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How to Easily Replace Image and Media Files in WordPress

Have you ever tried replacing an image that you uploaded in WordPress? If you did, then you probably had to upload a new file, rename it, and insert it into the post while replacing the old file. Now wouldn’t it be nice if you could do all of this with just few clicks? In this article, we will show you how to easily replace attachment files in WordPress.

Video Tutorial

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First thing you need to do is install and activate the Enable Media Replace plugin. Once activated, it works out of the box, and there are no settings for you to configure.

All you need to do is visit Media » Library in your WordPress admin area. If you are using the grid-view, then you would need to switch to the list view.

Now locate the file that you want to replace. Once you found the file, take your mouse near the file name, and you will see a link labeled ‘Replace Media’.

Replace media link in the media library

When you click on the link, it will take you to replace media page. There you need to upload your new file by clicking on the Choose File button.

Once you choose the file, you have two options that you can choose. You can choose to only replace the file, or you can replace the file, use new filename, and update all links pointing to the old file.

After choosing one of the options, simply press the upload button.

Replacing old file by uploading new media

WordPress will now upload your media file, and the plugin will replace the old media file. If you opted to use new filename and update links, then the plugin will take care of that as well.

You can now visit your posts or page where you had this media file attached and see it replaced with the new file you just uploaded.

We hope that this article helped you find an easier way to replace attachment files in WordPress.

If you just wanted to rename media files, then you may want to checkout our tutorial on how to easily rename images and media files in WordPress.

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Reader Interactions

28 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Is there a way to batch replace? I’m a photographer and sometimes have over 100 images per blog post. I wanted to replace them with smaller file sizes to help with my pages speeds. Is this possible?

    Many thanks

  2. If I use the plugin to just “replace image only” (with one of the same file name) will the alt text, image description, and image caption of the original image be overwritten or preserved. If they are preserved, this would save me a ton of time.

    • It should keep that information if it is able, you would want to reach out to the plugin’s support for specifics.

      Admin

  3. This option isn’t available in the new version as it just allows you to delete or edit it. if I delete it I don’t know the url to replace it with?

    • You may want to ensure you are in the correct view for your media library as the feature is currently available

      Admin

  4. Thank you for your post.

    I installed enable media replace plugin in my site. But when I replace an image that I used in a blog post, I can see the image has been replaced in the media library. But When I check that image in the blog post, there is no change to that image and its file size. What I have to do to resolve this?

    • You may want to try clearing your cache and if that does not work, reach out to the plugin’s support for them to take a look at possible issues.

      Admin

  5. Can I do the same thing manually by replacing the image via FTP? Will that change the image?

  6. Hi. I keep getting request timeout. Same as when uploading using usual wp means. That is why I had to switch to uploading via ftp and then loading them through a plugin meant for that. I really need to get this working since some of the images are not scaling properly nd need to change them. Any help would be apreciated. Thanks.

  7. Hi

    in my wordpress admin there is no any option like replace media..in mine there are only 3 options 1) EDIT 2) DELETE PREMANENTLY 3) VIEW

    So what is the issue there ..its old version or have any other issue can u please clear that so that i can replace that media files

    Regards
    Hitesh

  8. Help

    I’m a perfrormer contacting agents and tried to replace voice reels after successfully installing yourplugin ( thought it was safest way to go )
    Now htey are blanks – I’ve cleared browsing cache

    I followed the instructions
    my media player is this :

    svnlabs HTML5 Mp3 player 3.6 installed

    please help :0

  9. Hi thanks for the article, the plugin works great. There’s one thing I don’t get though: the image replacement seems to only affect the image in its original size, when the site displays the image in other formats (thumbnails, previews, etc…) I can still see the old image file.
    How can I force the image replacement on all the other image files (e.g. imagename-300×200.jpg)?
    thank you

    • Please use Regenerate thumbnails plugin to regenerate your images. after that you will see the replaced images.

  10. The Enable Media Replace plugin poses a security threat, I would totally avoid it. Its a shame to suggest users to use dangerous software. Please research before posting.

    The exploit holds since 2011.

    For more info see

    • Hi Panagiotis,

      The issue was immediately resolved by the plugin author in the very next release (please see plugin’s changelog and scroll down to version 2.4).

      This is why we recommend users to keep their WordPress site and plugins updated.

      Admin

      • Yes, you are correct. I’m sorry, I saw a support post which the plugin author didn’t answer and thought it wasn’t resolved.
        The exploit was patched @ 09 February 2011 (the same day).

        I wonder why the author hasn’t replied but I will inform the forum users.

        Again, sorry.

  11. I am running WP 4.6.1 bootstrap and I want to remove a background photo and replace it with one that is in my galley. Can you tell me how to do it, Thanks

  12. I followed the steps and in the library the new image is displayed but where the image is located on the home page remains the old photo. Not sure what to do…

    • Maybe it’s a browser cache related issue and you need to clean/delete the browser cache. If you don’t know how to do it, google your browser’s brand name and “clear browser cache”.

  13. This plugin works great in the media page. However I would like to also replace images/media from within the media modal window inside a post/page edit page without leaving the page. Any ideas?

    Thanks for this amazing post!

  14. I wish I had known this sooner! I didn’t detach my media files before I deleted them. I replaced them with a new image. The problem is that resulted in broken images. Even though I go back and reattach/choose the correct image down the road it breaks again. In my Easy recipe program I see the placeholder for the deleted image and the program searching for it. Is there a fix for this? Unfortunately there are about 200 files doing this.

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