Easier Way To Enable Or Disable Jetpack Modules With Rocketeer

One of the most common complaints from users of the Jetpack plugin is not being able to easily disable or enable modules. A new plugin called Rocketeer developed by Brady Vercher hopes to solve this problem. Rocketeer creates an interface in the back-end of WordPress similar to the plugin management page. With this interface, users can select multiple modules at one time and use the bulk actions menu to activate or deactivate them. After installing Rocketeer, you’ll find the module management menu under Jetpack – Modules. It’s worth noting that the minimum version of WordPress required for this plugin to function is WordPress 3.8 which is not yet available.

Rocketeer Module Management Page

In addition to being able to use the bulk actions editor, the modules are organized by categories such as free, premium, requires connection, etc. Rocketeer only works if the Jetpack plugin from Automattic is activated. In my opinion, this is a big improvement for managing modules in Jetpack.


19 responses to “Easier Way To Enable Or Disable Jetpack Modules With Rocketeer”

  1. I am delighted to learn about the improvement that Rocketeer brings to managing Jetpack modules. I will definitely try it.

  2. Doh! I installed it and was like, “It’s not working!” Requires WP 3.8. Not ready for production just yet.

    • Oh wow, that’s interesting. I used it on my local install which is using the bleeding edge version of WordPress 3.8 which is why I didn’t notice it. I’ll add that requirement to the post. Thanks!

  3. Thanks for the writeup, Jeffro! I wrote the plugin back on 3.6 and have been sitting on it for a couple months, but decided to get it out there in case anyone else might find it useful. It doesn’t actually require 3.8 and should work fine on earlier versions of WordPress, too.

  4. You know there is a problem when you have to install a third party plugin just to easily deactivate add-ons which shouldn’t be a FEATURE rather something that every plugin should have to provide a good user experience.

  5. I don’t know why some people want to disable Jetpack plugin. To me, it is the master of all plugins. I currently use it and it works cover the work of about 4 plugins combined.

    One fantastic aspect I love about it is the contact form. It looks professional. it can be viewed right on my contact page.

    Aside this, it has an excellent website security features that can help protect one’s wordpress blog.

  6. Yup, deactivating modules is a bit of a nuisance at the moment. Which is why we’ve been working on a new modules screen — still incomplete, but we hope to have it finalized by the end of the year. You can try our offering alongside the other here:


    It loads all the module data into Backbone and rebuilds the table on the fly based on the filtering selected above. It currently has a `cards` view and a `list-table` view — cards (spiritual successor to the current) is the default, but just append `&list_table=on` to the URL to try it with that view.

    If you’d rather just have an easier way to deactivate modules, though, give this one a spin:


    It’ll add a little `x` to the top right of your activated modules, that will let you deactivate them with a click. We had considered it for inclusion to Jetpack itself, but found people would accidentally click the X when they didn’t mean to, and a few other UX issues.

    Long story short, it is an issue that we’re certainly aware of and working on ways to resolve.

    As far as Rocketeer itself, it’s doing a couple things that it really shouldn’t.

    Firstly, when you deactivate the Jetpack plugin by default, it disconnects itself from WordPress.com. This is intentional, as Jetpack is a two-way connection. The JSON API, Site Uptime Monitor, and others need to know whether your Jetpack plugin is active or not — otherwise things can get troublesome. Rocketeer prevents this from happening … for no apparent reason.

    Secondly, it’s actually misleading when it says that Jetpack auto-activates new modules, without asking your permission. This plugin stops that. (linking to Mark’s Manual Control plugin) — Jetpack only auto-activates a modules that provide enhancements without affecting the front-end layout of the site. We’re very careful when we make the decision to auto-activate a new module — both of our latest modules, Single Sign On and Monitor, don’t auto-activate.

    And even then, they kick on only if we don’t detect that you have another plugin installed that duplicates or conflicts with that module’s functionality.

    So the implication that we’re recklessly activating anything that could do bad bad things really is a bit overstating the issue.

    All in all, though, I’m glad to see Rocketeer get released. It’s a great example of how folks can use all the hooks that we actively seek to include and build add-ons that enhance the experience for users — which, in the end, is the ultimate goal.

  7. @Brady Vercher – Hmm, I wonder why it’s not working for Ronald. Glad to hear it works for earlier versions.

    @James – It’s not that people want to disable the entire plugin. Users just want an easier way to manage all of the modules it comes with. A one step process for disabling/enabling modules is a good step towards solving that issue.

    @George Stephanis – Thank you George for chiming in on the discussion here. I will give the new Jetpack module layout your working on a try and report my experience compared to Rocketeer. Based on your observations, I hope Brady can chime in and explain why Rocketeer intercepts Jetpack notices.

  8. @George Stephanis – Hi George, Thanks for checking out Rocketeer. I wrote the plugin for my own use a couple months back to change a few things I didn’t like in Jetpack. Disconnecting on deactivation can be annoying during testing. I don’t remember if I actually got that working and thought it was commented out at one point, but Ben Lobaugh submitted a helpful pull request to remove it, so it’s already been taken care of. Opening an issue on GitHub would have been nice, though.

    The other thing you say Rocketeer is doing wrong is just a bit of help text, which was copied directly from the Manual Control plugin listing. Nothing purposefully misleading or implications of “bad bad things” being done on my part. However, auto-activation of any module has been a point of contention with many developers and tech-savvy clients I’ve worked with.

    @Jeffro – Rocketeer intercepts notices because it offloads the deactivation routine to Jetpack, then returns back to the module listing page. Jetpack actually has the functionality available, Rocketeer just exposes it to hopefully enhance the experience for folks who prefer the standard list table format.

  9. Hi guys
    Good discussion going here.

    I’m with Syed Balkhi on this one and I can’t think of anything in Jetpack that I’m desperate to have.

    Having said that my congratulations go out to Brady Vercher for coming up with a great plugin solution.

  10. @Ben Lobaugh – I think he was suggesting that I had opened the issue myself, rather than just commenting here.

    @Brady Vercher – Ben’s on the Jetpack team at Automattic with me, and I had suggested that he open the pull request as I was on other tasks at the time.

    New modules being available with an update happens with every bit of software, including WordPress Core, and there’s a few folks with a big axe to grind that misinterpret a lot of what we do, so I was just clarifying that we don’t auto-activate everything, only things that we believe to be safe and beneficial after giving each serious thought. Apologies if I took your intent as other than it was.

  11. @Brady Vercher – I can’t speak for Chip, but a few ideas might include:

    – fallback open graph image
    – disable comments on Carousel
    – auto-select/deselect Publicize checkboxes on Edit Post screen

    A full list of Jetpack Hooks can be found here. And the Jetpack tips & tricks blog has a few ideas & code samples that you might find useful.

    And thanks for contributing. While I can’t speak to the backend stuff that George mentioned, I love the way it works on the frontend.

  12. For my part, I think it’s better like that, do not bother to add another plugin for that. Why not just add a little message at the beginning to indicate that “if you want to disable a module, just click on” more info “?”
    What we need above all is the addition of a module for automatic publishing to Google+


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