For those of us who manage our clients’ websites, we create new WordPress websites all the time. Perhaps you’re starting one from scratch for a customer or are migrating to a new server and need to re-create the same setup. For everyone like this, it can be a pain to install a bunch of WordPress plugins each time manually. And plenty of us aren’t developers, so we can’t just spin up a new VPS instance and port installations. For these situations, Softaculous has a convenient feature called “Sets” that you can create and manage.
What are Softaculous “Sets”?
Softaculous sets are a combination of specific plugins and themes that you create in the WordPress management dashboard. Since all web hosting products use Softaculous, regardless of whether your web hosting dashboard is cPanel, InterWorx, or something else, this tool is readily available to everyone.
Creating Plugin and Theme Sets in Softaculous
Creating a plugin set in Softaculous is easy. First, log into your web hosting panel and select “WordPress Manager by Softaculous” as shown here:
This will bring you to a page with all your existing WordPress installations. Click “Manage Sets” like this:
The list will be empty if you haven’t created any sets so far. So get started by clicking “Create Set”:
Give your set a name. For this tutorial, I’ve created a set called “Test”. Once that’s done, you can start adding plugins to the set by clicking “Add Plugins” like this:
From here, you can search the WordPress.org database for various plugins. Click the checkmark next to the ones you want and click “Add” to include them in the plugin set like this:
Repeat till you’ve added all the plugins you want. You can go one step further and add themes to the set, though I feel this is less useful since each website will likely have a different look and feel.
Installing a Set “En Masse”
To apply the set to a WordPress installation, click “Install Set”, and in the resulting dialogue box, select the WordPress installations to which you want to add the set:
Click “Install”, and you’re done!
Add and Remove Plugins from Sets
You can modify your choices by clicking the “Action” drop-down box. From here, choose “Remove Plugins” or “Remove Themes”, and then you can select the ones you want to remove all at once.
Softaculous is Better than a Plugin
I prefer to use Softaculous for WordPress maintenance tasks, as opposed to plugins, whenever possible because Softaculous operates at a higher level than WordPress and is more efficient. It’s aware of other installations, so you can affect many of them simultaneously, as you can see above.
It’s also helpful in creating staging sites – for which there are some excellent plugins, but Softaculous is a more efficient solution. So when creating plugin sets and themes, why not use the in-built Softaculous tool?
I’m a NameHero team member, and an expert on WordPress and web hosting. I’ve been in this industry since 2008. I’ve also developed apps on Android and have written extensive tutorials on managing Linux servers. You can contact me on my website WP-Tweaks.com!