1. Chip Bennett

    But, doesn’t WP.org *already* have “core” plugins?

    can see the benefit/necessity of Akismet. On the other hand, Hello Dolly is an utter waste of resources – and yet it is installed by default.

    So, the question isn’t whether or not WP.org will have core plugins; the question is, what will the devs allow to become core plugins?


  2. Idealien

    I agree that taking functionality out of core into plugins is a bad approach. However, if Automattic / the gatekeepers do a good job of keeping the core clean, other projects could follow in the footsteps of buddyPress which is essentially a series of social media plugins with WordPress MU + a theme designed to support that added functionality.

    There are some very heavy weight plugins starting to come towards quite functional – PODS comes to mind – which present a more interesting set of questions about what should / should not be in the core in the future. Too much and you get bloated feature creep. Too little and it seems like the foundation has grown stale.


  3. Lloyd Budd

    @Chip, I think Hello Dolly is included to keep things light and as an example of how easy it is to create your own plugin. It sucks that you find it a utter waste of resources.


  4. Ryan McCue

    Pretty much everyone on the list (myself included) disagrees with what Mike is proposing.

    I very much doubt myself that any new core plugins will be made and included with WP. Automattic has many useful plugins themselves, but they are not included with core, because they aren’t of use to a significant majority of users.

    Features should never be moved from the core into “core plugins”, but rather into normal plugins hosted on the WordPress.org Plugin Repository.

    @Chip Bennett – You’re mistaken in saying that Hello Dolly is a waste of resources and that it is installed by default. If you’re concerned about a 2.17kb file, then you really need a better host. Additionally, it acts as an example file to developers on how to develop plugins.


  5. Andrew

    I don’t see Akismet as a core plugin. It is bundled, sure, but it is a one off, not the product of a philosophy to do this sort of thing.

    Ryan, I think there is value in some cases of producing core features as plugins, and if the repository had a way of distinguishing more official plugins then I would agree. I do think that if plugins were developed that were intended to form part of a WordPress release then it would be important to clearly identify them so they were more connected with official releases.

    I don’t see the value in using the core, or official plugins, simply for the purposes of standardising back-end code which I think is really what is being suggested on the list. Standardisation is very easy, just come up with the most extensible option that fits everyone elses needs and they will use it.


  6. Chip Bennett

    @Ryan: So, Hello Dolly is no longer included in a fresh install of WP.org? If true, I’m glad to see they removed it. It has been there every time I’ve installed from latest.zip (as opposed to upgrading e.g. via WPAU).

    For my purposes (and I daresay, for *most* WP users), Hello Dolly *is* useless. It adds nothing meaningful whatsoever to my blogging experience. That it is only 2.17 Kb is irrelevant; those 2.17 Kb are used needlessly – thus, they are wasted.

    The claim that Hello Dolly acts as an example plugin for developers is also a specious argument with respect to justifying its inclusion in the default install. The vast majority of WP.org users are *not* developers, and have no need of an “example” plugin.

    All that said, my main point remains: certain plugins *are* included in the default install of WP.org. Such plugins are, for all intents and purposes, “core” plugins.


  7. donnacha | WordSkill

    I couldn’t agree more on Hello Dolly – it adds no useful functionality and, for the vast majority of users, simply adds another step to the installation: having to remove it.

    It’s not about its size (actually 4kb on the disk) but the unnecessary cluttering of the plugin page. If developers need “an example file on how to develop plugins”, I’d suggest they download it along with the necessary documentation.

    I appreciate a light-hearted gag as much as anyone, but this joke isn’t funny anymore.


  8. Chip Bennett

    @Lloyd: How many (better: what percentage of) WP.org users will ever develop their own plugins? I’ll be generous, and say 1% (not sure of the aggregate number of users to which that percentage equates).

    Of the remaining 99% of WP.org users, how many/what percentage find the *functionality* of Hello Dolly useful/beneficial? I would find it hard to believe that the number would even be measurable.

    Nonetheless, let’s be really, really generous, and say that 5% of all WP.org users would find Hello Dolly beneficial, either as a developer template or in its function to end users.

    Now, I have to ask:

    What *other* plugins are useful to *more* than 5% of all WP.org users?

    Please note, I really don’t have a dog in this hunt. I’m comfortable with installing/uninstalling plugins, so whether some functionality gets moved into core, or some plugins become designated as “core” plugins, or the plugin situation remains exactly as it is now – no matter what happens, I can make my blog work the way I want it to work.


  9. Frank

    Hello and thanks for the post and the comments to the idea of core plugins. I have write a post over this point, actually only in german – later in english. I write you and i hope youcan read the nice comments on my blog over this idea, maybe you can translate with a service?


  10. fk:Blog - Fabians Weblog

    Diskussion: Core-Plugins…

    Frank Bueltge zeigt seine sicht zum Aktuellen Thema “WordPress-Core-Plugin” und auch ich möchte zu diesem Thema mehr, als ein Kommentar bei Frank, dazu sagen.



  11. miklb

    Can anyone say Gravatar?


  12. Gunnar

    @Idealien – that implies that they have a “clean” core to start with…


  13. Frank

    Now i ahve write my german blogpost also in english language. Thanks for read.


  14. tekzt

    I´m actually against core plugins. keep the extra functionality to the community. If it´s really a good plugin that is needed badly, someone will pick it up and continue to develop it even if the original author stops development. It already happened many times.

    WordPress IS an end user orientated platform and you should never underestimate the unknowingness of the end user. Some people just don´t know things that are basics for people taking part in those discussions. If it doesn´t work out of the box like intended, they will stop using it.


  15. Core Plugins - Bless Or Curse - my perspective, Plugins, WordPress, Core, Plugin, This - WP Engineer

    […] theme. Andrew, an experienced and avid developer, submitted the issue in a guest contribution on WP Tavern and brings some important points to […]


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