The world’s most popular blogging platform has released an important update. Release 2.9 for WordPress is out and includes some significant changes. Just so you know I have seven blogs to update, but thanks to the automatic update tool, that job is over and done with quickly.
WP 3.0 Looms
Being that this is release 2.9, this particular update brings us one step closer to a major overhaul of the platform which will introduce WordPress 3.0 to the world. No doubt, we’ll see several interim updates before then such as WP 2.9.1, 2.9.2, …, but when it does show up I’m sure that it’ll reflect the best of what WordPress has to offer.
Before you upgrade WordPress, you’ll want to back up your database first. Select Tools > Backup to accomplish that task, but if you’re not in the habit of regularly backing up WordPress, I suggest that you install the nifty WordPress Database Backup to automate the process. Why chance having your site crash and then discover your database (which contains all of your articles) is old and your most recent articles are no more? That’s a lot of work to lose because you failed to backup your database!
Four Significant Changes
Automattic, the company which developed and oversees WordPress, says that the following major changes have been included with WP 2.9:
1. Batch Plugin Update – I like this feature because every time that there is a significant update of WP, many of the plugins fail or don’t work quite as well as they could. That means WP plugin developers will respond by making quick changes to bring their plugins up to snuff, which also means that you may have scads of updates to handle. FYI, some of my sites have as many as 26 plugins installed, but thanks to the new batch update process, I can handle those changes at once and so can you.
2. Undo Feature – Have you ever accidentally deleted one of your posts? I can’t say that I have, but I know if I did I’d be bummed. WordPress has created a feature which will allow you to find and bring back your killed off posts, saving you a lot of grief and anxiety.
3. Image Editor – A built-in image editor makes it easier for you to crop, edit, rotate, flip, and scale your images without having to leave WP and use Photoshop, Gimp, or other image editing program to get this work done. I haven’t used it yet, but if it works according to plan, then this feature will save bloggers plenty of time and remove the excuse that you don’t have time to include a photo with your work.
4. Video Embeds – I don’t do all that many video embeds across my network of blogs, but that may change now that WP 2.9 has made this task easier to accomplish. All you have to do is paste the URL of the video in your post and WP automatically converts it to an embed code. Amazing! My personal recommendation for WP pros is to use videos sparingly as they tend to slow down the loading of your site. Too many videos on one page and your visitors may move on. Still, the updated feature sounds like a good one to me.
How do you perform an update to WordPress 2.9? That’s easy. A drop down notice is sitting on the top of your screen in the administrative control panel. Click on it and choose either to “upgrade automatically” or “download 2.9” and do the latter yourself. I always select automatic updates once I know everything is backed up and I haven’t had a problem yet.