WordPress Tip: Use the WP Local Dev Environment Plugin to Disable External Data Calls

photo credit: Orange Steeler - cc

When developing locally without an internet connection, it doesn’t make much sense for WordPress to load external files like fonts or Gravatars. This can slow you down unnecessarily.

WP Local Dev Environment is a plugin created by Andrew Norcross for developers who are working locally without an internet connection. It removes / unhooks the loading of external files to reduce load time and avoid errors due to missing files.

The plugin currently does three helpful things:

  • Replaces Open Sans CSS font file with a blank CSS file due to dependency issues
  • Replaces all instances of Gravatar with a local image to remove external call
  • Removes all HTTP requests

Norcross plans to continue adding improvements to the plugin and will remove more calls originating from core as he finds them. He’s also considering including other requests from popular plugins. If you have any feedback or would like to contribute, check out WP Local Dev Environment on GitHub.

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4 Comments


  1. Now that is what I call a useful plugin! Brilliant idea, on my way to check it out now. Thanks for featuring it here, Sarah!

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  2. thanks for the mention! This was something that came up during BeachPress that seemed like an idea worth having. I know there are other calls / pieces that I’m not aware of, so any pull requests would be welcome.

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  3. This is exactly what I’ve been needing for soooo long now. Thank you Andrew for putting it together.

    I often work in a local dev environment at the end of a really slow connection. There’s nothing more frustrating than your local dev site loading just as slow as if you were building it on a remote server.

    Brilliant.

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