Using WordPress ‘populate_roles_250()’ PHP function

The populate_roles_250() WordPress PHP function creates and modifies WordPress roles for WordPress 2.5.




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More information

See WordPress Developer Resources: populate_roles_250

This function is specifically for WordPress 2.5.


Updating roles for WordPress 2.5

In this example, we will update roles for a WordPress 2.5 installation using the populate_roles_250() function.

// Call the populate_roles_250 function to update roles

Creating a plugin to update roles for WordPress 2.5

Create a simple plugin to update roles when activated.

Plugin Name: WP25 Roles Updater
Description: Updates roles for WordPress 2.5
Author: Your Name
Version: 1.0

// Function to update roles on plugin activation
function wp25_roles_updater_activate() {
register_activation_hook(__FILE__, 'wp25_roles_updater_activate');

Add a button to update roles in a custom settings page

Create a settings page with a button to update roles using the populate_roles_250() function.

add_action('admin_menu', 'wp25_roles_settings_page');

function wp25_roles_settings_page() {
    add_options_page('WP25 Roles Updater', 'WP25 Roles Updater', 'manage_options', 'wp25-roles-updater', 'wp25_roles_updater_page');

function wp25_roles_updater_page() {
    if (isset($_POST['update_roles'])) {
        echo '<div class="updated"><p>Roles updated successfully!</p></div>';

    echo '<div class="wrap">';
    echo '<h1>WP25 Roles Updater</h1>';
    echo '<form method="post" action="">';
    echo '<input type="submit" name="update_roles" value="Update Roles" class="button button-primary" />';
    echo '</form>';
    echo '</div>';

Automatically update roles on theme activation

Update roles when a new theme is activated.

add_action('after_switch_theme', 'theme_roles_update');

function theme_roles_update() {

Update roles on plugin update

Update roles when a specific plugin is updated.

add_action('upgrader_process_complete', 'plugin_roles_update', 10, 2);

function plugin_roles_update($upgrader_object, $options) {
    $plugin_to_check = 'plugin-folder/plugin-file.php';

    if ($options['action'] == 'update' && $options['type'] == 'plugin') {
        foreach ($options['plugins'] as $plugin) {
            if ($plugin == $plugin_to_check) {