WPCore landed in the WordPress plugin repository this week. The plugin extends WordPress to interact with the new WPCore service that allows you to create and manage plugin collections. The new WPCore plugin lets you bulk install all the plugins from any collection in just one click. The service was created by Stuart Starr, an application developer with a penchant for launching what he calls “brand new and relatively useless web services.” In this case he may have actually launched a useful one.
Your average WordPress site needs at least a few plugins to add basics like contact forms, SEO, galleries, etc. More specialized sites can require a dozen or more related plugins in order to provide more complex functionality like e-commerce, social networking, forums, or event management. This is where having a collection ready to install can save you some time.
Once you sign up for the free service, you can start creating your own public or private collections on WPCore.com. Private collections will not appear in the collections directory.
Start typing in plugin names or slugs to add them to the collection. The search box autosuggests plugins as you type:
As you can see above, each plugin collection is assigned its own unique key. Once you’ve added all the plugins you want to your collection, you can then paste this key into the WPCore settings page:
This will pull up all the plugins in the collection and link to a bulk install page in the admin:
The handy thing is that you can grab the key from any collection to bulk install the plugins; it doesn’t have to be one that you created. You can browse the WPCore Collections directory to find other public collections that users have already shared.
Collections can be shared, edited and/or deleted, and made private at any time. The concept is very similar to what the WP Install Profiles plugin provides with its corresponding service. The WP Roller service is another app that attempts to do the same thing but also allows you to customize a few extra settings in the process. So far, none of these services have grown to become mainstream tools for WordPress developers.
The WPCore app was built with Laravel and Bootstrap. After testing the app and the plugin, I can confirm it is user-friendly and provides a super fast way to install a long list of plugins. Making the most of WPCore requires having your collections set up already and a necessity to install the same plugins on multiple sites.
For those building WordPress sites regularly for clients, the tool can be a real time saver. Once your collection is set, you no longer have to spend time trying to remember all the plugins you need for setting up new sites. It’s also an easy way to share your recommendations with new users and other developers. Check out WPCore and let us know if this is a service you’re likely to use.