I have a custom theme that I use for many client sites. I regularly update the theme and need a way to have the sites notified when there is an update to the theme.

I tried using https://github.com/UCF/Theme-Updater but since it is no longer supported and hasn't been updated I can not get it to work with WP 4.1.1.

I get the notification of the update in WP, but the update will not load. I get an error every time.

Is there another way to update custom themes?


2 Answers 2


Here is a full documentation for how to do this: Github updater - Documentation

Upload in wordpress

Download the latest tagged archive (choose the "zip" option).

Unzip the archive, rename the folder correctly to github-updater, then re-zip the file.

Go to the Plugins -> Add New screen and click the Upload tab.

Upload the zipped archive directly.

Go to the Plugins screen and click Activate.


This plugin was designed to simply update any GitHub hosted WordPress plugin or theme. Your plugin or theme must contain a header in the style.css header or in the plugin's header denoting the location on GitHub. The format is as follows.

GitHub Plugin URI: afragen/github-updater

GitHub Plugin URI: https://github.com/afragen/github-updater


GitHub Theme URI: afragen/test-child

GitHub Theme URI: https://github.com/afragen/test-child

...where the above URI leads to the owner/repository of your theme or plugin. The URI may be in the format https://github.com/<owner>/<repo> or the short format <owner>/<repo>. You do not need both. Only one Plugin or Theme URI is required. You must not include any extensions like .git.



There must be a GitHub Plugin URI, Bitbucket Plugin URI, or GitLab Plugin URI declaration in the plugin's header.

Plugin Name:       GitHub Updater
Plugin URI:        https://github.com/afragen/github-updater
Description:       A plugin to automatically update GitHub, Bitbucket or GitLab hosted plugins and themes. It also allows for remote installation of plugins or themes into WordPress.
Version:           1.0.0
Author:            Andy Fragen
License:           GNU General Public License v2
License URI:       http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.html
Domain Path:       /languages
Text Domain:       github-updater
GitHub Plugin URI: https://github.com/afragen/github-updater
GitHub Branch:     master


There must be a GitHub Theme URI, Bitbucket Theme URI, or GitLab Theme URI declaration in the style.css file. When initially adding a theme, the directory must be identical to the repo name.

Theme Name:       Test
Theme URI:        http://thefragens.net/
Version:          0.1.0
Description:      Child theme of TwentyTwelve.
Author:           Andy Fragen
Template:         twentytwelve
Template Version: 1.0.0
GitHub Theme URI: https://github.com/afragen/test-child
GitHub Branch:    master

Hope this helps.

Please let me know

  • 1
    Hi @Dionoh - thanks for posting an answer, but please include more detail: answers with just links are very fragile. When the link dies, your answer becomes useless, so try to include as much detail as possible (even if it's not complete, but only enough for a reader to base further research on) Mar 2, 2016 at 9:54
  • Just did it. Is this ok?
    – Dionoh
    Mar 2, 2016 at 10:20

If you are looking for a simple solution that you don't have to worry about coding yourself I would recommend you check out wp-updates.com.

I think it's free to signup for an account, it works for both custom themes and custom plugins, and they claim you can integrate the service with just 2 lines of code.

Provide automatic updates for your premium WordPress themes and plugins with 2 lines of code.

It's made by the team at Dev7studios, who are a respected group in the premium WordPress plugin space.

Good luck!

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