Participants Database 1.6 WordPress Plugin

This WordPress plugin is for the purpose of creating a simple database for use on a WordPress site. It is primarily intended as a way to manage information pertaining to people such as the members of a club or team, volunteers, students, anything like that. It gives you the ability to allow people to create and edit their own record while additional information can be managed by administrators or managers. The plugin may also be used as the basis for an index, directory or catalog.

The database is made up of fields, and each field may be one of several types that are uniquely suited to store a particular kind of information. These fields can also be divided into groups to help organize the information. Fields can also be provided with help text to assist users in providing the information.

Plugin Technical Support

Participants Database is a complex plugin and getting the most out of it often requires some basic technical knowledge. There are three main ways I support the plugin: the public forum, the comments section here, and by email.

Please read through the documentation and relevant support conversations before posting questions, you may find your questions have already been answered.

My support email is published in the plugin, please use it if you have questions or links you don’t want made public, or for special requests. While I try to provide good support for free, please remember this is what I do for a living and my time is limited. I am usually available to provide plugin customizations, so please contact me with inquiries about extending the functionality of the plugin.

>>WordPress Plugin Support Forum



Hi Roland,
I see that you have written an experimental auxiliary plugin for Pdb – could you please email it to me so that I can experiment?

by Philip Reckless on July 26, 2015 at 2:06 am. Reply #

I’m sorry, I don’t have anything to give you for that right now, I am traveling and won’t be at my desk until late August. I am planning to write tutorial on writing an aux plugin, which will include example code.

by Roland on July 26, 2015 at 5:26 am. Reply #

I just downloaded your plugin. I pasted the required “[pdb_record]” in my support page but nothing pops up. It just shows “no records found” on the page. Please how do i solve this?

by Daberechi on July 23, 2015 at 4:38 pm. Reply #

I suggest you go through the “Quick Setup Guide” to get a better understanding of how the plugin works. What you’re seeing is normal, but you’ll need to do more configuration to get it all working the way you want.

by Roland on July 24, 2015 at 9:23 am. Reply #

We are using your database plugin for our members. We are curious if there is a way to rotate the display of the member list based on refresh?

by Barbara Davis on July 7, 2015 at 8:12 am. Reply #

In order to do this, you’ll need to use a different template for the list that doesn’t use a table. There is a template in the plugin called “responsive” that will probably work.

by Roland on July 24, 2015 at 9:22 am. Reply #


Apologies in advance if this is really easily solved, I am very new to wordpress.

The sign-up page I’ve set up works great but the submit button isn’t showing. I have set the sign-up button text in settings to say “submit” but nothing appears. The button is still there as the space can be clicked it’s just not showing.

Page here:

Many thanks in advance.

by Rachel VO on June 24, 2015 at 2:28 am. Reply #

This is due to your theme styling the button so it isn’t visible…white on white. Your warranty page has the same problem. It may be easiest to try a different theme, but if you need to stay with your current theme, I’d suggest seeing if your can fix the issue by adjusting the theme settings for colors and such. Ultimately, you may need to create some CSS urles to style the buttons.

by Roland on June 24, 2015 at 6:42 am. Reply #

I love your Participant’s Database! I have a question about listing participants on a webpage. Can I restrict certain participants from being listed? We had about 10 participants that did not want their info listed for the group to see. Thank you so much!

by Theresa on June 22, 2015 at 4:54 pm. Reply #

Yes, there is am attribute for the shortcode named “filter” that can do this. Take a look at this:

Filtering which Records Get Shown with the List Shortcode

by Roland on June 22, 2015 at 6:00 pm. Reply #

Sir, first of all thanks for such a good plugin, my query is that , is it possible to do multiple field search through this plugin. I am not such friendly with word press. can u please guide me , if it possible.


by Vishal Singh on June 12, 2015 at 1:56 am. Reply #

The plugin does not have the ability to search on multiple fields. It can only be created by a developer as a custom search.

by Roland on June 12, 2015 at 8:15 am. Reply #

Hi there, It would be great if the participants are searched by their ID. Is it possible to display one user details horizontally? I’m trying to add few more fields and want to delete existing fields. Thanks in advance.

by Prakash kumar on June 11, 2015 at 11:18 pm. Reply #


Searching by ID isn’t possible in the current version of the plugin, but it is availabel in the upcoming update.

To display the details horizontally, a good place to start is to use the “bootstrap” template, then apply your CSS rule to get it to lay out the way you want.

You can add and deleted fields as much as you want, the fields that the plugin comes with are only examples. On the “manage Database Fields” page, you can delete fields by clicking the red “X” to add fields, enter the name of the feild in the box on the top left of the list of foed, then click, “add field”

by Roland on June 12, 2015 at 8:13 am. Reply #

Hello, I need to add a database of a few hundred volunteer therapists to be searchable by state via a drop down menu or a list of states. The individual would then be clickable with description and a form for contacting that therapist.
Does your plugin have any of these capabilities? Do you have screenshots of this? Thanks! Yona

by Yona on June 6, 2015 at 11:07 am. Reply #

Yes, it can do this. I have a demo page, you can see it in action, but it’s quite configurable to whatever your needs are.

by Roland on June 7, 2015 at 10:49 am. Reply #

Is it possible to edit administrative info at the page where [pdb_list] is?

by Thomas on May 29, 2015 at 5:04 am. Reply #

for checkboxes

by Thomas on May 29, 2015 at 5:09 am. Reply #

Yes, you can change the settings of the administrative group, uncheck “admin” and chack “display”

by Roland on May 29, 2015 at 7:09 am. Reply #

Hi, installed the PDB couple of days ago and implemented it to my so far experimental website and tested it abit. Looks great, was easy to understand and it was just the thing I was looking for.

However, I wish I could upload a CSV-file with more than 8 coloumns. Is it possible to do with some tweaks? I know it said that you have to follow the setup in upload menu.

by Mike on May 27, 2015 at 2:45 am. Reply #

Hi again. I have been thinking about this awhile now as I am designing a briefing page for a virtual airline. I have let`s say New York is one field and Boston is another. Now, I have a flight plan route field for example between these citites (a field on its own).

But I am out of coloumns in the CSV for the upload! :) So for New York – Washington route I need to manually put in the route for this. OR as I thought of now, use the Percistence. Let`s say I manually edit all the input field (and make them persistence) and THEN upload the CSV for the NEW York – Washongton flights. Persistence will put in manual labour I did in the first one I guess.

I hope I made sense and I will try this now to see if it works.

by Mike on May 27, 2015 at 3:13 am. Reply #

Ok! I found out that I just needed to mark the field with CVS (blahrgh)…

Now I have as many coloumns I could wish for! So thank you again for a great plugin :)

by Mike on May 27, 2015 at 3:28 am. Reply #

OK, Glad you got it working…but just to make it clear, the CSV setting is only for exports, you can upload any number of columns as ling as they match defined columns in the plugin.

by Roland on May 27, 2015 at 6:57 am. Reply #

You can upload as many columns as you want. What specifically is happening when you try to upload your CSV?

by Roland on May 27, 2015 at 6:55 am. Reply #

Great plugin. Is there a way for registered participants to delete their own profile and removed themselves from the system?

by Ken on May 25, 2015 at 11:36 am. Reply #

Hi Ken,

No, they can’t delete a record, but you can create a checkbox for them to use to deactivate it. Then, you just need to filter those records out of your displays. If you want to delete them, you can do that as an admin, list all the ones marked fro deletion, then delete them all.

by Roland on May 25, 2015 at 12:31 pm. Reply #

I’ve used this approach to let users delete their records. Just remember to add some way to prevent that record from being shown on the single record page.

(I solved it by adding some logic to the template I’m using, pdb-single-default.php.)

by Adrian B on May 25, 2015 at 12:38 pm. Reply #

It is possible to set the width of the columns? where can I do that?

by Monica on May 19, 2015 at 6:59 am. Reply #

Formatting column widths can be tricky because tables attempt to expand to contain everything in the cells. So you can set the width of a column, but the results won’t always be what you want. You’re much more likely to get a column to be narrower than wider because of this.

The set the width of a table column, you just need to use a CSS rule that changes the width of the cell in the top row. The plugin’s tables have classes on the top row that you can use to set your widths.

There is no plugin setting for this, you have to do it with CSS. There is a place in the plugin setting where your custom CSS can go.

by Roland on May 19, 2015 at 7:36 am. Reply #

Since this issue was a WordPress/database issue, I’ve deactivated all my plugins, then started reactivating them. I think the problem was that I had set up the pages which include the database, member profile, etc. as password protected pages. The conflicting plugin was probably BAW Login/Logout Menu by Juliobox. I’ve deactivated that and removed password protection from the pages that were associated with the database. I would like the database to be restricted to registered site users but not sure if that is possible.

by Joan Oefner on May 18, 2015 at 11:15 pm. Reply #

Yes it’s possible to place the plugin shortcodes on restricted-access pages, I have lots of users doing this and I’ve doe it for several clients. The problem you described happened in the admin, so it’s likely unrelated to a restricted access page on the frontend. Is the plugin working OK now?

by Roland on May 19, 2015 at 7:31 am. Reply #

Our database was working great but now you can’t add any records, you get this error “Are you sure you want to do this?

Please try again.”

Could it be the upgrade to latest WP?
Previously I had password protected the database, it had worked previously even with the passwords, but not I’ve removed all passwords and it still isn’t working. Hope you can help me.

by Joan Oefner on May 18, 2015 at 7:25 pm. Reply #

Try clearing out all browser cookies from your site domain and log in again. That will probably do it.

by Roland on May 18, 2015 at 10:27 pm. Reply #

This an awesome plugin – I think what would be useful is for the ‘update’ email being returned to the administrator to advise what fields have been updated.

by Adam on May 18, 2015 at 1:37 pm. Reply #

Hello, great plugin. Is possible to get an email when a record is accessed?

by Miori on May 18, 2015 at 1:02 am. Reply #

If they save it, yes. Check under the “Record Form” tab in the settings.

by Roland on May 18, 2015 at 8:45 am. Reply #

Thanks Roland. I was able to do this but I need to get an email when someone actually click on the form and later when they save. Would you consider it as a feature down the road? for now I can search the list daily.

by Miori on May 18, 2015 at 9:32 am. Reply #

Probably not a feature I’d add, most people only want to know if the record is updated.

If you’ve got some coding skills, it wouldn’t be that hard to build this function into a custom plugin template for the record form.

by Roland on May 18, 2015 at 9:36 am. #

When I download a CVS file. The text (have tried rich text and text fields) are downloading with html formatting code around it and other characters – see below. I am I to expect this with the download?

………………(quantitative–qualitative), we evaluated the effectiveness of FSS program.As such, the Food Safety Supervisor (FSS) certification was THIS IS THE END OF THE TEXT.


by Adam on May 11, 2015 at 5:04 pm. Reply #

I’ve been succesfully using PDB for several years on my kayak race web page. Great plug-in, thanks! Now, yesterday I upgraded to the latest WP version, and now there are some problems with PDB. The only visible item on the sign up page is the sign up button – there are no sign up fields visible any longer. Furthermore – the participants list is just showing some code info that I don’t understand: “Warning: current() expects parameter 1 to be array, null given in …/wp-content/plugins/participants-database/classes/PDb_Shortcode.class.php on line 494 Warning: key() expects parameter 1 to be array, null given in …/wp-content/plugins/participants-database/classes/PDb_Shortcode.class.php on line 500″ …. etc
Please have a look here:
Any ideas of what could be wrong??
Thank you!

by Jorgen on May 11, 2015 at 11:13 am. Reply #

I would guess that your database got corrupted or deleted somehow, those errors indicate the plugin was unable to find the data it needs to display form and lists and such.

There aren’t any known incompatibilities with the latest WordPress (4.2.2) I’ve got it running on several sites.

by Roland on May 11, 2015 at 12:06 pm. Reply #

Yes, it’s most definitely corrupted in some way. But where and how? I haven’t got a clue… Since I’m not the hacker type, I figure the easiest way for me is to simply delete the PDB plug in, and re-install it. I’ve managed to export all the current participants, so that I can add them manually when the new installation is done. Wish me luck!

by Jorgen on May 16, 2015 at 12:51 pm. Reply #

Is it possible to download the database (or filtered section) into a csv file from the front end rather than the WP dashboard – this would be useful?
Thanks Adam

by Adam on May 10, 2015 at 10:12 pm. Reply #

The plugin doesn’t have this ability as it is, sorry.

by Roland on May 11, 2015 at 6:46 am. Reply #

why I cant show the clickable link. I put this in the record

by Spartan on May 6, 2015 at 9:37 pm. Reply #

Make sure it is fully configured: you must set up a page with the [pdb_record] shortcode on it, the select that page in the “Participant Record Page” setting under the “record form” tab in the plugin settings.

by Roland on May 6, 2015 at 10:33 pm. Reply #

How come I don’t receive a signup notification email and recipient do not receive signup response email?

by Khaw on May 6, 2015 at 7:26 pm. Reply #

Take a look at my Email Troubleshooter, it will help you solve your problem.

by Roland on May 6, 2015 at 10:32 pm. Reply #

is there a way to display a subset of members, ie all the real estate members?

by Barbara Davis on May 6, 2015 at 1:29 pm. Reply #

Yes, take a look at the “Other Notes” page, under “Filtering which Records Get Shown with the List Shortcode”

by Roland on May 6, 2015 at 10:31 pm. Reply #

Thanks again I will research that and find out what to do. Great service

by Tommy on April 29, 2015 at 8:36 am. Reply #

Thanks for your fast response.
From the box size, text-area seemed way to big.
I just wanted to double the existing area/field so one does not have to scroll to see the entry

by Tommy on April 29, 2015 at 7:41 am. Reply #

Are we talking about the size of the box or the number of characters that can be stored? If it’s the visible size of the box you want to change, you need to add a CSS rule to modify how your theme is formatting the text input box. If you need more characters, but the text-area box is too big, you can also set the to what you want it to be by using a CSS rule.

by Roland on April 29, 2015 at 7:57 am. Reply #

New at this, but is there a way to make the text-line boxes longer. 255 characters is a little short my my application. Thank you. Learning but great so far

by Tommy on April 29, 2015 at 3:44 am. Reply #

Have you tried using a text-area instead of a text-line?

by Roland on April 29, 2015 at 7:04 am. Reply #

Hi Roland,

When will it be possible to search within the list for a specific Record ID via ‘show only records with’? This would be extremely helpful for us.

Many thanks,

by Daphne on April 17, 2015 at 12:10 am. Reply #

Not in the current version, the update has this ability…it will be out in a couple of weeks.

by Roland on April 17, 2015 at 6:56 am. Reply #

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