Can’t stop plugins from auto-updating



Do you have a plugin that manages plugin updates? It sounds like the new core feature is conflicting with something you were already using.
Could you list the plugins you have?
Could you look at Site Health to see what the plugin section says about each plugin’s auto-update state?

Thank you for the tip about the Site Health, it does give a somewhat worrying message (click for screenshot) although that appears to say that updates couldn’t be happening, which is the opposite of what I’m seeing (unless that screen is talking about updates not related to plugins?).

The “Passed Tests” section contains this section about plugins:

Plugin and theme auto-updates appear to be configured correctly

Plugin and theme auto-updates ensure that the latest versions are always installed.

which is true, and what I’m trying to avoid.

I used not to have any plugin manager plugins installed, but I tried the “Easy Updates Manager” to see if it would solve the problem for me – it didn’t make any difference so I have disabled it.

The plugins I have installed can be seen here and here. Try as I might, I can’t change the “Permanently Active” status of the automatic updates, and it used not to behave like this.

Thank you for looking at this.

James Huff


Volunteer Moderator

Thank you James, I think you’re on to something. Actually, I haven’t used any filters (not being at all familiar with them) but the hosting company (1&1) has put a load of stuff under the wp-content/mu-plugins directory and that includes some filters.

I’ll need to work through the files to see what they’re doing, but it does look like a promising line of enquiry.

Thanks again for the suggestion and the link. I’ll update with the results.

  • This reply was modified 2 days, 5 hours ago by BadBishop.

It looks like you’re on the right path.

It is definitely a plugin (<1% chance it is your theme) because WordPress itself never writes Permanently active the “Automatic Updates” column.

Also, I have copies of most of the plugins in your screenshots and none of them would cause this (Easy Updates Manager would display Managed by Easy Updates Manager. when it’s active and managing auto-updates.

So I was just about to have you add a screenshot of the Must-Use and Drop-ins views on the plugins screen so that I could see if anything there could have taken over management of auto-updates.

Very useful info that WordPress doesn’t write “Permanently active”. The culprit is IONOS, as that text arises from a file mu-plugins1and1-wordpress-assistantincauto-updater.php

I guess I have to wade through their code to see if/how to turn it off (there is nothing evident in the UI, though I’ll look harder there too).

Thanks to all for your help, I’ll keep this open a couple of days in case I have follow up questions.

You may want to think about switching to a hosting package or a host that isn’t WordPress hosting as such, if you do not want your host to make decisions like that on your behalf. [You can still install WordPress on pretty much any hosting package / host.]
Not a recommendation, just a consideration 🙂

  • This reply was modified 1 day, 20 hours ago by Carike.

James Huff


Volunteer Moderator

We have some recommended hosting providers at

I fully agree with the consideration (or even recommendation) about the host, I really don’t want the hosting company to make this sort of decision for me. Having said that, it is only in the past few months that 1&1 has been noticeably intrusive, and the other problem I had with them was a glitch rather than big Brother type behaviour. I’ll see how it goes for now …

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