1. Andrei

    A very good coverage of the current situation with Block Widgets. It’ll be very interesting to see how the widgets screen will end up looking for the customizer. Seems like there are some open issues about this right now in the Gutenberg repo and is something that’s being actively worked on.


  2. Marcus Tibesar

    When I go to Appearance –> Widgets, the new block-based Widgets appear

    When I go to Visit Site –> Tibesar Family Archives –> Widgets, the old Widgets appears

    Does anyone know if this was planned so that we can use the old Widgets while getting used to the new Widgets?


  3. Rodrigo

    Unfortunately, adding remove_theme_support( 'widgets-block-editor' ); does not bring back the “Widgets” section on the customizer right now. Clearly a bug.


  4. Peter

    For me, this is utterly broken and unusable!

    None of my custom, self-coded widgets work, and I am confident that they are all properly coded with the modern API calls, so they should.

    I understand the need to modernise, but it shouldn’t break backwards-compatibility. These block widgets should honour the CSS classes that old widgets use so that themes don’t instantly break.

    Like the previous commenter, remove_theme_support( 'widgets-block-editor' ); does not restore the widget editor to the customiser.

    There is no way that this is anywhere near being ready for inclusion in Core.

    So, for now, I have had to deactivate the Gutenberg plugin.


    • Gary Taylor

      I had a similar issue a few months back when refreshing my site theme. Turns out that not all of my self-rolled widgets worked using the block, and some built-in blocks had different functionality compared to the old widgets (tag list, for example, no longer has a title).

      In the end I converted them all into shortcodes.


  5. Penny Suarez

    I find this new widgets screen very confusing. I had the idea that one would be able to use all available blocks in the widget areas. For example, I would be able to add a Jetpack feedback form or a custom reusable block to the sidebar or footer. But that doesn’t seem to be the case. And if it is, then it’s all very unclear how to implement. I see very few widget blocks right now. The Gutenberg team should add a BETA tag to the plugin.


    • Justin Tadlock

      I did not even think to check reusable blocks. I did a quick test and didn’t see them listed in the inserter. I am guessing they are currently limiting what can be inserted into the sidebars/block-areas while this is in beta or for the “1.0” of this feature.

      I’m not sure why Jetpack forms do not appear. I’ll have to do some digging to see if third-party blocks are not shown at all or if it’s specific to the plugin.


  6. Steven Gliebe

    That really is a feat, but glad to see this:

    remove_theme_support( 'widgets-block-editor' );

    Fantastic to support this for new themes but could be a nightmare for old themes doing sophisticated things with widgets.

    Theme authors really can totally opt out, right?


    • Justin Tadlock

      Yes, at least at this point, theme authors can opt out. I am assuming the old system will be supported to some degree for a long while, sort of like how the old post editor is still supported.


  7. Lucy Ng

    We can use Gutenberg as a page builder, and now use it instead of Customizer widgets option. I just imagine one day Gutenberg can do everything.


  8. Rhys C

    I like the progression but it would be nice if more than the ‘core’ blocks would work. Also has anyone else experienced the drag and drop not working since the last few updates!?


  9. Marcus Tibesar

    I added a Buttons block to the new Widgets block editor’s sidebar area, and the primary/secondary colors chosen for the button’s background do not work. The button remains as a black background instead of the selected primary or secondary color.


  10. TimH

    Maybe you can help me out and explain widgets in the new post-Gutenberg world.

    I get that there will need to be a path for legacy widgets to keep working but aren’t sidebars and widgets an old-world construct?

    In the new world isn’t a “sidebar” just a fixed area for content or content embedded in content? And in that case isn’t a widget just…well…a block?


    • Justin Tadlock

      Essentially, yes widgets are just blocks.

      However, there is a vital difference between how their HTML is output, which changes a consistent standard that theme authors have relied since WordPress 2.1 (maybe 2.2 — it’s been a while). Taking away that structure means rethinking how sidebars work, or at least rethinking how theme authors approach styling them. There is a definite backward-compatibility issue at play here.

      I have some ideas though. New post coming in soon.


      • TimH

        Cheers Justin…

        I won’t look to perpetuate the discussion here and wait for your new post…but I leave you with this thought…navigation containers and sidebars (a.k.a Widget Areas) appear to fulfill the same function in a post-Gutenberg world…to contain blocks in a fixed area of the page. A number of legacy themes have supported Widget areas in Headers and Footers. A Navigation widget was common. So this is not a radical new idea I am floating.

        I accept your comment that this is a change to the HTML that theme authors are used to…but…come one…as a theme designer myself I can safely say that horse has left the paddock when it comes to maintaining pre-Gutenberg coding conventions ;-) I’m not sure why widgets / sidebars, of all things…would be a legacy metaphor that is retained moving forward. For my part I have moved all my legacy theme code into a plug-in and assume it is all dead code. I am starting fresh with a blank theme canvas that assumes it is a thin veneer on the core Gutenberg functionality.

        Other than retaining a “legacy widget container block” I would be disappointed if there was not a new Gutenberg version of the “widget area” (Fixed Group Block!) within which everything is a block (including block wrappered legacy widgets…however that would look).

        I look forward to your new post. I enjoy your writing immensely…you are an excellent writer with excellent WordPress knowledge and design ideas. A pleasure to follow :-)


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