I have 2 blogs, both are versions 3.x

One of them, "Blog 1" is a multi-user blog. I can't edit the themes under Appearance->Editor , because it doesn't appear.

"Blog 2" is a single instance blog, and I can see the Appearance->Editor

What's the difference ? How do I get the editor to appear ? Could it be file permissions ? If so, which directory(ies) do I need to check ?


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  • 2
    If the blog 1 is MU, then the editor is not available there by default. Commented Jun 26, 2014 at 22:59
  • Yes, it was MU. How do I add it ?
    – jeph perro
    Commented Jun 26, 2014 at 23:00
  • 2
    You can't, without altering core. Commented Jun 26, 2014 at 23:03
  • Any other way to allow my users to modify themes, without creating a linux/ftp account ?
    – jeph perro
    Commented Jun 26, 2014 at 23:20
  • 1
    If you want to allow users to change how their theme looks, use the theme customiser to give them options, or provide a setting with a CSS text area so that they can override styling like wordpress.com does.
    – Tom J Nowell
    Commented Jun 26, 2014 at 23:33

2 Answers 2


The theme editor is not available on multisite installations. Changing this would require modifications to WordPress Core, that would need to be remade everytime you updated WordPress. I STRONGLY advise against this.

Also keep in mind that if one user edits a theme, everyone else using that theme gets the changes. There is only one copy. The editor also allows users to edit other themes, so users can modify other peoples sites on the network this way. It's also a massive security risk, a maintenance nightmare, and deprives you of future development work.

Instead I suggest you:

  • Add theme options and settings for controlling the themes look
  • Theme customiser options so that they have a nice UI to change things around, colours, text options, etc
  • If they must add CSS, a setting with a text area like wordpress.com so that they can add CSS for the frontend. This way you can use some common javascript libraries to make editing the CSS much nicer than the editor you're trying to re-enable.

I'd also note that with the editor you desire, users can horribly break their websites. A single typo or error saved to functions.php can cripple all websites in your install using that theme. The same thing can happen to the entire network if it happens in a plugin, bringing down the entire multisite installation.


In a WP MultiSite environment, your account needs to be a super-admin to be able to use the Theme Editor. Then navigate to My Sites > Network Admin > Themes. Then on the left side menu, you should see Theme File Editor under the themes menu (left side).

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