wordpress 5.0 update

Here’s what you need to know about updating to WordPress 5.0

There has been a lot of talk in the WordPress development world lately. After all, it is the biggest update in WordPress history. Automattic has released WordPress 5.0 (Bebo) and not everyone is happy about it.

What does WordPress 5.0 mean to you?

Simply put, they’ve added a super cool page editor called Gutenberg. My builds use a theme that has it’s own badass page builder so, while I’ve tested Gutenberg, I won’t be utilizing it much.

So, why isn’t everyone super stoked about Bebo?

Long story short, compatibility issues. Apparently there is some concern over whether Gutenberg will play nice with legacy plugins and themes. Most paid themes and plugins have done their due diligence and will see minimal issues. I’ve been using my setup for several years in production now and the developers of the theme and the major plugins have all been talking about their testing process and updating ahead of 5.0 to get a jump on any issues.

I tested the Gutenberg beta with my current setup (which is pretty much identical to my client builds) and I had zero issues.

What do you need to know?

Regarding updating, there are a few things you should be aware of. Because of the compatibility concern I would recommend following these steps:

  1. Backup your entire site (themes, plugins, database, etc.) using something like UpDraft
  2. Download these files to your local computer in case you have a hiccup
  3. Run updates on your plugins and themes before the WordPress update
  4. Run these updates one at a time and test your front end after each update to troubleshoot issues
  5. Once you’re certain everything is up to date and running smoothly then you can run the WordPress updater
  6. Check your front end again

If you run into an issue you should be able to restore the backup you downloaded. At that point I would recommend calling who ever maintains your website to get some professional eyes on your installation.

Read about what Automattic has to say about the latest and greatest version here.

What if you don’t like Gutenberg?

If you really hate the new page editor (assuming you use the classic TinyMCE editor now) you can always install the Classic Editor plugin to get that experience back. Navigate to your Plugins dashboard and click “Add New” at the top of the page. Go to Favorites and type in “hmschiefer”. You’ll see all of the plugins that I recommend and have tested myself. Find “Classic Editor” and install it. After installation is complete you can activate the plugin and you’re editor should go back to the way it has always been. This is an official WordPress plugin and will be maintained until 2021 / 2022.

This all sounds a bit too scary.

I hear you. I know quite a few people that are a little queasy about hitting that update button. Good news is that I can handle this for you. You have two options. You can pay me a flat fee for a one time update or you can sign up for a maintenance plan.

You can read more about how my maintenance plans keep your website secure here.