in my one of my plugins i have modules (kind of like plugins in a plugin), is there a function like get_plugin_data() or wp_get_theme() that will allow me to get the header section of a custom file (by passing the path as a parameter)?

By heading section i mean

    Plugin Name: Name Of The Plugin
    Plugin URI: http://URI_Of_Page_Describing_Plugin_and_Updates
    Description: A brief description of the Plugin.
    Version: The Plugin's Version Number, e.g.: 1.0
    Author: Name Of The Plugin Author
    Author URI: http://URI_Of_The_Plugin_Author
    License: A "Slug" license name e.g. GPL2

Thanks to @toscho the correct solution was

$default_headers = array(
    'Module Name' => 'Module Name',
    'Test Header' => 'Test Header',

$file_data = get_file_data(dirname(__file__).'/some-file.php', $default_headers);


1 Answer 1


Use get_file_data( $file, $headers ):

$file_data = get_file_data( __FILE__, array ( 'Plugin Name' ) );

echo "the name is " . $file_data[0];

Make sure the first parameter points to an existing file.

It will find all lines that are formatted like regular plugins headers or the headers of a style.css.

In my plugin T5 Opera Speed Dial Preview I use it to show the link to my bug tracker:

$data = get_file_data( __FILE__, array ( 'Feedback URI' ) );
return empty ( $data ) ? '' : $data[0];
  • please see my own answer as i couldn’t figure out how to put code in a comment xXx
    – Sofia Rose
    Commented Jun 9, 2013 at 22:53
  • @SofiaRose See my update. You cannot read a directory, it must be a real file.
    – fuxia
    Commented Jun 9, 2013 at 22:55
  • so i cant read a file in another directory?
    – Sofia Rose
    Commented Jun 9, 2013 at 22:56
  • Of course it can. But the path must be correct. Try file_exists() to verify it is correct.
    – fuxia
    Commented Jun 9, 2013 at 22:58
  • sorry i was having a stupid moment, i needed dirname(file).'/some-file.php' not dirname('some-file.php')
    – Sofia Rose
    Commented Jun 9, 2013 at 23:06

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