9-24-2019 8-16-35 PM(1)

How to remove WordPress’ “PHP Update Required” nag box

WordPress recently introduced a scary “PHP Update Required” nag box on your WP dashboard. “Your site is running on an insecure version of PHP” they say. Isn’t that lovely? Well, no WordPress, just because my PHP version is “old” does not make it “insecure”. Fuck you.

Fortunately it’s easy to remove. Just add the following to your functions.php:

Now, I know what some of you are thinking… “but updates are important!” Hah.

I hate updates.

These are blasphemous words in the programming world. But it’s true, I hate updates with a passion. Why? Because updates break things for no good reason. A lot more often than you’d think. I’m a busy guy, so the last thing I want to do is waste time figuring out some strange bug that appears because some shitty developer released some shitty update to some shitty plugin.

I believe firmly in the saying, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. That’s why I religiously DON’T do updates. As a WordPress user, that means I don’t update my plugins, I don’t update my theme, and I don’t update WordPress core — unless I have a specific reason to do so.

Let’s be honest, 99% of updates are bullshit anyway. We developers like it when people get their updates religiously, for a few reasons. 1) It keeps us secure in our jobs, running around fixing things when they break (which is often). 2) For those of us who make money selling licenses “for updates and support”, it keeps people renewing their license keys. 3) For my own software support obligations, I’m lazy and I hate providing support for anything other than the most recent version. So making my users update just makes my life easier.

All of these things benefit us the developers, but tell me, where is the benefit to the end user? Maybe an update adds some cool new feature people want, but most likely that “important update” just changes the color of some button to a lighter shade of teal, or some other bullshit change for the sake of change. So why do people fall for the trap? Why do people believe updates are “important”? Because we scare people with the “S” word — Security. We tell people, “that update could have important security enhancements”, but 99% of the time we’re just lying to keep our phony baloney jobs.

Sure, I subscribe to every WP Security mailing list, I look at plugin changelogs, I’m not stupid… if I see a legitimate security update, I’ll jump on it and do a round of updates. But this is rare. Like I said, 99% of updates are just bullshit I don’t care about. So I don’t waste my time. And you know what, I have a lot less problems to deal with.

2 thoughts on “How to remove WordPress’ “PHP Update Required” nag box”

  1. I’d also like to add a “fuck you” to that site health and “The site is experiencing technical difficulties” e-mail nonsense. That’s what logs are for and users don’t need to see that crap.

    It wouldn’t be so bad if there was a single constant or a checkbox to disable it, but you have to use 3-4 hooks to completely remove it/block the page.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *