i am using WPMU 3.3.1, i have some plugins enabled but why i cannot see them in some wordpress panel, it is confusing, but these plugins may take effect to these blogs, it is really strange to take effect before i enable it ...

these erroneous plugins include Private Only, WordPress Importer, WP Super Cache

also some plugins which were disactivated appear in blogs' panel, such as Akismet, why?

i think plugins which are disabled by network admin should not appear in individual blog's panel, and plugins which are enabled by network admin should appear in individual blog's panel. the this is not true to my wpmu, why?

any clues? or this is a bug of WPMU, if yes, any method to find what is the lines that lead to this bug?

Edit 1 Network Admin portal: 7 plugins have been enabled here. enter image description here

plugin portal in sub blogs: why i can only see 2 plugins here? in fact i should see 7 plugins... enter image description here

1 Answer 1


Plugins with Network: true in their header cannot be seen, activated or deactivated in sub sites. The reason is simple: You need super admin rights to do something with them, and their settings section (if there are any) are visible in wp-admin/network/ only.

Even if you are the super admin and on a sub site you will not see those menus usually, because the API for network plugins is slightly different: The registration of menu entries works different, URLs differ and there is no real options API. For a plugin developer it would require some rather unstable hacks to offer those menu entries. It is just not worth the efforts.

The other group of invisible plugins is mu-plugins. They are stored in a directory mu-plugins, and they run without activation. Again, only the network admin’s business, and only visible here.

  • i am that super admin to that wpmu, i have enabled some plugins in Network Admin panel, why i cannot see this plugins in subblogs?
    – hugemeow
    Dec 5, 2012 at 8:47
  • 1
    @hugemeow See my update.
    – fuxia
    Dec 5, 2012 at 8:54
  • where is the directory named mu-plugins? i cannot find this directory with find . | grep mu-plugins ...
    – hugemeow
    Dec 6, 2012 at 9:00
  • in fact i can see the plugins in sub site which are enabled through Network Admin panel for a long time, but this is not true weeks ago, i don't know why ...
    – hugemeow
    Dec 6, 2012 at 9:01
  • 2
    mu stands for must use, that is not specific to multisite.
    – fuxia
    Dec 20, 2012 at 11:10

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