After what seems like an ultra-long development cycle, version 6.0 is now available for you to take for a spin. Download links to the new version are available towards the end of this article. Please make sure you read the full release below before attempting to perform any upgrades to this new version because there are significant breaking changes between version 5.x and 6.x!
What’s New In This Release?
An all new code-base
The major change in this release is not something that you will actually see unless you’re a developer. Major portions of the code has been rewritten to use a more modern structure. This makes it easier for new developers to dive in and get acquainted with the code-base.
Prior versions of the code used a classic procedural style of programming. Version 6.0 takes the first step to a more object-oriented code structure by introducing:
- JS Namespacing
And, as we have done with every release, there are performance improvements including:
- Improvements as a result of more stream-lined object oriented code
We also made the code more maintainable by:
- Drastically reducing the use of global variables
- Improving our adherence to our naming conventions
Integration with WordPress’s Privacy Infrastructure
Also included with this release is support for WordPress’s Export Personal Data option. This is part of the GDPR requirements as well as the requirements of similar privacy related legislation from other regions around the world.
With Simple:Press version 6.0, whenever an admin uses the WordPress Export Personal Data option, Simple:Press data will be included in the export.
By default only the basic data in the user profile will be exported. However, the admin can choose to make the forum posts and private messages available as well.
As you might expect, if you need GDPR compliance you will need to update to version 6.0!
Please note that WordPress 4.8 or later is required to be able to use these functions.
Now Released on WordPress.org
WordPress.org is the first place that users search on when looking for a particular type of plugin. To capture this audience, version 6.0.x of Simple:Press will now be available primarily from WordPress.org. This is a pretty big milestone and will open up the product to a whole group of new users who might not otherwise be aware that it exists.
With this change the plugin will no longer perform automatic updates by querying our site – it will now perform updates by querying WordPress.org directly. This will be a seamless transition once you have updated your site to version 6.0.
Note: Our plugins and themes will continue to only be available on our site.
You can help to build awareness for Simple:Press on WordPress.org by rating us with a 5 star review. If you find value from your use of Simple:Press, rating us on WordPress.org is the one simple thing you can do to help ensure a sustainable future for us.
Flexible Installation Locations
Prior versions of Simple:Press required that the installation folder always be named simple-press. We now allow for installation into a folder with any legal folder name. By default, the folder will be named simplepress (no hyphen) when installed from WordPress.org. The default folder will continue to be simple-press when installed via a manual download from our site or when upgrading from version 5.x.
Please note that there are a couple of quirks here:
- After you update to version 6.x, the next time you initiate an automatic update from WordPress.org WordPress will remove your simple-press folder and install the new version in the simplepress folder. This is because when WordPress.org performs an “automatic” upgrade it simply deletes the existing plugin and re-installs the new version in its default location. So if you have a reason to keep your existing simple-press folder, you should NOT automatically update from WordPress.org!
- If you do change the folder name, automatic updates from WordPress.org will not be possible. WordPress.org uses the folder name (simplepress) as part of its check to see if updates are valid for a plugin.
Improved Forum Permalink Structure
Sub-forums will now include the parent forum in the sub-forum’s permalink. Previous versions of Simple:Press would omit the parent forum in the permalink, using only the Forum Group and Sub-forum slugs to create the permalink.
- Forum moderator checks are now done on a per-forum basis (previously it was a single check for all forums)
As with any software release, this one includes a few fixes and tweaks:
- Corrected group view caching for single group display
- Corrected url shortening when using SSL profile
- After updating, account settings now works
- We cleaned up the use of some WP deprecated functions
- Log entries for security were showing up in the wrong color
- Improved php 7.x compatibility
- Improved html5 validation
- Corrected some DOM event handlers
- Additional php notice cleanup
- Various plugin and theme bug fixes and tweaks
Since all plugins and themes needed to be modified to use the new programming paradigm, they are now all officially 2.0 releases.
Store Distribution Adjustments
Our store will now include versions of our plugins and themes for both Simple:Press 5.7.x and 6.x on all sales. These links will appear in your purchase receipts and in your MY ACCOUNT screens.
Version 6.0 is not an automatic upgrade from the 5.x versions. Because of the extensive changes you will need to manually initiate this upgrade. You will also need to upgrade your Simple:Press themes and plugins to the latest versions as well.
We STRONGLY recommend that you apply this update to a staging site first before doing applying it to your production site. There are a lot of moving parts to the upgrade if you are using any premium plugins and themes so getting it right on a test site first is highly recommended!
Please read our instructions for performing this upgrade: Upgrading From Version 5.x to 6.x.
If you have created custom themes using any of our themes as a baseline you probably need this document as well: Theme Changes 6.0.0.
Now that version 6.0 is released our deprecation and end-of-life support policy is active for all of the version 5.x releases.
Get The New Version
You can get the new version directly from WordPress.org.
Because of the manual nature of this upgrade, we are offering a fixed price service to perform the upgrade for you. If you have not customized your Simple:Press plugins and themes, we can upgrade most sites for a fixed fee of $199.00. If you are interested in this service, we will need to get some information from you to see if your site qualifies for this flat rate. Please drop us a note at [email protected] to find out more.