WordPress 5.3 RC4

The fourth release candidate for WordPress 5.3 is now available!

WordPress 5.3 is currently scheduled to be released on November 12 2019, but we need your help to get there—if you haven’t tried 5.3 yet, now is the time!

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.3 release candidate:

For details about what to expect in WordPress 5.3, please see the first,  second and third release candidate posts.

Release Candidate 4 contains three bug fixes for the new default theme, Twenty Twenty (see #48450), and addresses the following:

  • The Twemoji library has been updated from 12.1.2 to 12.1.3 (see #48293).
  • Two regressions in the Media component (see #48451 and #48453).
  • One bug in the Upload component (see #48472)
  • Five bugs in the Block Editor component (see #48502)

Plugin and Theme Developers

Please test your plugins and themes against WordPress 5.3 and update the Tested up to version in the readme to 5.3. If you find compatibility problems, please be sure to post to the support forums so we can figure those out before the final release.

The WordPress 5.3 Field Guide has also been published, which details the major changes.

A new dev note has been published since the Field Guide was released, Use of the “wp_update_attachment_metadata” filter as “upload is complete” hook. Plugin and theme authors are asked to please read this note and make any necessary adjustments to continue working well in WordPress 5.3 or share any difficulties encountered on #48451.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.

WordPress 5.3 RC2

The second release candidate for WordPress 5.3 is now available!

WordPress 5.3 is currently scheduled to be released on November 12 2019, but we need your help to get there—if you haven’t tried 5.3 yet, now is the time!

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.3 release candidate:

For details about what to expect in WordPress 5.3, please see the first release candidate post.

Release Candidate 2 contains improvements to the new About page, and 10 fixes for the following bugs and regressions:

  • Three bugs contained in RC1 within the block editor have been fixed (see #48381).
  • A bug has been fixed where links within comments did not get the correct rel attribute (see #48022).
  • The scaled- string has been added to file names when images are downsized if determined “BIG” (see #48304).
  • The buttons group layout has been fixed in IE11 (see #48087).
  • A bug with boolean false meta values in the REST API has been fixed (see #48363).
  • The error code encountered when the native PHP JSON extension is missing has been adjusted to be unique (see #47699).
  • When uploading files, HTTP error code support has been expanded to include all 5xx errors (see #48379).

Plugin and Theme Developers

Please test your plugins and themes against WordPress 5.3 and update the Tested up to version in the readme to 5.3. If you find compatibility problems, please be sure to post to the support forums so we can figure those out before the final release.

The WordPress 5.3 Field Guide has also been published, which details the major changes.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.

WordPress 5.3 Release Candidate

The first release candidate for WordPress 5.3 is now available!

This is an important milestone as we progress toward the WordPress 5.3 release date. “Release Candidate” means that the new version is ready for release, but with millions of users and thousands of plugins and themes, it’s possible something was missed. WordPress 5.3 is currently scheduled to be released on November 12, 2019, but we need your help to get there—if you haven’t tried 5.3 yet, now is the time!

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.3 release candidate:

What’s in WordPress 5.3?

WordPress 5.3 expands and refines the Block Editor introduced in WordPress 5.0 with new blocks, more intuitive interactions, and improved accessibility. New features in the editor increase design freedoms, provide additional layout options and style variations to allow designers complete control over the look of a site.

This release also introduces the Twenty Twenty theme giving the user more design flexibility and integration with the Block Editor.

In addition, WordPress 5.3 allows developers to work with dates and timezones in a more reliable way and prepares the software to work with PHP 7.4 to be release later this year.

Plugin and Theme Developers

Please test your plugins and themes against WordPress 5.3 and update the Tested up to version in the readme file to 5.3. If you find compatibility problems, please be sure to post to the support forums so we can figure those out before the final release.

The WordPress 5.3 Field Guide will be published within the next 24 hours with a more detailed dive into the major changes.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages! This release also marks the hard string freeze point of the 5.3 release schedule.

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.

WordPress 5.3 Beta 3

WordPress 5.3 Beta 3 is now available!

This software is still in development, so we don’t recommend you run it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version.

You can test the WordPress 5.3 beta in two ways:

WordPress 5.3 is slated for release on November 12, 2019, and we need your help to get there.

Thanks to the testing and feedback from everyone who tested beta 2 (and beta 1) over 60 tickets have been closed in the past week.

Some highlights

  • Fixes and enhancements in the admin interface changes introduced in previous 5.3 beta releases.
  • Wording changes in login screen (#43037).
  • Improved accessibility in media upload modal (#47149).
  • Changes in the way the new error handling with images works (#48200).
  • MediaElement.js has been updated from 4.2.6 to 4.2.13 (#46681). The script is now also being loaded in the footer again. This fixes a regression that happened two years ago, so might be worth noting (#44484).
  • Update to the REST API media endpoint to allow resuming of uploads (#47987).

In addition to these, Beta 3 landed a number of small consistency and polish changes to the REST API, including an improvement to the permissions check used when editing comments, a fix for post type controller caching edge cases, and most importantly, the ability to use the _embed parameter to access the full data for a post using the /wp/v2/search endpoint.

Developer notes

WordPress 5.3 has lots of refinements to polish the developer experience. To keep up, subscribe to the Make WordPress Core blog and pay special attention to the developer notes tag for updates on those and other changes that could affect your products.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac where you can also find a list of known bugs.

WordPress 5.3 Beta 2

WordPress 5.3 Beta 2 is now available!

This software is still in development, so we don’t recommend running it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version.

You can test the WordPress 5.3 beta in two ways:

WordPress 5.3 is slated for release on November 12, 2019, and we need your help to get there.

Thanks to the testing and feedback from everyone who tested beta 1, over 45 tickets have been closed since then.

Some highlights

  • Work continues on the block editor.
  • Bugs fixed on Twenty Twenty.
  • Accessibility bugs fixes and enhancements on the interface changes introduced with 5.3 beta 1:
    • Iterate on the admin interface
    • Reduce potential backward compatibility issues
    • Improve consistency between admin screens and the block editor
    • Better text zoom management
  • Support rel="ugc" attribute value in comments (#48022) – this particular ticket shows the WordPress project ability to integrate quick solutions to things that are changing unexpectedly – like Google new features.

Developer notes

WordPress 5.3 has lots of refinements to polish the developer experience. To keep up, subscribe to the Make WordPress Core blog and pay special attention to the developers notes for updates on those and other changes that could affect your products.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac where you can also find a list of known bugs.

WordPress 5.3 Beta 1

WordPress 5.3 Beta 1 is now available!

This software is still in development, so we don’t recommend running it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version.

You can test the WordPress 5.3 beta in two ways:

WordPress 5.3 is slated for release on November 12, 2019, and we need your help to get there. Here are some of the big items to test, so we can find and resolve as many bugs as possible in the coming weeks.

Block Editor: features and improvements

Twelve releases of the Gutenberg plugin are going to be merged into 5.3 which means there’s a long list of exciting new features. 

Here are just a few of them:

  • Group block and grouping interactions
  • Columns block improvements (width support + patterns)
  • Table block improvements (text alignment support, header/footer support, colors)
  • Gallery block improvements (reordering inline, caption support)
  • Separator block improvements (color support)
  • Latest Posts block improvements (support excerpt, content)
  • List block improvements (indent/outdent shortcuts, start value and reverse order support)
  • Button block improvements (support target, border radius)
  • Animations and micro interactions (moving blocks, dropdowns, and a number of small animations to improve the UX)
  • Accessibility Navigation Mode which will allow you to navigate with the keyboard between blocks without going into their content.
  • Block Style Variations API

Plus a number of other improvements, amongst them:

  • Data Module API improvements (useSelect/useEffect)
  • Inserter Help Panel
  • Extensibility: DocumentSettingsPanel
  • Snackbar notices
  • Typewriter Experience
  • Fix a number of Accessibility report issues

If you want to see all the features for each release, here are direct links to the release posts: 6.5, 6.4, 6.3, 6.2, 6.1, 6.0, 5.9, 5.8, 5.7, 5.6, 5.5, and 5.4.

Continuous effort on performance

The team working on the block editor managed to shave off 1.5 seconds of loading time for a particularly sizeable post (~ 36,000 words, ~ 1,000 blocks) since WordPress 5.2.

A new default theme: welcome Twenty Twenty

WordPress 5.3 introduces Twenty Twenty, the latest default theme in our project history. 

This elegant new theme is based on the WordPress theme Chaplin which was released on the WordPress.org theme directory earlier this summer. 

It includes full support for the block editor, empowering users to find the right design for their message.

Wait! There is more

5.3 is going to be a rich release with the inclusion of numerous enhancements to interactions and the interface.

Admin interface enhancements

Design and Accessibility teams worked together to port some parts of Gutenberg styles into the whole wp-admin interface. Both teams are going to iterate on these changes during the 5.3 beta cycle. These improved styles fix many accessibility issues, improve color contrasts on form fields and buttons, add consistency between editor and admin interfaces, modernize the WordPress color scheme, add better zoom management, and more.

Big Images are coming to WordPress

Uploading non-optimized, high-resolution pictures from your smartphone isn’t a problem anymore. WordPress now supports resuming uploads when they fail as well as larger default image sizes. That way pictures you add from the block editor look their best no matter how people get to your site.

Automatic image rotation during upload

Your images will be correctly rotated upon upload according to the EXIF orientation. This feature was first proposed nine years ago. Never give up on your dreams to see your fixes land in WordPress!

Site Health Checks

The improvements introduced in 5.3 make it easier to identify and understand areas that may need troubleshooting on your site from the Tools -> Health Check screen.

Admin Email Verification

You’ll now be periodically asked to check that your admin email address is up to date when you log in as an administrator. This reduces the chance that you’ll get locked out of your site if you change your email address.

For Developers

Time/Date component fixes

Developers can now work with dates and timezones in a more reliable way. Date and time functionality has received a number of new API functions for unified timezone retrieval and PHP interoperability, as well as many bug fixes.

PHP7.4 Compatability

The WordPress core team is actively preparing to support PHP7.4 when it is released later this year. WordPress 5.3 contains multiple changes to remove deprecated functionality and ensure compatibility. Please test this beta release with PHP7.4 to ensure all functionality continues to work as expected and does not raise any new warnings.

Other Changes for Developers

Keep your eyes on the Make WordPress Core blog for more 5.3 related developer notes in the coming weeks detailing other changes that you should be aware of.

What’s next

There have been over 400 tickets fixed in WordPress 5.3 so far with numerous bug fixes and improvements to help smooth your WordPress experience.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac where you can also find a list of known bugs.