In this blog post, we take a closer look at the new features introduced in WordPress 6.2, as well as how we at UpdraftPlus are leveraging these changes and adapting our features to stay at the cutting edge.
Browse and choose templates to edit
Previously, the Site Editor loaded the Home template of your theme by default, leaving many beginners wondering which template or template part they needed to edit. With the latest WordPress release, the site editor will load the template preview window first. From here, users can browse different templates and see a preview of what it looks like. Then they can simply click on the Edit button to start working on the selected template.
If you’ve finished editing your template, making your changes live is as straightforward as clicking the save button. If you want to go ahead and edit a different template, you can choose it from the template browser sidebar, revealed by clicking the WordPress logo in the top left corner.
Leverage custom CSS
In the last few WordPress releases, the site editor hid the ‘Theme Customizer’, making it difficult for users to add custom CSS to their themes. WordPress 6.2 lets users jump to the styles panel and select whatever custom CSS they’d prefer from the menu. By extension, this also means users can apply any CSS they choose at a global level, affecting every area of the site.
But this new and valuable control doesn’t just apply to themes. You can now also add your custom CSS rules to specific blocks, all from the style panel. From the blocks menu, users can select from a list of existing blocks; adding custom CSS to a block is as easy as a mouse click. If that sounds like too much of a hassle, don’t fret – there are useful third party plugins that can handle some or all of the heavy-lifting for you.
New and improved navigation menus
Sometimes when developers are focused on the big picture it’s easy to overlook the pains that users go through using certain features. One such predicament is the challenge of adding navigation menus in the full site editor. The new release addresses this head-on, creating the ability for users to add, edit or remove menu items from a subpanel on navigation blocks. The best part? You can drag and drop menu items, and even retrieve old menus you created earlier instead of having to try and rebuild one.
Colours to indicate template parts being edited
In the past, some users have misunderstood the scope of changes they’re making; on occasion they have made changes to templates without realising that it will have a global, site-wide effect. WordPress 6.2 comes with a helpful highlighted border around elements being edited, to make it crystal clear when you’re making a miniscule change – or a massive one.
Review block styles using the ‘Style Book’
Finally, the site editor now ships with a ‘Style Book’, allowing users to see all the blocks for a site and how styles are being applied to them. This makes it much simpler, and faster, to find blocks that aren’t styled correctly and fix it so its appearance matches the rest of the site. Previously, it was often necessary to view the site as a whole or to go through block by block to find misapplied or missing styles and repair the block in question. It makes both small and large style changes a more achievable goal, particularly if resource is an issue.
UpdraftPlus and the changes
Although these are welcome changes, there’s always the chance that they cause issues, particularly for existing plugins.
At UpdraftPlus, we test the beta and release candidate versions ahead of minor and major WordPress releases alongside our plugins so we can pick up any possible compatibility issues ahead of time.
We run a comprehensive gamut of automated tests. These may do simple things like confirm pages load as they’re supposed to, but we get granular too, testing specific pieces of functionality across our WordPress plugins.
If you use UpdraftPlus, WP-Optimize, All-In-One Security (or any other plugins for that matter) it’s a good time to check you’ve installed the latest version of either the Free or Premium versions. If any compatibility issues do arise, you can be sure we’ll be on their case pretty fast, pushing out new and improved releases to keep you up to date ad error free.
Thanks for reading.