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Change twentyeleven name folder without crashing site WordPress

What's the safest and easiest way? I don't want to crush the site. Thanks

Answers (6)


Kyle answers:

If by name folder do you mean the folder in the theme file?

If so, you should be able to change it and then all you have to do is re-activate the theme in the admin area.

maryhellen comments:

Yes, i mean rename the them name folder. I've tried to copy the folder and rename it. I renamed also theme
name in the style css and activated but result is a total mess.
Theme is twentyeleven.


John Cotton answers:

I assume you want to keep using that as a theme, but with a different name?

You can just rename the folder, but to keep it you will then need to go to wp-admin > Appearance > themes, swap to an alternate and then back again.

Alternatively, you could manually update the wp_options table for the template and stylesheet rows to match the newly named directory (ie change twentyeleven to yournewname)

maryhellen comments:

Yes, i want to keep them but with a different name (i've made many changes).
I've tried to copy the folder and rename it. I renamed also theme
name in the style css and activated but result is a total mess.
I'm scared that somethinng could go wrong because site is running and is of my client

John Cotton comments:

<blockquote>Yes, i want to keep them but with a different name (i've made many changes).</blockquote>
You should really be doing this as a child theme. Much easier and much less like to break.

[[LINK href=""]][[/LINK]]

maryhellen comments:

Now, it's too late. I need something faster.

maryhellen comments:

I need another name also because i want to avoid theme update in the next Wordpress upgrade.

John Cotton comments:

Therefore the step are:

1/ Make sure you have at least one other theme in the themes folder
2/ Via FTP, change the folder name of twentyeleven to whatever you want (you can change the name in style.css as well, but this is only used as a label and so isn't crucial)
3/ Your front-end site will be broken at this point
4/ Go to Dashboard > Appearances, select and activate the other theme
5/ Still on Dashboard > Appearances, select and activate the original (renamed theme).

If your site is broken after that it must be because you hardcoded the original folder name somewhere in the theme or your posts, in which case you've got to change all those too.

maryhellen comments:

After some experiments i found that problem is related with widgets. When I switch to a copied and renamed theme in the widgets panel some widgets are missed and others are in a wrong widget area (e.g. a header widget displays in the left sidebar and left sidebar in the footer, a custom menu disappered...).

I added two widget areas fo the site: left sidebar (there is a custom menu) and the header (slideshow).

Why does this issue occurs?



Jim Dugan answers:

Better to make a child theme:

But if you don't want to do that, duplicate the folder then change header info in style.css so the new name is reflected there. So if you call it "not2011" you'll want that name in the header of style.css also.

maryhellen comments:

I've did it the second. Result? A total mess. I did not understand why, but layout went broken.


Abdelhadi Touil answers:

I think what you can do is to rename the theme folder via FTP, then reactivate it from the dashboard. You should note that renaming just the folder is not enough if you want to really rename the theme, because the theme's name exist also in the style.css of the thme, and it should be modified there too.

To read:
[[LINK href=""]][[/LINK]]

Good luck.

maryhellen comments:

I did it but result has been a total mess: broken layout

Abdelhadi Touil comments:

Can you enter to the wordpress dashboard? I have another sure method:
1) copy the cureent used theme via FTP.
2) Rename the copy to what you want, also the info in the style.css file in the new copied version.
3) From the dashboard you can now activate the new one.
I don't know why I didn't think to this sollution before posting my first answer. Sorry for the problem and good luck.

maryhellen comments:

I did exactly what you are suggesting with messy result. I dont' understand why layiut went broken if i made a copy of the original and renamed it.

Abdelhadi Touil comments:

Can you give us your website link?

maryhellen comments:

[[LINK href="http://"]][[/LINK]]

maryhellen comments:

here is the link:
[[LINK href="http://"]][[/LINK]]

maryhellen comments:

maryhellen comments:

I?ve tried to rename folder without copying it.
Same messy result.

Abdelhadi Touil comments:

As I see your wordpress isn't installed in the root of your website, it's in a folder called "nonabusaredegliunderscore", I'm not sure if the problem comes from that, but why you didn't installed wordpress in the root folder to avoid any problem?
Normally copying the theme folder and renaming it then activating the new copied one should work. Do you change the theme info also in the style.css file? I mean in the copied version.

maryhellen comments:

Yes, i've changed info also in the style.css.
I've installed wordpress not in the root folder because i had to work in wordpress and keep running the site.

maryhellen comments:

existing site, i meant

maryhellen comments:

Can you explain how theme folder name is related to wp theme? If I renamed twentyeleven theme folder after
switched to another theme i get this error: "Cheatin' uh?" in a blank page.


Francisco Javier Carazo Gil answers:

As John says you can change it in wp_options. How? Using the API as he says or for me a better way, go to MySQL:

FROM wp_options
WHERE option_value = 'twentytwelve'

Later when you see the rows, update the name:

UPDATE wp_options
SET option_value='yournewname'
WHERE option_value='twentytwelve'

maryhellen comments:

Whare i can find this command? Thanks

Francisco Javier Carazo Gil comments:

Hi, you can introduce these commands into phpMyAdmin, your MySQL client.

Remember to choose your DB.

In your cPanel you will find it.


Mantas answers:

Copy theme "twentyeleven" folder and rename the copied folder to your wanted name.

Then go to wp-admin, activate copied theme.

Then delete real-old twentyeleven theme folder.

maryhellen comments:

Why delete real-old twentyeleven theme folder after renamed copied folder?

Mantas comments:

<blockquote>maryhellen says:
Why delete real-old twentyeleven theme folder after renamed copied folder?</blockquote>
No need to delete if you will need it later, it was just a suggestion.