Plesk WordPress Toolkit

The Plesk WordPress Toolkit is a swiss army knife for admins needing to manage multiple WordPress instances on one server.

Whenever you are running several instances of WordPress, you will sooner or later get to the question how to manage them and keep them up to date and safe. The Plesk WordPress Toolkit can simplifiy this process. It offers a one-click installer and an interface which enables administrators to manage multiple WordPress instances.

Staging environments can be setup very quickly with the Plesk WordPress Toolkit.

Also, WordPress sites can be copied or synchronized. Without a management platform like the Plesk WordPress Toolkit, this can be a tedious task. Also, perorming such tasks manually implies a high risk of data losses or security holes.

Screenshot of the Plesk WordPress Toolkit site cloner

The Plesk WordPress Toolkit site cloner

But the Plesk WordPress Toolkit is also of great value in daily business:

Logged into Plesk, any WordPress admin customer can perform a Security Check with a following WordPress hardening. Some examples:

  • The WordPress Toolkit checks if there is a user with administrator rights and the login name’ admin’. If this is the case, the user name can be changed.
  • The Toolkit checks if the prefix for database table names is not’ wp_’. If this is the case, it can be fixed.
  • Plesk also checks and fixes unauthorized access scenarios to the wp-config file.
  • Another Security Check function deactivates the directory search.
  • Security settings for the folders wp-content and wp-includes are optimized
  • XML RPC Pingbacks can be disabled

… and more.

Screenshot of the Plesk WordPress Toolkit security check

The Plesk WordPress Toolkit security check

Moreover, the Plesk WordPress Toolkit helps in keeping WordPress core, theme and plugin files up to date.

Instances can be set to auto-update as soon as new patches are available, or the Plesk admin can perform updates manually. Thus, admins save a lot of time and trouble.

The WordPress Toolkit also provides

  1. WP-CLI
  2. maintenance mode
  3. debug management
  4. search engine index management

Even finding, selecting and installing plugins and themes becomes a lot easier. From version 3.3 on, the Plesk WordPress Toolkit includes filters which enables admins to find the right assets with ease.

There are two different versions of the Plesk WordPress Toolkit available:

WordPress Toolkit SE

(limited features – included with Plesk Web Admin Edition)

  • Install new WordPress instances
  • Add existing WordPress instances (Manual)
  • Migrate remote WordPress instances
  • Security Check: Read-only
  • 1-click hardening of WordPress: Only instances installed via the Toolkit
  • Mass management of WordPress instances
  • Manage plugins & themes
  • Updates for WordPress, plugins and themes: Manual updates

WordPress Toolkit

(all features of SE, but the following features on top, included with Plesk Web Pro EditionPlesk Web Host Edition)

  • Cloning a WordPress instance
  • Staging environment
  • Sync data between WordPress instances
  • Security Check: Full (also fixing the issues)
  • 1-click hardening of WordPress: not only instances installed via the Toolkit, but all instances on the server
  • Updates for WordPress, plugins and themes Manual updates and auto-updating
  • Maintenance mode management
  • Debug management
  • Password protection
  • Search engine indexing management

Personally, I have been using the full version with all features for several months now. Besides some smaller bugs in earlier versions:

I found Plesk WordPress Toolkit extremely helpful in managing a huge number of WordPress installs.

Summary
The Plesk WordPress Toolkit can simplifiy managing multiple WordPress sites on the same server. It offers a one-click installer and an interface which enables administrators to manage multiple WordPress instances.
Good
  • Install, stage, copy, clone WP sites
  • Complete update management of core, themes, plugins
  • Security check with automatic hardening
Bad
  • Smaller bugs from time to time
  • Compared to tools like InfiniteWP: no cross-server management
8.5
Great
Features - 9
Handling - 9
Price / Performance - 9
Reliability - 7
Written by
Bernhard has been working as a tech editor for 10 years, then became a communications specialist. In 2011, he founded his own agency Lots of Ways. He is blogging and working with WordPress since 2006.

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