This article struck a chord with me.
WordPress Plugins: Can You Have Too Many?
It addresses a question many competent WordPress web developers have asked recently, especially with the growing number of free plugins available to link our clients’ social media and sharing tools.
Ooo! Which shall I try next?
Plugins are like apps for your WordPress install, and they can be very tempting, but we need to be aware of performance slowdowns, which the above article addresses. But what happens to your site’s backup tools with the addition of more plugins?
The issue of too many plugins became a concern for me when a backup tool that I use (it too happens to be a free plugin) to backup my sites’ WordPress databases became over-run and couldn’t complete the weekly backup. At first, I didn’t know why this was happening, but the issue soon pointed to the several trial plugins that my client had installed.
We install free plugins because we, our clients, or our blog administrators are just curious and want to “look around” to see how a particular plugin adds functionality to our site. There is usually no harm in doing this type of investigative tweaking and installation of “trial” plugins. After all, tweaking and experimenting are fundamental practices of web design. However, if you don’t delete these unused plugins, you can quickly run into problems with your database backup settings (by the way, it’s a really good idea to backup your WordPress database, especially if your site is updated with frequent new posts.)
If your WordPress site has a diligent backup tool installed, which by default backs-up the other installed plugins that occupy the MySQL database space, your backup tool can become quickly overrun. So, what should you do? Don’t stop being curious, but be very careful to intentionally exclude these trial plugins from your backup schedule, or before long your backup manager will become glitchy, dysfunctional, and your site won’t be safe.