Workaround: Unavailable Widgets in WordPress Admin Panel

This is a simple workaround for widgets which seem to be unavailable in your WordPress admin panel. When I started using my latest theme “Green Park 2“, I encountered a really nasty bug in WordPress 2.7.
If you use a theme with two or more available sidebars and within each sidebar one or more widgets and you switch to another theme with only one sidebar, some of the widgets become unavailable in the admin panel: and you can neither deactivate nor rearrange them.

Although the solution is quite simple, it’s a kind of annoying: the widgets are in use and hidden in the 2nd or 3rd sidebar – WordPress does not provide a simple way to deactivate or rearrange your widgets if you use a theme with only one sidebar and you have no access to the 2nd or 3rd sidebar.

  • Switch back to a theme with two or more sidebars.
  • Remove all the widgets from the sidebars.
  • Switch back to your new 1-sidebar-only theme
  • Reactivate your widgets.
  • Enjoy ;)

Remember: the content of Text-Widgets gets lost if you deactivate them!

8 responses to “Workaround: Unavailable Widgets in WordPress Admin Panel”

  1. Interesting… I’m using a theme with 3 sidebars and my Archive widget is unavailable. I’m going to switch to the default WP theme and switch back and see if that fixes it.

  2. Ah I fixed it. I found a theme with like… 10 sidebars (xD) and my archives widget was in sidebar 4. Thanks for helping me. Before reading this I had no clue what the problem was. For those wondering the theme I used that had a ton of sidebars is named “Greed”.

  3. Wow! Thanks so much! I just switched from a 3 sidebar theme to a 1 sidebar theme, and couldn’t figure out why it wouldn’t work. Thanks for the help!

  4. Fantastic! I had a 4-sidebar theme and switched to 2 and this fixed the mystery of the missing widgets. Winner!

  5. i went from 3 sidebars to 1 and lost widgets

    but unfortunately after switching back to the 3 sidebar theme
    so i could remove all widgets.. all i see there is 1 sidebar now
    maybe i’m doing something wrong.. very frustrating.. thanks anyway