WordPress 5.0 (a.k.a. the Gutenberg version) is approaching. We highly recommend postponing this update in your production sites until January.
What’s coming with WordPress 5.0?
The main (and huge) change in WordPress 5.0 is the editor. Instead of TinyMCE, we’re getting Gutenberg. Until now, Gutenberg used to be a plugin (as I’m writing this post, it still is). However, it is getting merged into WordPress 5.0.
Once you switch to WordPress 5.0, the editor that you’re using now will be retired and completely replaced by the new Gutenberg editor.
Here is how the new editor looks like and how to translate content with it:
Will I benefit from it?
Long term, we’re sure that WordPress and everyone using it will greatly benefit from this new editor.
However, for the next few weeks, and especially when dealing with existing sites, the drawbacks are bigger than the benefits.
Gutenberg is certainly a cool new editor, but it’s a completely new thing to WordPress. This means that a lot can break at the beginning.
Is WPML compatible with WordPress 5.0?
We’ve been testing and updating WPML for Gutenberg compatibility in the last few months. Every time a beta or release candidate (RC) of WordPress came out, we retested everything and made the necessary changes to be compatible.
Unfortunately, Gutenberg is still not stable enough for full integration. Since it’s changing between each release (including the release candidates), there’s a chance that new compatibility issues will arise with the upcoming WordPress 5.0 release and with every subsequent 5.x update.
Of course, we will do our very best to keep up with these changes. When we can fix things ourselves, we do that immediately. Sometimes, we need tiny changes from Gutenberg side. Mainly, we may need new filters and hooks. Right now, we are facing several issues that will not work until addressed in WordPress:
- Translations of Gutenberg Reusable Blocks are not displayed
- Gutenberg Latest Posts block displays posts in all languages
- Gutenberg blocks created using ACF 5.8 are not translatable
WPML enjoys a large development team, so we can keep up with these rapid changes. Not all plugins and themes have this capacity, so it may take a little longer to adjust to Gutenberg.
When will be a good time to update?
December is holiday season for almost everyone. Unless you’re missing an adrenaline shot, there’s no point in doing a major update right now. A fun trip to an adventure park with friends and family will cost less and be less stressful and you’ll get the same rush.
We’ll be updating our production sites to WordPress 5.0 on January, assuming that from today and until January we’ll see only one release of WordPress and it will go out smoothly. This is the first time since our launch that we’re holding off updating our production sites to new WordPress versions.
Hello installing the “classic editor” from wp core team to remove gutenberg will also have an effect on WPML or are we good to go ?
The Classic Editor plugin restores TinyMCE, but it doesn’t completely revert all changes in WP 5.0. Unless you’re in a rush to use Gutenberg editor now, I recommend to hold this update.
Okay thank you, we will not use Gutenberg in the near future anyway (too much change on our templates)… so we’ll wait until january.
But will we be able to install the TinyMCE editor in WP 5 and use it like we are used to in WP 4? Or will it never be the same again? I am a freelancer and I manage around 50 WordPress sites, this will be a nightmare if I have to convert all of them to work with Gutenburg. I just want to keep building and editing sites like I used to, but then in WP 5.
In that case, you will need to use the Classic Editor plugin.
You don’t need to convert them unless you need to edit them again. And then they will convert automatically. By “convert” I mean, they will open in the new editor and your old content will be available in the so-called Classic block. You can further (manually) convert the content into individual Gutenberg blocks if needed.
You may disable Gutenberg with a simple line of code in your functions.php file
Full info here:
Thanks for sharing it Maor!
If I update, but don’t post anything new until January, will that still risk breaking my website?
It depends on what other plugins you use and if they are Gutenberg compatible, also your theme. The front-end should look the same but when you open your posts for editing please note they will open in the new editor.
Don’t update your live web site, do a staging and to all the compatibility test on it unless you like to have trouble
Thanks for heads up. Have shared this in several FB groups.
This text made my day: “Unless you’re missing an adrenaline shot, there’s no point in doing a major update right now. A fun trip to an adventure park with friends and family will cost less and be less stressful and you’ll get the same rush.” 🙂
There are others expressing their concerns too, please see hundreds of comments here: https://make.wordpress.org/core/2018/12/04/new-5-0-target-date/#comment-34575
Thank you so much for this important information. Greatly appreciated. We shall follow your recommendations.
Thank you for your comment.
The update is not going to be automatic?
Can I ignore the the message about the update until everything will work with wordpress 5.0?
No, the update is not going to be automatic. Yes, you can simply ignore the message and update later. This is exactly what we suggest.
Great, hope they fix all the problems
“Once you switch to WordPress 5.0, the editor that you’re using now will be retired and completely replaced by the new Gutenberg editor.”
I can’t believe my eyes! Does this mean that all the WordPress sites that use other editors have to be rebuilt??
the existing sites don’t need to be rebuilt since the content of old pages and posts will available in the Classic block, which uses the TinyMCE editor (the one you use now). But if your theme or plugins have added some additional icons to the old editor, these icons can no longer be available in the Classic block so some functionality might be missing.
Ok updating WordPress to 5.0 may bring troubles. But how about new installations?
Since the hosting provider will provide latest release in managed hosting plan so choosing specific old version to install is not in option. So shall I get it installed now with version 4.8.9 and further wait till January to update or it is ok to install version 5.0?
There are already some compatibility issues with version 4.8.9. Will it be safe to install 5.0 and move on from now or immediately get version 4.8.9 installed before there is no option left to get it installed?
FYI: Woocommerce + OceanWP theme free + Elementor plugin Paid + WPML and Toolset plugins Paid are the only things to be used and in my website requirements
In that case, I’d recommend installing the Classic Editor plugin. You can set up it to open your posts/pages in the new editor or in the old editor. Using the new editor is recommended only if you are sure that all the plugins and your theme work with it, as expected, without any show stoppers. If you are not sure, please install the Classic Editor plugin for your new sites as well.
If I were you, I’d set up a test site with the plugins you listed and the OceanWP theme, populate it with some content (you can use WP export/import tools to migrate some of your content), switch to the WP 5.0 (beta) or the Gutenberg plugin and do some heavy testing, including updating existing content, adding new posts/pages/products and all the standard activities you normally do. If you have any issues it means your set of tools is not Gutenberg ready and the Classic Editor plugin is a must-have for you.
I already had set up a test site as also suggested by you but with the Gutenberg plugin in WP 4.8.9. Since I have WordPress managed hosting plan with no version selection option so I didn’t test it with WP 5.0 (beta).
As of now with the Gutenberg plugin installed there was no issues I could notice. So will that work fine with WP 5.0? Or as you recommended I should install and use the Classic Editor plugin in WP 5.0? Also I would like to know will the content entered via Classic Editor installed in WP 5.0 require some manual migration steps in future when Classic Editor is uninstalled or content migration step won’t be required?
Glad to hear that all works fine but honestly, I would be very careful about going just with WP 5.0 even if everything seems to work fine in your current configuration. Let me explain why. If you start editing content in the new editor and later on you will decide to add a new plugin that is not Gutenberg-ready and you decide to switch to the Classic Editor then, some of the content you have built in the new editor in the meantime might look broken after switching back to the old editor. What I’m saying, if you plan to add other plugins in the future and you are not sure how they behave in the new editor, there is always some risk.
You can think about disabling the Classic Editor plugin in the future as switching to WordPress 5.0 now. No manual migration steps will be needed unless the plugin authors recommend doing so. The more plugins you use, the most complex it becomes (cross-dependencies).
You can use this plugin: https://wordpress.org/plugins/wordpress-beta-tester/ But again, only for your staging environment.
Thanks a lot for suggestions and explaining it !
Good luck. This will be quite an interesting ride…
Thanks for the warning. Gutenberg is released too soon. It’s not ready yet and we should not upgrade until it’s compatible with other themes and plugins. At the moment, there’re more than 1000 issues on Github!
I’m fairly sure you all know this already, but in case not:
Take a look at ClassicPress
ClassicPress is a community fork of WordPress 4.9 branch and ClassicPress is and will be 100% compatible with WordPress 4.9.x
forgot to mention, of course, that ClassicPress is 100% WordPress 4.9.x therefore __without__ Gutenberg 🙂
This is really amazing and very sad at the same time.
Of course WordPress needed something better then the default editor, all the visual page builders out there are a good proof for this.
But forcing Gutenberg to core despite all the “rave” reviews against to do so seems to be the most silly thing WordPress could do. Why in the world they can’t keep it as a plugin, like all the other page builders and let the people freely choose which editor they want to use.
So much about the core WP value of: free like in freedom…
Well it seems that the public opinion doesn’t seems to have a big value for the worlds leading blogging tool.
Moving to a fork might maybe a solution for some sites, but frankly I don’t see this to be as easy as it seems, because the real value in using WordPress is based on a pile of useful plugins and themes made by third parties.
While 10 years ago not much comparable was out there, nowadays there are quite a few alternatives for the ones that want just a simple website with blogging and e-commerce options.
If you compare that with the plain vanilla WP right out of the box without anything added – what do you really get? And could you imagine anybody using this to build their new sites if WordPress would be just a newly released blogging tool today without the thousands of themes and plugins?
But maybe this might be also the spark needed that triggers new ideas from the many brilliant people out there to make a real opensource CMS done right from scratch.
In the meantime we just can sit back and wait to see what the believe system named WordPress throws on our desks.
So, I should put this line on my wp-config.php: define( ‘WP_AUTO_UPDATE_CORE’, false);
thanks for your help,
Nice article, however is a good rule to always wait at least 1 month for updating to a major version, and do a staging full test before going live.
Help the community in a good way and don’t blame the devloppers because you are to anxious.
Keep calm and turn of yours auto updater
It looks like my site has autoupdated during the week – everything still looks OK to the visitor (thank goodness) but I can’t update pages – when I try to update hyperlinks or publish draft pages it simply says ‘update failed’. I’m not very IT savvy – in simple words, what’s the easiest way to resolve this? I need to update many pages ove rth Xmas break (it’s my annual clean up time). Thanks for any help.
You can install the Classic Editor plugin, which will restore the TinyMCE editor to your site:
Seems to have become very popular since WordPress 5.0 was released a few days ago…
#gutenberg Matt is revealing at #wcus what comes in Phase 4: support of Multilingual Sites!
Seems they want WPML, Polylang and others out of business soon. Btw., same future for “ACF”, look at “GCF” from a Gutenberg deveveloper, …
WordPress 5.0 and the Gutenberg phase 1 editor is a full scale trojan horse. Support it now, get killed later.
This is Matt’s plan for 2019:
Right now, WordPress is on “Gutenberg step 2”. Let’s allow this step to complete before getting in panic over step 4.
Right now the nice looking horse present has been rolled into the city.
After updating to WordPress 5.0 ( I have Avada Theme installed) I`m getting error “Your page content could not be displayed as a Fusion Builder layout. Most likely that means, there is some invalid markup or shortcode in it.” when trying to edit page with Fusion Builder.
If you have Avada theme and WPML installed, do not update to WordPress 5.0
Thank you for this heads up.
We don’t know what amount of testing Avada did for WordPress 5 and Gutenberg. They probably did a lot, but WordPress 5 had some last minute changes between release candidates and the final version. In any case, we recommend everyone to wait a bit with this update of WordPress and certainly only do it on development sites and not directly on the production sites.
After disabling WPML plugin everything works fine.
Thanks. We’ll check what’s happening. Can we contact you to get a Duplicator copy of your site?
Yes. Any time.
Hi, I have just emailed you directly using the email we have associated with your account, as Amir said we’ll need a snapshot of your site in order to debug and see what’s happening, we did test Avada with WP5.0 RC and WPML and did not see this issue, but WP5.0 changed quite rapidly between versions and we might have missed something.
Let’s continue via email, thanks!
What about upgrading to WP 5.01 (well, after all it is an urgent security release …) and installing the CLASSIC EDITOR Plugin? This switches off Gutenberg and keeps the old editor. It works well with non-gutenberg-compatible themes. Will this work with WPML?
Hello Alex, in most cases using Classic Editor helps. Please back up your site first.
WPML works fine with WordPress 5.0, 5.0.1 and 5.0.2 with and without the Classic Editor plugin (and of course with earlier WordPress versions). We are releasing a small update of WPML today to improve the performance with WordPress 5.x, but it’s already working correctly for most sites.
What is your expectation with the release of WP 5.1 around Feb 21 2019? Will WPML be fully compatible within a few days after that release?
WPML will always be ready ahead of upcoming WordPress releases. You can already use WPML today with WordPress 5.0.1 (the released version). We suggested to clients to wait with this update because we know that not everything else is ready and many supporters and developers will be away until the beginning of January.
With WP 5.0.3 and latest WPML versions.
Can you confirm this?
Thx. Best regards.
Yes, we found this issue and fixed it. We’ll release an update on Monday. This is what we meant with frequent changes to WordPress 5.x. I hope that these frequent changes are coming to an end soon.
Hi, I wanted to make some translations today, but I met on issue with wpml advanced editor.. Icon in the middle for auto-translation didn’t work. But Iam not sure If it could be caused by last update wp5.3 or by something else. I didn’t work with wpml for a longer time, therefore I’m not sure if it worked before update or not. Did someone meet the same problem?
I recommend that you create a support ticket and show us what you’re seeing. Our own website is running WordPress 5.0.3 right now and we’re not seeing such issues.