How to Restore the Default User Permissions on a WordPress site

In some situations, you may need to completely refresh your WordPress site.

If you need to reset your WordPress user permissions, this is possible with a plugin called PublishPress Capabilities. This plugin has an option to delete all the current permissions and user roles, and restore the WordPress defaults.

Here's the process to follow if you want to restore the default WordPress permissions.

  • Install PublishPress Capabilities.
  • In your WordPress admin menu, go to Capabilities > Backup.
  • Click the tab “Reset Roles”.
  • Look for the button “Reset to WordPress defaults”.

Before you take this step, make sure to read the warning:

“WARNING: This will delete and/or modify stored role definitions. If you have installed any plugin that adds new roles or capabilities, these will be lost. It is recommended to use this only as a last resort!”

Reset To Defaults
Reset To Defaults
  • If you want to proceed, click the “Reset to WordPress defaults” button.
  • PublishPress Capabilities will ask if you’re really sure you want to do this. Click “OK” to continue.
Reset permissions to WordPress defaults
  • Once the process is complete, you’ll see the message, “Roles and Capabilities reset to WordPress defaults”.
Reset Complete
Reset Complete

More PublishPress Capabilities Guides

Here are more cool things you do with the PublishPress Capabilities plugin:


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  • Steve Burge

    Steve is the founder of PublishPress. He's been working with open source software for over 20 years. Originally from the UK, he now lives in Sarasota in the USA. This profile is generated by the PublishPress Authors plugin.

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