How to install Thesis 2.0

Finally, the wait is over and Thesis 2.0 has hit the web. Thesis 2.0 is completely different from the 1.x.x series. It has got a new amazing template builder and some great capabilities which are yet to be explored.

I will continue writing about it as I play and mess around with Thesis 2.0

Here is a quick guide to installing Thesis 2.0 on your site :

Download Thesis 2.0

First thing to do is, download the latest version of Thesis from

Upgrade Helper Plugin

If you are looking forward to try Thesis 2.0 on your existing and would like to port your existing customizations to Thesis 2.0 then download “Upgrade Helper Plugin” from Thesis download page.

If you are installing it on a fresh copy of WordPress, you can ignore using this plugin

Install and activate:

  1. Login to WordPress admin.
  2. Go to Appearance >> Themes >> Install Theme >> Upload Theme
  3. Upload your downloaded Thesis 2.0
  4. Click “Activate” after installation is complete.

So, now you have your Thesis 2.0 active on your site but it’s not yet done. There are few more steps that you should follow before taking a look at your new site.

Get started with Thesis Admin

After you have activated Thesis 2.0, click “Thesis” link in the left pane and you will see the brand new Thesis admin panel.


Thesis 2.0 Admin Panel

Here, click “Click to get started!” button. Do NOT check your site before following these steps else you might be scared with a blank page! After clicking “get started” button, Thesis will install default skins and folders.

Skin Editor:

Next, head on to the Skin Editor as shown below and this will open a pop-up for Thesis Canvas. Thesis Canvas shows how your final site will look like after you are done with making all the changes.


thesis-2-skin-editor-previewCompiling CSS:

Thesis 2.0 comes with Packages. These packages can be termed as “building blocks” of your site. The CSS for your site is generated from the packages used on the site. Packages allow you to style all your fonts, widths, colors, background, links etc. via a user interface. Though, it’s completely different from what it used to be as “Thesis Design Options”, it works in a similar manner. You will need to spend some time to get the most out of it.

Every time you make changes to your site’s packages you will need toCompile CSS so that CSS file will be generated incorporating all necessary code for the changes made.

In the Skin Editor, click CSS tab  and then click Save and Compile CSS


Yay! All done!

That’s all you need to do, now you can take a look at your site and start playing around with Thesis 2.0 Skin Editor for more design and layout options.

Important Notes:

Thesis 2.0 comes packed with Thesis Classis and Thesis Blank. When you first activate the theme, Thesis Classic will be in action and it looks like the older versions of Thesis i.e Thesis 1.x The Blank Skin comes with no pre-configured settings, layouts, colors etc. This is a blank canvas to create your own picture. You can use it to build your own custom Thesis skin.

It’s easy to switch between different Thesis Skins because all the settings are saved in the database. You won’t lose any changes that you make. So, feel free to switch back and forth and keep exploring the new BEAST!

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{ 15 comments… add one }
  • angie_seattle October 3, 2012, 6:27 am

    This is great. Wish I had it yesterday, would have saved me a panic attack (ok, almost panic attack). Visuals are so helpful.


    • Puneet October 3, 2012, 1:20 pm

      Glad that it was helpful 🙂

  • maarif October 3, 2012, 1:19 pm

    hi Puneet..
    i like your blog. and now i use thesis 2. after i folow your step, but stil blank.
    what happen Puneet? help me please…
    before i use 1.xx

    • Puneet October 3, 2012, 1:23 pm

      Looks like you are using “Thesis Blank” skin. Try activating “Thesis Default” skin from “Select Skin” page.

  • Søren Larsen Pedersen October 7, 2012, 1:18 am


    I’m trying to make my own Thesis 2.0 skin from scratch (not just modifying “Thesis Classic” or “Thesis Blank”). Do you know how to do this? – I can’t figure out how to start out.

    – S

    • Puneet October 7, 2012, 10:28 pm

      HI Soren!

      I will give it a shot this week and write a tutorial soon.

  • chris November 2, 2012, 2:20 pm

    I’m stuck on installing it on I saw some instructions for the old version of Thesis. However, when I try to follow those instructions for Thesis 1.85, it’s not even the same files. So when the instructions tell me which files to set permissions for, I can’t even find the files.

    Any assistance would be hugely appreciated.

    • Puneet November 2, 2012, 11:45 pm

      are you trying to install Thesis 1.8.5 or Thesis 2.0?

      • Jay November 22, 2012, 2:07 am

        I am having the same problem – installing 2.0 on Godaddy. Style sheets do not seem to function

        • Puneet November 22, 2012, 9:56 am

          Hi Jay! Try doing a manual WP installation instead of using Godaddy’s installation script.

  • Clint November 13, 2012, 7:45 am

    I have a question, I don’t use any version of thesis theme, can I install thesis theme version 2.0 directly without having to install the older version of it? I’m having a trouble regarding this new version and I really don’t know what to do first, unfortunately my website is under maintenance because of this.

    • Puneet November 13, 2012, 10:18 am

      Yes, you can install thesis 2.0
      You don’t need to have older version.

      • Clint November 13, 2012, 1:49 pm

        Well, i really have problems regarding the newest version. I have installed the version 1.8.5 instead and its more easier to manage. Maybe I’ll upgrade it later. Thanks by the way for the reply.

  • Inderpal singh February 3, 2014, 11:41 am

    Thanx yaar it’s easy but i was stuck in the installation bcoz the wp-content/thesis folder is not created then i’m created manually and install skin folder inside it’s working fine thanx….. 🙂


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