Chapter 4: Customizing the WordPress Admin

If you're developing sites, themes, or plugins for others, it may be necessary to customize the admin screens in WordPress in order to include additional options or settings for your users to control or to make things simpler for them. In this chapter you'll learn how to do that. In particular, you'll learn about the following:

Roles and capabilities—How they work and how to customize and add to them

Admin screens—Customizing the existing screens (including the Dashboard) and adding new ones

Theme options—Adding options to your theme and integrating the Theme Customizer

Data sanitization—Why it's necessary and how to do it

Content and editing—How to customize administration to make it easier for your clients to edit their sites and minimize the risk of errors

As the chapter progresses, you'll find the code for a series of plugins that you can download from This includes code for theme options screens, although you would normally place these in the theme's functions file, not a plugin. For more on functions and plugins, see Chapter 9.

When to Customize the WordPress Admin

For users and developers familiar with WordPress, the admin screens are very straightforward to use. For complete novices, however, especially those with a nontechnical bent, working with these screens can be a little daunting. This is one reason why it's a good idea to customize the WordPress administration for nontechnical ...

Get WordPress: Pushing the Limits now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.