Update jQuery Migrate in WordPress 5.5

Don’t Panic! Fixing jQuery Migrate Issues in WordPress 5.5

The release of WordPress 5.5 brought some major changes that could potentially break sites relying on outdated code. Specifically, the jQuery Migrate plugin was removed from the WordPress core. This change has left many site owners scrambling to deal with sudden JavaScript errors and compatibility issues.

While this may sound daunting, resolving these jQuery Migrate problems is totally manageable with the right approach. This guide will provide WordPress users with an in-depth look at why these issues are occurring, along with actionable solutions to get your site back up and running smoothly.

Understanding the Problem: Why jQuery Migrate Was Removed

jQuery has played a pivotal role in WordPress, empowering a multitude of interactive functionalities on websites. The jQuery Migrate plugin was specifically designed to ensure backward compatibility with older jQuery code.

However, the decision to maintain jQuery Migrate indefinitely proved unsustainable in the long run. In WordPress 5.5, the WordPress team made the strategic choice to remove it to streamline the codebase and encourage the adoption of more up-to-date code practices.

With jQuery Migrate no longer in play, websites relying on deprecated jQuery code may encounter JavaScript errors and functionality gaps. Common issues include:

  • Breakage of sliders, tabs, or accordions
  • Navigation menus failing to function as expected
  • AJAX requests encountering errors
  • Some plugins experiencing diminished functionality

Typically, older themes and plugins that haven’t received recent updates are more likely to be affected. However, even up-to-date software may indirectly rely on the Migrate plugin.

For additional insights into related topics, you can explore these resources:

Feel free to click on the provided links for further information on these subjects.

Solutions and Workarounds

While these jQuery issues may seem daunting at first, there are a few straightforward ways to address them:

Option 1: Update Plugins and Themes

The best long-term solution is to update any outdated plugins, themes, or custom code on your site. Developers have had ample time to phase out deprecated jQuery and test for compatibility with WordPress 5.5.

Here are some tips for getting your site updated:

  • Use the Theme Check plugin to scan for themes containing deprecated code.
  • Check the changelog of plugins to see if they’ve specifically addressed jQuery Migrate issues. Look for plugin alternatives if necessary.
  • Some hosts like SiteGround offer tools to automatically update plugins/themes.
  • For custom code, work with a developer to remove reliance on jQuery Migrate.

Staying up to date with software is always recommended for security and site performance as well. So take the opportunity to update any lingering outdated code!

Option 2: Enable jQuery Migrate Helper Plugin (Temporary Solution)

If you need a quick fix, the jQuery Migrate Helper plugin by wordpressdotorg temporarily restores jQuery Migrate support.

However, this is just a stopgap measure. It’s preferable to address the underlying compatibility issues for long-term sustainability.

Here’s how to get started with the plugin:

  • Download and install jQuery Migrate Helper via your WordPress dashboard.
  • Activate the plugin.
  • Confirm the setting enable jQuery Migrate Helper is checked.
  • The plugin will now silently fix jQuery issues, but outdated code still remains.

Be sure to disable jQuery Migrate Helper once you’ve updated any problem plugins, themes, or custom code. Don’t rely on it as a permanent solution.

Option 3: Manual Code Fixes (For Developers)

Developers can take a hands-on approach to identifying and fixing problematic code triggering jQuery Migrate issues. Some key steps include:

  • Using browser dev tools to profile JavaScript and pinpoint errors.
  • Searching for calls to deprecated jQuery methods like .live() or .bind().
  • Referencing the jQuery Migrate 3.0 documentation for migration tips.
  • Testing changes on a staging environment before updating a live site.

This process takes time and testing but is worthwhile for permanently updating jQuery code without the Migrate dependency. We have additional resources for learning WordPress development if you’d like to DIY the fixes.

Advanced Troubleshooting and Prevention

Dealing with specific jQuery Migrate errors as they arise is one thing. But preventing new issues long-term is ideal. Here are some proactive measures you can take.

Identify the Specific Conflict

Sometimes multiple plugins or scripts are clashing, making it unclear what’s causing problems. Advanced users can isolate issues with browser developer tools:

  • The Console in Chrome DevTools or Firefox Browser Console will display JavaScript errors.
  • Use the debugger to pause script execution and inspect variables.
  • Utilize console logging to output diagnostics.

Get familiar with the Chrome DevTools documentation and debugging WordPress with Xdebug for more advanced troubleshooting.

Preventing Future Issues

Here are a few best practices to avoid jQuery compatibility headaches down the road:

  • Rigorously test plugins, themes, and code updates on a staging site first.
  • Only use well-supported software from reputable developers. Check for ongoing maintenance.
  • Monitor WordPress announcements and plan for major releases like 5.5.
  • Encourage your developers to build with long-term sustainability in mind.

Being proactive about keeping software updated while detecting issues early is the best way to avoid surprise breakages when WordPress releases new versions.

Additional Resources

Here are some links to useful resources for resolving your jQuery Migrate problems:


While the removal of jQuery Migrate in WordPress 5.5 has disrupted many outdated sites, these issues don’t have to stop you in your tracks. With a few simple updates, workarounds, and targeted troubleshooting, you can eliminate those pesky JavaScript errors.

The key is approaching the problem systematically: update where possible, temporarily fallback if needed, and troubleshoot specific conflicts. And remember to proactively keep your software updated and test major releases when possible.

What issues have you encountered from the jQuery changes in WordPress 5.5? Feel free to ask any questions in the comments below!

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some common questions about resolving jQuery Migrate issues:

Q: Will installing the jQuery Migrate plugin permanently fix problems?

A: No, the plugin is intended as a temporary backward compatibility measure. You should still update any outdated code causing issues.

Q: What’s the best way to update a lot of plugins/themes at once?

A: Plugin management tools like InfiniteWP allow bulk updating plugins across multiple WordPress sites.

Q: How can I find custom code on my site that may be using deprecated jQuery?

A: Use a scanning tool like Theme Check to flag problematic code for review.

Q: I updated plugins but still get jQuery errors. What should I try next?

A: Check your live site against a staging environment to isolate issues. Enable more verbose JavaScript error logging as well.

Q: Is it safe to use jQuery Migrate Helper long-term?

A: No, Migrate Helper is intended as a temporary fix. Relying on it long-term risks site stability and performance.

Q: Where can I find help updating jQuery code on my custom theme?

A: Web developer communities like the WordPress Support Forums can assist with theme migration.

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