Last week, we reported the Better WordPress Security plugin would be renamed to iThemes Security. We also shared important details to prepare users for the upgrade. Because of the name change, users needed to re-enable the plugin or risk seeing errors. Despite the beta testing period, the upgrade process hasn’t gone smoothly for some users. Some have chosen to vent their frustrations by writing one star negative reviews.
I don’t like writing bad reviews. Three days ago I would give this plugin five stars without hesitation. Unfortunately, upgrading to 4.02 and then 4.05 broke the checkout functionality on my web store which resulted in lost sales and no clear solution in sight. Definitely a rushed update with insufficient testing.
Considering the plugin has over 1.8 million downloads, it’s inevitable some users would run into problems. As is the nature of software development, internal testing can only get you so far. According to Chris Wiegman, primary developer for iThemes Security, the plugin underwent the largest amount of beta testing by iThemes.
If you haven’t upgraded yet, I encourage you to read this guide which lists the most common issues related to the 4.0 update.
Beta Testing Only Gets You So Far
While some of the blame can be placed on iThemes Security for not picking up on specific bugs, it’s impossible to test in every conceivable environment or combination thereof. Take WordPress for example. Despite thousands of people participating in the WordPress beta period, a lot of bugs and problems are reported after the stable version is released. It makes sense because the amount of users and environments using the stable version are far greater than the number participating in the beta period.
iThemes Is Working As Fast As They Can To Fix Bugs
I got in touch with Cory Miller, CEO of iThemes, and asked him what the team is doing to address issues users are having with iThemes Security. Considering the number of users and types of changes made to the plugin, the team thinks overall, the upgrade has gone well.
Our motto has always been to ship good, tested work and iterate on it fast. As we get more data on bugs and issues, we’re seeking to figure them out and handle them accordingly. This is a commitment we’ve held since 2008 and will into the future.
Prior to launch, we had the biggest beta program for this release we’ve ever had and tested as thoroughly as we could (internally and with our beta group). We did our best, testing this before release, but any good software developer will tell you, especially with the variety of hosting and WordPress setups that you’re bound to miss something.
If you encounter a bug, please report it to iThemes. The team will be working hard this weekend to squash any bugs that have been reported thus far.