Introducing Automatic Dashboard Updates For All Our Themes And Plugins

Posted on December 23, 2013 by in Theme Changes/Bug Fixes | 177 comments

Introducing Automatic Dashboard Updates For All Our Themes And Plugins

Today, we are very excited to announce a new feature that has been heavily requested by our community for some time. All of our themes and plugins now support seamless, automatic updates from within the WordPress Dashboard. From now on, you can update our themes and plugins just like you would any other theme that you have downloaded from the repository. Just click “update” and you’re done! No longer will you need to re-download and re-install our themes when a new version is released.

We understand the importance of keeping things up-to-date. To ensure security and compatibility, you should always be using the latest versions of your themes and plugins. For this reason, it is important for us to make the process of updating our themes as easy as possible. For developers especially, who manage many installations for their clients, keeping your customers updated will now be a breeze.

Using The Elegant Updater Plugin

Before you can enable automatic updates, you must first authenticate your Elegant Themes subscription using the Elegant Themes Updater Plugin. Once authenticated, you can update your Elegant Themes using the standard update interface in WordPress.

To authenticate your WordPress installation, you must first download and install the Elegant Themes Updater. Download the ZIP file here, and then install it via the Plugins > Add New link in your WordPress Dashboard. Once it has been installed and activated, navigate to the Settings > General tab and scroll to the bottom of the page. You will notice that a new section has been added called “Elegant Themes Automatic Update Settings.” Here you will need to input your Elegant Themes Username as your Elegant Themes API Key. You can find your Elegant Themes API Key here. Once both fields have been filled in, click the “Save Changes” button. You can now update your theme when a new version has been released via the Dashboard > Updates page, or via the Appearances > Themes page.

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  1. yes! Thanks, today is a happy day 🙂

    • Oh, yes it is!!!!

    • THankS!!

  2. You make me cry! best xmas gift I have received!

    • I AGREE

  3. Christmas gift to all Elegant Themes user.

  4. More and more I am getting the feeling that you guys are seriously overdelivering. This is really awesome and you just made a lot of people happy Nick and team!

    • +1

  5. Thanks guys, you´re awesome

  6. It was needing this. It was annoying to have to download and upload the theme updates whenever they went out. Now everything is much simpler. Thanks ET. Definitely, I will renew my subscription. Although, how I can update my subscription to Lifetime Access plan?

  7. This is good news!

    How does it work with a multisite install? It doesn’t appear to be possible to authenticate it in the multisite Dashboard. Does it need to be network-activated, and then authenticated within each site? (Or just the primary site…?)

    • Yes, you will need to network activate the plugin and then go the main site’s dashboard settings to input your credentials. Then you can update themes in Network Admin or the main site.

      • Great works guys! Works perfectly!

      • Why not just have it so it only needs activated on the main site? Network activated, it’s running code on every site’s admin, but they’re receiving no benefit from it.

      • Hi – I tried all of the above yet I still have no option to bring update my theme on the dashboard. Can you help me? Thanks.

  8. Hi guys,
    Sounds really good, thanks!

  9. Yes, great feature! Love it!

  10. Absolutely the missing link to making ET top-of-the-line!

  11. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I’ve been asking for this for three years!


  12. This is FANTASTIC! ET is only becoming better. Thanks and have a great Christmas!

  13. Awesome! I have been wanting this feature since I first began using elegant themes 2+ years ago.


  14. Many, many thanks!

    Are you planning to deliver this plugin packed with the themes themselves?

    Happy Christmas everyone!

    • No, it wont be packaged with the themes. It’s best as a separate plugin.

      • I agree, keep it as a separate plugin, even when your customers are asking for additional features, please consider making them as plugins rather than in the theme.

        Thanks for this amazing update!!! I was not expecting you to have it ready so fast since my last comment.

        You have finalized my company of choice and I cannot see myself needing another theme company at all.

        Btw: I do see divi becoming your flagship theme, You almost don’t need for anymore new themes but rather just new module’s for the divi theme itself.

        You can take this further by having new *themes* as pre-made layout options instead if you know what I mean.

        Keep up the great work!

      • Thanks for the plugin, this is one of the long awaited featured I’ve been waiting for.

        1. I don’t see any reason why this plugin shouldn’t be included in the theme since all themes need to be updated to the latest version.

        2. Alternatively, you could “bundle” this plugin with the theme. Take a look at TGM Activation plugin. It allows you to auto-activate any external plugin when you activate a theme.

        3. Probably you should mention in this article about the importance of using child theme. I’m afraid that some users forgot to backup the changes made to the theme before updating the theme.

  15. This is fantastic! Thanks so much for doing this!


    (Which is Dutch for YES! only louder and more happy 🙂

    Thanks ET-Team, you guys ‘n gals have grown so much since I ‘met’ you three years ago. Really cool to witness that.

    Merry Christmas to you all!

  17. What a big help!

    Is incredible how far can go your support ET. Really useful plugin for anyone who manage more than one site. Many thanks for all the helpful advice, of course, for the amazing theme Divi. Nick, take a break, finally enjoy the Christmas holidays. MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL.

    • Thanks 🙂 We’ll be taking a break soon!

  18. Quick workaround for those using WordPress Multisite:
    Network activate the plugin, go to your main site, put your ET credentials into the Settings >> General pane, update whatever needs updating, and then deactivate the plugin.

    It isn’t ideal, but it works.

    • Update: For WordPress Multisite, the easiest way to use this is probably as follows: Activate the plugin on your main site, enter your credentials in Settings >> General, and then use the network administration panel to update themes and plugins as you would normally.

  19. Wonderfull. Thanks a lot

  20. OH MY…what an awesome Christmas gift!

    • This could mean that there is a file or folder with permissions that do not allow WordPress to delete it. You can check via FTP to see what’s left inside your theme folder. If you edited the theme, or uploaded it manually, there may be permission issues.

  21. Okay, really? This is too much to take in one month. Next year is going to be automatically, elegantly awesome – thanks too all my new Elegant Themes!

  22. Yeah!!!! Great news!!!!!, thanks to all developers, really a great gift of christmas!!!!

  23. Will you need to authenticate for every update as they are released or is it a one-time authentication?

    • You only need to authenticate your accounts once.

  24. Now I’m worried. How long before our membership fees go up?! All these amazing new features and themes… it won’t be long before Nick figures out how much better he and his team are then the rest 🙂

    Cheers, and thank you! Merry Christmas!

  25. The auto-update will overwrite any changes made to the original theme code itself, yes? (For example, if I’ve edited the footer.php code, and am not using a child theme.)

    • Yes, as with updating your theme manually, you will lose any changes you have made to the actual theme files. In the future, it’s a much better idea to create a child theme.

  26. Awesome. Been waiting for this for a long time.

  27. Wow Wow! AWESOME! I suggested this in a ticket earlier this year to have an updater plugin where members can login to update the ET theme. I was told it was a nice idea. Beware what you wish for because wishes can come true.

    Great Job as always!

  28. Nicely done! great tradeoff between ease-of-use and viable security for the product.

  29. Great work! You guys rock! …. Awesomeness now achieved. 😛

  30. Now this is cool! Thanks for the nice Christmas gift!
    Quick question: Do I need to keep the plugin active all the times, or can I turn it off when not in use and save some memory?

    Thanks again Nick and team, and Merry Christmas everyone!

    • You can turn it off if you like, but I would not worry about it using server resources.

  31. Thank you so much ! I am dancing a happy dance right now…this is fantastic 🙂

  32. Thanks very much, I just updated a theme through the process and it was a smooth experience. But can you still update theme if your membership expires?

    • Theme updates are only available to active members, which is the same policy we have had in the past.

  33. Hi Guys – great! Please post instructions for “official” use with Multisite.
    Much appreciated.

  34. Thanks for the Christmas gift.

  35. Thank you!

  36. Very Nice! and Thank you!!
    Now the child themes needs to be used 😀

    Muy best wishes!

    Happy Holidays!!


  37. Would you go over using Child Themes in brief please? I often tweak header and footer AND style.css with alternate sizes and colors. How would I do this via a child them so auto updates do not spoil my customization please?

      • Nick, did you know that this blog post isn’t showing up in your Blog feed @ ? Just thought I’d let you know.

        • Nevermind….it was a caching issue. I did a hard refresh and it showed up. But note that I have the normal Chrome cache settings, so I think it might be a caching plugin that you’re using…just a head’s up.

  38. Fantastic… Really happy to hear this 🙂

  39. That worked totally fine – thanks for the great gift, Nick! 🙂

  40. Thanks for the wonderful Christmas gift! Elegant Themes keeps getting better and better — can’t wait to play around with Divi over the holidays!

  41. I have a site where a few things have been modified in the header, footer, css.styles, custom css. I didn’t create a child theme. If I do so now, do I copy and paste the code in the appearance custom css? I’m assuming I don’t have to.

    I may not remember all the modified files. Should I just copy over all the files I see in the editor? I’ll back everything up first, but there are so many files other than the styles.css. Hate to blow up my hard work.

    • Art: First thing is, sit back and relax before touching anything. Usually you can get by with just dealing with the CSS. Copy the whole CSS file to your child theme folder. Later you can use a file compare program to find where you made alterations, then change the updated file as well. That’s where most of your alterations were probably made. Then you probably changed the footer.php file for modifying the copyright line in the footer. You can put the whole file in the child theme folder. Maybe you changed the functions.php file. If you commented out the changes here, you can easily copy them over to the new functions.php file and then save that to your child theme folder. The bottom line is the changes to update themes don’t change the files I’ve mentioned here. So, once they are in your child theme folder you should be good to go. Make a site backup before you do all of this so you are covered – just in case.

  42. From spain , a man very happy !!!!!!

  43. This was so easy to implement! Turns out I was a VERY VERY VERY VERY VERY VERY VERY good girl this year!! Thanks Elegant Themes. How many wins do you guys plan to go for this month? !

  44. This is the BEST GIFT you could give! Thank You SOOO MUCH!


    Happy Holidays!

  45. This is a great new update for updating the themes. I just installed it on 5 of my websites, and they updated beautifully. All my themes are child themes, so nothing was damaged in my sites. Excellent work! This was a long time coming.

  46. Awesome, much appreciated ! Happy Holidays guys and girls.

  47. good job works fine 🙂

  48. This is awesome! Between Divi itself, the 12 days of Divi, and now this, you guys are blowing me away these last couple of weeks!

  49. Awesome. Nick, you and the team continue to kill it on every front. Updating has always been a trial. Thanks much for making this happen.

  50. This is the best Gift this Year



  51. Awesome. Thanks guys – this is exactly what we need. Now, about those child themes….. LOL!

  52. You guys have made me very very happy 🙂 This has just about made your themes pretty much perfect.

    Hope you all have a wonderful christmas and new year. May 2014 be bright.

    Thanks, Ellen.

  53. Just updated my themes! Thank you so much guys! Merry Christmas! 😀

  54. Tremendous ! 😮

  55. Cool! ThanX & Merry Xmas!

  56. stunning…thanks for the update…!!merrry christmas…!!

  57. This is THE plugin that I have been waiting for all my life. Thank you Nick and Team. You have topped my list of awesomest people of all times.

  58. This is something we all waiting to have. Thank you guys!

  59. Excellent news for Christmas! What a great job they are doing! Thanks to Nick and his team.

    Greetings from Spain Corrupt

  60. What a great christmas gift 🙂
    Merry Christmas to all from Denmark

  61. Thanks guys for excellent work! Merry X-mas 🙂

  62. Time to celebrate!! Thank you so much

  63. Very Handy 🙂

    Have some nice holidays…

  64. Thank you so much. The only thing I didn’t like about elegant themes was the manual update. Now all is well.

  65. Nick, awesome update! Now Elegant Themes are truly elegant! 😀

  66. Got the same problem. I can’t use the auto update :/

    I’ve tried to change the Divi folder in themes to 777,775 and 755 without any luck.
    After the wordpress error message are shown for the auto-update can’t be done, this error are showed:

    Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/xxx/ on line 988

    What could be wrong? WordPress’s own themes autoupdate dose work for me.

    The theme was installed by using wordpress’s upload function for themes. So I did not manually drag-and-drop trow files into a FTP client.

    • Sorry to hear that you are having trouble. If you open a ticket in our support forums then we will be able to help you more easily.

      • I will create one right away – and Marry Christmas to you Nick! 🙂

        • Why you don’t put the solution here to can see everybody? I’m a old customer of your products and i have similar problems..

          /home/username/public_html/wp-content/themes/thesource/epanel/custom_functions.php on line 786

  67. mucho cool, always thought that feature should have been in the get go. Kudos for adding that in.Thanks!

  68. Finally, way to go Elegant Themes! The easiest to use and the best now even better.

  69. NICE!

  70. Very Nice Christmas Present. This is a huge time saver for me and I ‘m sure everyone else! Thank You and Merry Christmas! You have out done yourself in 2013!!

  71. Great feature! Love it!

  72. Thanks guys, life got a lot easier.

  73. OMG this is the best gift ever! And so easy! Thank you Thank you!

  74. ohh ..thanks for the updates…!!The easiest to use and the best now even better.:-)

  75. Good idea – but implemented in a one-administrator-per-website way?

    There seems no support for WordPress’s centralised network features (i.e. one administrator being able to update all/selected ET themes across the network via the wp-admin/network control panel). This is how WordPress’s Network / Updates feature works.

    I’ve discussed this issue more in my ticket here:

    • It’s possible, we will update your ticket.

      • Hi: I’m having the same problem. Excited to make this work. I’s a great feature.

        Is it possible to view this ticket or get the information sent to me as well?


  76. Super 🙂

    Now we just need to get rid of the save settings thing to activate the theme ?

    All the best

  77. I’ve been hoping for something like this as long as I’ve been a member of ET. Thanks for making it happen! This is a big time saver long term.

    Tested it out today on my own personal blog to update to the latest Nexus, and it worked great.

  78. Very good news! Excellent gift! Very thanks & happy holidays!

  79. Best. Update. EVAR!!

  80. Great feature! Love it..!!

  81. Good evening all

    This is a great tool, as everyone else has been saying. However, I’m just wondering, as I use a centralised WordPress Management tool (Infinite WP – whether it is possible to code my API and Username into the plugin somehow?

    I’m looking through it at the moment, but I thought if I asked you might have a quicker answer.

    Many thanks
    Andy 🙂

  82. THIS IS AWESOME!! Thanks guys!

  83. Love, love how ET is always improving current user experience. I have only had my membership for a week and I am in love with how easy your team is making it even for those that are beginners with WP to be able to customize a website using one of your themes along with all the perks!

  84. THANK YOU for the update plugin! This really simplifies things for me across my websites using Elegant Themes, and is the main feature I’ve wished existed. Thank you Thank you!

  85. Thank you, this is great but how can one know what is new?

    I received the message: You have version 1.9 installed. Update to 2.0.

    I need to know what was changed in order to decide what to do.

    • In the Appearances > Themes section, there is a changelog for the theme. There is also a changelog in the members area (see the “changelog” link for each theme when you login).

  86. Thanks for this Nick. Held off implementing until the Christmas wrapping paper massacre was cleared from the house. Working well and also great it is works from my MainWP dashboard which is going to remove a lot of hard work.

    Any thoughts on why some some themes that are using a child theme don’t show up as needing (or having) an update available?

    Congrats on 2013 and well done to Team ET!


  87. This was the only feature I really wanted from you guys! Makes my life SO much easier! I have been using InfiniteWP to update all my sites using Elegant Themes at once, but still had to come in and download new ones each time, so having the “one click update” now will be so much easier! Much appreciated!

  88. Hello,
    If I update my theme via updater, will my translated .po file disappear?


  89. Hi Nick and ET crew!

    Thanks for this feature!

    I think the theme updater inside the WordPress dashboard is a feature that a lot of ET customers were waiting for a long time.

    No more deleting and uploading “the old way”.

    Keep up the good work!

    Best regards.

  90. Is it possible to add google maps?

  91. this beautiful plugin saves time.
    why not download private area?

  92. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you for fulfilling my long time wish… Look forward to more and more improvement on ET… Kudos!

  93. Thank you for this. But EVERY TIME I install it on a site I have to go to Google, find this page and figure out where to enter the API key!

    Can you please consider moving this to Settings > Elegant API

    …or something better? Where we can find it when we want to enter the API.

    Because this allows THEMES to be updated then it would be more useful in the Themes area… or at least when the updater is installed on each theme put a link to the setting or a note like , “Hey, we hid the API field on the General Settings page or your installation–that’s where you’ll find it instead of in it’s own Settings page.”

    All plugins which require an API follow a standard where you can go to that plugin’s setting’s (which are easy to find by name!), and enter the API there.

    Hiding the API setting under the General settings is putting it in the wrong place–where all of the WordPress Site General Settings belong–not plugin settings.


  94. Will this work when using a child theme? Will it update the parent them, activate then switch to using the child theme?

  95. Please add this plugin to the downloads page so its easy to find. This blog will get harder to find as it gets buried beneath all your other great blogs.



  96. Happy about this, thanks!

  97. Howdy Mr Roach,

    To yse the update plug-in, this lovely gift, I do not have to upgrade to the plug-in access, do I? If so, where in the php script may I manuallyI ad my API key?


    • *use

    • You don’t need to upgrade. How to use and download the plugin is outlined in this post.

  98. Hi Elegant Themes,

    I have the divi theme installed at one of my wordpress blogs. But its not active. I tried to update the Divid theme anyway after successfully installing the elegant themes updater. It said my api was not correct. Will this be fixed after I activate the divi theme? Great plugin! I updated divi on two other blogs with it, its great. 🙂

  99. Hi

    I recently purchased Divi theme for one of my client. Am big fan of Elegant themes. The plugin is awesome am damn sure it will make things easier. Thanks

  100. Hola, ayer compre el tema wordpress Chameleon en
    Lo instale y funciona bien, pero dice que la actualización del tema se debe hacer manual, por lo que hay que ingresar un API KEY, el cual solo se obtiene con un nombre de usuario y pasword en
    ¿Cómo obtengo estos datos? Ya que en Mojo market place no me entregaron ningún nombre de usuario ni pasword.

  101. What a shame, I only just recognized that the automatic updater is available. Waited so long… Great!

  102. Good job. Thanks for this one. Would be good if I didn’t need to raise a support request to find this link tho. On multi-sites, the username/api-key settings should show up in the network dashboard settings, not the settings for an individual site since theme updates take place from the network dash.

    All said and done, this plugin is a blessing. Thanks again.

    • Yes, could you please put it in the plugins section?

    • Or even better include it in each theme! 🙂

  103. I would love to see this plugin on the plug in page. It would be easier to find.


    And thanks for it… makes the maintenance much easier.

  104. ElegantThemes is worth every penny! Thanks for this.

  105. Hi I am gabriel Patagonia Argentina, I wanted to ask, if I pay for the version developer of one year only, subsequent years next if you do not pay, downloaded themes remain without update, that means they can keep running or blocked, I can continue working with these templates? excuse the question’m new to this lol Thanks


    • If you subscription expires, you can continue to use the themes you have already downloaded. However, you will not be able to update them to the latest version.

  106. Nice plugin – Why would you not list it here or even in our members area? I had to find out about its existence via support ticket…

  107. This is weird…I’ve followed the tutorial carefully, but really cannot see anything flowing down the update page, although theme updates from (ie twenty fifteen and so on) work like a charm…

  108. Just a suggestion,

    You might want to consider adding a link to the updater plugin under the members section, Themes, Plugin Downloads section.

  109. You might want to add this to the lists of plugins you can download…… i have to search for this blog everything i need it.

  110. First, it would be great to find the Elegant theme update in plugin list when logged.

    Secondly, when theme updates doesn’t work, verify the folder name of your theme because updater is case sensitive.
    For exemple, I had my Divi folder in lower case ‘divi’ and updater didn’t find updates. When folder named ‘correctly’ as ‘Divi’, updater works.
    Hope it will be fixed by Elegantthemes Team.

    Maybe it’ll help some people with the same issue. 😉

  111. The Elegant Themes Updater does not download as a zip file for me. It uploads as elegant-themes-updater.php
    Can you email me the zip file?

    • If you are using Safari to download the file, then you will need to re-zip it (as the browser automatically unzips things you download).

  112. You might want to add this to the lists of plugins you can download in the members section…… i had to search for this blog entry to find it.

  113. Having issues on every site I’ve used the updater plugin on, consistently pooch screws the appearance of thumbnails to make a stylize shadow box where thumbnail should be but the full image imposes itself on the page. Does not look good and don’t know how to fix this so I have rolled back to the previous backup.

  114. As pointed out before, users who have this feature/plugin turned on but setup incorrectly are blocked from updating non-elegant themes products (like our Sermon Manager). Can your plugin please be fixed so that it does not interfere with unrelated plugins or themes?

    To see for yourself that this is causing problems with lots of unaffiliated plugins just search Google for “your elegant themes username or API key is incorrect”

  115. If it’s not going to be included in the list of plugins for download then at least make people aware of where to find it.

    The LINK to the updater plugin needs to be added to the theme options panel so people will know where to get it.

    Also, the various conflicts people are reporting needs to be addressed either in an update to the plugin, or providing instructions for a workaround.

    • Why is it not included in the download list? Or support?

      Currently I keep downloading it from this old article. But this way, I’m never sure if I have the latest version. Divi (on all my sites) will not auto update anymore. Maybe a new version has a fix for this problem?

      I hope Nick reads this and is willing to answer.

      • Yes, it should be much easier for members to find the updater plugin! It only makes sense that it would be with the other plugin downloads.

  116. RFE: Change the API settings field in the dashboard to a password field.

    This way other users see ******* instead of the actual API key … This prohibits illegal use by others.

    Looking forward to you reaction.

    Kind regards,


    • I too am worried about the easy access to the API key and username. At the moment anybody with admin privileges can view it and steal it if they wish. how can we protect our access if we want to use this plugin without savvy clients misusing our membership?

  117. thanks for post, i really like it.

  118. What about (In Divi 2.6) including this in the theme? That would be cool. I’m not sure how a plugin could go into a theme and work correctly though. I don’t create the themes (yet), but it would be helpful. Thanks for this EXTREMELY helpful plugin!

  119. Firstly thanks for the plugin…

    Then WTF….

    I really can not believe that after nearly two years this plugin is still hard to find, despite so many requests by people to move it to the plugin download page.

    I recently joined ET and have no had much chance to use Divi, I had set up a test site and thought today I would try and create a new site using it. I noticed on the theme is was saying I could update automatic – But How?

    Google is your friend highlighting the text I searched and found this post / link, but I like many more before me, do wonder why I did not know of it when I first joined.

    How does this work with wp site managers like MainWP – how would you update 50 sites on various servers without having to log into each one?

    How Automatic is the Automatic UpdateUpdate plugin?


    • Our automatic plugin’s purpose is to make sure that you don’t have to leave the dashboard to update your Elegant Themes and plugins. If you are using a plugin like MainWP you can update our themes and plugins just like any other from the official WordPress repository.

      • Thank you for the reply.

        Still managing to ignore an explanation as to why the plugin is hard to find & not on the plugin page.

        Yes I can confirm that MainWP did detect the update required and ran the update successfully. – It can sometimes take an hour or two to find updates that show in the site dashboard.

        • Yes indeed, why isn’t this plugin on the Plugins page? I can never find this easily. I’ve been asking for this for well over a year. Why is this so difficult?

      • Any reason why this is not on the plugins page along with all the other ET plugins? I use Google each time I need to get this updater plugin. Seems a little odd. I also have no easy way to know if the plugin itself has been updated… for instance, to resolve the issue that it currently displays my API key in the open to my clients.

        • Same here…….. i have to search for thid post EVERY time i create a new et site! come on guys!

  120. Hello, I have been using Elegant Themes for the past one year, I am wondering why the “Elegant Themes Updater” is not been updated for a long time, Since I couldn’t find no other version release after “Elegant Themes Updater” Version 1.1

    Please Advise, Is it “SECURE”, If I use this “Elegant Themes Updater” version 1.1 on all my wordpress sites????

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