Most of you probably know that our blog is powered by WordPress, and last week version 2.7 Beta 1 was released for anyone who felt compelled to try it out. In the past I’ve never used a Beta version of WordPress on this blog, but I normally give them all whirl in a test environment to make sure they don’t leave me begging for mercy in the end.

After a few hours of tinkering around with this release I can say that it has been unexpectedly stable, and I decided to move it into our production environment already. To be honest I think this could be one of the biggest WordPress releases to date with all of the features it now offers when administering a site. Take a look at some of my favorites along with some screenshots:

  • Revamped Admin Screen & Dashboard
    The administration screen has been completely reworked to make use of widescreen monitors. Now all of the navigation items are placed off to the left side, but if space gets cramped you can always collapse down the sidebar.
    wordpress 27 dashboard.png wordpress 27 dashboard collapsed.png
  • Automatic WordPress Updating
    All I have to say is… finally! You can now update WordPress from the admin section of your site as long as you have (S)FTP access. No more downloading the ZIP file and carefully extracting the files trying to ensure that you don’t accidentally overwrite something important.
    wordpress 27 upgrade.png
  • Automatic Plug-in Installation & Browsing
    Installing plug-ins couldn’t be any easier. You can either upload a ZIP file from your own computer, or browse the directory of available plug-ins and have them automatically installed.
    wordpress 27 plugin install.png
  • Inline Comment & Post Editing
    You can edit both comments and posts from the management area without being taken to another screen. Editing posts in this fashion will let you change things like categories and publish date, but not the content itself. You can, however, edit the contents of comments this way.
    wordpress 27 edit post.png wordpress 27 edit comments.png
  • Inline Comment Replies
    You can reply to comments from within the administration screen.
    wordpress 27 reply comments.png
  • Comment Threading & Paging
    We haven’t set this up yet, but in a few clicks you can enable both nested/threaded comments and paging. By enabling paging you can control how many comments appear on any one given page.
    wordpress 27 discussion.png
  • Sticky Posts
    Nothing special here, but a nice feature regardless. You can finally set a post to appear before any other article on the homepage.
    wordpress 27 sticky posts.png

WordPress 2.7 Release Candidate 1 is expected to be released on November 10th, and the final release should be ready by the end of the month. If you don’t feel comfortable running a pre-release version you’ll only have to wait a few more weeks to get all of these exciting features!

Get WordPress 2.7 Beta 1