Overview of The WordPress Super Admin and Other User Roles

The Super Admin user is the person who looks after all network management on a WordPress Multisite install. They have the ability to:

  1. Manage the access and level of responsibility of all users on all sites on your network
  2. Manage network and site features including access to plugins, themes and privacy settings
  3. Create new users and new sites
  4. Edit posts, pages, comments on any site without being added as a user to the site
  5. Reset passwords and change users’ profile details
  6. Access all the Super Admin menu items via the Network Admin dashboard

The other user roles you commonly have on a WordPress site are:

  • Administrator
  • Editor
  • Author
  • Contributor
  • Subscriber

The role you assign a user is based on how much access you want them to have to a site.  The Administrator has the highest access of the site users and is able to use all enabled site features, while a subscriber has the lowest, only able to read and write comments (for more information check out the comparison charts below).

You need to consider carefully what role you assign all users because on group sites Administrators are able to remove other users, including other administrators, and editors can delete content.

Choosing your Super Admin User(s)

The Super Admin user is the next level of access, and responsibility, above an Administrator, and has complete control of your entire network.

Deciding who and how many users you assign as a Super Admin user requires the greatest consideration because they have the highest level of access and are able to make changes that affect the entire network. Mistakes made by a Super Admin user can have a significant impact on your network

Introducing the Network Admin Dashboard

The “Network Admin” dashboard is a separate dashboard area for all Network Management on a WordPress Multisite install; this is where you access your Super Admin area.

The “Network Admin” link is only viewable and  accessible to users who have been granted Super Admin privileges for the Network.

You access the “Network Admin” link via the My Sites dropdown menu on your WordPress admin bar.

network-dashboard-link

Once in the Network Admin dashboard you can quickly change back to the “Site Admin” Dashboard, by clicking on the dashboard link to any of your sites under My Sites.

subsite-dashboard-link

The Network Admin Dashboard

network-dashboard-overview

Summary of user roles based on their Capability:

Summary of differences between users based on access to dashboard menus:

User roles