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WP-Sweep

Plugin Author: Lester Chan

In the past, I’ve reviewed Optimize Database which is a great way of getting a handle on your WordPress database and trimming it down when it gets to bloated. But I’d like to add WP-Sweep into the mix, which does some of the same things, some things different, and in general makes database optimization extremely simple.

What’s it Do?

WP-Sweep adds a new utility to the WordPress admin that cleans up some common problems with the WordPress database. It optimizes for post revisions, unused and spam comments, orphaned user and term metadata, old and unused database tables, and expired transients. For each of these, WP-Sweep allows you to dive into the details of what will be removed from your database (in plain English) before it actually sweeps things up. You can also optimize one category at a time, or all at once.

How’s it Work?

Once you’ve installed and activated the plugin, you can actually start using it by going to Tools -> Sweep.

In the WP-Sweep settings screen you will see a list of potential optimizations that can be made to the WordPress database, organized by category. For each individual element, it will either indicate N/A if there are no optimizations to be made, or include a “Details” and “Sweep” button if there are.

The WP-Sweep interface

The WP-Sweep interface

Clicking on the “Details” link will show you a list of individual items that will be removed. For instance, for spam or trashed comments that are being removed, you will get a list of users that the comments are attributed to. Details help you sort out if the optimization is really worthwhile.

Clicking the “Sweep” button will remove the data from your database altogether. This is irreversible, so remember that none of this data can ever be recovered. However, you don’t have to worry about it too much, because WP-Sweep focuses on the extraneous and trivial parts of your database, not places where any content will actually be effected.

At the bottom of the page, you will see a link to “Sweep All”. You can use this to perform all of the optimizations listed at once. And that’s about all there is to it.

Costs, Caveats, Etc.

WP-Sweep is completely free, and makes good use of the API. It is simple to use, and when used regularly, can do a lot for improving performance and removing bloat on your site. If you are having any problems with it, you can ask for help from the developer on the WordPress support forums.

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