To Free Up Resources, Plugin Review Team Begins Closing Unused Plugins

In an effort to free up resources on, the WordPress Plugin Review Team is closing unused plugins. An unused plugin is one that has been approved for the directory but no code was uploaded by the developer in six months or more.

An unused plugin reserves a URL slug on and prevents others from using it. It also takes resources away from active plugins. In addition, if plugin authors are submitting multiple plugins without taking advantage of the resources offers, submissions from that author will be suspended. provides plugin authors free hosting as a convenience and is not a listing service. Mika Epstein, a member of the plugin review team, says that some people have taken advantage of the submission process to receive a code audit, “We’ve found out some people like to get a review as a ‘free’ security review instead of hiring people for that work.”

To find out what happens when a plugin is closed and how to close a plugin you maintain, check out this guide in the Plugin Developer FAQ. Also, if you want to use a plugin name that’s currently held by a closed, unused plugin, you can request to take over the slug by contacting the review team.


20 responses to “To Free Up Resources, Plugin Review Team Begins Closing Unused Plugins”

  1. They should also start removing plugins that were not updated for 5 or more years. Current plugins number looks high, but, number of active plugins are much lower. They started marking outdated plugins few years ago, but, that ultimatively did nothing to really cleanup the repository.

  2. “We’ve found out some people like to get a review as a ‘free’ security review instead of hiring people for that work”

    So for many non-commercial plugins you require authors to spend money on something which they not benefit financially ?

    • You did not understand clearly : the code was reviewed by the team but was never uploaded on the depot. So the developer had a free check but did not share any work. So, it’s not a “non-commercial” plugin as it’s not distributed in the depot. And, worse, it can be a commercial plugin.

    • The main issue with that is: There are quite a few plugins around which simply DO NOT NEED updating.

      Eg. Regenerate Thumbnails got no updates for over 6 years – because it was working flawlessly. Only after excessive head shaking and strong nudging, the original author started overhauling it.

      IWhen looking at its usage statistics, you see that quite a bunchload of users still prefer the 2.x releases. Which might be a) one doesnt trust the rewrite or b) the 2.x AGES OLD release still works flawlessly even in the current WP nightly builds.

      Of corpse, I do understand that nowadays, folks think that updates are an indicator if a piece of software has been or has not been abandoned for good. Which is well-meaning, but shortsighted. Because: NTARS.

      cu, w0lf.

  3. What about providing notifications in WP admin backend plugins list if a plugin has not been updated for 1, 2, 5 years or has been removed or suspended from repository? With maybe a vertical color bar left/right in yellow, orange, red, purple or similar?

    That would really be helpful.

  4. That’s a good move. I’ve seen several plugins that haven’t been updated for years, and that are still downloadable. Some still work, most don’t. They also pose security risks to WordPress users. Hopefully, this will force plugin authors to keep their plugins updated.


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