You should have a backup. WordPress recommends having a default theme as well. If you have a default theme like twenty-twenty it will automatically activate if your current custom theme just disappeared. Let’s do some testing.
Theme Test One
I currently have 2 custom themes. What do you think will happen if I hide/delete/make vanish my currently active theme? Well…let’s do it and find out! 🙂
So, the first question, who thinks I will lose my ability to update this post if I hide my theme?
There was no issue whatsoever updating this post. Good to know. What If I preview the post?
Those are my colors though I believe, so it’s still loading the CSS from the customizer as well. Let’s turn off the Cloudflare and WP Rocket cache and see if anything changes. Done, no changes. What if I’m logged out?
Okay, my questions are being answered, my curiosity satisfied. I’m going to check the source code of each of these and see if there’s anything unexpected. Viewing the source here, there are no calls to the theme whatsoever. I did a search for ‘themes/’ because normally it would try and pull something from there, but it doesn’t even try, it’s not 404’s.
I said earlier that my customizer seemed to be working based on the colors when I was logged in. Well, logged out, I verified.
Well This Is Weird
Time to check the Appearance and theme and see what is showing. Remember, I have two custom themes, and you can see that in the terminal image.
How can explain that? Well, I’m not going to dive into code, I’m just going to make some assumptions. WordPress has found my Ganstapenguin2021.old, the theme I renamed to hide, and is treating it as a new theme in a different location that just happens to have the same name as the theme that has ‘disappeared’.
Another question…what do you think will happen if I activate that newly found theme? My thoughts are that I’ll get any file customizations back, so posts templates if I actually made a style sheet the style sheet, etc. I will however lose my customizer settings because it’s going to think it’s a new theme. Well, let’s find out.
I was right and wrong, the customizer CSS is gone. That was what was expected and that is true. I did however forget that I put some basic rules in my style sheet, and haven’t only used the customizer. So how can I prove the screen shot earlier was CSS from the customizer?
So, if I name my theme back, and then change it to the activate theme…everything should actually be fine.
Time to change that, I’m going to activate my theme under its original name and everything should be fixed.
This test is going to be a lot quicker because we now know the basics, the only question is does having a default theme change this behavior in any way. The answer is yes, but I will prove it later. This was already a lot of work and this post isn’t formatted well. I need to add alt text to all these images and shit, I didn’t even upload them correctly. I don’t have a VA and I have a full-time job, give me a break.