GitHub is an apps repository. If you are using WordPress as the backend panel for your website, you might be using different plugins to make your website more functional. To source those plugins you use the repository of WordPress where all the plugins, themes and other utilities get listed and custom made for WordPress. Github is exactly the same but it is hosted externally and its apps, themes, plugins and utilities are not only tailor made for WordPress but also for other CMS.
Another important difference between them is that WordPress can control the applications that it will keep in its repository while Github is fully open source based. The apps, plugins you find here will remain changeable and updatable by the editors, contributor users, general users and its sole publisher. The engagement of people from different places with varying skill levels led to the development of brilliant plugins for websites. This is the sole reason, most of seasoned web developers and applications users will prefer Github to find and install their plugins on their websites.
How to find WordPress plugins from Github?
Now with the above background for you, it is time to know how to find and install the plugins from Github for your website. Since Github is not a WordPress property, you will have to do it externally. Here we are explaining on the steps.
- At first go to Github
- If you know the plugin, then search for it directly from the search bar or look up from the repository lists.
- Once you find your desired plugin from the list, you will find the download ZIP button next to it.
- Click on the button and download load the ZIP file.
You are done with getting the plugin you need. Now there are some tricky situations for example, Github hosts millions of plugins and there is huge possibility that most of them will not have WordPress tagged with their name. So, you really need to be attentive while picking your plugin.
How to install WordPress plugins from Github?
After your download the plugin, you need to install and activate the plugin. Follow the steps below:
- Login to the admin panel of your WordPress.
- Click for plugins section and add the plugin.
- From the locating menu select the ZIP file you downloaded on your computer from Github.
- Upload it, install it and lastly activate it.
- WordPress will show you activation success message.
That is all, you are done with finding and installing WordPress plugins from GitHub.
Automatic tool to get and install plugins from Github
Alternative to manually searching, downloading and uploading the plugin files is using a plugin itself that only finds plugins from GitHub. This may sound funny, but due to GitHub’s extremely high popularity and active presence of helpful developer communities, a new plugin is there to make the work easy for everyone. GitHub Plugin Search itself is a plugin for WordPress that one can install and do their search. It will connect the GitHub repository under WP admin panel and rest of the processes of finding and activating the plugins are similar to the WordPress repository plugin search and installation process. Am giving you a link of it here, it is from Paul Clark who is among the early contributors of WordPress itself.
What else to know about installing WordPress plugins from Github?
While we described each step of finding and installing plugins for WordPress we did not talk about an important part of it. As WordPress updates itself, the plugins become useless if they are not updated at the same time. Similarly without regular update of the plugins, they will not work for long.
You will not such update issues when you get plugins from WordPress repository but if you get the plugin from external source, and then you will have to take the hassle. For plugins from GitHub, developers have sorted it for once and all introducing the GitHub Updater plugin. You need to have this tool installed on your domain if you have activated a single plugin from GitHub. Otherwise in the long run it will not work. Here you can find more about the GitHub Updater.
Lastly it is important to go beyond in delivering your customers and users. GitHub can be the ideal source for some brilliant plugins. However, you need to know about the requirements of plucking the plugins from GitHub and the tools that will help you to ensure proper functioning of your desired plugin.