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How To Update PHP Version In WordPress?

how to update php in wordpress

Are you trying to learn how to update PHP version in WordPress?

WordPress is this amazing digital canvas, allowing you to paint your online presence in any hue and style.

Now, PHP?

It’s like the magic behind the scenes – the invisible spells that bring your canvas to life, making everything from your blog posts to your dazzling pages a reality.

But here’s the kicker – PHP needs to stay fresh to keep the magic strong and safe.

Keeping PHP up to date is not just about adding new tricks to your arsenal; it’s about:

  • Shielding your site from those sneaky internet gremlins (read: security threats)
  • Boosting your site’s speed like a turbo-charged broomstick
  • And ensuring that everything plays nice together – your themes, plugins, and all the wonderful WP goodies

In short, staying on top of your PHP version gives your WordPress site a superpower boost.

It ensures it performs at its best and locks down tighter than a dragon’s treasure chest.

This post covers:

Understanding PHP & Its Role In WordPress

The Magic Of PHP

PHP ensures everything from your latest blog entry to the dynamic features work in perfect harmony.

WordPress would be like a spellbook missing its enchantments without this magical language.

PHP’s New Versions

PHP isn’t just a one-spell wonder; it keeps getting new, more powerful features.

With each new PHP version that comes out, we get many improvements.

These improvements make your site faster and more secure and ensure all elements (like themes and plugins) work together beautifully.

The Lifecycle Of PHP

Every PHP version starts its own adventure. It begins when it’s first made and ends when it’s time to say goodbye.

This makes room for new, better versions.

It’s important to keep up with these updates.

They help keep your site safe from online threats and make it run super fast, just like a cheetah!

Benefits Of Updating PHP In WordPress

Improved Website Speed & Performance

Updating PHP is like giving your site a super boost.

It makes everything load faster and run smoother.

Think of it as turning your site into a speedy race car.

Keeping Your Site Safe

With the latest PHP, your site strengthens against hackers and nasty bugs.

Compatibility With The Latest WP Themes & Plugins

When you update PHP, all the newest themes and plugins work better with your site.

Checking Your Current PHP Version

Want to peek at which PHP version your WordPress site is using? It’s super easy, and I’ll guide you through it.

How To Check The PHP Version Of Your WordPress Site

how to check the php version of your wordpress site
Just follow these simple steps, and you’ll find out in no time:

  • Log in to your site: Jump into your WordPress dashboard, where all the magic happens.
  • Find the info spot: Click “Tools” in the menu, then hit “Site Health.”
  • The big reveal: Click on the “Info” tab at the top. Scroll down to “Server” and voilà! Your PHP version will be right there, smiling back at you.

Tools & Plugins For Checking PHP Version

Not feeling like a detective? No worries!

Some nifty tools and plugins can check the PHP version for you:

  • Health Check & Troubleshooting plugin: This little helper tells you your PHP version and checks if your site is feeling top-notch. (Find it here.)
  • Your hosting dashboard: Sometimes, the easiest way is to log into your hosting account. Look around for a “PHP” section, and you’ll find your answer there.

Preparing For PHP Update

Before we dive into updating PHP, let’s ensure your site is all packed and ready for the journey.

Backup Your WordPress Site

Backing up your site is like having a magic safety net.

You can bounce right back if anything goes wonky during the update.

How To Back Up:

  • Plugins: Use a backup plugin like UpdraftPlus or Duplicator. They’re like friendly robots that pack up your site for you. (See how to install a WP plugin.)
  • Your hosting service: Many hosts offer backup services. It’s like asking a friend to hold onto your stuff for a bit.
  • Manual backup: Feeling tech-savvy? You can manually backup your site files through FTP and save your database via phpMyAdmin.

Compatibility Check: Will It Blend?

Before hitting the update button, ensure your themes and plugins will play nice with the new PHP version.

How To Check:

  • Theme & plugin updates: Make sure everything is up to date. Developers often update their wares to work with the latest PHP.
  • Compatibility plugins: Use plugins like PHP Compatibility Checker. They’re like having a little scout that checks the road ahead for any bumps.
  • Read up: Sometimes, a quick visit to the theme or plugin’s website or support forum can tell you if it’s ready for the new PHP version.

How To Update PHP Version In WordPress

Ready to give your WordPress site a little boost with a PHP update?

Fear not, it’s easier than you think.

Contact Your Hosting Provider

Sometimes, getting a little help from your friends is good, right?

If you’re unsure about updating PHP on your own, give your WordPress hosting provider a shout.

They’re like the helpful wizards of the web world, ready to assist you.

When & Why:

  • When: If you’re unsure where to start or if the option to update PHP isn’t visible in your control panel.
  • Why: They can offer guidance or even do the update for you.

DIY Update Via Hosting Control Panel

update wordpress php version in kinsta
Feeling adventurous?

You can update PHP yourself through your hosting control panel.

The steps are usually pretty friendly whether it’s cPanel, Plesk, or something else.

Step-by-Step Guide:

  • Log in: Access your hosting account (I’m using Kinsta) and dive into the control panel.
  • Find PHP: Look for a section named “PHP Version”, “Select PHP Version”, or something similar. It’s often under the “Software” category. (In Kinsta: WordPress Sites > Click Your Site > Tools > PHP Engine.)
  • Choose & click: You’ll see a list of PHP versions. Pick the latest stable one recommended for WordPress, and hit that update button.
  • Apply & save: Don’t forget to save or apply the changes.

Verify The Update

Let’s make sure everything’s shiny and updated.

How To Verify:

  • Back to WordPress: Head over to your WordPress dashboard, and under “Tools” find “Site Health” again.
  • Info tab: Click on “Info” and scroll down to “Server.” Your new PHP version should be smiling back at you.

And there you have it! Updating your PHP version doesn’t have to be a daunting task.

With a little help from your hosting provider or a bit of DIY magic, your site will be running on the latest PHP in no time.

Troubleshooting Common Issues After Updating

So, you’ve ventured into PHP updates, but hit a few bumps along the way?

No worries at all.

Dealing With Site Errors Or Downtime

Encountering some errors or, yikes, downtime? Take a deep breath – it’s often a quick fix.

What to Do:

  • Stay calm: First, don’t panic. It’s usually something that can be fixed with a few clicks.
  • Error messages: Take note of any error messages; they’re like clues on a treasure map, guiding you to the solution.
  • Check the basics: Sometimes, it’s a simple issue like a limit being exceeded. A quick chat with your hosting provider can often clear this up.

Plugin & Theme Incompatibility Issues

Updated PHP but now your theme or a plugin is throwing a tantrum?

Compatibility issues can be party poopers.

Smooth Things Over:

  • Deactivate & reactivate: Start by deactivating your plugins (yes, all of them) and then reactivating them one by one. It’s like finding out who’s not playing nice in the sandbox. (See how to disable WordPress plugins.)
  • Theme test: If the issue persists, switch to a default WordPress theme (like Twenty Twenty-One). If things improve, your theme might be the shy one at the PHP update party.
  • Updates: Check for updates to your themes and plugins. The developers might have already rolled out a compatibility fix.

How To Revert To An Older PHP Version

If all else fails and your site misses the old PHP version, it’s okay to return.

How to Revert:

  • Back to control panel: Jump back into your hosting control panel where you updated PHP.
  • Select PHP version: Find that PHP version section again, and this time, choose the previous version you were on.
  • Apply & save: Don’t forget to save the changes. It’s like hitting the undo button.

Remember, encountering issues after a PHP update isn’t a defeat; it’s just a little detour on your WordPress journey.

With a bit of troubleshooting, you’ll have your site back quickly.

Conclusion: Master PHP Updates In WP!

Keeping PHP updated is like giving your WordPress site its superhero cape.

It zaps away nasty bugs, speeds up your site, and ensures your themes and plugins work in perfect harmony.

It’s all about making your site the best it can be – secure, swift, and super compatible.

I know, diving into PHP updates might have seemed a bit daunting at first.

But look at you now – you’re practically a PHP update champ.

It usually only requires a few clicks and you’re ready to roll.

So, here’s a little nudge from me to you: keep that PHP version in check, and your WordPress site will thank you in countless ways.

FAQs About Updating PHP In WordPress

Why do I need to update PHP for my WordPress site?

Updating PHP ensures your WordPress site runs faster, remains secure against vulnerabilities, and is compatible with the latest themes and plugins.

How can I check my current PHP version in WordPress?

You can check your PHP version in the WordPress dashboard by going to “Tools” > “Site Health” > “Info” tab and looking under the “Server” section.

Will updating PHP break my website?

While updating PHP is generally safe, it can sometimes cause issues if your themes or plugins are incompatible with the new version. Always back up your site before updating and testing in a staging environment.

How do I update the PHP version on my WordPress site?

You typically update PHP through your hosting provider’s control panel. Look for a section labeled “PHP Version” or similar, select the version you want to upgrade to and apply the change.

What should I do if my site has problems after updating PHP?

First, don’t panic. Try deactivating all plugins and switching to a default theme to see if the issue persists. If problems continue, you may need to revert to the previous PHP version and consult with your hosting provider or a professional for further assistance.

About Author

Rok decided to put his original approach and vision into action by starting ULTIDA, thanks to his extensive experience with web development and design since 2011. Working with 100s of clients made his subconscious mind think of nothing but themes, HTML, plugins, mockups, etc.