WordPress Plugins Directory adds user-voted compatibility checker

October 28, 2009 | No Comments Yet

WordPress.org Plugin Directory compatibility feature

WordPress plugins listed at WordPress.org’s official plugin directory now have a new feature for compatibility checking. It uses the naturally-helpful WordPress community to gather statistics on how compatible a plugin is for a certain WordPress version. Weblog Tools Collection reports:

Normally, the plugin information within the FYI box tells you which version of WordPress is required and which version the plugin is compatible up to. Unfortunately, the version the plugin is compatible up to is not updated that often which is why some plugins which state that they only work up to WordPress 2.5 end up working with the latest release.

[…] The beauty of this system is that it leverages the community in order to figure out what works with what. However, just because it works for the majority of users is no guarantee it will work on your particular setup. But using these statistics, it should make it easier to figure out whether the issue is with the plugin and WordPress or with your setup.

One of the biggest fears users have when it comes time to upgrade WordPress is whether their plugins will work on the newest version or not. There are a large handful of people who upgrade to the latest version of WordPress as soon as it’s released and the hope is, these folks will visit the plugin page and report their findings for others to take advantage of. If more users see that their plugins work on the newest version, they are more likely to upgrade.

It’s not yet on all plugins, and it doesn’t appear yet inside details screen when you install from within your WP admin, but expect that to change soon. After all, this feature is still in beta.

But the biggest advantage, as WLTC notes in the last paragraph above, is key here. WordPress-powered sites often stay outdated and unable to fight off security attacks because their owners fear for incompatible plugins breaking their site. This checker should help quell those fears. And of course, this is a great incentive to make sure you’re grabbing plugins from the most legitimate source out there.

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Official WordPress Commercially Supported GPL Themes Directory launched

July 2, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Here’s the big lesson on the opening of the official WordPress Commercial Theme directory (also under WordPress Extend): it’s possible to make money off a commercial theme while still having a GPL license, which in turn, means you’re supporting the WordPress philosophy of making everything accessible to everyone.

While our directory is full of fantastic themes, sometimes people want to use something that they know has support behind it, and don’t mind paying for that. Contrary to popular belief, GPL doesn’t say that everything must be zero-cost, just that when you receive the software or theme that it not restrict your freedoms in how you use it.

So now that’s all cleared up, time to submit your premium theme—although I think we should stop using the term for good and use commercial instead, especially since there are a number of the “premium” themes that are free. Here’s the list of guidelines for the theme directory:

  • Distribute 100% GPL themes, including artwork and CSS.
  • Have professional support options, and optionally customization.
  • Your site should be complete, well-designed, up to date, and professional looking.
  • Include a haiku about yourself to be included.

A haiku? Now there’s a requirement you don’t see everyday.

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WordPress Theme Directory moves to WordPress Extend

July 18, 2008 | 1 Comment

You might remember that the official repository of WordPress themes was once hosted at themes.wordpress.net, but unfortunately had to close down for several reasons. Today, WordPress Themes has reopened at a new location at WordPress Extend, a fitting parallel to the Plugins section.

Bringing the new theme directory under the WordPress “extend” umbrella allowed us to take advantage of all the infrastructure that has already been built up to support WordPress.org. If you’ve browsed through the plugin directory, you’ll feel right at home in the new theme directory.

Aside from having the privilege of being at the official site of WordPress, themes uploaded there will be more convenient to update for ordinary WordPress users, as they have done with the automatic plugin updater already built into the latest version of WP.

However, theme authors, keep in mind that you must meet several requirements to get your themes listed. As with the recent development on the old themes.wordpress.net, themes with hidden, paid, or sponsored links are not allowed.

In order to be added to the directory each theme must meet the following
requirements:

  1. A single zip file, with all of the files themes file included.
  2. There must be a style.css file containing:
    1. Name (which must be unique to the directory)
    2. Tags
    3. Version (in the format of x.x or x.x.x and must be unique to the theme)
    4. Image align classes: img.centered, img.alignright, img.alignleft,
      .alignright, .alignleft
  3. The screenshot file name must be screenshot.png, and be a
    real screenshot of the theme, not a splash screen.
  4. Licensing must be GPL compatible.
  5. No hidden, paid or sponsored links in the theme. Links back to the
    author’s site are fine.
  6. The theme must be your own original work.

Upload your WordPress theme now!

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