Have you ever updated to the newest version of WordPress only to have things start acting crazy? No fear! Typically, this issue occurs with a compatibility issue with a theme or plugin and the newest version of WordPress. Rarely, it’s a matter of the WordPress update. If you find yourself in this situation, you can manually degrade WordPress to the previous, bug-free version.
Is It a Plugin or Theme?
Before you determine if a theme or plugin cause your issue, try the following:
- Activate a different theme. If the problem persists, go back to your old theme.
- Deactivate all plugins, and activate them one at a time. Test the site to see if deactivating fixed the bugs. If it’s fixed due to the plugin being deactivated, hold off on activating the plugin until a new update comes out. If the plugin has not been updated in a while, look to switching to an alternative that is updated regularly.
- Or, if you cannot deactivate the plugin, then consider manually downgrading your version of WordPress.
Blogger Importer Extended
The only time I manually degrade WordPress is when I conduct Blogger to WordPress transfers with Blogger Importer Extended. I prefer this plugin to do all of my Blogger to WordPress transfers. Unfortunately, it works correctly with WordPress Version 4.6. When I do a transfer and install, I manually degrade WordPress for the transfer; then, I remove the plugin and update WordPress to the latest versions.
Manually Degrade WordPress
Before you make any changes to your site, make sure you have a backup! There are tons of backup plugins available, but my favorite is Vaultpress!
- Download a previous version of WordPress. You can find all the versions of WordPress here. Select the version that was working before you updated.
- Deactivate all your plugins by going to PLUGINS < ALL PLUGINS. Select All Plugins, and go to DEACTIVATE.
- Log out of your site dashboard.
- Log in to your site via FTP and locate your site’s WordPress Files.
- Transfer files from the previous WordPress version to your site’s FTP. You will copy all files except wp-content. It can take a few minutes for the files to upload to the server.
- Once the files are uploaded, login to your WordPress Dashboard. A screen will popup that says “Update WordPress Database.” Press that button and continue.
- Once you log in, you should see the older version that you degraded. Reactivate your plugins. Your site should be fixed!
Remember, using old versions of WordPress should be a temporary solution and not a long-term one. WordPress updates usually include security patches that help protect your site.
Avoiding Compatibility Issues
When I select a plugin to use with my clients or my site, I avoid plugins that do not get updated regularly. With my rebrand, I’m expanding my support section to include more detailed change-log of theme updates.
I hope you found this guide helpful, and hopefully, it will be saved in your virtual toolbox in case you run into the situation in the future!