Version 6.0 of the External Links WordPress plugin has been released. The biggest reason to upgrade is performance. The version 5.x releases had a lot to be desired and added a drain to site loaded. I’m embarrassed about it. Thanks to David and Alex for pointing this out on the External Links wordpress.org plugin area. Good news is that things are much, much quicker now. (Note that the Auto-Thickbox plugin used the link parsing logic and suffered poorer performance than necessary. It has been upgraded as well).
This version introduces an option to define if subdomains (sub.example.com) are treated as a local link to the site (assuming the plugin is installed on example.com). Also, there were a pair of complementary plugins, Autolink URI and Dofollow, that have now been merged into this plugin. Those plugins are now deprecated.