Support » Fixing WordPress » Banner ad for a plugin keeps appearing on my admin page.

  • Resolved RecoverySI


    A banner ad for the “WP Checkup” plugin appeared at the top of my Admin dashboard page. I clicked the “close” button. When I navigated to the comment management page, the same banner appeared again. Again I clicked the “close” button. When I navigated back to the dashboard page, the same popup reappeared. Again I clicked the “close” button.

    Someone kindly tell me how I can delete this annoying popup forever? I will now never, ever, EVER use that plugin, no matter what. There has to be a better tool than one designed by someone who thinks this is a great way to attract customers.

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 17 total)
  • Moderator Steven Stern (sterndata)


    Support Team Volunteer

    This may be a plugin or theme thing. Please attempt to disable all plugins, and use one of the default (Twenty*) themes. If the problem goes away, enable them one by one to identify the source of your troubles.

    Once you find what’s putting that ad there, I suggest you contact its developer.

    In other words,list all the plugins I’ll need to re-enable, hopefully save my highly-customized theme intact, disable all the plugins, drop the very LARGE database into a new theme, then… what?

    I won’t really be able to tell whether the hash I’ve made of the site is simply the artifact of the theme change and plugin disabling or not, so I suppose I’m just navigating around on the backend, seeing if the popup shows up, and if it doesn’t, I assume the problem is solved?

    And then attempt, crossing all body parts, to drop it back into its custom theme and re-enable all of the plugins, and hope like hell I didn’t break it?

    And of course, doing this at 3 am my time so that it disrupts traffic to the site as little as possible.

    I appreciate that you’ve offered me a do-it-yourself ‘possible’ solution, and if all else fails, that’s what I’ll try.

    But I’d much prefer it if WordPress would contact the developer of the offending plugin and tell them to stop spamming users, and remove their pustulent little advertisement.

    Sorry, Steve.

    I put BAD information in my original question. Could you kindly remove it?

    The offending item isn’t a plugin at all. I searched the plugins directory and it’s not there.

    So it appears to be some other kind of hack.

    Moderator Steven Stern (sterndata)


    Support Team Volunteer

    YOu can still edit your post. However, the methodology is sound. Something is putting that banner there and it’s unlikely it’s a hack. It’s probably a plugin by the same author, so open your site in two tabs. One one, have a page that shows the banner. ON the other, dashboard-> plugins. Deactivate a plugin and refresh the other tab. Did it go away? If yes, make a note of that plugin. If not, re-activate and deactivate the next one; refresh the other tab. Rinse and repeat.

    Good suggestion, Steve, thanks. If I have to be up at 3 am to fiddle with the website this is a lot easier.

    It affects NOTHING on the front end of the site- every type of post and page appears normally, although I can’t check them all as there are hundreds of posts. But all the major category pages, search results pages for tags, a random sample of posts, and regular pages appear completely unaffected.

    It is ONLY the admin pages, the backend, that are affected. I’m assuming that the idea is to make me or some other admin click the button, which will then install malware or otherwise mess up my site.

    How they got in to install the banner in the admin area is the question, and the runthrough you suggest seems to be as good a way of scoping out whether any of the plugin developers are the culprit is a good idea.

    I’ll let you know (tomorrow, no doubt, since I can’t be messing with the site while traffic is ongoing) how it turns out. Thanks for your suggestion!

    Hire a consultant

    @kmessinger had some suggestions I’d like to reply to but he then closed the topic.

    He included a lot of hack resources, none of which seems on-point except possibly the ones that are so technical I can’t really understand them. (Not a geek.) Then suggested I “try this on different computer. This is different than most hacks.”

    Then he closed the topic so I can’t ask “try WHAT?” @kmessinger if you are out there could you kindly elaborate?

    Also, @luckychingi, did you have a consultant in mind? Yourself, for instance? Troll level: Pre-K.

    If I can’t solve this myself I’ll certainly work with my developers, but I’d prefer to solve it without spending cash if possible.

    @recoverysi, I dont market my services on the Forum.

    Since @kmessinger gave you various options and you could not figure out the technical part, its only wise to look for help.

    Its your choice! spend time or money.

    Moderator Steven Stern (sterndata)


    Support Team Volunteer

    Once again, I think it unlikely that you’ve been hacked. It seems to me that more and more plugins are including annoying ads on the admin pages.

    I’ll give the your suggestion a try and let you know. If it IS a plugin I’m already using, I’ll find a different one that does the same thing.

    I wouldn’t be quite so irritated if it had popped up once and allowed me to dismiss it. But the continual reappearance is ‘acting like malware’ in my book.



    This is a plugin. Did you recently install the Custom Sidebars plugin? I did and I started getting this immediately. There’s a thread about it on the plugin’s support page and the developer is working on it.

    In the meantime, I was able to get it to go away by disabling AdBlock on the domain I’m working on. Annoying for sure, hope this helps!

    RecoverySI, this is caused by a plugin called Custom Sidebars. I’m having the same issue, the dev seems to be aware of this problem.

    Same problem here, custom sidebars plugin came with the theme, and displayed WP Checkup Banner ad on top of every admin page. Both are created by wpmudev.

    Disabled Custom Sidebars, deleted the plugin, banner ad gone.

    I’m really sorry about the frustration caused by this, we’re working on it and will have a release shortly.

    The issue of getting this and not being able to disable it is apparently due to a recent renaming within the code where we labelled something as a dismissable ad which shouldn’t ever come back, ironically browser ad blockers are now blocking this from being dismissed.

    We’re working on it and will be releasing once we’ve confirmed the fix.

    Once again, please accept our apologies.


    Thanks to Steve, hutch, perkedel, patthis. It is indeed Custom Sidebars and since I’ve used that plugin for years and it’s integral to site appearance, WPMU DEV, a fast fix would be GREATLY appreciated.

    Since I know it’s not a hack or malware shill, I can live with it for a day or two. But I’m really hoping to see the “update” icon in my alerts bar taking me to a new Custom Sidebars release ASAP.

    Given the ubiquity of browser ad blockers, might I suggest y’all integrate that assumption into future development and testing?

    I’m going to leave this open for a day or two, hopefully once WPMU has fixed the problem we can close it and move on.

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 17 total)
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