WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg
WordPress 5.0 was released December 6th, 2018. This is the biggest WordPress update in several years, so in this article we're going to go over when and how to update your site.
We will go over all of these points in detail below, but here are the most important things you need to know:
- The Genesis Framework and 17th Avenue Genesis child themes are fully compatible with WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg.
- Before updating to WordPress 5.0, upgrade to Genesis 2.8 (or later) FIRST.
- The biggest concern with updating to WordPress 5.0 is the potential for plugin conflicts. Do a plugin audit and make sure all of your plugins are up to date before updating.
What is Gutenberg?
The biggest change in the WordPress 5.0 update is an all-new post editor called Gutenberg. Gutenberg drastically changes the way you create and publish blog posts in WordPress. Before you update to WordPress 5.0, we recommend installing the Classic Editor plugin so you still have the option to use the Classic Editor instead of being forced to use Gutenberg.
Are 17th Avenue themes compatible with WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg?
All of our WordPress themes have been tested with WordPress 5.0. We did not come across any issues during our testing and no compatibility issues have been reported by customers.
Our WordPress themes were tested with 5.0 under the following conditions:
- All recommended plugins for each theme active
- All recommended plugins fully updated
- Genesis updated to version 2.8 or later
Should I Update?
Ah – the golden question! YES, you can go ahead and update. But see the next section for steps to take prior to updating.
When we first wrote this article in December 2018, we advised waiting for smaller bug updates to be released before updating to WordPress 5.0. Now that it's February and we are on version 5.0.3, the majority of kinks have been worked out and most plugin developers have pushed compatibility updates. The majority of websites won't have any issues updating to WordPress 5.0.
Advice for Updating to 5.0
Before you update to WordPress 5.0, we strongly recommend doing everything listed below:
- First, sure that you have a external backup of your website. If WordPress 5.0 or a plugin causes a problem on your site, you'll be able to easily restore your site to a backup point.
- Update to Genesis 2.8 (or later) before updating to WordPress 5.0 – EXTREMELY IMPORTANT.
- Update all of your plugins before updating to WordPress 5.0. This will minimize the possibility of a plugin conflict. This is also a good time to audit/review your plugins and remove any that are outdated or that you are no longer using.
- Install the Classic Editor plugin so you have the option to use Gutenberg or the Classic Editor, instead of being forced to use Gutenberg.
- If your hosting company offers a staging site, use it! Update your website on a staging site before updating on your actual website.
What to do if 5.0 breaks your site
If you update your site to WordPress 5.0 and notice issues, the first thing you'll want to do is a plugin test. 17th Avenue themes are compatible with WordPress 5.0 AND all of the plugins recommended for each theme (including WooCommerce). If you are experiencing problems after updating, the culprit is almost certainly one of your other plugins.
If you update your site to WordPress 5.0 and get the "white screen of death" – the first thing you'll want to do is restore your site backup (you did make a backup, right!?) From there, make sure all of your plugins are updated if you haven't updated them already. Next, deactivate all of your plugins. Then go ahead and update to WordPress 5.0. Finally, activate each plugin one by one to determine which plugin is causing the problem.
If you have any questions about WordPress 5.0 or Gutenberg, feel free to get in touch!