iThemes Sync is designed to save you time in your WordPress site management workflow. Instead of logging in to multiple sites, Sync gives you one place to perform important WordPress administration tasks for you or your clients.
1. Update WordPress Core
Keeping up with updates can be a huge hassle if you’re managing multiple WordPress sites. With Sync, you can log in and have one place to see available updates for your sites and then run those updates.
2. Update Themes & Plugins
Before Sync, you would have to log in to each individual site to update WordPress core and your plugins and themes. If you’re running more than a handful of WordPress sites, it can be time-consuming to log in to each site and run updates.
Sync organizes available updates per site and also into groups by individual plugins and themes, so you easily run updates.
Before you update, Sync also allows you to view plugin changelogs.
3. Bulk Install Plugins & Themes
iThemes Sync makes it easy to install plugins and themes across multiple sites at once. You don’t have to log in to each individual site and upload them or search the repositories on WordPress.org.
From Sync, you can install themes and plugins from WordPress.org, your iThemes membership or you can upload a theme and plugin file for installation. Sync even pulls in your favorite plugins from WordPress.org, making it even easier to install plugins on multiple sites at once.
4. Run Backups
With Sync, you can run WordPress backups remotely with BackupBuddy. On the individual site view, click the BackupBuddy tab. Fro here, you can run a manual backup for any of your backup profiles, download your latest backup files, download ImportBuddy.php, set up backup schedules and see backup files stored in Stash.
From the individual site view, Sync gives you a great reminder/overview of the number of edits made since your last backup (yikes!).
5. Manage Comments
For any pending comments on your site, you can approve, unapprove, delete and mark as spam–without having to leave the Sync dashboard.
6. Reset User Passwords
From Sync, a WordPress user access manager, you can add and edit any user to your synced sites. When editing a user in Sync, you can also reset passwords, which can be helpful if you have a client that forgets and calls you to get logged back in.
7. View Key Google Analytics Metrics
Instead of having to log in to Google Analytics, you can view a few key traffic metrics right from the Sync dashboard. View info on total visits, unique visitors, total page views, landing page sessions and keywords.
8. Manage iThemes Licenses
Sync gives you one place to easily manage your licenses for your iThemes plugins and themes. Again, instead of having to log in to each individual site to add your license info, you can do it all from here.
9. Release iThemes Security Lockouts
iThemes Security, our WordPress security plugin, includes the ability to lock out specific IPs who are hitting a large number of non-existent pages in a short period of time, an indication that they’re scanning for something (presumably a vulnerability). This setting is also helpful for protecting your site, but you may find yourself accidentally locked out of your site. From Sync, you can release your iThemes Security lockouts remotely.
10. Share iThemes Security Pro Settings
From the Security tab, you can quickly import and export iThemes Security Pro settings. Sharing the security will cut down the time it takes to configure security on a new site.
11. Add Site Notes
Sync’s Notes feature is a handy way to keep notations about your synced sites. For example, if you added customizations to theme or plugin files that could be lost with an update, you might want to add a reminder here.
12. Manage Your BackupBuddy Stash Backup Files
If you use BackupBuddy Stash for your offsite backup storage, Sync gives you one place to view, download and delete the backup files stored in Stash.
13. Customize Client Dashboards
We all know that clients don’t always need to see every menu item that WordPress offers. With Sync Pro’s Client Dashboard, you can hide confusing menus items they shouldn’t touch, like certain plugin menus, settings or even update notices — saving you some headaches. With Client Dashboard, you can customize the visibility of WordPress dashboard menu items, WordPress admin bar menu items, dashboard widgets and admin notices.
14. Generate Maintenance Reports
One of the best ways to show clients the value of their monthly WordPress website maintenance plan is with summary reports of all of the actions you are taking to keep their WordPress website updated. Sync Pro’s Reports handle the hard work of compiling all the actions you took in Sync so you can easily email clients their maintenance reports—all from the Sync dashboard.
15. Manage WordPress Settings
With Sync you can remotely manage the WordPress settings.
16. Uptime Monitoring
With Sync Pro’s Uptime Monitoring, you can track uptime (total uptime percentage and number of downtimes), and the site’s uptime History.
17. Activate, Deactivate & Delete Plugins & Themes Remotely
Sync allows you to remotely deactivate and activate plugins and themes. This could be helpful if an installed plugin breaks a site, and you need to quickly deactivate or delete it.
18. Show/Hide Sync
Sync gives you the option of hiding the Sync plugin from the WordPress admin area. This feature was highly-requested from our freelance web designers and site managers that didn’t want clients to see Sync installed on the site.
19. One-Click WP-Admin Access
Sync allows you to log into a site’s wp-admin with a single click, bypassing the password and two-factor requirements.
20. View Update Logs
While Sync Pro gives you the ability to generate update reports, the free version still lets you view the WordPress update log for each month. These logs can be useful for seeing all the update actions that were taken throughout the month, plus the previous and new version numbers.
iThemes Sync is the best way to manage updates (and more!) for all your WordPress sites.
Kristen has been writing tutorials to help WordPress users since 2011. You can usually find her working on new articles for the iThemes blog or developing resources for #WPprosper. Outside of work, Kristen enjoys journaling (she’s written two books!), hiking and camping, cooking, and daily adventures with her family, hoping to live a more present life.