Dashboard Widgets Suite


1 Plugin. 9 Widgets. Awesome Dashboard.

Add new widgets to your WordPress Dashboard. Streamline your workflow and optimize productivity.


Dashboard Widgets Suite provides awesome widgets that you can add to your Dashboard with a click:

  • Control Panel – Control widgets directly from the Dashboard
  • User Notes – Add, edit, delete notes for any user role
  • Feed Box – Display and customize any RSS Feed
  • Social Box – Display social links from Twitter, Facebook, etc.
  • List Box – Display custom lists created via the Menu screen
  • Widget Box – Display any theme or WP widget (e.g., Search, Text)
  • System Info – Display basic or advanced system information
  • Debug Log – Display, customize, reset your WP debug log
  • PHP Error Log – Display, customize, reset your server error log

Each widget includes its own set of options for customizing display 🙂

The notes widget is super awesome, designed for serious note takers. You can choose from 3 note formats: Text, HTML, or Code. Check out Installation for more about the User Notes Widget.

Suggest a widget!


Dashboard Widgets Suite provides a slick set of useful Dashboard widgets with some great features:

  • Includes 9 awesome Dashboard widgets
  • Easy to set up and customize options
  • Regularly updated and “future proof”
  • Secure, clean, error-free code
  • Built with the WordPress API
  • Lightweight, fast and flexible
  • Focused on performance, loads only enabled widgets
  • Enable/disable widgets via Dashboard or plugin settings
  • Option to restore 1-column display for the Dashboard
  • Shortcodes to display widgets on the frontend
  • Many options for customizing widget display
  • Works perfectly with or without Gutenberg

Check out the Screenshots for more details!

Suggest a feature!


This plugin does not collect or store any user data. It does not set any cookies, and it does not connect to any third-party locations. Thus, this plugin does not affect user privacy in any way.

Dashboard Widgets Suite is developed and maintained by Jeff Starr, 15-year WordPress developer and book author.

Support development

I develop and maintain this free plugin with love for the WordPress community. To show support, you can make a donation or purchase one of my books:

And/or purchase one of my premium WordPress plugins:

Links, tweets and likes also appreciated. Thank you! 🙂


  • DWS Dashboard: All widgets enabled
  • DWS Settings: General Settings
  • DWS Settings: User Notes
  • DWS Settings: Feed Box
  • DWS Settings: Social Box
  • DWS Settings: List Box
  • DWS Settings: Widget Box
  • DWS Settings: System Info
  • DWS Settings: Debug Log
  • DWS Settings: Error Log


Installing Dashboard Widgets Suite

  1. Upload the plugin to your blog and activate
  2. Visit the settings and enable desired widgets
  3. Visit the WP Dashboard to use your new widgets

Tip: you can enable/disable widgets via the plugin settings or via the Control Panel widget on the Dashboard.

More info on installing WP plugins

Like the plugin?

If you like Dashboard Widgets Suite, please take a moment to give a 5-star rating. It helps to keep development and support going strong. Thank you!

User Notes Widget

As of DWS version 1.9, you can choose a format for each user note:

  • Text (default)
  • HTML
  • Code

How to choose a note format:

  1. Click the “Add Note” link
  2. In the “Format” select menu, choose your format
  3. Write your note how you want, click the “Add Note” button and done!

To Edit or Delete any note, double-click on the note content (to display the “Edit” and “Delete” buttons).

Debug and Error Logs

Note that the Debug and Error Log widgets may require a bit of configuration, depending on your WP setup. Here is a quick guide:

Debug Log

To enable the WP Debug Log for the Debug Log widget, make sure that debug mode is enabled in your site’s wp-config.php file. Here is one possible way to enable, by adding the following code to your wp-config file, just before the line that says, “That’s all, stop editing!”:

define('WP_DEBUG', true);
define('WP_DEBUG_LOG', true);
define('WP_DEBUG_DISPLAY', false);

Once added, this will tell WP to log all errors, warnings, and notices to a file named debug.log, which is located in the /wp-content/ directory. Note that if the file does not exist, you can create it manually and give it suitable permissions. Ask your web host if unsure.

Error Log

To enable the Error Log for the Error Log widget, follow the same steps as for “Debug Log”, but use this code instead:

define('WP_DEBUG', true); 
ini_set('display_errors', 'Off');
ini_set('error_reporting', E_ALL);

And also make sure to set the correct file path under the plugin’s “Error Log” tab, in the setting “Log Location”.

Debug Log and Error Log

To enable both Debug Log and Error Log, follow the same steps as above, but use this code instead:

define('WP_DEBUG', true);
define('WP_DEBUG_LOG', true);
define('WP_DEBUG_DISPLAY', false);
ini_set('display_errors', 'Off');
ini_set('error_reporting', E_ALL);

For more information, visit Debugging in WordPress.


Dashboard Widgets Suite cleans up after itself. All plugin settings will be removed from your database when the plugin is uninstalled via the Plugins screen.

Restore Default Options

To restore default plugin options, either uninstall/reinstall the plugin or visit the General Settings > Restore default plugin options.


DWS provides several shortcodes for displaying widgets on the frontend of your site. Here is a summary:

[dws_feed_box]   => Feed Box
[dws_social_box] => Social Box
[dws_user_notes] => User Notes

You can add these to any WP Post or Page to display the widget on the frontend. The same widget settings apply to both frontend and backend display.


Dashboard Widgets Suite provides plenty of settings to customize your widgets. For advanced customization, developers can tap into the power of WordPress Action and Filter Hooks. Here is a complete list of the hooks provided by Dashboard Widgets Suite:

Action Hooks









Filter Hooks











DWS also provides hooks for customizing widget names on the Dashboard.

Suggest a hook!


Can you add this widget or that widget?

Yeah maybe, feel free to suggest a widget!

How to customize the names of dashboard widgets?

It’s not a current feature of the plugin, however it is possible using custom functions. Check out this tutorial at Perishable Press.

How to add a widget that displays all pages?

To display a Dashboard widget that displays links to all of your pages:

  1. Visit the Widget Box tab on the plugin page
  2. Check the box for the setting, Enable Widget
  3. Select Dashboard Widgets Suite for the Sidebar setting
  4. Save changes
  5. Visit the Menus screen under the Appearance menu
  6. Create a menu that displays all Pages (or whatever links you want)
  7. Visit the WP Widgets screen
  8. Add your new widget to Dashboard Widgets Suite

Done! You can now visit the Dashboard to view your new menu in the Widget Box.

How to edit or delete a note?

Double click on the note itself, and buttons will be displayed, enabling Edit, Delete, etc.

Who can view the notes?

For each note, you can specify a level/role user that is allowed to view/read. So any user who has the capabilities of the specified role can read the note. For example, if you set a note level to “Author”, then users with role of Author, Editor, or Admin will be able to read.

How to set a required note format?

By default, the user may choose which format (text, html, code) they want for each note. To change that, so that only one format is used, add the following code to your theme (or child theme) functions.php, or add via simple custom plugin:

function dashboard_widgets_suite_notes_format_custom($field_default) {

    return 'text'; // accepts: text, html, code

add_filter('dashboard_widgets_suite_notes_format', 'dashboard_widgets_suite_notes_format_custom');

Change text to any accepted format: text, html, or code.

How to add my own note styles?

To override the default note styles, add the following code to your theme (or child theme) functions.php, or add via simple custom plugin:

function dashboard_widgets_suite_note_styles_custom($css) {

    return '#dws-notes-user .dws-notes-user textarea, #dws-notes-user .dws-notes-user-note { font-size: 18px; }';

add_filter('dashboard_widgets_suite_note_styles', 'dashboard_widgets_suite_note_styles_custom');

The returned CSS code is just an example, showing use of DWS existing selectors. You can change the CSS to whatever is necessary.

How to change path/location of the debug log?

By default, the WordPress debug file is located at /wp-content/debug.log. To change that, add the following code to your theme (or child theme) functions.php, or add via simple custom plugin:

function dashboard_widgets_suite_log_debug_path($log) {

    return '/whatever/path/debug.log'; 

add_filter('dashboard_widgets_suite_log_debug_path', 'dashboard_widgets_suite_log_debug_path');

Change the path to whatever is necessary.

Got a question?

Send any questions or feedback via my contact form


January 24, 2024
This really helped me secure my server, as a newbie. I had no idea we had to secure PHP and other stuff.
September 25, 2022
One of the best plugins Jeff could ever devise. Simplicity, efficiency, everything at your fingertips. Increased user experience on WordPress.
September 22, 2022
Lots of functionality in one plugin. Highly recommend you try it out.
June 2, 2022
This small plugin makes the Dashboard finally useful. All Widgets are optional but enhance the functionality a lot. The Notes widget is essential for our workflow. Leaving small notes for other editors is incredible helpful. The System widget lists every information that could be helpful. Everything can be de/activated and configured. Once activated the widgets perfectly fit into the Dashboard. It’s one of the first plugins I install everywhere.
February 20, 2022
I only use the system info widget. But this is my standard on every wp dashboard! Thank you very much to give it us.
June 21, 2021 1 reply
Thanks for such a great plugin very useful ! It is professionalism such as this combined with the spirit of sharing that creates such a rich WordPress community, great experience and contributes to a wonderful CMS that keeps getting better.
Read all 35 reviews

Contributors & Developers

“Dashboard Widgets Suite” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.


“Dashboard Widgets Suite” has been translated into 1 locale. Thank you to the translators for their contributions.

Translate “Dashboard Widgets Suite” into your language.

Interested in development?

Browse the code, check out the SVN repository, or subscribe to the development log by RSS.


Thank you for using Dashboard Widgets Suite! If you like the plugin, please show support with a 5-star rating »

3.4.6 (2024/06/19)

  • Fixes bug with dismiss_notice_link
  • Adds option for “Add Note” location
  • Updates plugin settings page
  • Updates default translation template
  • Tests on WordPress 6.6 (beta)

Full changelog @ https://plugin-planet.com/wp/changelog/dashboard-widgets-suite.txt