How to upgrade from previous BuddyBoss versions to 3.0

Updating to BuddyBoss 3.0 will be a bit bit harder than usual as the theme has been completely recoded. Your child theme edits will need to be re-applied into the new child theme structure.


Getting Started

Back Up

The very first thing you should do before performing a major update is to back up your database and files! In case you mess something up, you can then revert back and restore your old setup. The WordPress Codex has a good guide about performing backups.

Switch to BuddyBoss 3.0

First you need to download and then install BuddyBoss 3.0. If you are already running version 2.1.9 or below and you are an existing customer, you can download version 3.0 for free. More information on this here.

Activate the Wall and Photos

When you switch over to BuddyBoss 3.0 your Wall and Photos components may be turned off by default. Just go into Appearance > BuddyBoss to re-activate them.


Differences between 2.1.9 and 3.0

BuddyBoss 3.0 has some important configuration changes from what you are used to.

Theme Options

Theme options used to be in your admin in a BuddyBoss section in the left panel. We have moved the theme options into Appearance > BuddyBoss per current best practices.

Admin bar

We now have two admin bar options. We have the version you are used to, with a custom admin bar floating at the top right of your site. Due to many user requests we added a second option for a full width fixed admin bar docked permanently to the top of the page – similar to the default WordPress admin bar but custom styled for BuddyBoss. The new “Fixed” option is better if you have a lot of content in the header area of your site, like a wide logo or ads. You can choose which one you want in Appearance > BuddyBoss.

Login Widget

In older versions of BuddyBoss you had a hard-coded login section in the left sidebar of the homepage. After logging in it switched to showing your avatar and some useful links. We have converted this functionality into a widget that comes with the theme, and also streamlined it to be simpler and cleaner.

  1. Go to Appearance > Widgets.
  2. Add the “(BuddyBoss) Profile Login Widget” to your desired widget area. You can add it to as many widget areas as you’d like.
  3. Give the widget a title of your choosing,  like “Log In” for example. The title will only be displayed for logged out users.

BP Profile Search

If you have been using the “BP Profile Search” plugin for your Members directory search, previously the functionality was hard-coded in the members sidebar. That is no longer the case, as the plugin now comes with a widget. Now you can just add their widget to your desired widget area (usually the “Members → Directory” widget area).

The plugin options for “Search Form Header” and “Toggle Form” are not relevant. Whatever you put in there will not be used as those options are only used if the plugin is hard-coded into the theme, like before. Again, BuddyBoss is now only using the widget.

Custom theme colors

BuddyBoss 3.0 does not have a color picker anymore. We will soon introduce a color pack child theme that has a bunch of pre-built color variations for you to choose from and then edit.


Migrating your theme edits

If you have done a bunch of edits in your parent theme – the “buddyboss” theme folder – this could be difficult. The new theme is structured in a completely different way. If you did your edits in a child theme it will be easier as you can quickly locate every edit you have made, but it will still take some work. CSS is very different in BuddyBoss 3.0. We apologize for that, but we really had no choice. Responsive CSS (for mobile layouts) is written in a different way from non-responsive CSS and the only way to make BuddyBoss truly responsive was to start from scratch in terms of CSS.

We recommend migrating all of your CSS and template edits into a child theme. You then activate the child theme in the WordPress admin. We put together a thorough guide on child themes over here.

If you give up and need a professional to help you out, feel free to contact us. We will have to charge you, but we do take on custom projects. I can't guarantee we'll be able to work on your migration as we are often booked with a lot of work already, but it's always worth asking.