What is a WordPress child theme? And how to create it?

David Beroff

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I have just bought a paid theme and making changes on it but I read that if I directly change parts on it after update to a newer version, changes that I made in the past will be lost. I open a support ticket and they said I should create a child theme. What it is? and how to create it in Wordpress?
 

NickR

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You can find a lot of tutorials on how to create a child theme on google. You can also get a plugin like "Childify Me" and create a child theme via a plugin.

A child theme is essentially an extension to your original theme that you get to keep after you update the original theme. So if you change the functions.php file in your original theme, after you update it you'll lose those changes. If you have a child theme, you can add a functions.php file to your child theme and make changes there. After an update, you'll still get to keep your child theme, thus not losing any changes.


Always, and I mean always use a child theme.
 

Gecko

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Gecko
That's my philosophy that I had to learn the hard way. I lost some customs coding I did years ago by updating a theme without it being a child theme.

One way around using a child theme for the avoidance of lost customizations and other theme modifications due to updating is to use a plugin called "Easy Theme and Plugin Upgrades" to do the theme updates. It was a blessing for a couple of sites I used it on to avoid losing my custom theme work.
 

Collabora

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Creating a child theme is a good idea, especially if you are going to add some customizations to your main ("parent") theme. By creating a child theme you will be assured that any theme updates will not overwrite your customization. Its easy if you haven't made any modifications yet. Here is a tutorial:

[video=youtube;wEYSqEBZHRE]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wEYSqEBZHRE[/video]
 
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