What is a Plugin Editor?

As the name implies, a plugin editor allows you to edit the files that make a plugin operate. The plugin editor looks and functions much like the text editor for making changes to a post or page.

 

In order to edit a plugin, you must be logged into the administration panel. From there, click on “Plugins” on the left-hand side of your screen and then “Editor.” From there, you’ll see a list of all the files used by the various plugins on your site. Click one and the text of the plugin file will appear in the editor window. You can then proceed to make any changes.

 

Note: If you’re operating a WordPress site that is hosted by WordPress.com, then you won’t be able to add, delete, or edit plugins. Only independent WordPress sites not hosted by WordPress.com can access and edit plugins.

 

It’s essential to remember that if you update the plugin later, all of the edits that you’ve previously made will be overridden. And because modifying the plugins directly in the plugin editor can cause your plugin stop working, it’s generally recommended that you never use the plugin editor. If you do enter commands into the plugin editor that cause an error, WordPress won’t lock you out of your site, but it will deactivate the plugin and display an error message.

 

The only good use case for using the plugin editor is for developers who want to use quickly modify plugin files by utilizing a hook or filter from within the plugin itself. Only the most confident and experienced developers should ever use the plugin editor to modify a plugin’s files!