Background: A client has used first and last names as the user names, and we are trying to replace the old users with new users with more secure user names. We need to assign the posts for the old users to the new user accounts.

After we created a new user, we went to Posts -> Bulk Actions -> Edit. The list of users does not show the new user. I have never seen this before. How do I force that list to recreate from the actual user list?

  • How did you create the users? Why didn't you just alter the user names? This seems like the long way around to me.
    – s_ha_dum
    Dec 18, 2015 at 19:04
  • It is my understanding that user names cannot be changed. Dec 18, 2015 at 19:11
  • Not from the WordPress backend, they can't, but its a trivial query. You'd have some cleanup to do, mostly concerning incoming links. The way you are doing it, though, you will have to a lot of cleanup connecting the new users to the old ones. That point, of course, is in addition to solving the issue you already have.
    – s_ha_dum
    Dec 18, 2015 at 19:17
  • Yes, I understand that you can go into the database and make changes to a database table, but I'm not going to encourage my client's local developer to do that. It's a simple change on the new user to apply their posts to a new user before deleting. But, that does not address the question here, why do the new users not show up in Bulk Actions -> Edit. Instead of dealing with the method, let's answer the question. Dec 18, 2015 at 21:53
  • If I knew why you were having this issue I would have posted a proper answer, not a comment. Sorry. What kind of debugging have you done? Have you tried manually updating the site? These weird ones are sometimes just corrupt or missing files.
    – s_ha_dum
    Dec 18, 2015 at 22:19

1 Answer 1


s_ha_dum's answer prompted me to look into this a little further. I checked the users in the database. It turns out that the dropdown list in Posts -> Edit is using the Display Name, not the User Login, as I had expected. So, the problem was not that WordPress was functioning incorrectly, but that my understanding of what field was being used was incorrect. I guess this was a "false negative."

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