WP-Orphanage Extended


Users who have not been assigned any Roles or Capabilities are called ‘orphans’.
When using the shared users table trick to link up multiple WordPress installations, users who register on one of your blogs, are not given any privileges on the other blogs in the network.
WP-Orphanage is a plugin that automatically adopts your orphan users by promoting them to the role of your choosing.
By default it is the same as the default role set in the WP Options.

It does it in two ways:

  1. Users who try to login to a different blog in the network than the one they signed up on, will be promoted at the time of login. The user won’t even know that it happened.
  2. When the admin logs into the blog and views the users page, all orphan users – for that blog – are promoted automatically.

By taking a just in time approach, this plugin will not add any noticeable overhead to your WordPress blogs, while providing a seamless experience for the users and administrators.

This plugin is a extended version of WP-Orphanage plugin written by Eric Marden


  • WP-Orphanage Extended Options Screen


  1. Download the wp-orphanage-extended.zip file, unzip and upload the whole directory to the /wp-content/plugins/ directory
  2. Activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress.
  3. Edit the plugin options to set the role you would like users to be promoted to, and other WP prefixes where to search for roles.
  4. As an admin you can visit the Users page to automatically upgrade all orphan users of that blog to that role. Users who login before you do that will also get the same treatment (but only for their account).


Why Would I Want This?

If you are using the CUSTOM_USER_TABLE and CUSTOM_USER_META_TABLE in your wp-config.php, you’re probably going to want this.


January 4, 2018
Btw – Mike McLin has created an excellent video tutorial (see: mikemclin.net/single-users-table-multiple-wordpress-sites/) in which he explains the perfect use case for this WP-Orphanage Extended plugin 🙂
September 3, 2016
Just ensure you enter the table suffixes correctly like wp_ etc. if they are different for different installs. Works in subdomain. what a blessing! Thanks so much
Read all 5 reviews

Contributors & Developers

“WP-Orphanage Extended” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.


“WP-Orphanage Extended” has been translated into 1 locale. Thank you to the translators for their contributions.

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Interested in development?

Browse the code, check out the SVN repository, or subscribe to the development log by RSS.



  • Escaped data on settings page


  • Changed textdomain to ‘wp-orphanage-extended’, represented by constant WPOEX_TD
  • Minor code styling corrections


  • Initial release.

This plugin is a extended version of WP-Orphanage plugin written by Eric Marden (xentek.net)