Testing WordPress 2.0 before I upgrade

Screenshot of WordPress 2.0 Write Post
Screenshot of WordPress 2.0 Write Post page, now with integrated image upload (the blue panel at the bottom of the image).

Today I’ve been checking out WordPress 2.0, the recent major update to the popular blogging and CMS tool, prior to upgrading various WordPress-driven sites that I manage.

The update from WordPress 1.5 to 2.0 has been quite considerable, particularly the back-end code and so inevitably some plugins written for WordPress 1.5 “Strayhorn” may not work with WordPress 2.0 “Duke”.

Plugins — for those of you who don’t know — are additional modules that add extra functionality to the WordPress application. For example, by default the search function in WordPress only searches the data in Posts and not static Pages, so the excellent Search Pages plugin extends the search to include Pages too. Another example, the ShowOnFrontPage plugin controls whether Posts show on the front page or not — very useful if you’re using WordPress as a Content Management System.

So my first task was to check whether the few plugins that I consider essential, and rely on for my site designs, worked with WP 2.0, and if not if they’d been updated. The good news is that thankfully they all do (or have been updated):

My plugins of choice:

  • Bad Behaviour
    Stops comment spam before it starts by trapping and blocking spambots before they have a chance to post comments
  • Spam Karma 2 Reloaded
    Another anti-comment spam tool, that in conjunction with Bad Behaviour means that I now get almost no spam comments whatsoever
  • WP-DBManager
    Manages your WordPress database. Allows you to optimize, backup, restore, delete backup database and run selected queries. In my opinion this is better than the one built into WP2.0. It’s been updated for WP2.0 too.
  • Include Page
    his plugin adds an include_page() function that allows you to include the contents of a static page in a template, on the Sidebar or as a Welcome note on the front page, for example.
  • Search Pages
    This makes search queries look at Pages and Posts instead of only Posts.
  • ShowOnFrontPage
    Allows you to keep select posts from showing on front page of WordPress
  • WP-Scrobbler
    Lets you display recently played songs from your AudioScrobbler profile on your site.
  • IImage Browser
    This plugin adds an “IImage Browser” button to the Quicktags area which opens an image browser to select from all previously uploaded images and add the appropriate code to the post.

What’s up with images?!

Which leads me nicely to the one reason that I’m not downing tools and racing to upgrade my blog to WordPress 2.0: the way that it handles images.

Inevitably some people will love it, others will hate it, and today I read quite a few comments from both supports and haters on the WordPress Support forums.

You may be able to see from the screenshot image above that WordPress 2.0 now has an ‘inline’ upload panel within the Write Post and Write Page panels — it’s the light blue panel at the bottom. I thought that I’d love this feature, but in practice it just doesn’t offer enough options … in fact, it doesn’t offer any!

I’d like to be able to decide where to upload files, and what type of files (I like to be able to upload PDF files using the upload facility). I’d also like to be able to decide on the maximum width of images, because the default for both (?!) thumbnails and full-size images is 128 pixels. Which is mad! I know that this is to prevent less-experienced users from breaking the theme by uploading files that are absolutely massive — as I’ve seen done — but surely there could be an option to set the maximum size shown. I’d also like to be able to decide on whether to use the new ‘inline’ upload panel or the ‘old school’ version. Some members of the Support forum have simply been overwriting the new wp-admin/options-mis.php with the version in WordPress 2.0 Beta.

There may be a plugin that offers this, or a hack workaround. But in the meantime I’m going to install and activate the Filosofo Old-Style Upload Plugin and see how I get on with that.

WYSIWYG vs QuickTags

One of the nice things about WordPress 2.0 for less-experienced users is the inclusion of a nice What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) editing panel, courtesy of — I suspect — a customized version of TinyMCE. But I like my raw XHTML codes when editing posts.

Thankfully in WP2.0 I have the option of turning the WYSIWYG “visual rich editor” on or off within my own user account options. This means that on a site where you have a handful of contributors each can have the Write panels setup for their own preferences (XHTML or WYSIWYG, geek or non-geek).

I’d still like to find out how to extend the options on the “visual rich” toolbar, however. The XHTML toolbar options can still be edited in the quicktags.js file, although in WP2.0 this has now moved to \wp-includes\js\quicktags.js.

On this blog I’ve included the following XHTML tags to my quicktags bar: h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6, acronym, abbr, table, tr and td. I’d like the option to be able to add some of these to the TinyMCE visual rich editor.

On the whole I’m really liking WordPress 2.0, apart from the way that it handles images. But I’m sure I can hack my way around that! 😉


I’ve discovered that in the file inline-uploading.php this section of code:

81. if ( $imagedata['width'] * $imagedata['height'] < 3 * 1024 * 1024 ) {
82. if ( $imagedata['width'] > 128 && $imagedata['width'] >= $imagedata['height'] * 4 / 3 )
83. $thumb = wp_create_thumbnail($file, 128);
84. elseif ( $imagedata['height'] > 96 )
85. $thumb = wp_create_thumbnail($file, 96);

the number at the end of line 83 — in this case, 128 — instructs WordPress how wide to create the thumbnail.

But this code does not affect the generated XHTML code when you add an image to your post, either as Original size or Thumbnail. For that … I need to keep looking.

Published by

Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 52 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Enneagram type FOUR and introvert (INFP), I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, play mahjong, write, draw and laugh… Scrum master at Safeguard Global; latterly at Sky and Vision/Cegedim. Former web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and previously warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall.

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