Where To Put define(‘wp_debug’, true);


In the realm of WordPress development, the define('wp_debug', true); statement holds a significant role, acting as a debugging tool that can unveil insights into the inner workings of your WordPress site. In this guide, we will explore the nuances of this crucial code snippet, shedding light on where to strategically place it for optimal results.

Demystifying define('wp_debug', true);

Before delving into the intricacies of where to place define('wp_debug', true);, let’s grasp its essence. This code snippet activates the debugging mode in WordPress, providing developers with valuable information about errors, warnings, and notices that might otherwise remain concealed. It is a powerful ally in troubleshooting and enhancing the overall stability and performance of a WordPress site.

The Strategic Placement: Unveiling Best Practices

1. In the wp-config.php File

The most common and recommended placement for define('wp_debug', true); is in the wp-config.php file. This file serves as the configuration hub for WordPress, and by adding this snippet near the top, right after the opening <?php tag, you activate debugging from the early stages of the site’s execution.

define('wp_debug', true);
// Other configurations follow...

2. Inside Theme Functions

For theme-specific debugging, embedding the snippet in the functions.php file of your active theme is a viable option. This approach allows you to focus debugging efforts on the specific theme in use.

// Inside your theme's functions.php file
define('wp_debug', true);

3. Plugin-Specific Debugging

When dealing with debugging related to a specific plugin, inserting the snippet directly into the plugin file can be effective. However, exercise caution to avoid interfering with the plugin’s core functionality.

// Inside the main file of the plugin
define('wp_debug', true);

Navigating Debugging Output

Once define('wp_debug', true); is strategically placed, WordPress will start displaying debugging information on your site. This includes error messages, warnings, and notices. The following are common types of debugging output:

1. Error Messages

Errors are critical issues that need immediate attention. Debugging in this mode helps identify and rectify issues before they impact the site’s functionality.

2. Warnings

Warnings signal potential problems that may not halt the site but should be addressed to ensure smooth operation.

3. Notices

Notices are informative messages that highlight areas for improvement, helping developers enhance the site’s performance.


In conclusion, the strategic placement of define('wp_debug', true); in your WordPress development arsenal can significantly streamline the debugging process. Whether it’s uncovering hidden issues in the core, theme, or plugins, this powerful snippet offers invaluable insights. Experiment with its placement based on your specific debugging needs, always keeping an eye on maintaining a robust and error-free WordPress site.

With the ability to pinpoint and resolve issues efficiently, the judicious use of define('wp_debug', true); is key to crafting WordPress experiences that stand out in the digital landscape. So, go ahead, harness its potential, and elevate your WordPress development game.