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How to Disable Multiple WordPress Post Revisions

WordPress Post Revisions

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Many people may have been grappling with a feature in WordPress which makes it save several post revisions every time the writer updates a post.

WordPress is a great piece of web-based software for bloggers and online publishers in general.

Why WordPress Post Revisions?

This is a feature built into WordPress by default that allows the writer to automatically leave a paper trail of back-ups for each post.

These revisions are actually full posts created every time the update button is pressed in the post editor. The reason for this is that it allows the publisher to roll back any article to any previous version.

These WordPress post revisions do not necessarily affect the experience of the website visitors so generally if you do not need them there is no reason to keep them around.

The main problem with the post revisions is that they can really make your WordPress post table grow to really large size.

Let’s say you have thousands of articles running on WordPress, depending on how you edit your articles you can have an average of two to three revisions per post and that can triple, quadruple the size or more of your WordPress MySQL database post table.

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To keep your table clean and lean there is a way to disable WordPress post revisions.

All you need to do is:

  1. Ask your developer to access the WordPress installation via several methods including ssh, sftp, FTP, CPanel file manager or whichever method your hosting server supports.
  2. With a text editor open the file wp-config.php which can be found in the root directory of the installation.
  3. Insert the following line somewhere in the file. Preferably after other configuration directives.
    define(‘WP_POST_REVISIONS’, false );

That’s it. Your WordPress installation will no longer create the multiple post revisions every time you make a post update.

Multiple WordPress Post Revisions
A sample of Multiple WordPress Post Revisions in the Admin Area

To get rid of previous WordPress post revisions you will have to go in an remove them manually from within a MySQL client or preferably using a plugin. Bulk Delete is a great plugin to manage and clean your posts table.