My quest for the perfect WordPress maintenance mode plugin

There was a day when WordPress maintenance mode plugins were simple little things designed by developers for developers, and these little gems were very useful. Then marketers got involved.

Today the WordPress maintenance mode plugin space is a wasteland of shit. In that pile of steaming stuff, you’ll find plugins that do everything but what a respectable maintenance mode plugin should – they’re pushing you upsells and ads and layouts and countdown timers when all you really want is a fucking white screen with “down for scheduled maintenance” text to show up for people who aren’t logged in. By comparison, here’s what the maintenance mode plugin within WordPress core looks like (you’ll see it when updating plugins or a theme):

WordPress’ default maintenance mode view; clearly built by and for developers

That’s why I built and freely share my TMM Maintenance Mode WordPress plugin – a distinctly HELPFUL and free maintenance mode plugin that I’ve been using for over 7 years and counting. Here’s the complete list of features:

  1. No options. Just activate and done.
  2. Hides the site from anyone who isn’t logged in – see screengrab below.
  3. A bright red favicon and bright red WP admin bar background color to indicate that your site is in maintenance mode (to prevent me from accidentally editing a LIVE site…which I’ve sadly done many many times) – see screengrab below.
  4. Zero setup integration with Andy Fragen’s fantastic Github Updater plugin for easy updating.
  5. No ads or spam or shit like that.

That’s it. Simple, effective, and useful! What else would you want in a maintenance mode WordPress plugin?

Want it to say something else or display your logo, just fork the project on Github or edit the files in your install accordingly (there’s only 30 lines of actual code, all contained in a single php file, in this efficient little elf).

Notes:

There are 469 “maintenance mode” plugins in the WP.org repository.

If you search for “maintenance mode” on wordpress.org, you’ll find 469 free plugins that match that query. Do we really need 469 fucking WordPress maintenance mode plugins?!

469 WordPress maintenance mode plugins in search

Here’s what you’ll see after installing the “#1 Maintenance Mode” plugin from wp.org:

Above: Here’s what you’ll see after installing “The #1 Maintenance Mode Plugin” – a BEAST of a plugin by SeedProd

Just what I always wanted: a WordPress maintenance mode plugin with…”Smart Sections”, “Drag & Drop Page Builder”, “Landing Page Templates”, and “Premium Integrations”! Fuck you, SeedProd.

Oh, and SeedProd’s Maintenance Mode plugin also has “Growth Tools”! Fuck yeah – just what I always wanted while I’m hiding my site from public view – Growth Tools! *Snark Implied*

SeedProd Maintenance Mode wordpress plugin’s admin menu options include Growth Tools!

Have your own WordPress maintenance mode plugin horror stories to share? I’d love to hear them!

Posted in ,

Toby Cryns

RSS From Toby’s Blog

  • “Now THAT was a good meeting!”
    A single effective meeting can change the course of history for a company. Imagine if you could lead effective meetings EVERY DAY! You can, but it takes curiosity & practice. This article is a good place to start your journey to a more effective you.
  • Never Respond to RFPs & Custom Proposal Requests
    Y'all who work at normal 9-5 jobs don't need to deal with the B.S. that is an RFP process (or rather you get paid to deal with it). But us freelancers gotta deal with a whole big bag of schtuff when it comes to custom proposals. Here's my quick-and-dirty RFP filtering process that I use […]
  • What content should I put on my homepage?
    I see websites as one stop of many on the sales journey, useful to help get customers from Point A to Point B in the sales process (or maybe from Point D to Point E).  If you are wondering about what to put on your homepage, start with these basic sales-related questions: Who, specifically, will…

More posts from themightymo.com

woocommerce logo

How to fix the “Warning: Class ‘Automattic\WooCommerce\StoreApi\Routes” issue in WordPress + WooCommerce

By The Mighty Mo! Design Co. | May 13, 2022

Today when I visited a customer’s website, I saw an error similar to this: etc. After trying all sorts of troubleshooting, the solution ended up being simple. Download a fresh copy of WooCommerce from WordPress.org and FTP it up to the server, replacing the existing WooCommerce files. Problem solved. Isn’t that nice? Many thanks to…

How to CSS rainbow text

By The Mighty Mo! Design Co. | March 31, 2022

Here’s a bit of plain CSS that’ll create rainbow text on your WordPress site or anywhere, really.

How to Restore a Deleted Amazon S3 Bucket

By The Mighty Mo! Design Co. | March 22, 2022

I ran into a rather serious issue recently: a human on my team (me) intentionally (but accidentally) deleted an Amazon S3 bucket that was serving files to a WordPress site. The solution to the problem follows: Cry when you realize you cannot restore a deleted S3 bucket. Search your computer, your co-workers’ computers, your former…

RSS From Toby’s Blog

  • “Now THAT was a good meeting!”
    A single effective meeting can change the course of history for a company. Imagine if you could lead effective meetings EVERY DAY! You can, but it takes curiosity & practice. This article is a good place to start your journey to a more effective you.
  • Never Respond to RFPs & Custom Proposal Requests
    Y'all who work at normal 9-5 jobs don't need to deal with the B.S. that is an RFP process (or rather you get paid to deal with it). But us freelancers gotta deal with a whole big bag of schtuff when it comes to custom proposals. Here's my quick-and-dirty RFP filtering process that I use […]
  • What content should I put on my homepage?
    I see websites as one stop of many on the sales journey, useful to help get customers from Point A to Point B in the sales process (or maybe from Point D to Point E).  If you are wondering about what to put on your homepage, start with these basic sales-related questions: Who, specifically, will…