How to remove/customize unwanted items from WordPress dashboard

By default, WordPress comes with a lot of items on the dashboard that most people would never use. The problem with having a lot of options on the dashboard is that it not only makes the dashboard looks cluttered but also can negatively impact on your blogging productivity.

Besides this, if you are developing a Wordpress website for a client, leaving unnecessary options and choices will lead to confusion and higher risk of breaking your hard web design work.

 

Remove unwanted WP items dashboard

Although WordPress ships with ‘screen options’ from where you can disable showing unwanted items on the dashboard, sometimes for the sake of simplicity you might want to completely remove these unwanted dashboard items even from the ‘screen options’.

Again, if you are developing a WordPress theme for a client who is an absolute novice to WordPress environment, it makes sense to avoid everything that can make them confused, which can also help improving the overall user experience.

The goal of this tutorial is thus, to completely remove the unwanted dashboard items not only from the dashboard screen but from the ‘screen options’ as well.
Here’s how the dashboard items and the ‘screen options’ will look like before implementing the below code to your WordPress site.

screen before

Here’s how it looks after implementing it.

screen after

In this tutorial, you’ll find how to remove:

  • 'At a glance’ item from the dashboard
  • WordPress news feed from the dashboard
  • Quick draft option from the dashboard

Removing unnecessary dashboard items

Simply add the following code snippet to your functions.php file to remove unnecessary items from dashboard and the ‘screen options’.

add_action('wp_dashboard_setup', 'my_custom_dashboard_widgets');

function my_custom_dashboard_widgets() {

global $wp_meta_boxes;

unset($wp_meta_boxes['dashboard']['normal']['core']['dashboard_right_now']);

unset($wp_meta_boxes['dashboard']['side']['core']['dashboard_secondary']);

unset($wp_meta_boxes['dashboard']['side']['core']['dashboard_quick_press']);

}

Remove only the options you want

Many times, you might not want to remove all of those items from dashboard and the ‘screen options’ as given on the above code snippet. In such cases, you can remove only specific items from your dashboard that you feel you might not want to use.

Take a look at below to know which snippets are responsible for each action. If you think any of them is necessary you may remove it from the above code before adding it to your functions.php file.

At a glance:

unset($wp_meta_boxes['dashboard']['normal']['core']['dashboard_right_now']);

WordPress news feed:

unset($wp_meta_boxes['dashboard']['side']['core']['dashboard_secondary']);

Removing quick draft:

unset($wp_meta_boxes['dashboard']['side']['core']['dashboard_quick_press']);

Decide which ones you want to leave and which ones you want to remove and for the ones which you don’t want, LEAVE it in the code. This is because we are asking the code to UNSET, i.e. remove the option, rather than specifying which ones we want to leave.
This code edit once in place will allow you to remove or customize any unwanted items in the Wordpress dashboard.

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