Check for WordPress Theme and Plugins Compatibility with PHP 7

It’s been over 7 months since the release of PHP 7, but only less than 2% of the total WordPress-powered sites are running PHP 7, per the statistics. By now, most hosting service providers would have added PHP 7 option in the hosting control panel for their customers. What’s so special about PHP 7?

The infographic by Zend.com above clearly shows the power of PHP 7, and who wouldn’t want a free 2x speed boost which PHP 7 provides (compared to 5.6)? Kinsta has a benchmark results page here, but they differ on the HHVM part. Anyway, this post isn’t about HHVM vs PHP 7.

If you’re using a framework or theme that hasn’t been updated for a long time, it’s better to change over to a premium / PHP 7 compatible theme. The same goes for WordPress Plugins. You don’t want to have an outdated Plugin slow down or crash your site after changing to PHP 7. Some PHP functions deprecated in 5.x are completely removed in PHP 7.

Before flipping the PHP 7 switch in your hosting Control Panel, you may first want to give the PHP Compatibility Checker Plugin a shot. This Plugin was released by WP Engine, one of the leading WordPress hosting providers. The PHP compatibility checker Plugin tells you if your current Theme and installed Plugins support PHP 7 or not. From the WordPress Admin dashboard, search for, and install the PHP Compatibility Checker (by WP Engine) and activate it.

PHP 7 compatibility checker

From the Tools menu and click PHP Compatibility. Select PHP 7 and click Run.

PHP 7 compatibility checker

In my test site, most of the active Plugins and the current Theme were listed compatible, except the premium Plugin supplied by the theme developer. It’s flagged as incompatible due to a single line of code which references a function that’s discontinued in PHP 7. If you have too many of such errors, contact your theme developer for an update.

PHP 7 compatibility checker



If you haven’t already upgraded to PHP 7, do it right now!

Interesting reading here

Getting Ready for PHP 7 | DigitalOcean

PHP 7: The Way Of The Future | WPEngine

The Definitive PHP 7 (Final Version) & HHVM Benchmark

PHP 7 Compatibility Checker: Prep Your Site For PHP 7 | WPEngine


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Ramesh Srinivasan is passionate about Microsoft technologies and he has been a consecutive ten-time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional award in the Windows Shell/Desktop Experience category, from 2003 to 2012. He loves to troubleshoot and write about Windows. Ramesh founded Winhelponline.com in 2005.

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