WordPress 5.5 “Eckstine“ brought several awesome features to the platform’s core, which made it a success – well, mostly. As with any update, there were undeniably problems.
The main issue stems from WordPress’s decision to remove the outdated jQuery Migrate. In fact, many developers were caught unprepared for this update despite recommendations for developers to test and update their code.
Scaling one’s website to generate higher amounts of traffic by attracting visitors became even challenging due to messed-up performance optimization and caching plugins. Examples of these include Yoast, Classic WordPress Editor, and Social Welfare.
Read on as we determine the total extent of the damage caused, and also discuss ways to troubleshoot WordPress 5.5 update quickly.
Understanding the “Unexpected Behaviors “
WordPress issued a statement acknowledging the chaos brought forward by removing the jQuery Migrate 1.x in WordPress 5.5:
“With the update to WordPress 5.5, a migration tool known as jquery-migrate will no longer be enabled by default. This may lead to unexpected behaviors in some themes or plugins who run older code.”
Well, more than 80,000 WordPress publishers proceeded to download a WordPress plugin, which we’ll discuss in more detail later, in a bid to stop the “unexpected behavior“ of WordPress 5.5. Additionally, the update affected around 2400 plugins that had conflicts due to the disabling of jQuery Migrate.
While it‘s true that WordPress does offer satisfactorily good security, many publishers resort to installing additional WordPress security plugins to boost the overall level of security further and protect their website against hackers and malicious bots.
Security is only one of the many types of plugins that were affected. Optimization plugins, design plugins, and others were also giving problems to users.
What About Themes?
In addition to WordPress plugins, it was discovered that over 200 themes were conflicting, but only five had more than 10k active installs.
People who have experienced issues with misbehaving themes have often found out outdated code to be the main culprit. But, in this case, some of these problems were caused due to the bundling up of plugins with the respective WP themes.
For instance, you‘ll find slider plugins and premium page builder plugins routinely bundled with specific themes. Now, because these are premium plugins, it isn’t necessary for them to get updated to the latest version – provided it’s what your software license states.
While clearing your cache and refreshing things would typically be a good way to handle misbehaving WordPress themes, users had been advised to find another way out.
You could try to upgrade to the latest version of the theme. However, if you find the problem still persists, try installing the WordPress Enable jQuery Migrate Helper to get your website working and functioning like before.
That said, make sure you don’t treat it as a permanent solution, though – it’s only temporary.
This is precisely why you should know how to troubleshoot your site for recognizing the specific functionality, which is the root cause of issues. Once you succeed in identifying the functionality, you’ll be able to download an up-to-date replacement plugin and then use it to effectively handle the broken function.
How to fix WordPress 5.5 Update Issues
Here, we’ll tell you two easy methods to fix conflicting issues with WordPress 5.5 update. They are as follows:
- Enabling jQuery Migrate Helper plugin
- Downgrade to an older version of WordPress
Now, if you aren’t able to login to your WordPress site and access the backend, it’s highly likely for the plugin to be potential issue triggers.
In such cases, you should create an FTP account, log into your file manager and deactivate every single plugin, and even rename the plugins folder. You can also do the same thing for your themes.
Having said this, we would also recommend creating a complete backup of your site to avoid compatibility issues down the line. So even if you face any problems after the update, you can always restore the previous version.
Enabling jQuery Migrate Helper Plugin
The jQuery Migrate Helper tool acts as a bridge that allows all the code to function on the new version of WordPress. You see, the migration tool in question isn’t enabled by default, so in case you don’t update your themes and plugins, you’ll end up seeing errors and compatibility issues in the latest 5.5 version of WordPress.
The good news is that the plugin is free to download, making it an excellent solution to stop errors until developers successfully fix the problems with the conflicting plugins and themes. Once you finish installing the tool, the jquery-migrate script will be enabled and connected with the migration script. In turn, this will fix all problems with the plugins and themes.
If you’re wondering how to download this plugin, you simply need to visit your WordPress dashboard. Go to ‘Plugins’ and then ‘Add New.‘ Search for Enable jQuery Migrate Helper, and finally, click on the ‘Activate‘ button.
There is no additional set up required once you finish activating the tool. Though, you should take note that enabling this plugin doesn’t actually fix the problems on your side, but it’ll only help restore functionality and allow you to continue using WordPress.
Downgrade to an Older Version of WordPress
The main idea behind the new update was to modernize WordPress, but this wasn’t supposed to be at the cost of other functionalities. This disruption can put your private data at risk. Anyone who gets unauthorized access to your computer will be able to review this information and learn a lot about your habits.
What makes matters worse is that your browser is happy to report a lot of your private information to the websites you are visiting. If you want to stop bad agents from getting unauthorized access to your personal information, you should strongly consider investing in a browser that makes your web traffic anonymous to ensure privacy.
You should also consider downgrading WordPress to an older version. Doing this will give you more time to identify the problem or wait for a theme or plugin update.
Downgrading to an older version of WordPress is possible in the following three ways:
- A manual downgrade
- Using a plugin
- Restoring a previous backup
Downgrading versions can be pretty complicated and time-consuming since you need to download the ZIP file of the stable WordPress version to your local storage and then upload it through the file manager or an FTP client. You have to follow this up by making changes to the wp-config.php and other core files.
The Bottom Line
Nevertheless, WordPress 5.5 does still offer great features to help you develop and design simple as well as complex websites, blogs, among other benefits. So make sure you follow any one of our above solutions, and you’ll be able to fix conflicts, albeit temporarily.