WP CLI – Overview

WP CLI allows managing WordPress admin actions through the command line. Most of the actions we take from the admin area, especially tricky things, can be handled quickly via WP CLI.

Installing WP CLI

If you’re on a managed host, chances are high that it’s pre-installed. Run the below command from the terminal to check if WP CLI is installed.

wp --info

If WP CLI is installed, this will output the WP CLI version at the end. This article explains how to install WP CLI on various platforms The Complete Guide to Installing WP-CLI

Download or reinstall the WP core

wp core download

This will download the latest WordPress core zip from wp.org and extract it to the current folder.

  • --force will override the existing installation. If WP is installed on the same directory, wp core download will fail. That’s where the force flag is used.
  • --skip-content This flag is used to skip the wp-content folder while downloading core files. So default themes and plugins bundled with WordPress will be skipped.
  • --version The latest WordPress version gets installed if the version flag is not specified.

Whenever I need to reinstall WordPress core files, I do the following:

  • Check if core files are modified with wp core verify-checksums.
  • If checksums don’t match, I check the currently installed version number with wp core version , this is to avoid accidental core version updates.
  • Make sure the present working directory is public_html or web root. This is important. If we run wp core download from somewhere else, like 📁 wp-content/plugins folder, core files will be downloaded there, which doesn’t make sense.
  • Then, download the core with
wp core download --skip-content --force --version=[NUMBER]

Install Plugins and themes

wp plugin install woocommerce
wp theme  install astra

#To delete a plugin or theme
wp plugin delete woocommerce
wp theme  delete astra

#To deactivate a plugin or theme 
wp plugin deactivate woocommerce
wp theme  deactivate astraCode language: PHP (php)
  • --force is used to reinstall.
  • --skip-plugins and --skip-themes are used to skip the theme and plugin initialization. This avoids fatal errors from a theme or plugin preventing installation.
  • --activate will activate the plugin/theme after installation.
  • --version to specify the version number.

I usually do that when I need to reinstall the latest version of a plugin or theme:

wp plugin install woocommerce --force --skip-plugins --skip-themes

wp theme  install astra --force --skip-plugins --skip-themes

Reset user password

Sometimes the reset password email never reaches the inbox for various reasons. User password can be changed with WP CLI

wp user update 123 --user-pass=newpassCode language: Bash (bash)

123 is the user ID. Inseated of user ID, we can use user email or username. To get this info we can list the users with wp user list