Tweak and Build WordPress Sites Faster Than Ever With One-Click Configs

Configs eliminate painstaking manual adjustments for individual sites. Instead, you can immediately apply your preferred WPMU DEV plugin and uptime settings to unlimited sites with a click!

Best of all, they’re all implemented quickly from The Hub and WordPress admin.

Adjust any config-supported plugin to your preference, save as a new config, apply your custom config to all of your Hub-connected sites in one click — it’s that easy!

This article is your ultimate guide to learn, know, and use configs for your WordPress sites. We’ll be going over:

Once you have configs up and running, you’ll see for yourself how easy and beneficial it is to adjust your config-supported plugin settings on unlimited WordPress sites.

And with easy config access from The Hub, WordPress management just got better than ever.

Let’s get to it!

What Are Configs?

Let’s start by showing you the magic of configs in action. 🎩🪄

Currently configs can be used with SmartCrawl, Defender, Smush, Hummingbird, Snapshot, and Uptime (Forminator, Branda, and Automate coming soon!).

When installing any of these plugins, you can choose to activate and configure the plugin using our recommended and optimized settings or configure the plugin’s settings from scratch.

So, let’s go ahead and save time activating and configuring our plugin using a config …

Activate and configure plugins with all the specs in under 5 secs.

As you can see, Configs are by far one of the most beneficial features you can use to quickly build and tweak an unlimited number of WordPress sites.

In a nutshell, they allow you to set up any supported plugin to your preference, and then save these (non-unique) plugin settings as a new config – which you can then apply to the rest of your sites in one hit.

Think saving your video game progress, but for WordPress plugins.

  1. Adjust any config-supported plugin or tool to your preference.
  2. Save your plugin settings as a new config.
  3. Apply your config to all your Hub-connected sites in a click.
  4. Repeat whenever a new important plugin feature is added.

New configs created in WordPress or The Hub automatically sync across to each other.

Note that you can also use configs WITHOUT The Hub, you’ll just have to save and upload them to your sites manually – which will still save time – but won’t be as fast as one-click applying them via The Hub.

Finally, you have the option of using our default configs (which are already set up and optimized by our expert team), or you can create and save your own custom configs.

Using Default Configs

Using default configs is a great way to get started, especially if you’d prefer to skip the manual configuration process.

Our default options suit most sites and are a great foundation to get started quickly and fine-tune plugin settings faster.

We’ll use Defender in the WordPress admin for this walkthrough on how to use configs.

Defender’s dashboard includes a section labeled Preset Configs that lets you view and manage existing configurations and set up unlimited preset configs.

Defender - Preset Configs
Defender digs Preset Configs.

Defender comes pre-installed with two Configs that include our recommended default protection settings:

  • Basic Config – This is created from your current site configuration when you first install the plugin.
  • Default Security Config – This can be applied directly from your Hub. Note: This is a system config and cannot be deleted.

Click on the dropdown arrow next to the config to view its details and see which security features are active or inactive.

This site was secured with one-click using Defender’s Basic Configs.

Clicking on the gear icon lets you make the following changes to a saved configuration:

  • Apply – Apply the saved configuration to your Defender installation.
  • Download – Download the saved configuration as a .json file. This option is useful for non-Hub users who want to upload configs to other sites.
  • Name & Description – Edit your saved configuration’s name and description.
  • Delete – Permanently delete your saved configuration.
Configs list of actions
Click the gear icon to perform various actions on your saved configs.

To apply the settings of any saved config, click the gear icon of that config and select Apply. Your site’s existing settings configuration will be overriden by the new settings when you click the Apply button, so make sure to make a backup before performing this action.

Apply config popup window.
Hit Apply and kiss the old settings goodbye!

This configuration will also be available in The Hub under Configs > My Configs, so you can apply it to all your other sites in bulk (more on this soon!).

The Hub - Configs - My Configs
Add your custom rigs to My Configs.

Now that we’ve looked at using default configs, let’s look at …

Creating Custom Configs

Creating a custom config allows you to set up plugin configurations to suit your needs and preferences.

You can create custom configs inside your WordPress site or from The Hub, and apply them to unlimited WordPress sites.

Let’s set a custom config inside WordPress. Again, we’ll use the Defender plugin for this example.

First, go through and activate the modules you like and configure Defender’s settings to your preference.

Once you’ve done this, go to Preset Configs and click on Save New.

Preset Configs panel - Save New button.
Creating and saving your new custom config is as easy as clicking this button.

Enter a Name and Description for your config and click Save.

Save Current Config window.
Name your custom config.

All of your current configurations will be saved and available as a new config in the Preset Configs section.

Defender: Preset Configs - New Custom Config.
Your new custom config is now added to your plugin’s Preset Configs.

Use the new custom config to apply (or reapply) the saved settings to your site, or download it and apply it to as many additional sites as you like.

As mentioned earlier, you’ll also find all of your custom configs In The Hub, in the Configs > My Configs section.

The Hub - Configs - My Configs
The more sites you manage, the more time you’ll save with these little beauties!

Speaking of The Hub, let’s show you how to quickly and easily apply configs to unlimited sites with just a few clicks.

Adding Configs in The Hub

In The Hub, click on the Configs tab. The Configs screen displays Default Configs which we create for you and the My Configs tab listing all of the custom configs you have created.

The Hub - Configs screen
Access all default and custom configs in The Hub from the Configs screen.

Whether you choose to apply default configs or custom configs to a site, it’s the same process, so for this example, we’ll apply a default config.

In the Default Configs tab, you will see the option to Apply to site(s) and an ellipsis next to each of the configs listed.

Click Apply to site(s) and select one, multiple, or all sites. Note that websites where the plugin is not installed or is inactive will be grayed out and not available for selection.

Click the “Apply to X sites” button to apply the config to your selected sites.

Apply default configs to sites
Apply configs to sites individually or in bulk.

To view the config’s settings, click on the ellipsis and select Details. This will bring up a screen listing the config’s creation date and categories listing active/inactive modules and any automated features.

You can also access the Apply to site(s) screen from here by clicking on the Apply button.

Hummingbird default config settings
Hummingbird’s default config settings.

Want more convenience?

Configs can also be enabled directly from The Hub Overview.

Here’s an example of saving or applying an Uptime config.

The Hub Overview.
Access Uptime configs and your other WordPress plugins in one place.

If you click on the ellipsis, it will open up a dropdown where you have an option to Save Config and Apply Config.

Where you save and apply configs.
Saving and applying a config is as easy as ever from The Hub Overview.

If you scroll down the Overview page, you’ll also find config dropdown menus available for inactive services in the Recommended services section.

The Hub - Overview screen: Recommended Services section.
You can apply configs to inactive plugins in the Recommended services section.

If you really want to save time configuring different services for a WordPress site, here is a much easier and convenient feature…

Quick Configs Site Setup

After creating various configs for different plugins, you can easily add them to single sites all at once using the Quick Setup feature.

To access this feature in The Hub, select a site and go to the Overview screen, then either click on the Open Quick Setup button in the top screen’s horizontal toolbar (if visible) or click on the ellipsis in the upper-righthand corner and select Quick Setup.

The Hub - Quick Setup
Use The Hub’s Quick Setup to quickly add all services with preset configs to your site in one click.

You can choose from our recommended default setup or create your own custom setup by selecting the Advanced Options tab.

Configs - Quick Setup screen
Set up configs quickly using the default or custom setup options.

Select the service(s) you would like to activate by checking the box next to the feature (note: greyed out features mean the service has already been activated on your site.), then select any available preset configs (including custom configs), from the Select Config dropdown menu.

Config Setup screen - Advanced Options
Set up services quickly using default or preset configs.

After selecting all of your configs, click the Start Setup button.

Save hours of work … set up fully configured services for your sites in seconds!

That’s all there is to it! The Hub will automatically go through your site and configure all of your selected services using preset configs.

Note: We recommend not using configs for brand-spanking new sites. It’s best to get established with your plugins and features first so that any functionality isn’t disrupted (e.g. if you were to enable a Defender config on a brand new site with masked login activated, you will not be able to log into the site).

Take Advantage of Uptime Configs

Our uptime tool allows you to monitor downtime and uptime, configure notification threshold, and the email recipient who you want to keep tabs on your chosen site.

Uptime configs also work slightly different to our regular plugin configs, and custom uptime configs can be a great tool for agencies or freelancers who manage many websites and want to prioritize them differently.

Customized configs area.
Set downtime & uptime alerts, the threshold, and email recipients.

For example, you might create specific uptime configs especially for clients who have purchased your top tiered plans. In this case, your alerts could be set up to instantly notify your top developers.

On the other hand, for lower paying, less priority sites – you might only have a 10 min downtime alert, which is sent to your intermediate developers.

Then simply save these two unique setups as configs, and apply to relevant sites based on their priority.

That’s the one example anyway. The point is, you can get creative with how you customize this particular config tool and use it to your advantage.

Like the others, Uptime configs can be applied via the default and custom config tabs.

Uptime config.
Uptime is right in the mix with the rest of the configs.

For more on Uptime, be sure to check out our plugin documentation.

Go Big and Config

As you can see, configs are a BIG advantage to your WordPress management. They put you in the driver’s seat when it comes to your WordPress sites settings!

Configs streamline everything, so you don’t have to adjust settings for each site that you have. They’re an excellent one-and-done solution.

Be sure to give configs a spin today on unlimited sites with our supported plugins and Uptime. If you don’t have The Hub and want to check out all that we have covered above, then sign up for a membership … it’s completely risk-free! You’ll get access to all of our award-winning premium plugins, 24-7 support, and much more!

[Editor’s note: This post was originally published in July 2021 and updated in April 2024 for accuracy.]

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