Jetpack 4.0 Released with UI Improvements and New Editor View for VideoPress

Shortly after Jetpack 4.0 was released yesterday many users reported a fatal error and/or white screen when updating. Developers started warning each other in the Advanced WordPress Facebook group to avoid updating to 4.0, after having received emails from clients with sites that went down. A followup 4.0.2 release was pushed out today for users with the specific configuration that caused the fatal error.

This is the third time in under two months that the Jetpack team has had to send out a followup update on the heels of a release to correct significant problems. Fortunately, the team worked quickly to get a fix out to sites with fatal errors.

jetpack-ui-improvementsThe 4.0 milestone brings major UI improvements for on-boarding new users. In previous versions of the plugin, visiting the Jetpack settings page showed a big green button prompting users to connect to WordPress.com.

This release introduces a full page explaining the benefits of Jetpack to encourage users to hook it up. It also displays a picture of the development and support team, an explanation of Photon, and the benefits of the Protect module.

Version 4.0 also adds a new editor view for VideoPress that lets users edit the shortcode in the editor with a new modal options window. This makes it easy to wrangle VideoPress settings directly in the editor

A few other notable enhancements in this release include:

  • Tighter WooCommerce Integration: Social sharing icons now appear on WooCommerce single product views
  • Widget Visibility for Custom Post Type Archives: Show/hide widgets for CPT single or archive views
  • Selective Refresh for Widgets: Widgets now update instantly with live previews in the customizer
  • Updated schema.org Microdata for Breadcrumbs: Gives search engines a better understanding of a page’s position in the site hierarchy

Jetpack 4.0 also adds performance enhancements for the Protect module and Contact Forms. The method it uses to clean the database of spam form submission records is now more efficient. Check out the changelog to see a full list of all the enhancements and fixes in this release. It should be safe to update your sites and clients’ sites to 4.0.2 without any ill effects.

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17 Comments


  1. JetPack really botched this rollout. It’s a great plug-in for a lot of reasons, but it’s been getting sloppy as of late.

    I did what it instructed (thank God it had detailed enough instructions on what to do), but having to go into FTP to clean up someone else’s mess is pretty infuriating.

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    1. If you use that plugin/service for free, it’s just your mess, not someone else’s ;)

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      1. Well in JetPacks case its so wordpress.com can get more paying customers. Some of the services are not for free as in no charge you pay with your email etc.

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    2. Hey there! I work on the Jetpack team.

      We did mess up, and we’re very sorry about that.

      Unfortunately, although we did test the plugin before releasing, we didn’t catch that issue, and it seems that none of our Beta testers ran into it either.

      It goes to show that even with automated tests, internal testing, and a public Beta period, some things still manage to slip through the cracks. ?

      We’re already thinking about ways to avoid issues like this in the future. If you’re interested in helping, we would be really happy to have you join our public Beta group! The more beta testers, the better. We’ll catch more issues before each release, and every beta tester has a chance to give us feedback about upcoming features before they’re launched.

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      1. wow. you really need too re test jetpack with all modules activated.
        apparently you have tons of files not found because you changed the dir/files structure.

        maybe idea:
        how about creating file loader (require_once() wrapper) function with file exist check and add debug data when file not exist?

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      2. I can’t seem to reproduce the issue on my end. We only moved 2 files, so you’re most likely experiencing a different issue.

        Could you try to delete and reinstall from scratch? If that doesn’t help, could you send us an email or post in the support forums with more details about the errors you get?

        Thanks!

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      3. I’m sorry, I was referring to the issue link in your previous comment.
        https://github.com/Automattic/jetpack/issues/3697

        I didn’t experience it myself.
        in my site all seem to work fine, but I only use several modules.

        and I have to admit, jetpack is one plugin that’s hard to debug locally.
        I actually give up to test jetpack before updating (I test all updates before push them to live site for WP and other plugins).
        I’m sure a lot of dev do the same because the way jetpack is built (as a Frankenstein monster).

        but, awesome work in this major update and bug fix :)

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      4. jetpack is one plugin that’s hard to debug locally.
        I actually give up to test jetpack before updating (I test all updates before push them to live site for WP and other plugins).
        I’m sure a lot of dev do the same because the way jetpack is built (as a Frankenstein monster).

        @David Instead of testing locally, I’d suggest testing on a live sandbox, or a staging environment. If your testing environment can make and receive XML-RPC requests, it becomes easier to play with Jetpack and run all the tests you want! :)

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      5. “…it seems that none of our Beta testers ran into it either…”. Are you telling me that you only have testing environments and Beta testers for 1,000,000 unique possible issues/problems and not 100,000,000 unique possible issues/problems?

        What kind of a Two-Bit operation are you guys running? LOL A joke of course :) Yeah, I think it is actually impossible to magically figure out every possible unique/unusual scenario/issue/problem on the first Go-Round. ;) Although I did get lucky once in the past 10 years and that did actually happen – 1 out of 10,000 times, not bad. :)

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  2. Hello,
    I found something interesting about that. I experienced the error, too, but before digging in my webspace, I checked my backend through Calypso app. I found it very convenient to manage my self hosted sites that way in the past and I was just curious how Calypso might behave with a defect Jetpack plugin. Quite unexpected, even while getting the error via browser, I was able to access my backend via Calypso app. At the time I have noticed the issue, the update for Jetpack was already available and I could trigger the update with Calypso.

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  3. So…since I have not yet done the update, which version do I want/need to avoid any issues?

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      1. Hi Jeremy,

        I understand that I need to update but was concerned about the issues that were happening last week with people’s site’s going down. I didn’t do the update to 4.0 and wanted to make sure there was no issue with updating from 3.9.6 directly to 4.0.2.

        Thanks,

        Alison

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  4. Until this update, I had a large network of client sites managed by the Jetpack Manage module. I set Jetpack as one of the plugins to to auto update (It’s partly created by Automattic, so it’s gonna be rock solid, right?). That day, I woke up to a sh*t storm of angry clients saying that their site is broken. Loss of income, you broke my site, yada yada yada…

    Lesson learned: the world is not yet ready for WP plugin auto updates.

    Luckily I was able to fix the issues within 15 minutes. I’ve lost the trust of a lot of high profile clients now though.

    I can’t complain though, it’s a free service after all. As I say, lesson learned.

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    1. So sorry about that. We’ll work hard to regain your trust, and hopefully help you regain some of your clients’ trust as well.

      If you’d like, you could join our Beta group so you can test the upcoming version of Jetpack on a test site before it’s released and updated on your clients’ sites. We would also be happy to receive any feedback about the new features included in each release.

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