate WordPress plugins
  • What’s the difference between deactivating a plugin and uninstalling it?
  • What is the best way to uninstall a WordPress plugin?
  • Is it necessary to keep deactivated plugins on your site?

How to Deactivate a Plugin in WordPress

Let’s begin by turning off a single WordPress plugin.

Simply go to Plugins » Installed Plugins in your WordPress admin area to temporarily disable or deactivate a WordPress plugin.

You’ll need to locate the WordPress plugin you want to deactivate from here. Next, move your mouse over the plugin’s row, and a link to deactivate that plugin will appear.

The WordPress plugin will be deactivated as soon as you click the link.

The plugin will remain installed on your website after you deactivate it, but WordPress will no longer load it.

If you want to use the plugin again, all you have to do is click the Activate link below it.

How to Deactivate WordPress Plugins in Bulk

To troubleshoot issues, you will have to deactivate most WordPress plugins on your website. Rather than deactivating one plugin at a time, WordPress allows you to quickly deactivate multiple or all plugins.

Simply go to Plugins » Installed Plugins and uncheck the boxes next to the plugins you’d like to disable. Simply check the box at the top to select all plugins if you want to deactivate all WordPress plugins.

Then, from the ‘Bulk Actions’ drop-down menu, select ‘Deactivate’ and click the ‘Apply’ button.

WordPress will now deactivate all of the plugins you’ve chosen.

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How to Use FTP to Deactivate All WordPress Plugins

You won’t be able to deactivate WordPress plugins from your dashboard if you’ve been locked out of your WordPress admin area.

In such cases, you’ll have to deactivate plugins through other means. Deactivating WordPress plugins via FTP or your WordPress hosting file manager is the simplest method.

WordPress searches the /wp-contents/plugins/ folder for your installed plugins. If it is unable to locate the plugin’s folder, WordPress will deactivate all plugins.

Rather than deleting the plugin’s folder, we’ll simply rename it.

To begin, you’ll need to use an FTP client to connect to your WordPress site. After you’ve connected, go to the wp-content folder in your WordPress root directory.

Right-click the plugins folder and choose ‘Rename’ from the menu that appears. This will open a popup where you can give your plugin’s folder a new name, such as plugins-deactivated.

The plugin’s folder will now be renamed by your FTP client. You can now go to the plugin’s page by logging into your WordPress admin area. Notifications about deactivated WordPress plugins will appear.

How to Deactivate WordPress Plugins Manually Using PHPMyAdmin

In our opinion, the FTP method is far more convenient. phpMyAdmin, on the other hand, can be used to disable all plugins.

To begin, go to your web hosting account’s dashboard and log in. Then, under the ‘Databases’ section, click the phpMyAdmin icon.

This will open the phpMyAdmin interface for you. To begin, go to the left menu and select your WordPress database.

In the right panel, PhpMyAdmin will now load your database tables. Next to the wp options table, click on the ‘Browse’ button (your WordPress table name may differ depending on your WordPress database table prefix).

The data in the options table will now be loaded by phpMyAdmin. Scroll down to the row with the option name ‘active plugins’ and click the ‘Edit’ button next to it.

You must delete the data inside the option value field after PhpMyAdmin opens the row for editing.

Then, at the bottom, click the ‘Go’ button to save your changes.

You can now go to your website and see that all plugins have been disabled by WordPress.

What’s the Difference Between Deactivating a WordPress Plugin and Uninstalling It?

It’s easy to tell the difference between deactivating and uninstalling a WordPress plugin.

A WordPress plugin is simply turned off when it is deactivated. It is, however, still installed on your website, and you can reactivate it if necessary.

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Uninstalling a plugin, on the other hand, removes it entirely from your website. The plugin will not be visible on the Plugins » Installed Plugins page.

If you want to use the same plugin again, you’ll need to reinstall it.

How to Remove a Plugin from WordPress

Uninstalling plugins from the WordPress admin area is a breeze. Simply go to the Plugins page in your WordPress dashboard after logging in.

You’ll see a list of the plugins that are currently installed on your site. A blue background will be used to highlight your active plugins.

If you want to uninstall a plugin that is currently active, you must first deactivate it. Then, beneath the plugin, you want to uninstall, click the delete link.

WordPress will now prompt you to confirm your decision to remove the plugin.

You must select the option to “Yes, delete these files.” WordPress will now remove the plugin from your web server in a secure manner.

That’s all there is to it; you’ve successfully removed a plugin from your WordPress site.

Even when uninstalled, some WordPress plugins leave behind data and files.

These items have no bearing on your WordPress site, but if you want to get rid of them, this is how you would do it.

Delete any shortcodes that are no longer in use.

Shortcodes are used by many WordPress plugins to make it easy to add content to your posts and pages. Those shortcodes will become visible in your posts after you deactivate or uninstall a plugin, and they are quite ugly.


By adding the following code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin, you can easily disable shortcodes.

  1. ‘pluginshortcode’, ‘__return false’ ); add shortcode( ‘pluginshortcode’, ‘__return false’ );

This code essentially restores the shortcode and causes it to display nothing. Replace plugin shortcode with the shortcode tag used by the plugin you’d like to uninstall.

It’s important to remember that if you ever want to use that plugin again, you’ll have to remove this code.

Plugin traces in the WordPress database are being cleaned up.

In the WordPress database, some WordPress plugins create their own tables. If these tables contain too much data, the size of your WordPress backup will grow.

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To clean these up, go to your WordPress hosting dashboard and launch phpMyAdmin.

You must first select your database, then the tables you want to delete. A drop-down menu labeled ‘With selected’ appears below the table list. You must first select ‘Drop’ from the drop-down menu.

After that, you’ll see a warning that these tables are about to be deleted. To confirm the action, you must click Yes. Please note that this is an irreversible process; once these tables have been deleted, you will not be able to restore them unless you have a database backup.

The database tables from your unused plugins will now be deleted by PhpMyAdmin.

Delete any WordPress plugins that are no longer in use.

WordPress plugins frequently create files and folders on your web server. These files are usually harmless, but they can significantly increase the size of your WordPress backup.

To delete them, you’ll need to use an FTP client to connect to your WordPress site. After you’ve connected, navigate to the wp-content folder. Within the uploads and plugins folders, you’ll find files and folders created by plugins.

Check to see if the files you’re deleting were created by the plugin you just removed. Simply delete them from your web server after that.

Should You Keep Plugins That Have Been Deactivated on Your WordPress Site?

You should not keep inactive or deactivated WordPress plugins installed on your website if you are not going to use them.

Your website’s performance is unaffected by inactive plugins. Plugins, on the other hand, contain executable files that hackers can use to hide malware or a backdoor.

Apart from being a security risk, they also increase the size of your WordPress backups, cause false positives in security scans, and cause other problems.

As a result, we always advise users to remove inactive plugins from their websites.

We hope that this article has taught you how to deactivate WordPress plugins correctly.

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