How to Fix WordPress 5.5 Update Issues? (2 Easy Solutions)

Last week, Automattic rolled out WordPress 5.5, the latest version of the famous CMS. If you are facing problems after updating to this new version, we have got some solutions for you. In this article, we are going to show you how to fix the WordPress 5.5 update issues in 2 simple ways!

Why are there problems with the WordPress 5.5 update?

The WordPress 5.5 update brought many changes to the core. The most important one is the removal of the jQuery Migrate 1.x. Even though WordPress suggested its community to get ready for this big jQuery update, this new version caught many developers not as prepared as they should have been. As a result, the update broke many websites and left many users with problems on their sites.

What are the issues with WordPress 5.5?

There are five major issues with the latest version of WordPress:

1) Classic Editor

When Automattic rolled out version 5.0, it came with a brand new editor called Gutenberg. However, they have also released the Classic Editor plugin to remove Gutenberg from a site and bring back the old-style WordPress editor.

If you check this plugin in the WordPress repository, you will see it has more than 5 million active installations, making it one of the most popular plugins out there.

The problem is that after the recent update to WordPress 5.5, the classic editor stopped working properly. Users reported that the Text Editor was working but the Visual Editor wasn’t. The Visual Editor is the beginner-friendly method for creating content. So if you’re a developer this may not be a big issue. However, creating posts and pages via the text editor might be tricky for beginners because it requires some basic HTML knowledge.

3) Issues with plugins and themes

Additionally, there were many other issues with plugins and themes. The update in the JavaScript library has created many issues for sites that were using plugins or themes with outdated code. Even though you can expect the developers to fix these issues, in the meantime there are many plugins and themes that no longer function properly.

3) Featured Images

Apart from these problems with the visual editor, some users also reported that the featured images weren’t working after the update.

4) Pagination issues

Some users also reported that WordPress 5.5 causes problems with pagination on some websites. This affects both navigation and user experience on the site.

5) Problems with sitemaps

WordPress 5.5 also has a sitemap bug that affects some sites that have native WordPress sitemaps. The bug creates non-existent sitemap pages and mainly affects websites that need more than one XML sitemap. However, the good news is that WordPress is aware of this and will release a new version 5.5.1 that fixes the bug on September 1st.

So, if you’re experiencing these or any other issues, you’ve come to the right place. In this guide, we’ll show you 2 easy ways to fix the WordPress 5.5 update problems.

How to fix WordPress 5.5 update issues?

There are two main methods to fix issues with the WordPress 5.5 update:

  1. Enable jQuery Migrate Helper plugin
  2. Downgrade to an older version of WordPress

In this guide, we will show you both so you can choose the best for your site.

If you aren’t able to log in to your WordPress site and access the backend, the plugins might be triggering that issue. To solve this, create an FTP account, log in to your file manager, and deactivate all the plugins renaming the plugins folder. You can do the same for themes.

If you need more information about this, check out our step-by-step guide on how to deactivate all WordPress plugins.

NOTE: Before any major updates like this one, we recommend generating a complete backup of your site. Compatibility issues like these are pretty common, so if you face any problems after the update, you can restore the previous version. This way you’re better prepared and can get your site up and running until the plugins and themes fix all the bugs and compatibility issues.

1) Use jQuery Migrate Helper

The first solution to fix the WordPress 5.5 update issues is to use jQuery Migrate Helper. WordPress’ update removes the jQuery Migrate 1.x so this plugin will help you fix that. This tool acts as a kind of bridge that allows older code to function on the new version of WordPress.

In WordPress 5.5, the migration tool called jquery-migrate isn’t enabled by default. So, if your theme or plugins haven’t been updated, they will show errors and compatibility issues with the latest version of WordPress.

jQuery Migrate Helper is a free tool that will give you an excellent solution until the developers fix the problems with the plugins and themes. This plugin enables the jquery-migrate script and is able to connect with the migration script, fixing the issues with the plugins and themes.

So, to install jQuery Migrate Helper, in your WordPress dashboard go to Plugins > Add New. Then, search for Enable jQuery Migrate Helper and activate it.

This plugin doesn’t need any additional set up so once you activate it, it will enable the jquery-migrate script and fix the WordPress 5.5 update issues.

It’s important to note that Enable jQuery Migrate Helper doesn’t actually fix the problems on your site. However, it will help you get it back and running until the plugins or themes that aren’t compatible with WordPress 5.5 receive an update.

2) Downgrade to an older version of WordPress

Another potential solution to fix the compatibility issues with WordPress 5.5 is to downgrade WordPress to an older version. This doesn’t solve the bottom of the issue but it gives you more time to find out what’s going on or to wait for a plugin or theme update.

You can downgrade to an older version of WordPress in two different ways:

  • Manually
  • Using the WP Downgrade plugin

Downgrading WordPress manually is pretty hard and time-consuming. You need to download the ZIP file of the stable WordPress version to your local storage, upload it through the file manager or an FTP client, make changes to the wp-config.php, and other core files and so on.

Considering that with WP Downgrade you can change the WordPress version in a simple click, for this tutorial, we will show you how to downgrade WordPress using this plugin.

Downgrade WordPress with WP Downgrade

The first thing you need to do is install and activate WP Downgrade on your website.

Fix WordPress 5.5 update issues - Install WP Downgrade

After that, under the WordPress settings page, you will see the plugin’s configuration menu.

When you click it, you will see only one configuration option where you can choose which WordPress version you want to use.

Before continuing, we recommend you create a full backup of your site if you haven’t done it yet.

The plugin will automatically detect the current WordPress version and language you’re using. And above that, you can enter the target WordPress version which you are planning to use. Keep in mind that you need to write the exact WordPress version number. If you’re not sure about the version numbers, check out the WordPress releases section.

As we’re using WordPress 5.5 and have issues after the update, we are going to downgrade our CMS to the stable version 5.4. So, in the WordPress Target Version field, enter 5.4, and then save the changes.

Fix WordPress 5.5 update issues - Downgrade

After that, you’ll see a text confirming that the change has been made and that’s it. You should be running on the 5.4 version now!

This change should fix the compatibility issues after updating to WordPress 5.5. If you’re not happy with your site’s performance, you can always downgrade or upgrade to any WordPress version you want using this plugin.

It’s worth noting that downgrading your WordPress version won’t solve the compatibility issues with WordPress 5.5 but at least it will give you more time to fix your plugins or themes or wait for an update.

Bonus – Check Your PHP Version

If you are running on an outdated version of PHP, you will probably have problems with the WordPress 5.5 update. This is because PHP versions like 5.4 aren’t optimized anymore. That’s why we recommend you use the latest version of PHP on your server.

To check your PHP version, go to your cPanel and look for the PHP Version under Software. There, you will be able to upgrade to the latest PHP version.

The location of the option to upgrade PHP depends on the hosting company so if you can’t find it, contact them.

What if your plugins/themes have problems with WordPress 5.5?

Finally, if you have developed plugins/themes and they aren’t working properly after the update to WordPress 5.5, we have a solution for you. Test jQuery Update is an official plugin developed by the WordPress team that will help you test different versions of jQuery and jQuery UI before updating them. Even though it is not intended for use in production, it can help you fix compatibility issues with WordPress 5.5.

Problems with lazy loading?

One of the main new features of the WordPress 5.5 update is that images are lazy-loaded by default. Even though this helps you save bandwidth, some users have reported having problems with it. This happens because some plugins already implement lazy loading. So the update to WordPress 5.5 can cause conflicting functionality.

If the plugin that’s generating the issues hasn’t been updated yet and you’re having problems after updating to WordPress 5.5, we have a solution for you. You can either deactivate the plugin that’s causing issues or disable the WordPress 5.5 lazy loading functionality with this free tool.

Conclusion

All in all, the WordPress 5.5 update has come with big changes that may cause issues on your site. Users have reported problems with the classic editor, featured images, pagination, and many issues with plugins and themes. If that’s your case, there are two main solutions to fix these issues:

  1. Use Enable jQuery Migrate Helper plugin
  2. Downgrade WordPress to an older version

jQuery Migrate Helper will serve as a temporary fix enabling plugins and themes to work with WordPress 5.5 until the developers update the tools. Downgrading WordPress, on the other hand, isn’t a definitive solution but will get your site up and running until all compatibility issues have been solved.

Are you experiencing any issues after the WordPress 5.5 update? Let us know in the comment section below!

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