I developed a forked version of the Understrap theme for a project I completed. The theme has since been used in about 300 sites. Recently we found a bug relating to a plugin used that the developer has been unable to resolve after more than a year of requests. The solution is to uninstall that plugin and install an alternate plugin.

My question relates to the theme update mechanism, I used this library but I'm not sure if it is possible to deactivate the existing buggy plugin and install the alternate plugin via the update?

Using the update would obviously make it easier to roll out the change


You should never deactivate or uninstall or even install any thing which is not part of your theme without explicit user consent. If a theme can not work without a plugin, its functionality should be shipped as part of the theme, or it just have to live with whatever bug that plugin has.

The best you can probably do is to have an admin notice about the incompatibility.

  • Thanks Mark, I realise I haven't shared the full context of the scenario, these sites are within a single organisation and as a result the change is mandated from management hence consent shouldn't be a consideration. – Daniel Feb 20 '18 at 14:36
  • oh, yes context is important here. There is no way that I can think of from the wordpress admin, but why not to do the upgrade using wp-cli, just write a small shell script that updates the theme, disables the outdated plugin and installs the new one? – Mark Kaplun Feb 20 '18 at 17:03
  • Thanks Mark, I'll look into this, I've never encountered the wp-cli so it should make for interesting reading! – Daniel Feb 22 '18 at 9:27

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