Version Checker 2.0 RC6, and notes on WP 2.9

I’ve just released a few plugin updates:

  • Search Reloaded v. 4.0.3 addresses an HTML validation issue when it is combined with Fancy Excerpts
  • Semiologic Cache v.1.2.1 addresses a tiny niggle that occurred when the plugin was used with custom plugin and wp-content folders
  • Semiologic Fixes v.1.9.3 moves its external libraries directly into the plugin (in advance of the new installer that we’ll be rolling out in WP 2.9)
  • Version Checker v.2.0 RC6 revamps (in effect, drops…) the Sem Pro upgrader (more on this below)

The Semiologic theme got an additional tweak, in order to support WP 2.9 post thumbnails. It’s a very cool addition, btw, even if a few UI bugs remain at the time of writing.

Speaking of WP 2.9, I’ve been testing the theme and plugins with it in the past few days, and I’m looking forward for the first WP upgrade (in 5 years!) that breaks absolutely nothing (that I’m distributing anyway…). For this reason, I’m proceeding a bit ahead of schedule and dropping the Semiologic Pro upgrader that we had been using until now.

What this means in practice for your Semiologic Pro sites:

  1. When installing a new site, Version Checker will prompt you to install Semiologic Pro using Tools / Upgrade, and it’ll stick to upgrading the Semiologic theme and plugins from that point onwards.
  2. Upon upgrading Version Checker on an existing site, WP will prompt you to upgrade to WP 2.8.6; go right ahead and do so.
  3. When WP 2.9 gets released, go right ahead and upgrade your Semiologic Pro site when it’s convenient for you — be sure to check for plugin compatibility if you’ve installed extras, though.

My favorite feature in WP 2.9, by the way, is not oembed integration, the Trash can, or the post thumbnails. Rather, it is the mass plugin upgrader. I’m already looking into (ab)using the latter, and I envision the following workflow by the end of the year for new sites:

  1. You install Version Checker to your site.
  2. You browse tools / upgrade to mass-install plugins.
  3. You install the Semiologic theme from the same screen or from Themes / Add New.

From then onwards, the site’s components (core, theme, skins, plugins) get upgraded separately, on a per need basis. And Version Checker sticks to warning against upgrading WP when your theme or plugins are not marked as compatible with a new version of WP.

In short, this changes the dynamics of Semiologic Pro entirely. :-)

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