Update PHP for WordPress with Hostgator

PHP update required

WordPress has detected that your site is running on an insecure version of PHP.

What is PHP and how does it affect my site?

PHP is the programming language we use to build and maintain WordPress. Newer versions of PHP are both faster and more secure, so updating will have a positive effect on your site’s performance.

When you see this warning in WordPress Dashboard, you need to update PHP on your web server. Before that however you may need also to keep your themes and plugins up-to-date, so as to make sure they will work with newer PHP version. Make a backup of your site first. Then go to upgrade WordPress, themes and plugins to the most recent version. Download and use a PHP compatibility plugin to check your themes and plugins for possible issues. After that go to update your PHP version.

Depending on the server that you are on, you will have either the MultiPHP Manager or the PHP Selector plugin in the cPanel, which is used to modify your websites’ PHP versions.

Method 1. Upgrade PHP to higher version using MultiPHP Manager in cPanel

If your WordPress site is hosted with Hostgator, the update of PHP is very easy. To update PHP for WordPress sites with Hostgator, you can simply log into your hosting control panel, find the MultiPHP Manager in the Software section.

hostgator cpanel software multiphp-manager

Once you open the MultiPHP Manager in cPanel with Hostgator, you will find the settings to set PHP version for each of your website or domain as shown below.

set php version per domain website using multiphp manager in cpanel with hostgator

In this Set PHP Version per Domain section, click to select the domain name from the table at the bottom, then choose a newer version from the PHP Version list, finally click Apply button to apply a PHP version to the domain you have selected.

Method 2. Update PHP using PHP selector in cPanel

If you can’t find the MultiPHP Manager in the Software section, you should see the PHP Selector in the Software section instead. See how to access the root directory of your WordPress site, select and update to the newer PHP version using PHP Selector below.

Log into the cPanel with Hostgator. Scroll down to the SOFTWARE section where you can find options like QuickInstall, PHP PEAR Packages, Perl Modules, RubyGems, WordPress Tools, etc.

cpanel php selector hostgator

Click on PHP Selector. You will find out the system default version of PHP, your current PHP configuration and a PHP selector. Navigate to the directory for where your WordPress site files are saved. Then select a newer version in the box next to ‘the .php file extension will be processed by‘, hit the Update button to upgrade PHP from current version to the selected version.

Update PHP in cPanel hostgator


  • You can update PHP version in your home directory so you don’t have to update PHP version for each site one by one.This however will not work if you have set custom php.ini or different directive to one of those sub-directories or add-on domains.
  • If you previously used the PHP Selector to upgrade the PHP version to a newer version, and then recently used the new MultiPHP Manager plugin to update PHP, you may have the missing WordPress required MySQL extension error on your site and here is how to fix the missing WordPress MySQL extension error with Hostgator.

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