Plugin Info

Description

This plugin provides a simple way of displaying up-to-date information about specific plugins hosted on the WordPress Plugin Directory in your blog posts and pages. It is intended for plugin authors who want to display details of their own plugins from the WP Plugin Directory on their blog and want those details to remain up to date. It’s also useful for bloggers who may blog about plugins and would like the details in their blog posts to remain up to date.

This plugin uses WordPress shortcodes so it’s easy to include any information about a particular plugin in your post or page.

Er, what?

You want to blog about a particular plugin on your blog and include various details of it in your blog post (eg. the number of downloads or the last updated date). You could manually type this information into your post but this means that in a few days/weeks/months’ time the information will be out of date.

This plugin allows you to use shortcodes in your blog posts and pages which fetches this information right from the WordPress Plugin Directory, therefore ensuring the information always remains up to date.

Here’s an example

This plugin uses WordPress shortcodes so it’s easy to include any information about a particular plugin in your post or page.

This plugin has been downloaded [plugin downloaded] times!

This will produce the following content in your blog post:

This plugin has been downloaded 1,650 times!

The download count will remain current without you having to touch your blog post again.

Screenshots

  • Adding a plugin to a post. Remember to use the slug and not the name, as using the name isn't 100% reliable.

Installation

You can install this plugin directly from your WordPress dashboard:

  1. Go to the Plugins menu and click Add New.
  2. Search for Plugin Info.
  3. Click Install Now next to the Plugin Info plugin.
  4. Activate the plugin.
  5. Now read the usage guidelines below.

Alternatively, see the guide to Manually Installing Plugins.

Usage

  1. Write a new blog post or page, or open an existing post or page for editing.
  2. In the ‘Plugin Info’ box on that screen, type the slug of the plugin (see screenshot #1). The plugin slug is the last part of the URL of the plugin’s page on wordpress.org.
  3. Add a shortcode to your blog entry like this: [plugin version] and save the post. (That’s the word ‘plugin’ and not the slug of the plugin by the way).
  4. Take a look at your post and the version number of the plugin will be displayed.

For a complete list of all the shortcodes you can use, see the FAQ page.

FAQ

Is this plugin for me?

This plugin will be of use to you if:

  1. You are a plugin author and you want an easy way to include up to date information about any of your plugins in your blog posts or pages.
  2. You are the author of a blog that highlights plugins of interest and you want to ensure that information in your posts remains up to date.
Which attributes of a plugin can I display?

The majority of the available shortcodes can be seen from the post writing screen. Just click the ‘[show]’ link in the ‘Plugin Info’ box.

Please see https://johnblackbourn.com/wordpress-plugin-info/ for a complete list of all the available shortcodes. There are a few additional (less useful) shortcodes listed there.

Shortcodes which display a formatted hyperlink can have their default link text overridden by adding a ‘text’ parameter. For example: [plugin homepage text='Homepage'] will display a link to the plugin homepage with the link text ‘Homepage’.

Can I display plugin info outside of my blog posts?

Yes! You can use the plugin_info() function anywhere in your template. The function takes two parameters, the slug of your plugin and the attribute you’d like to display. The following example will display the last updated date for my User Switching plugin:

<?php plugin_info( 'user-switching', 'updated' ); ?>

You can also get the info rather than printing it out using the get_plugin_info() function:

<?php $updated = get_plugin_info( 'user-switching', 'updated' ); ?>
The geek stuff

The plugin information is collected from wp.org each time you save your post or page. It is updated hourly using WordPress’ cron system and uses the Plugin API available in WordPress 2.7 or later. The plugin data is stored as an associative array in a custom field called ‘plugin-info’, and the plugin slug you enter is saved as a custom field called ‘plugin’. For supergeeks, this means you can also access the plugin data using get_post_meta(), but I’ll let you figure that out for yourself.

Contributors & Developers

“Plugin Info” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.

Contributors

Changelog

For Plugin Info’s changelog, please see the Releases page on GitHub.