4,500 Plugins Need Your Help in Determining Gutenberg Compatibility

One of the keys to a successful roll out of Gutenberg is plugin compatibility. Without it, users will experience unnecessary frustration and hamper enthusiasm of the new editor. In an effort to figure out what plugins are already compatible with Gutenberg, Daniel Bachhuber has created a Gutenberg Plugin Compatibility Database.

Gutenberg Plugin Compatibility Database
Gutenberg Plugin Compatibility Database

The database contains 5,000 plugins that represent more than 90% of the total active install count. Plugins are compatible with Gutenberg if they meet the following two requirements.

  • A WordPress user can perform the same functional task with Gutenberg active. For instance, if the plugin includes an ‘Add Media’ button, it’s considered Gutenberg-compatible when it has a block registered for the Gutenberg inserter.
  • There are no (obvious) errors when the WordPress plugin is active alongside Gutenberg.

In order to participate in the testing process, you’ll need to register an account on the site. Once approved, testers will be able to create a fresh sandboxed WordPress install on the site and test randomly selected plugins. After a manual review is complete, plugins will be marked as is_compatible=yes or is_compatible=no.

Some plugins are already classified with is_compatible=likely_yes or is_compatible=likely_. As reports are completed, two pie charts that display compatibility results at the bottom of the site update automatically.

Bachhuber estimates that if each plugin takes about a minute to test, they’ll need roughly 75 person-hours to get through the remaining 4,500 plugins in the database. This project is a great opportunity for individuals and businesses to contribute back to WordPress via the Five for The Future initiative.

Ideal testers are those who can review dozens of plugins, but even reviewing a few will help the project. If you’re interested in contributing, check out the project’s GitHub page to learn what’s involved in the testing process. Alternatively, visitors can watch the following YouTube video.


32 responses to “4,500 Plugins Need Your Help in Determining Gutenberg Compatibility”

  1. Nothing like watching on oncoming train wreck. Anyone remember VB.NET? Just sayin’

  2. Feel free to again attack me for daring to be critical of WordPress (or even block my comment). I won’t shed a tear. I promise. But WordPress continues to operate as if anyone who uses it can be guilted into providing free labor and services. Amazing.

    • In life there are givers and there are takers. In the same token,
      you are either part of the problem or part of the solution.

      We live in a very selfish, self centered world, and it makes me feel so sad for the future.

      • @Brian Lacouvee

        I’m sorry you’re feeling sad about WordPress. A lot of people are. But not having time to work on WordPress for “free” is not being “very selfish, self centered.” If you want to and have the time, good for you. Go for it. But why are you trying to guilt others into working for free for WordPress? And is anyone from WordPress offering to work for your business for free, even if you work 100s of hours for WordPress for free? Didn’t think so.

        As Marcelo said: “for those of us being webmasters/managers of hundreds of WP sites,… man you are making us working a lot of extra time FOR FREE!!!!”

        And as Kevin Provance said: “I’m still dreading all the free work I will have to do to update client sites when this monstrosity breaks content.”

    • Nobody cares if you’re critical, but they might care if you’re nonsensical. My question is – who should be paying for it exactly? You do realize WordPress isn’t really owned by anybody, right? There is no WordPress entity to guilt users into providing free labor. It’s open source. It benefits everybody to work at making the typically FREE plugins compatible so we can continue using this FREE functionality without needing to custom develop everything from scratch.

      • Why are you afraid to criticize me and/or defend WordPress with your real name or link to your profile? And how many hours should someone be willing to work for free for WordPress, and what formula(s) do you use? Is it based on how many sites someone uses WordPress for? How long they’ve been using WordPress? Is it based on how much income they make using WordPress? What if they’re a non-profit and generate -0- income from their WordPress site? Now who is the one who’s nonsensical? :)

    • Scott, you’ve had a chip on your shoulder for YEARS. WordPress is clearly no different to you.

      If you don’t want to contribute then don’t contribute. Nobody will miss you.

  3. Elliot Condon

    Yes, we should be concerned. This is the biggest change we have seen in years and it will affect every website that updates to WordPress 5.0.

    The new Gutenberg edit screen does not only change the way we edit the “post content”, it also changes the markup and elements on the edit screen. This is the change that makes me nervous for the WordPress community because so many of our content tools (plugins, themes, custom functionality) rely on these elements to exist.


    • Elliot Condon’s latest communication on Gutenberg – Exciting Developments Coming for ACF as 2018 Rolls On.

      Elliot: Testing ACF with Gutenberg is going great. I’m happy to see how well Custom Meta Boxes are being supported in this new JS powered edit screen – everything seems to be working out of the box! The only issues are due to changed actions and filters, which will require some minor compatibility patches. As the Gutenberg project continues to develop, we will continue to test and roll out updates.

      • Neil,
        Condon’s concern is not for his plugin and customers, but for the wider ecosystem.

        As he said in the post I linked to:

        I am confident that we will add compatibility for Gutenberg before it ships, but I’m not confident that every client is aware of the change.

  4. This is a big lol. If plugin authors have no idea how gutenberg will end up being to be able say by themselves if the plugin is compatible, how will random people be able to do that.

    My favorite stupid entry in the DB is related to the search and replace plugin, claiming that since it does nothing with the editor it has to be “ok”, but since the search and replace is textual and GB adds a lot of garbage comments in the content, it is very likely that search and replace as it works now will break some of you content, and this is also a concern to probably all plugins which combine backup with migration.

  5. Can someone explain to me why the Gutenberg team doesn’t want to have a “Classic” button in the corner of the screen that restores the Edit Screen to the way it is in WP 4.9?

    Then we get the best of both worlds – all the old plugins still work, developers can update on their own schedule, new plugins can be built for Gutenberg, and users will get the easy Gutenberg writing experience when they open up the edit post screen.

    Am I missing something? I haven’t followed the project closely.

    • You’re not missing anything. This is about becoming the next WiX. Forgetting of course WiX sucks. Perhaps WP will learn what took MSFT years to figure out; don’t fix what isn’t broke.

      I’m still dreading all the free work I will have to do to update client sites when this monstrosity breaks content. The GB team can say all they want this won;t happen. I don;t believe them. I’ve seen this happen so many times over the last twenty years, where these types of promises are made and then ignored.

      I could be wrong, sure. But I ain’t optimistic.

      • WP.com already is Wix, in my opinion. If the open source developers weren’t contributing so much WP.org would be shut down. It doesn’t make them any money but it does give them a lot of free workers and promotion.

  6. Keep this thing as plugin and those who want to run it can do so at their own risks. Problem solved.

  7. Although it may remind the way political system works, if we already doing de facto WP Reboot, perhaps it would make sense to initiate discussion with developers and at the same time make other BIG changes that break backward-compatibility. This way it would be one time to suffer, one time to check all plugins.

  8. This is going to break a lot of websites.

    For end users who barely understand how plugin updates work, they will likely do a mess. Guaranteed.

    An for those of us being webmasters/managers of hundreds of WP sites,… man you are making us working a lot of extra time FOR FREE!!!! This upgrade cannot be taken lightly and a lot of testing must be made in a per site basis. Customers shouldn’t be charged for this. But they will. And even more: a lot of customers/endusers will probably choose to do-not-upgrade-my-install. How about that?

  9. It only takes a minute to test a plugin to see if it’s compatible with Gutenberg? Really? (not being sarcastic, I really want to know if this is a valid assumption)

  10. Or, we could just not force users to use Gutenberg, and instead remain on classic editor if they want to. You know, the one that doesn’t potentially break 4,500+ plugins…

    The more I hear Gutenberg updates, the less I want to use WordPress, if forced into using this editor.

  11. Automattic loves to remind us that “WordPress is now used on 30% of the Top 10 Million Sites”, but these are not “consumer blogs”. The top sites responsible for WP’s success are client sites made by developers, and they are there because developers liked using WP.

    As Pete Tasker of Delicious Brains put it,

    My biggest issue isn’t specifically with Gutenberg, but with the Editor Focus in general. People may not know that WordPress has a monolithic amount of technical debt in core. By focusing just on Gutenberg for several years, nothing is being improved on this front.

    What does this mean for developers? It means to the powers that be, the WordPress user is more important than the WordPress developer. Full stop.

    The problem with that approach is that the WordPress user is not the reason for WP’s top-sites success – the developer is. And in a high-handed, bureaucratic way, Automattic has been sidelining developer priorities for a LONG TIME now.

    Which ones?

    Other than cleaning and making more sense of WP core’s codebase there are many other things: a fully baked REST API, a fields API, dependency management, getting off of Trac and SVN. There’s a long list… None of these are new asks, most tickets are YEARS old.

    And we won’t even talk about PHP 5.2 support…

    And lastly, everyone’s just cool with jamming in another JavaScript framework (React) into the core JS libraries? I’m not going to count.

    • As a WP user, not a developer, I feel the opposite. WP seems very much for developers. So much of what I liked, as a user, has been taken out of WP core or abandoned/ neglected. The media files being a big part of that. As I see it, WP is designed to make it easy for developers to create, set up and maintain cookie cutter sites for clients running commercial sites focused on marketing.

  12. Wow, how did we get from “hey, here’s a cool project to help make sure the top 5,000 plugins are compatible with Gutenberg” to “Gutenberg is being forced on everyone, and will potentially break the majority of those top 5,000 plugins”?

    No one will be forced to use Gutenberg: https://wordpress.org/plugins/classic-editor/

    At any rate, this sounds like a great project and, believe it or not, many of those top 5,000 plugins are developed by competent folks who test new features and releases well before they are released to the general public.

    In case any of those devs have their heads buried in the sand, they usually also get an email in advance of a WP release too. So the sky isn’t going to fall… not today anyway :)

    Is it scary to face a huge change like this? You bet! But should we give up all the benefits it brings because it is scary? I sure hope not…

    • It’s not about scary/notscary.

      The issue for developers like me is, Gutenberg brings zero benefit to the people who pay my bills – paying business clients. They give zero f’s about editor freedom.

      They do however need WP to have a better media manager, a 100% working REST API and a core meta fields UI.

      I myself need MUCH better documentation of existing core dependencies, like backbone.js

    • > No one will be forced to use Gutenberg.

      Sure, and your site with WP 5.0 and forced GB and “Classic Editor” will be 3-5 times slower in front end and 8-10 times slower in backend, that’s what makes customers happy… not!

      Just test it, but with a real site, which uses WP as CMS. Not with an out-of-box test install with twentyseventeen and 5 blog entries…

  13. Yet another plugin to research and learn in order to supposedly solve another WordPress issue. WordPress should be renamed PluginPress. Or perhaps better yet, incorporate some of the more popular and useful plugins, as core features. But I’m sure that’s not a popular idea for WordPress developers / designers whose incomes depend on WordPress NOT being less complicated and expensive to use for small businesses and entrepreneurs. :)

  14. Testing individual plugins is only going to help so much. Sites use a variety of plugins which interact with each other. Then there are premium versions of plugins, plugins bought from developers and not available on the WordPress plugin database. Also, old plugins and plugins not updated on user sites.

    I’ve been working to eliminate plugin use on my sites. I’ve gone back to simple posts using standard HTML, no extra code from plugins. My sites should be fine with whatever changes roll out in WP 5. If not I have already looked at other options within WP and alternative CMS.

    The interesting part of Gutenberg and plugins will be all those page builder plugins. Will they merge with Gutenberg or become obsolete?

  15. IMHO, the main reason I pitch Wp idea to my clients is the familiar way to create content, look like a simple text editor and they can do it themselves, I believe they should focus more on the nifty stuff about WordPress editor, paste a youtube link and get an embedded video, perhaps little improvements like that are less harmful and polemical then re-engineering the whole thing.


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