Jul 192013
WordPress Plugin Name: Background Manager
Plugin URL:http://wordpress.org/plugins/background-manager/

Plugin Author: Mike Green (Myatu)
WordPress profile: Mike Green (Myatu)
Plugin version:
Last updated: July 27, 2015 (4 months ago)
Tested up to (WP version): WP 4.2.5
Downloaded: 219,263
Rating: 5 (out of 5)


Note! This plugin has been deprecated; it is no longer maintained nor supported.

Background Manager is a powerful replacement for the default WordPress background manager.

It allows you to create multiple image sets, from which an image is selected and displayed as the website background. The images can be uploaded from your local computer, selected from the images available in your Media Library, or import them from other plugins and third-party sources.

With an easy to use menu, you can also define how the background image is displayed, such as full-screen (with ratio correction), tiled, fixed or scrolling, define where the image is positioned and how a background image is selected (random or in sequential order).

You also have the ability to add an overlay to the background images with a choice of pre-defined patterns. And of course it is also possible to add a background color.

Where supported, in full-screen mode the the background image is optionally "eased in" when it is ready to be displayed. No longer will visitors with slower Internet connections have to endure watching a background image load from top down.

You can also limit the background images to certain parts of WordPress, for example only on the front page or a full-page post. And for each individual page, post, category or tag, you can also override the images, overlay or color used as the background, which allows you to have pages or posts with a different background theme.

Each individual background image can also be linked to a specific URL, which allows a visitor to click anywhere on the background and be redirected to another page or website. Impressions and clickthroughs of clickable backgrounds can optionally be be tracked via Google Analytics.

All this is done without the need to edit the theme or any other files!


Visit the Background Manager Demo Site for a live demonstration of the plugin.


  • Integration with WordPress Media Library
  • Full support for the WordPress Theme Customizer
  • Full-screen background images
  • Full control over position for images in normal display mode (tiling, positioning, scrolling and stretching)
  • Optional "Ease in" of a full-screen background image
  • Multiple Image Sets to select a random or sequential image from
  • Override the Image Set for each Post, Page, Custom post type or by Tag(s) or Category, including WP e-Commerce and WooCommerce Product Categories
  • User defined display interval between the background images (timed slideshow)
  • Optional transition effects between the different background images displayed:
    • Fade-in/Fade-out (Crossfade)
    • Slide (Top, bottom, left or right)
    • Cover (Top, bottom, left or right)
    • Fade-in and Zoom
    • CSS3 transitions: Bars, Zip, Blinds, Swipe, Random Blocks, Sequential Blocks, Concentric and Warp
  • 18 pre-defined background overlays
  • Enable or disable the background images on the Front page, Error pages, Custom post types, etc.
  • Optional thumbnail/information tab for the visitor to learn more about the background
  • Import from various sources, such as:
  • Define the background opacity (available in Full Screen only)
  • Background image links (click-able backgrounds)
  • Track background clicks and impressions via Google Analytics
  • Uses AJAX to load background images, keeping the website's footprint small and improves caching
  • Graceful degradation for visitors without JavaScript and older browsers
  • Option to add a "Pin It" Pinterest button

This product uses the Flickr API but is not endorsed or certified by Flickr.


Help, it's broken! What do I do now?

If something does not appear to be working as it should, search the WordPress Support Forum if there may be a solution, or write a new topic that describes the problem(s) you are experiencing.

It will be very useful to include information about the environment in which the problem occured. If you can still activate and access the Settings page for the plugin, look at the bottom of the page for a Debug link. Clicking it will expand a box with often requested details, such as the WordPress version and what operating system the web server is using. You can copy and paste these details when reporting a problem, which will help speed up finding a solution.

How do my make my backgrounds click-able?

You can redirect your visitor to a specific URL if they click anywhere on the background by setting the Background URL for an image. Simply edit one of your Image Sets (Apperance -> Background -> Image Sets --> [desired image set]), select an image and click the Edit icon displayed over the image. Provide the URL in the Background URL field and click Save All Changes.

Can I track background impressions and clicks?

Yes, starting with version 1.1, any click-able background image that is shown or clicked on can be tracked using Google Analytics. They will appear as Google Analytics Events, which can also be used for Goals. The Help tab on the main Settins page will describe this in more detail.

How do I change the background, overlay or color for individual posts or pages?

To override the default Image Set or overlay used as the background, edit the desired page or post and look for the Background box, which is usually located under the large text editor.

If this box is not visible, ensure that it is enabled by clicking the Screen Options tab in the upper right corner, and under the Show on screen heading select/tick the Background option.

You will be able to select any of your existing Image Sets, as well as a different overlay, or disable either entirely.

How do I override by Category or Tag?

Edit the desired Image Set (Apperance -> Background -> Image Sets --> [desired image set]) and select a Category or Tag in the corresponding Override by Category or Override by Tag boxes.

If the box is not visible, ensure that it is enabled by clicking the Screen Options tab in the upper right corner, and under the Show on screen heading select/tick the Override by Category and/or Override by Tag options.

Once the Image Set has been saved, it will override the selected Category/Tag.

How do I display an Image Set in order instead of random?

This option is only available if a new background image is select every few seconds (see Settings -> Select an Image option). This will give you the added option of displaying an Image Set in ascending or descending order.

How can I change the order images are displayed?

First ensure that a background is selected every few seconds (see above). Edit the desired Image Set and highlight an image using the mouse or by using the cursor keys on your keyboard. Buttons will overlay the highlighted image, allowing you to edit, delete/remove and move the image one position left or right.

To move more than one image at a time, double click or press SPACE on your keyboard to select the images. A set of buttons will appear at the top of window containing the images, which give you the option to move the selected images left or right.

Note: These changes take effect immediately!

I have a PHP version older than 5.3, can I make it work?

This plugin makes use of many features introduced in PHP version 5.3, and an attempt to make it work with older versions of PHP is equivalent to a complete rewrtie of the plugin.

Many hosting providers are already providing PHP 5.3+ to their customers, and others allow for an easy upgrade. Also consider that PHP 5.3 was first released in 2009 and fixes many bugs and security issues, and support for PHP 5.2 was stopped in 2010.

How can I upgrade to PHP version 5.3?

This depends. If you have your very own server, then this is Operating System specific and you will need to consult its documentation on how to upgrade. Most commonly in Linux environments this consists of running apt-get, yum or pacman from the CLI.

If you are using a web hosting provider, then you need to contact the provider regarding this. Some can move your website to a different server with a newer version of PHP 5.3, while others make it as simple as adding/changing a line in the .htaccess file or a setting in the control panel. For example:

  • 1&1 Webhosting: Add AddHandler x-mapp-php6 .php to the .htaccess file
  • OVH: Add SetEnv PHP_VER 5_3 or SetEnv PHP_VER 5_TEST to the .htaccess file
  • GoDaddy Linux Shared Hosting: Add AddHandler x-httpd-php5-3 .php to the .htaccess file
  • GoDaddy 4GH Hosting: Visit GoDaddy's Hosting Control Center -> Content -> Programming Languages
  • HostGator: Add Action application/x-hg-php53 /cgi-sys/php53 and AddHandler application/x-hg-php53 .php to the .htaccess file
  • Bluehost: Add AddHandler application/x-httpd-php53 .php to the .htaccess file (Note: may require a support request/ticket to enable PHP 5.3)

How do I translate Background Manager to another language?

Background Manager uses the same method as WordPress to translate text. A default .PO file has already been created and can be found at /wp-content/plugins/background-manager/resources/l10n/default.po. Once you are done editing it, export the .MO file into the same directory, giving it the locale as name. For example: en_US.mo for American English, or nl_NL.mo for Dutch.


  1. background-manager screenshot 1

    A full-screen background behind the TwentyEleven theme

  2. background-manager screenshot 2

    The main settings of Background Manager

  3. background-manager screenshot 3

    Editing an Image Set within Background Manager

Other notes:

Latest Change log entry:

  • Fixed: Bug with NONCE check on AJAX requests, affecting some versions of Firefox and MSIE


background, flickr, image, photo, random, rotate, slideshow, theme

+ Jason's Comments

I use this for full screen responsive backgrounds.