Thesis 1.8.6 Released for WordPress 4.0 Compatibility

by Chris Pearson · 73 comments

If you’re still using Thesis 1.x, you’ll be happy to know we’ve released Thesis 1.8.6 for full WordPress 4.0 compatibility.

Grab the update here, and then follow these instructions to update from version 1.x to version 1.8.6.

Finally, just to be clear—if you’re using Thesis 2 (and specifically, the latest version, 2.1.9), your site is fully compatible with WordPress 4.0.

About the Author: Chris Pearson, Thesis creator and DIYthemes founder, is obsessed with optimizing the web and making sure every last detail receives the attention it requires. Follow DIYthemes on Twitter for the latest tips and info on building effective websites.

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Thanks Chris! Thesis is still my favorite “playground theme” – so awesome to apply, implement, move and extract ‘exotic elements’ into the framework! It’s brilliant for novices who know HTML/CSS but not ‘wp’ based coding like me lol


I have Thesis 1.8.2 , I need update for Wordpress 4.0 compatibility, how do I get it?

Chris Pearson

Thomas, did you read this post? It’s instructions for how to do precisely what you’ve asked.



I need to pay for it? I cannot log in to your website.. I chose 1.8.2 from Wordpress , was free originally.


if you’ve installed Thesis 1.8.2 and got it free, you downloaded it from an illegitimate source, and you should run a security check.

Thesis was never free, I’ve been a happy customer since many years. I’m not a fan of the new Thesis version, but I love that the Thesis team is still supporting Thesis 1.x.

Chris Pearson

Thomas, as Bob said, Thesis has never been free. If you have an active account with DIYthemes, you can log in at any time and download Thesis 1.8.6 (or the latest version of Thesis 2).


Great news. I am so glad you are still supporting Thesis 1.X. I still love it!
Question: Is there any way to use the WordPress SEO plugin by Yoast with Thesis 1.X?

Chris Pearson

Rick, yes, but you will need to make a few small modifications to ensure it works properly. Visit our support center for specific help here.


I have Thesis 2 (1.0.3 Classic) installed and I’ve noticed an error when viewing on my mobile phone (iPhone). The content seems to be shifting from the bottom and overlying the top.

Are there any updates for this issue or am I the only one experiencing it?


Chris Pearson

Sarah, the content shifting is likely due to an element inside your content that is too wide for the column (such as an image that’s too big or a really long URL). You may wish to visit our support center for further assistance here.


What a relief! I could hug you right now. Thesis 1.8 is so much easier for me to use. Massive thanks!

Chris Pearson

But Jem—you did such a fine job with your linked site, which is using Thesis 2 😀


Hi Chris

I have a question – my web designer built my site with the old Thesis so I don’t have the license key to do the upgrade. What do I need to do so that I can do this upgrade?

Chris Pearson

Theresa, you’ll need an active DIYthemes account to access the updated version. You can get an account for yourself, or you can contact your designer to see if they still have an active DIYthemes account (and could therefore get the update for you).

Aky Joe

Not so early, but never too late.

Ari Wahyudi

Go Thesis Go!!

Burnell Yow!

I just upgraded from Thesis 1.8.5 to 1.8.6 and now only the first page of my site shows up. None of the previously linked pages come up when the link buttons are clicked. Instead, I get a 404 error page. So, I deactivated 1.8.6 and went back to 1.8.5. Same problem persists. Only the first page shows up. Any ideas?

Chris Pearson

Looks like you got it working, Burnell. Nicely done!

Richard Elen

This is excellent news! While I’ve bought Thesis 2 I have had absolutely no chance to rewrite everything on my sites to make it work (I’d consider paying someone to do it, but when I asked I just got replies offering to move me to another platform [sigh]). As a result I need to stick with Thesis 1.x at present and I’ve been holding off on upgrading to WP4 until this very moment. Thanks again!

Chris Pearson

That’s a solid plan, Richard. There’s no pressing reason to upgrade to Thesis 2 until you’re ready to roll out a brand new design. At that point, it will make sense to move to the new platform to take advantage of the performance benefits and additional control.


Our sites are still on 1.8.2, I think its time to move forward now

Chris Pearson

Definitely update your site to Thesis 1.8.6. From security to compatibility, there are many reasons why this is the prudent thing to do.


I purchased Thesis and when I try to click to upgrade from 1.8.5 it is telling me that my license expired? I have to buy the theme again to upgrade?

Chris Pearson

Heather, if you only purchased a Basic license, your license expired after 12 months. I recommend purchasing our Professional license, as it gives you lifetime access to updates of the Thesis 1 and Thesis 2 platforms.


Thanks for making this update available.

The reason I grabbed this update was because I noticed my comments haven’t been showing since the update to WordPress 4.0. With the 1.8.6 version of Thesis, I can see comments on posts when I’m logged in, but not when I’m logged out. Is this a bug or is there a setting I need to check?


Never mind … I found the problem.

Even though I deactivated WP SuperCache according to your instructions, the cached version was still showing until I reactiviated the plugin and deleted the old files from the cache.

Renee @ Bendiful Blog

OMG this is the same issue I’ve been having since updating wordpress! But I still have thesis 1.X is there a way to change this without doing the update to 1.8. My old designer no longer designs and doesn’t have a code so I would need to purchase the new version. Plus I don’t know how to update my these without losing all my customs.


Haa, I am software developer, I still love the code, I feel more freedom in 1.8 as thesis 2.0, thanks for 1.8.6

Chris Pearson

Ali, it looks like I need to do a better job of explaining Thesis 2, as you actually have MORE code options/freedom with the new version than you do with Thesis 1.


Great News for thesis theme lover 🙂 Actually,Iam a big fan of thesis theme.thanks for latest update.

Todd Blair

Thanks… your instructions are clear for my sites – there’s nothing worse than using themes that screw up the updates. Thanks

Chris Pearson

Glad you were able to pull off the update without a hitch!

Floyd Lawson

Thank you for the update. It was quick and easy.


Just upgraded and it went very smoothly thanks to this excellent video.


So, thanks first for your help getting my update to work.

I just was walking friend thru same process, went to check my comments and find they are STILL NOT DISPLAYING? What is wrong?

(are there fewer problems with other themes or versions?)

Chris Pearson

Jacqueline, on occasion, caching Plugins can cause some confusion when updating, and that appears to be the case here. Please open a support request, and we’ll help you complete the update.


I attempted to open a support request but data is required from Thesis Admin? Where is that exactly? A search took me to info on version 2, no help for me using 1.8.6? (Thanks for the upgrade btw!)

Chris Pearson

Warner, since you’re using Thesis 1.8.6, you don’t have System Status information, so just leave that field blank when submitting a Support Request.

Arbaz Khan

I am really looking forward to getting Thesis for my new blog. I just hope I get the theme before anything happens!


Really nice to see you people stay on top with updates, are there any major enhancements from 1.8.2 ? or this is just compatibility update?

Chris Pearson

Spencer, we’ve included some compatibility fixes as well as enhanced security in Thesis 1.8.6, and I strongly recommend updating as soon as you get the chance to do so.


The theme is awesome. I will buy it for some of my next projects. Regards


Hi –

Just working on a upgrading a thesis 1.51 site running on wordpress 2.9.2 for a new client.

Is there anything different that is likely to break content or formatting in the upgrade to thesis 1.8.6 and wp 4.0?

How about to thesis 2.1.9?

Thank you.


Chris Pearson

David, upgrading from Thesis 1.5.1 to Thesis 1.8.6 is a straightforward process, and the results will be precisely what you’d expect. Upgrading a Thesis 1 site to Thesis 2 generally requires a professional (or at least someone with experience in HTML, CSS, and WordPress themes).

Sohil Memon

Seriously, till today, I haven’t gone for any thesis theme. But, as many of the bloggers recommends it for my personal blogs so gonna try it this time. Well, I am glad that you have added the support for the latest WordPress update. Cheers 😀

Roy Blumenthal

Hi Chris…

I think you’ve got to do a much better job of making Thesis 2 easy for non developers to use.

With Thesis 1, it was really simple to change the background to an image, change sizes of things in the design.

Now, I’m stuck with whatever default there is in Thesis 2. There is NO intuitive way to change ANYTHING.

Thesis 2 is completely opaque. Completely.

It may be very powerful, but if that power is inaccessible, then it’s pretty unfortunate.

Blue skies

The London Study

I’m using These 2.1.9 and a new thesis user. I just wanted to know if you have any short codes in 2.1.9 or I have to use third party short codes.

Chris Pearson

Thesis (and our official Thesis Skins) do not include shortcodes, as we believe that to be a poor practice in theming.

Instead, we recommend you add any shortcodes via Plugin (or other external means); this way, you’ll always have access to them no matter what theme you’re using.

Joseph Holmes

Chris, I had modified my Thesis 1.8.5 with the earlier suggested changes to the comments.php file.

Is there any reason for me to now upgrade from 1.8.5 to 1.8.6?


Chris Pearson

Joseph, Thesis 1.8.6 includes some other minor enhancements that ensure total WordPress compatibility. Because of this, I think the smart move is to update your theme, and it’s easy if you follow the instructions outlined in this video (login required).


Is Thesis 1.8.6 a responsive theme? 🙂

Chris Pearson

Thesis 1.8.6 does not include responsive CSS, but you can find tutorials on how to add the appropriate CSS via a simple Google search.

Amanda Paa

hello! wondering if it is possible to make a thesis 1.8.6 theme mobile compatible. is there any advice, plug-in or tutorial that you know of? thank you!

Chris Pearson

Amanda, this is certainly possible if you follow the advice I gave to Marzio above.

Jake Poinier

Hey Chris, longtime satisfied Thesis user, and appreciate how easy it was to update to 1.8.6

Maybe my Google-fu is weak, but I’m not finding any tutorials that seem to fit. When you have a moment, do you mind providing a good search term? Thank you.

Alternatively, what’s your opinion on using a plug-in to accomplish mobile compatibility? Is there a drawback to doing that rather than CSS?

Thank you!

Chris Pearson

Jake, check out this article from our archives about making your Thesis 1.8.x site responsive.

Amy Brown

I am glad that to see this Thesis 1.8.6 update, it features is really amazing.

Thanks Chris for sharing this info.


Hi Chris,

My comments section of my blog is not working, most likely because it’s not version 1.86. I’m not so good with the technical part of upgrading etc. Could you recommend me someone/company to do the upgrade for a fee? Thank you.

Chris Pearson

Anthony, if you follow these simple instructions (login required), you can perform the update yourself. Don’t be scared—it’s easy!

If you are still stuck after visiting the link above (and trying to follow the instructions, of course!), then feel free to visit our Support Center (login required) for more direct assistance.

Katie John

Hi – I am currently running Thesis 1.8 on my site. I was given the theme as part of a project I was doing several years ago, so I don’t have the original licence number for it. Is it possible to buy a copy of 1.8.6? (I would buy Thesis 2, but I’m a bit nervous about how to make it work with my WordPress site – but if there is a simple way to do this, then I would be happy to buy Thesis 2.)

Best wishes


Chris Pearson

Katie, all Thesis 2 purchases include access to the latest version of Thesis 1.8.6. In other words, even if you’re still using Thesis 1 on your site, you need a current Thesis 2 license in order to access the latest and greatest version of Thesis 1.

From India with Love

I really love Thesis as its really a professional theme framework, for WordPress Blog and Website. But I do have a query, If Thesis is available for Websites which are not built on WordPress.

Chris Pearson

At this time, Thesis only works on WordPress websites.

Sanjib Saha

I wish I could get it for free. D you have any plan to cut down the cost anytime soon? I would love to use Thesis 1.8.6. Looks awesome to me.

Chris Pearson

Sanjib, $87 per year (or a one-time fee of $197!) is extremely cheap for a reliable website platform. We certainly won’t be cutting the cost anytime soon, but we may actually make it more expensive to reflect the ongoing value Thesis provides 😀

David Schlussel

Hi –

I just updated a Thesis 1.5.1 site on a rush job, and suggested we upgrade wordpress, which was at wp v2.9.2. This appears to be invalid with 1.5.1, so i need to upgrade that, as well, as this post suggests.

My client does not have password information, can you help?

Chris Pearson

David, if you have a Professional License, you can purchase a Client Site Option for $40 (presumably billed to the client). Otherwise, you can encourage them to purchase a Thesis License—either the Basic or Professional License will suffice in this case.

Jarvis Hugh

Id it compatible with the latest WordPress 4.1 version? Stable too?

Chris Pearson

Indeed it is!


Great news for thesis themes love 🙂 Thanks Chris!


Thanks Chris, Thesis always rocks.


I am looking for a video that you guys had on your site a while back where one of you went from start from finish using T 1x changing colors, nav bar padding adding and removing same from a standard T 1x theme.
It was so simple to follow and was a big help to me.

I have searched high and low for this video but cannot find it anywhere on Thesis site or the web.

Can you direct me to it please .

Many Thanks in advance.

Chris Pearson

Hi Kevin, I think this is the video you’re looking for.