I was checking out the wordpress.org download stats for WP Hide Dashboard, in particular the active version stats graph.
As of 20 February 2011, 57.5% of the active plugin installs are running the latest version (2.0). That leaves 42.5% of the active plugin installs running older versions of the plugin (1.3, 1.4, and 1.5).
While I've noticed a steady increase in the percentage of active plugin installs running version 2.0 in the past few weeks, the number of installs running older versions causes me a bit of concern.
For those of you that are running the latest version - bravo! It means you are actively keeping both your WordPress install and your plugins updated.
But, those of you that are running an older version of the plugin - why? I can think of a few possible reasons:
- I'm running an older version of WordPress and I'm afraid my site will break if I upgrade the plugin or WordPress.
- It's just a simple plugin - there's really no reason to upgrade it, is there?
- I've customized the plugin and I don't want to lose my changes.
If you fall into group #1, I strongly encourage you to upgrade BOTH WordPress and the plugin. Running older versions of WordPress and plugins opens up your site to security weaknesses and the possibility of being hacked.
Group #2 - it may be a simple plugin, but yes, you do need to upgrade it. New versions are released to correct errors, add features, and take advantage of new WordPress goodies. Go ahead and press the upgrade link - I promise, it won't bite.
Now for group #3. I know that many of you have customized your version of WP Hide Dashboard so that it applies to other roles beside Subscriber, and to remove links that some plugins have added to the admin menu. It's humming right along, doing what you want it to. You're afraid of losing your changes. However, you're also missing out on changes to the plugin made to take advantage of new WordPress functionality, and new plugin features that have been added in recent versions.
So...which group do you fall into and why?