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WordPress 4.5 - what's new?

18th April 2016

Automattic - the team behind WordPress - have released version 4.5 of the content management system.

Each major release is named after a famous person, and 4.5 has been dubbed "Coleman" in honour of jazz saxophonist Coleman Hawkins. 4.5 is the first major WordPress release of the year, and comes with some handy new features. In this blog, we'll give you a rundown on what these new features mean for your WordPress website or blog.

Appearance

Upload your logo through the theme customiser

Adding a logo to your WordPress website from the theme customiser has been a widely requested feature. Many premium/paid WordPress themes already allow users to set logos from the theme options, but there was no standard way to do it for themes which did not have this feature built in. With WordPress 4.5, theme developers now have the ability to enable theme support for logos - this will allow the user to upload and set a logo for their website using the WordPress theme customiser. However. this is a theme feature, which means that it needs to be enabled by your theme developer. If a theme does not support this new feature, then you will not be able to see it in the customiser.

Improved preview options for site icons

Site icons were first  introduced in WordPress 4.4. This feature allows users to set a favicon (the little icon which appears in the tab in your browser) and application icon (the icon which appears on your mobile devices) for their website. WordPress 4.5 allows the user to see a preview under the site identity panel after you have set the site icon.

Content creation and editing

Inline link editor

One of WordPress' keyboard shortcuts is Ctrl+K (Command+K on Mac), which allows you to insert links in posts and pages. Until WordPress 4.4.2, it opened the insert link pop-up box which was a little distracting and sometimes slow for the user. In WordPress 4.5, pressing Ctrl+K shows an inline insert link box. Simply type the URL and continue writing your content without skipping a beat.

New inline text shortcuts

Inline text shortcuts were introduced in WordPress 4.3. These shortcuts allow you to quickly add formatting while writing posts. WordPress 4.5 allows the user to use three or more dashes to add a horizontal line. You can also use backticks (`your code text`) to format text to look like code.

Smart image resizing

Generated images now load up to 50% faster with no noticeable quality loss, though it is still recommended to resize your images to optimum dimensions before uploading to save on webspace and loading times for users with slower internet connections.

Administration

Login with your e-mail address

Many websites - particularly social media platforms - allow the user to sign in not only by using your username, but also with your registered e-mail address. If you have a habit of forgetting your username or simply don't wish to write it, you can now sign in using either your username or e-mail address. The sign in page now reflects this as it now reads "Username or Email".

More user-friendly comment moderation

WordPress 4.5 tidies up the comment moderation page and makes it more user-friendly; something it desperately needed. Until 4.4.2, when you clicked on the link in comment moderation notification email, the user was only able to approve the comment or cancel the process. This page didn’t allow you to edit a comment, and it also ignored plain HTML formatting used. With 4.5, the user can now completely edit a comment if they desire.

If you have any questions about WordPress design and development, feel free to contact Cosmic's web team on 0845 094 6108 or e-mail [email protected].