How to force Wordpress to recognize new PHP 7.4 install in ubuntu

I have installed php7.4 and installed all the packages and updates. Rebooted my droplet, restarted apache, cleared all caches, etc. My server is running php version 7.4. But my wordpress installation is still using PHP 5.x and warning me about needing to update. I’ve followed every how-to and tutorial. I tried to disable 5.x and the site broke. I’ve looked through .htaccess and wp-config.php, etc etc, there’s nothing conflicting or even mentioning php versions.

Anyone have any advice? is there a way to force wordpress to use php7.4? Where in the wordpress back-end does it even mention which php to use if it won’t default to the newest version?


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September 6, 2020
Accepted Answer

Hi @todderik,

You need to tell Apache/Nginx to use the newly installed PHP verson.


You need to tell Apache to use the installed version of PHP 7.4 by disabling the old PHP module and enabling the new PHP module using the following command.

sudo a2dismod php5.X
sudo a2enmod php7.4

Remember to change 5.X with your actual PHP version.

Restart Apache for the changes to take effect.

sudo service apache2 restart


For Nginx you need to install FPM, execute the following command to install PHP 7.4 FPM

sudo apt install php7.4-fpm

After the installation has completed, confirm that PHP 7.4 FPM has installed correctly with this command

php-fpm7.4 -v

For Nginx you need to update the PHP-FPM socket in your Nginx configuration located inside the sites-available directory. This will be located inside the location block location ~ \.php$

sudo nano /etc/nginx/sites-available/your.conf

The line you need to modify will look like this…

fastcgi_pass unix:/run/php/php5.X-fpm.sock; 

You need to replace the old PHP version with the new version.

fastcgi_pass unix:/run/php/php7.4-fpm.sock; 

Regards, KFSys

Hi all, I put in contact with the hosting and we solved it in this way:

We found out that phpSelector in cPanel only worked when changed from 5.6 to 7.2; but not to 7.3 or 7.4, where the site crashed.

The technician finally found in phpSelector that mysqli was disable. Higher php version -> more modules to apply.

It worked perfectly and now I have 7.4.12

I hope it helps. Best

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Hi, I’m in the same situation. However its very well explained I have no idea how to solve this in Apache…

Question: Shouldn’t that be a problem for the hosting company to fix?

Thx in advance. Best,

Carlos Abellanosa