I’m thrilled to announce that Version 2.3 “Dexter” of WordPress is now ready for the world. This release includes native tagging support, plugin update notification, URL handling improvements, and much more. This release is named for the great tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon.
The entire team is really proud of this release, and I’m happy that this is our second on-time release under our new development schedule. The grand experiment of a more agile WordPress with significant features in the hands of users more often is working. I could write a blog post about each new feature, but I’ll try to be brief:
- Native tagging support allows you to use tags in addition to categories on your posts, if you so choose. We’ve included importers for the Ultimate Tag Warrior, Jerome’s Keywords, Simple Tags, and Bunny’s Technorati Tag plugins so if you’ve already been using a tagging plugin you can bring your data into the new system. The tagging system is also wicked-fast, so your host won’t mind.
- Our new update notification lets you know when there is a new release of WordPress or when any of the plugins you use has an update available. It works by sending your blog URL, plugins, and version information to our new
api.wordpress.org service which then compares it to the plugin database and tells you whats the latest and greatest you can use.
- We’ve cleaned up URLs a bunch in a feature we call canonical URLs which does things like enforce your no-www preference, redirect posts with changed slugs so a link never goes bad, redirect URLs that get cut off in emails on similar to the correct post, and much more. This helps your users, and it also helps your search engine optimization, as search engines like for each page to be available in one canonical location. More info here.
- Our new pending review feature will be great for multi-author blogs. It allows authors to submit a post for review by an editor or administrator, where before they would just have to save a draft and hope someone noticed it.
- There is new advanced WYSIWYG functionality (we call it the kitchen sink button) that allows you to access some features of TinyMCE that were previously hidden.
You’ll notice that two of those features are straight out of the most-voted for ideas list. That’s just the user facing stuff, if you’re a developer you’ll be interested in:
- Full and complete Atom 1.0 support, including the publishing protocol.
- We’re using the new jQuery which is “800% faster.”
- Behind the user-facing tags system is a really kickass taxonomy system, which adds a ton of flexibility. It’s probably the biggest schema upgrade since version 1.5.
- The importers have been revamped to be more memory efficient, and you can now add an importer through a plugin.
- Through hooks and filters you can now override the update system, the dashboard RSS feeds, the feed parser, and tons more than you could in 2.2.
- The new
$wpdb->prepare() way of doing SQL queries.
- Finally there were over 351 tickets in Trac closed for this release, with over a hundred people contributing. This is the polish, the hundreds of tiny bug fixes and features that make WordPress what it is.
You can view the Codex for more information about the release and some screenshots. And of course the place to download is always the same. Before you upgrade you may want to check out our Preparing for 2.3 post and the list of compatible plugins on the Codex.
A number of people are hosting upgrade parties around the world, including myself in San Francisco. If you are let me know and I’ll promote it on my blog.
If you follow WordPress development closely you’ve probably noticed a few new faces around lately, or to be more accurate a few old faces who are taking on bigger roles in the community. I would like to take this opportunity to announce and publicly congratulate Mark Jaquith and Peter Westwood who have both become lead developers, the highest development honor on WordPress.org.
Mark Jaquith has been using and contributing to WordPress since 2004. Mark especially enjoys watching people use WordPress to express themselves in areas of the world where free expression is suppressed. But, being a voracious consumer of information, he probably reads your cat blog too.
Peter works as an Embedded Software Engineer developing a web-enabled BMS controller. Using WordPress since version 1.0.1, Peter spends his spare time triaging bugs on Trac and investigating new open source tools. When not at the computer Peter can often be found photographing flowers, animals and cars and listening to a wide variety of music.
In just a few short days WordPress 2.3 will be coming out with tons of new features that (hopefully) will make you want to upgrade right away. Well while you have a bit of time over this lovely weekend, here are some things you can do to help yourself prepare for the big upgrade on Monday:
If you have any other ideas put them on your blog and pingback this post.
The first release candidate for WordPress 2.3 is now available. We’ve spent the week since beta 3 fixing bugs and shaping RC1 into release candidate material. If you would like try RC1 and help us get 2.3 ready for its final release on Monday the 24th, download RC1 here and report any bugs you find. Although we consider this release candidate to be stable, keep in mind that this is still pre-release software. You may find some lingering bugs. Please back up your database before upgrading. If you have problems with RC1, you will not be able to revert back to your previous release without a database backup.
And a big thanks to those of you who have been testing the betas and now the RC. Your efforts make 2.3 better for everyone.
Beta 3, the third and final beta for WordPress 2.3, is now available. Many bugs have been fixed since the second beta, and we could use your help finding and fixing more bugs in preparation for the first Release Candidate due next Monday. The standard disclaimer for betas applies. Beta 3 is pre-release software that is still being tested. If you would like try out Beta 3 and help report bugs, join the wp-testers mailing list and download beta 3 here.
2.2.3 is a security and bug-fix release for the 2.2 series. Since this is a security release, we suggest you upgrade immediately. Two of the fixes are high priority.
On our Trac you can see the bugs closed and the files changed for 2.2.3.
To get 2.2.3, please see our download page.
As always, upgrade instructions including an extended upgrade guide are available.
Thanks to Alexendar Concha, Aaron Newman, and xknown for identifying and helping us fix the security vulnerabilities.
WordPress 2.3 will be here before you know it! We’re putting out a beta release every Monday until WordPress 2.3 ships on September 24th. Today the second beta drops for your testing pleasure. We’ve fixed a bunch of bugs in the last week — thanks to everyone who participated! That said, this is still rough code, so you should only test the beta if you are comfortable troubleshooting PHP issues, filing tickets, and backing up your blog’s data.
Still want to play? Go ahead and join the wp-testers mailing list and download beta 2 here.