I'm relatively new to customising WordPress and I am unsure what happens to custom tables that are manually added to the database when WordPress is updated to a new version. Are custom tables deleted when updating WordPress? Is the data in custom tables overwritten? I have been asked to import data from a database external to WordPress and display that data on the front end. Many thanks in advance.

  • 1
    Custom tables are not touched during updates.
    – shanebp
    Commented Mar 29, 2022 at 23:30

1 Answer 1


During a WP 'core' update that happens to modify the database, I believe that there is no 'overwrite' of tables or removing tables in the database.

If you add a new table to the database, that table will 'survive' the next WP core upgrade.

You'll only lose data if you reinstall from scratch, and specify another WP table name. But there would be few reasons to do that.

A plugin or theme will make some changes to the tables. A plugin might have options that are stored in a table. And their upgrade might add/modify one of their own tables, but not the WP-based ones.

Updates are good to do, IMHO. I check for core/themes/plugin updates daily, and install daily when needed.

  • Thanks for the reply.
    – Michael
    Commented Mar 30, 2022 at 5:20
  • (The protocol around here is is an answer is what you were looking for, then you should mark it as such with the checkmark next to the answer. If there are multiple answers to a question you found (that is not yours), then it is good to 'vote up' the correct answer. Voting/accepting gives the person 'reputation points', which are appreciated. In case you weren't aware .... ) Commented Mar 30, 2022 at 18:09

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