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License protection for Premium Theme


I build and customized wordpress themes. In ALL of this cases I manually install wordpress on the client's host.

How can I protect my wordpress premium themes?

Doesn't have to be a 100% secure measure. Just one simple solution, that somehow prevents the theme from being distributed.

Thanks, Diogo Gomes

2 Answers

James Barnett
James Barnett
39,199 Points

The PHP in a Wordpress theme is covered under the GPL, however you are free obfuscate the CSS & JavaScript if you want.

In case you've never heard of the GPL, here's the first sentence from the Wikipedia article

The GNU General Public License (GNU GPL or GPL) is the most widely used[5] free software license, which guarantees end users (individuals, organizations, companies) the freedoms to use, study, share (copy), and modify the software.

John Locke
John Locke
15,479 Points


If the person buying your theme wants to be shady, there's not a lot you can do to prevent them from reselling your theme. However, for the majority of clients, I don't see them doing that. If they are savvy enough as developers to jack your theme, then they are risking being found out and exposed by the worldwide development community.

Is there any reason you are reluctant to trust your clients with custom themes?

Hi John,

It's not a question of not trusting my clients. Just wanted to know a simple way of, at least, making harder for them to copy or use the theme somewhere else.

Many premium plugins and themes have security measures to do this.

In my case, I have always access to the host of the client, and will be doing the installation of the wordpress theme on my clients.

Do you know or can point me out a simple way just to make it a little harder to use the theme somewhere else?

Many thanks