Sorry it’s been so long since my last post. I’ve had some family emergencies that I’ve been dealing with and obviously got very behind in posting.
The most current version of WordPress is 3.5.1 and I strongly urge all of you to upgrade any and all of your WordPress installations immediately. If you are already on WP 3.0+, you should be able to do a one-click upgrade from within your WordPress Dashboard.
In addition to lots of feature enhancements, there are many security fixes that make this a MUST INSTALL upgrade. It’s been out for a while now and is quite stable, so it is safe to install (in general, I always recommend holding off on installing WordPress updates for a few days after they are released as experience has shown that sometimes they can be buggy and a fixed version will then be released a few days later..)
I also recommend that you signup for the WordPress Release Notification newsletter so that you will always know when a new release has come out. Keeping all of your WordPress sites updated is critically important as older versions often have security exploits that hackers can use to inject malware into your sites. I will soon be writing an article specifically about how to protect your WordPress sites from hackers and malware.
Just a quick note to let everyone know that WordPress 2.8 is now available.
As a reminder, I always advise readers to wait just a few days before upgrading, as sometimes WP has a habit of releasing an update that breaks things and requires you to install yet another update shortly after that to fix everything…in other words, sometimes some big bugs slip through (not always, though). So just waiting a few extra days before upgrading and finding out whether this is, in fact, a stable release is usually a good idea. I will keep you posted on word from the wordpress community and when I think it’s safe to do the upgrade. If you’re using WordPress 2.7.1, the fantastic news is that you can actually upgrade WP from your dashboard automatically when you’re ready — just don’t forget to backup your database beforehand
While I did say to wait a few days, once it’s clear WordPress 2.8 is stable then, like other updates, it is crucial that you upgrade all of your WordPress installations (but first check to make sure that any of your “MUST HAVE” plugins are compatible with the new version and then weigh the pros and cons. These updates are critical – they generally not only FIX existing bugs (this release fixes 790 bugs!), but they almost always include security enhancements — these are something you need as it is never okay to go around with an old version of WordPress that it turns out can be hacked. Major updates often have new features that you will want, as well.
Here’s a rundown of what you get with WordPress 2.8 (the new stuff, that is):
2.8 is way faster to use
You can now browse the entire theme directory and install a theme with one click from the comfort of your WordPress dashboard
If you make edits or tweaks to themes or plugins from your dashboard, you’ll appreciate the new CodePress editor which gives syntax highlighting to the previously-plain editor.
completely redesigned the widgets interface to allow you to do things like edit widgets on the fly, have multiple copies of the same widget, drag and drop widgets between sidebars, and save inactive widgets so you don’t lose all their settings.
new Screen Options on every page. It’s the tab in the top right. Now, for example, if you have a wide monitor you could set up your dashboard to have four columns of widgets instead of the two it has by default. On other pages you can change how many items show per page.
Can you help my reader, Steven, who wrote in to me with the following problem?
I have recently upgraded to WordPress 2.7.1 from 2.6.
I was creating pages with wp 2.6. Underneath the post title was displayed the “url” or permalink, and I could edit and customize it any way I liked.
Now with wp 2.7.1, no matter what I enter in the page slug box, my new pages’ permalinks are always in the default format, ie the ugly permalinks with the numeric ids (despite that my permalink settings are set to ‘custom’). The old pages created with wp 2.6 are unaffected.
I have been struggling and researching for the past 5 hours and still can’t get it to work. I’ve read that there are some problems with ‘category slugs’ meant for posts, but so far I have not found any feedback about page slug or page permalinks.
Please help me.
Unfortunately, I’ve no suggestions for Steven with today’s Reader Question (RQ) — can YOU help him?
Please provide any and all suggestions in the comments section! Thanks from both myself and Steven for any assistance you can provide.