If you’re following the recent developments in the WordPress community, you may have heard already that WordPress 5.0 is coming out December 6th. This new version of WordPress will be very different to previous releases in recent years as it includes the new Gutenberg editor, which will significantly change how WordPress works and is used for content creation / content management.
While Gutenberg has been a highly controversial project since the start, many people in the WordPress community think it’s the right way to prepare WordPress for the future. In this post we’ll quickly answer some common questions you may have about WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg compatibility with MH Themes. Let’s get started:
- Is it safe to update to WordPress 5.0 right after release?
- How can I update to WordPress 5.0?
- What happens with my existing content when using the Gutenberg editor?
- I don’t want to use the Gutenberg editor. What can I do?
- Are WordPress themes from MH Themes compatible with Gutenberg?
- Where can I get help with Gutenberg?
Is it safe to update to WordPress 5.0 right after release?
While the new Gutenberg editor has been tested in many common environments and use cases, it still may be buggy and cause issues with your content and WordPress themes or plugins. If you’re running a lot of plugins on your site, it would be highly recommended to test WP 5.0 on a test / staging environment before updating your live site. Also make sure you have a backup ready.
Some people in the WordPress community think that WP 5.0 isn’t as stable as it could be and we share that opinion. With that said, if you don’t really have to, we recommend to wait with the update until it is more stable and tested. You could for example consider updating your site after the holiday season in January 2019 when hopefully the remaining bugs and issues have been fixed.
How can I update to WordPress 5.0?
You can update to the latest version of WordPress just like you usually would do. As always, before updating your live site, make sure you have backups available. In that case you can revert the changes if something goes wrong. This is especially crucial with an update as significant as WP 5.0.
What happens with my existing content when using the Gutenberg editor?
In theory, your content shouldn’t be affected by Gutenberg and you should be able to convert your existing content to blocks. However, while this should work in most cases, there also have been reports from WordPress users that Gutenberg messed up or even deleted their content. While this is unlikely to happen, we highly recommend that you backup your content before using Gutenberg.
I don’t want to use the Gutenberg editor. What can I do?
While Gutenberg certainly opens up new possibilities in WordPress, it may not be for everyone. If you prefer the classic editor in WordPress that you’ve been using for years, you can install the Classic Editor plugin. That way you can still upgrade to WordPress 5.0 but disable the Gutenberg editor.
It’s worth mentioning that the Classic Editor plugin isn’t a solution that will be available forever. At this point the plugin is officially maintained until December 31, 2021. If you don’t like Gutenberg at all, there is an alternative for some, a fork of WordPress called ClassicPress. This basically is WordPress without Gutenberg that will be developed as a stand-alone CMS. However, if this CMS will be available long-term remains to be seen.
Are WordPress themes from MH Themes compatible with Gutenberg?
Recently we’ve added some styling for Gutenberg core blocks to some of our WordPress themes. While it’s unlikely that you will experience major issues with Gutenberg, at this point we highly recommend installing the Classic Editor plugin so that you can keep using the WordPress editor like you’re used to. That way you can still update WordPress, but avoid negative impact on your website.
In January 2019 we’ll face internal restructuring which will result in new development resources and more regular updates in the future. Until then we’ll keep monitoring Gutenberg closely and you can expect full compatibility with Gutenberg somewhere in Q1 2019.
Where can I get help with Gutenberg?
Gutenberg significantly changes the editing and writing flow in WordPress. If you need assistance with the new Gutenberg editor, you can get help in the official WordPress support forums. You can leave feedback on Gutenberg here or report bugs and issues directly on Github.
We hope that this post answers most of your questions about the upcoming WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg. We wish you a happy holiday season and stay tuned! We’ll be back in 2019 with some exciting announcements and new updates.