If you have a tendency of installing every other plugin on your website and deactivating it when you don’t use it. Beware these inactive plugins can be really harmful to your website in several ways. You must remove any inactive plugin which you are not using for a long time or it was installed for hit and trial purposes only.
WordPress has more than a million plugins written for it by different authors. You may find N number of plugins for every other functionality. It is quite tempting to try them on your website. When you are looking to put a new functionality on your website, you search through the plugin and find 10s of them providing the same features somewhat here and there. Now the problem starts. You start to install them one by one and check how they work. When you find the one you wanted or is most suitable for your requirement you are happy and go ahead with it. Here you make the mistake of leaving all those inactive plugins behind as garbage. Sometimes you try to uninstall them but you must understand that only uninstalling a plugin will not completely remove it from your system. Their residual files and table remain sometimes and can cause issues in the future.
How you can avoid installing unnecessary plugins :
The most common reason of installing unnecessary plugins is that there are several plugins available for the same functionality on WordPress and you start checking them one by one. You should not be doing it ideally. There are several ways to avoid doing it:
- Read the complete information about every plugin before installing it. There is quite a lot of information available about these plugins on the WordPress.org site. Most of the plugins also come with a screenshot looking at which you can get a good idea about the look and feel and working of that plugin. If you don’t like it, don’t install it.
- You may arrange for a demo WordPress installation where you can install and check these plugins. And install only the ones you like on the real website.
10 Ways Inactive Plugin Can Harm Your WordPress Website :
- It can be used as backdoor entries by hackers to access your website by breaching WordPress Security. It usually may happen as you don’t regularly update these inactive plugins which may cause vulnerabilities that are exploited by hackers.
- These inactive plugins eat up precious resources on your server and sometimes create scarcity for active plugins.
- These plugins may have created certain tables in the database which may lie there forever even if you delete the plugin. You can learn how to properly remove a WordPress plugin here.
- They clutter your admin panel as you will keep receiving update notifications and other warnings related to these inactive plugins. It may create a lot of confusion.
- If in case a new person starts managing your website, he will surely face trouble in understanding the inactive plugins as which of them are made inactive for short term and which are not useful at all.’
- Hosting service providers never like websites with a lot of inactive plugins and their virus scanner keeps raising virus alerts regarding such plugins. You must take these warnings seriously as they may block your outbound port which may cause issues in the functioning of your website.
- If your outbound port gets blocked due to these inactive plugins you will not be able to add new plugins to your website.
- A lot of WordPress plugin authors are freelancers and may stop supporting their plugins anytime, so if think that you may use such plugins in the future will not be a good idea.
- Inactive plugins may create issues when the WordPress core receives some major updates.
- Last but not least spammers may use these abandoned plugins to spam your website with ad links and other harmful stuff.
Considering the seriousness of the issue, you should always delete a plugin if you don’t plan to use it in near future. Also should avoid installing any unnecessary plugins. This will keep your website working properly without any glitches.