Last night Ryan Boren announced the release of WordPress 2.6 Beta 1. At first glance, you probably wouldn’t notice much difference between versions 2.5 and 2.6. The two biggest new features are Post Revisions, which saves a history of edits made to each post, and support for Gears, which greatly speeds up working with the admin screens.
Other changes of note:
- Support for the XML-RPC and Atom client APIs is turned off by default now. If you use an external client for posting, you’ll need to specifically turn these features on, under
- Impoved support for SSL access to the admin screens.
- When you are selecting themes, you now get to view a preview of how your site looks with the new theme before commiting to the change.
- The return of the “Press This” bookmarklet (find it in the sidebar of the
Writepage). Drag the link to your browser’s bookmarks toolbar, and use it to quickly post about sites you visit.
- More avatar options. The Gravatar service now supports displaying MonsterID, Wavatar, or Identicon icons in place of the default icon for those who don’t have a personalized Gravatar. These options are selectable under
Settings/Discussion. My Easy Gravatars plugin can support this as well, though I’ll probably update it to use the new built-in settings, rather than its own. I’ll write that up later.
- Improved plugin management. Active and inactive plugins are now listed separately. You now have the abiliity to “bulk activate” or “bulk deactivate” plugins. You can also delete unused plugins at the click of a button. (Now all we need is the ability to search and install plugins from the Extend directory right from our admin! Maybe in 2.7?)
And there are other assorted improvements, such as updates to the latest jQuery and jQuery UI libraries, updates to the latest TinyMCE editor, improvements to Page and Category management, and as always, general performance enhancements.
It is a beta, so there are still quirks being hammered out (personally, I’ve observed issues with the theme preview, and with deleting plugins). So don’t use this on a “critical” production web site yet. I’m running it here, but obviously, my personal blog isn’t critical, and I’ve always got backups available for when I screw something up. 🙂