This plugin hasn’t been updated in over 2 years. It may no longer be maintained or supported and may have compatibility issues when used with more recent versions of WordPress.

WP Session Manager


Adds $_SESSION-like functionality to WordPress.

Every visitor, logged in or not, will be issued an instance of WP_Session. Their instance will be identified by an ID
stored in the _wp_session cookie. Typically, session data will be stored in a WordPress transient, but if your
installation has a caching system in-place (i.e. memcached), the session data might be stored in memory.

This provides plugin and theme authors the ability to use WordPress-managed session variables without having to use the
standard PHP $_SESSION superglobal.


Manual Installation

  1. Upload the entire /wp-session-manager folder to the /wp-content/plugins/ directory.
  2. Activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress.
  3. Use WP_Session::get_instance() in your code.


How do I add session variables?

First, make a reference to the WP_Session instance. Then, use it like an associative array, just like $_SESSION:

$wp_session = WP_Session::get_instance();
$wp_session['user_name'] = 'User Name';                            // A string
$wp_session['user_contact'] = array( 'email' => '' ); // An array
$wp_session['user_obj'] = new WP_User( 1 );                        // An object
How long do session variables live?

By default, session variables will live for 24 minutes from the last time they were accessed – either read or write.

This value can be changed by using the wp_session_expiration filter:

add_filter( 'wp_session_expiration', function() { return 60 * 60; } ); // Set expiration to 1 hour


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Contributors & Developers

“WP Session Manager” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.




  • Fix a race condition where session expiration options could accidentally be set to autoload
  • Make the garbage collection routine run hourly to alleviate long-running tasks on larger sites


  • Fix a bug where session expiration was not properly set upon instantiation


  • Implement Recursive_ArrayAccess to provide multidimensional array support
  • Better expiration for session data
  • Implement garbage collection to keep the database clean


  • Switch to object persistence rather than transients


  • Changes implementation to avoid the use of a global variable (still registered for convenience)


  • First version