Recently, one of our readers asked us how to force WordPress to check for plugin updates.
WordPress automatically shows plugin updates when they are available. However, if you immediately need to update a plugin, then there are other ways to force updates in WordPress.
In this article, we will show you how to easily force WordPress to check for plugin updates.
When to Force WordPress to Check For Plugin Updates
You should force WordPress to check for plugin updates when you want to get the latest versions of your plugins quickly.
By default, WordPress checks for the core, plugin, and theme updates regularly. However, there might be instances where you need the latest version of a plugin immediately, such as:
- When a critical bug fix is released, especially if the bug is affecting your website significantly. You want to update your plugin as soon as possible to keep your website secure.
- When there is a new feature and you want to try it out. In this case, you want to update your plugin to test the latest version and see if the new feature works with your website.
With that in mind, let’s look at how to force WordPress to check for plugin updates. You can use the quick links below to skip to a specific section:
Method 1: Using the Built-in WordPress Updates
If you just want WordPress to check if a plugin update is available, then this is the easiest way to do that.
Simply head over to the Dashboard » Updates page in your WordPress admin dashboard and then click on the ‘Check Again’ link.
WordPress will now reload the page and check all your WordPress plugins, themes, and core WordPress software for updates.
If there is an update available, then it will show you on the page and as a notification in the admin bar.
You can now go ahead and install the update. For more information, take a look at our article on how to properly update WordPress plugins.
Method 2: Managing WordPress Updates Using a Plugin
If you manage multiple WordPress websites, then keeping all your WordPress plugins up to date can be difficult.
You will notice that there are updates available whenever you log in to one of your websites. You will also notice that some plugins are more frequently updated than others.
You can set some of these plugins to be automatically updated whenever there is a new version available.
Upon activation, you need to visit the Dashboard » Updates options page to set up the plugin.
In the General tab, scroll down to ‘Plugin updates’ and then click on ‘Choose per plugin’.
This will allow you to set automatic updates for specific WordPress plugins on your website.
Next, you need to switch to the ‘Plugins’ tab.
Here you can click on ‘Allowed’ to allow plugin updates and ‘On’ to turn on automatic updates below the plugins that you trust and want to be automatically updated.
To force automatic updates, you need to switch to the ‘Advanced’ tab and click on the ‘Force automatic updates’ option in the left column.
Next, select ‘Force updates’.
For more detailed instructions on updating WordPress, please see the following tutorials:
- How to Better Manage Automatic WordPress Updates
- Why You Should Always Use the Latest Version of WordPress
- How to Check for WordPress Security Updates (Beginners Guide)
- How to Setup Email Notifications for WordPress Updates
- Should I Update WordPress or Plugins First? (Proper Update Order)
- How to Update a WordPress Theme without Losing Customization
We hope this article helped you learn how to force WordPress plugin updates. You may also want to see our ultimate guide to WordPress SEO or our expert picks for the best managed WordPress hosting providers.