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WordPress 2.3 Dexter: Major Update, Major Headache?

WordPress 2.3The long awaited release of Dexter, WordPress 2.3 is here. The upgraded features are awesome, but so are the things you need to look out for when upgrading to this version of the software.

Here are the highlights, on top of the 351 bugs fixed:

1. Native tagging support allows you to use tags in addition to categories on your post, 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.

2. 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 what the latest and greatest is you can use.

3. 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.


4. 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.

5. 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.

However, and this is always the catch, this new version will likely break a lot of your plugins. Check this complete list of supported plugins. There’s also the list of non-working plugins and another list of conflicting plugins. For a summary of things you need to know about WP 2.3, read it over here.

Don’t rush this one if you’re not patient with the upgrade process — backing up, checking plugins, new tag system, etc. Maybe you might want to make a mirror blog on a subdomain or another domain and do the upgrade there. I usually do that method for most of my large blogs with tons of plugins and custom themes. Otherwise, prepare for a major headache.

If you’re just starting with a new blog, grab the latest version here and I’m sure you’ll enjoy the new feature-set.

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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9 Responses

  1. sylv3rblade says:

    UTW and Googlesitemaps are the usual suspects for 2.3 update headaches. Categories get a major update. They’re (the table for them) part of what’s updated which is why you can’t downgrade from 2.3 unless you have a backup AND why plugins that access them break your WP install.

  2. vance says:

    i’m experiencing those headaches… I might revert back to 2.2… even though my k2 theme has a WP2.3 version already theres is still a lot bugs.

    I will agree not to upgrade immediately..

  3. vance says:

    errata: i meant the theme i’m using has a wp2.3 version..

  4. Jaypee says:

    I’m gonna hold off the upgrade until I’ve made sure that all the plugins I’m using work with WP 2.3. I’m also waiting for some plugins to be updated by the author. I hope I won’t have any headaches when I upgrade my WordPress installation. :D

  5. Allen says:

    I managed to upgrade my wordpress to version 2.3 yesterday in my local installation. I tried twice before I manage to pull it off. :D

    Note: Google Sitemaps plugin now works for version 2.3

  6. Miguel says:

    Thanks for the reminder, Abe. I upgraded just now and it took 5 minutes, and 5 more to add tags to my theme.

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