66 Responses

  1. Luis
    Luis Published |

    I haven’t explore all the options in the new widget panel, but now that you mention them, I’m up for a challenge. I think that not everyone like changes, after awhile people will stop the moaning. Me, I like it.

  2. Remkus
    Remkus Published |

    I totally agree with you Justin on this one. I love what ‘they’ have done with the widget control. I think it is such a logic thing to use widgets to do exactly what you want them to do and where you want them to do it. I hope all WP theme designers will pick up upon this option as I expected you would be one of the first πŸ™‚

    Looking forward to see where this is going. I think this little widget thing has the possibility to start a little revolution.

  3. Kim
    Kim Published |

    Please please please Justin, write a tutorial how to do this…. I want conditional widgets on a few of my pages.

  4. Ian Stewart
    Ian Stewart Published |

    Totally. Now if only they weren’t called sidebars. That name is going to start making less and less sense in the year ahead. I’d rather have widgetarea(‘something’).

  5. cellobella
    cellobella Published |

    I totally agree with you especially about the “why change something that ain’t broke” folk. Everything evolves – without change we’d still be using beveled edges on everything and flashing graphics. Ewww.

    The widget toolbar change was a bit of a shock at first and took me a minute to work my way around. I would say it was my least favourite bit of 2.5, an upgrade I’m really enjoying. However, your explanation of how it could be used now makes sense of the changes.

    Thank you. And like Kim, looking forward to your tutorial. πŸ˜‰

  6. BoltClock
    BoltClock Published |

    Personally, I find the new widgets screen much more usable. Although I only find one little issue, where changing the sidebar to work with is not Ajaxified, a bit annoying, I must say that the new screen is pretty good.

    I agree with everything you’ve said in your post, Justin, especially the part about changing the sidebar. It helps a whole lot if a theme provides a whole lot of different sidebars, like Options.

    If you want to check out how I done this for my Options theme, you can read the full discussion. Or, you can beg (in the comments) for me to write a full-blown tutorial on this.

    Please write a tutorial! πŸ˜›

  7. Justin Tadlock’s view on new 2.5 widgets panel » BoltPress
  8. J Mehmett
    J Mehmett Published |

    I’m another huge fan for WP2.5 widgets panel, too. I agree with you, when we were using WordPress2.3 it was hard to scroll to the top of the page dragging and dropping, specially when you’re working with 10 sidebars having 10 widgets each.

    However, I don’t agree with the removal of widget editting popup.

    ELIZABETH Published |

    Hi justin beforehand agradesco you everything you do for us, we know pΓ²co templates and code html.en portal blog and Web tube inmenza the opportunity to meet and download the brilliant and beautiful template tailored for visionary blogger, which tu.esta created the template vicsionary has been a challenge for me until this day dormir.y leaves me is that I was unable to activate the “TAB” because I do not understand how esplicacion is hace.como also ask you this Visionary is the template of 3 columns?, is that the demo I saw a blog site and I saw that if it was 3 column but leaves 2 ami me, as I use the dime 3 column .. there some tutorial ayudame by fa. pleaaaassssseeeee ….

    en espaΓ±ol
    Hola justin de antemano te agradesco todo lo que haces por nosotros, los que conocemos pΓ²co de plantillas y codigos html.en el portal de blog y web tube la inmenza oportunidad de conocer y descargar la genial y bella plantilla visionary adaptada para blogger, la cual creaste tu.esta plantilla la vicsionary ha sido un reto para mi que hasta el dia de hoy no me deja dormir.y es que no he podido activar los “TAB” porque no entiendo la esplicacion de como se hace.como tambien te pregunto esta plantilla la Visionary es de 3 columnas?, es que en el demo que vi en blog y web pude observar que si era de 3 columnas pero ami me sale de 2,dime como utilizo la 3 columna..existe algun tutorial ayudame por fa….pleaaaassssseeeee.

    ELIZABETH Published |

    I had forgotten something, what would you tube videos appear with the big screen and on the side of the elementos.gracias for your patience

  11. Dan Butcher
    Dan Butcher Published |

    It’s a great improvement to the functionality of Wordpress. Drupal, that other open source CMS, allows for blocks and regions to be placed anywhere on the page, making it highly customizable. I’d like to see Wordpress change “Sidebar” to something like “Region” to foster the idea that widgets could be used on any part of the page.

  12. SmockLady
    SmockLady Published |

    Yes, I like the new widget layout/options/functionality. It took me a minute or two after upgrading to wrap my head around the new format, but I began to see how wonderful it can be. I really like it.

    BTW, I use the Options theme and I have a few pages that utilize the No Sidebar format and I would love to implement a bottom section (sidebar) to put in three specific widgets across the bottom of those pages. So where’s that tutorial teaching me how to do just that?

  13. Anonymous
    Anonymous at |
  14. Mike
    Mike Published |

    I couldn’t agree more, I love where 2.5 is going. There will always be some growing pains when things old become brand new again.

    Love your Option themes and Structure themes.


  15. Bryan Harley
    Bryan Harley Published |

    I was one of the many disappointed with the new widget control panel. I like that we have to ability to have LOTS and LOTS of sidebars, and things don’t get disorganized. BUT, drag and drop functionality was a big plus for me. Now it is much more tedious to move widgets around from one sidebar to another. I do this frequently.

    Additionally, it’s IMPOSSIBLE to move a Text or RSS widget from one sidebar to another. You just can’t do it anymore. The widget is stripped of its content, you have a copy/paste everything over. This is very irritating.

    I wish we could keep drag and drop and just find a happy medium between 2.3 and 2.5.

  16. Leon
    Leon Published |

    I totally agree with you – widgets in 2.5 are much improved, more powerful and give the admin greater control… It just may take a little time for people to change the way they think… and the design/layout is great.

  17. groovy
    groovy Published |

    I’ve been reading the long and mainly critical feedback (wordpress.org) on the new WP 2.5 and There is one central issues that I see behind this. If you are a seasoned blogger and you are used to the old WP admin pages, the new 2.5 version is bound to cause a sharp intake of breath. Wordpress has primarily been a blogging platform, but over a the recent past developers and users have seen opportunities to extend wordpress into a CMS role and take on the huge market of users who would normally go to Drupal, Joomla etc. This is an exciting extension of WP, but it means the core functions and interfaces have to move to accommodate better CMS control. The ability to move content around in blocks of code and make this discreet, as in widget positioning is part of the strengths of CMS platforms. Wordpress 2.5 has firmly established that control and with theme structures as we see on JustinTadlock.com and other developers, it is clear that wordpress is quite capable of achieving and exceeding the competition in the CMS role.

    Now for the seasoned blogger, who is happy with basic ‘bloggroll’ mechanic, there are new features that appear both intrusive and cumbersome to their way of thinking and normal operation. It’s inevitable that more control becomes more complex. However, I think it’s important that Wordpress developers remember that this is first and foremost a blogging platform, supported by millions of bloggers, many of which love it for its ease of use and simplicity. The move towards CMS features is both a good and a risky thing, as it stands to alienate some of the traditional community of users.

    If I were making a creative comment here, I would advise that developers come clean and recognise the duality of their user base and make provision for not only maintaining the blogging community, but also encouraging the CMS development as well.

    Ok, does that mean another branch of WP? we already have WP and WPMU. So should there be WPCMS as well as the traditional blogging version seen up to 2.3.3? Maybe this is better rationalised by making the admin section skinable and providing options for blogging features and a CMS version. I don’t know, but underneath the inevitable carping and complaints of some users, there is an underlying reluctance to change that comes from the seasoned blogging community. Can we afford to ignore those users, or simply tell them to ‘get over it’?

    Back to the widget controls; This can become a big beast to control. Having used xoops and drupal for a number of websites, I am very familiar with the pros and cons of content placements. Add into the mix ‘permissions’ or roles for each block of content (future concept) and it’s a full fledged interface challenge.

    Final Zen comment … ‘Sometimes less is more’

  18. Ozh
    Ozh Published |

    I wanted to contact you by mail but your Contact page returns a 404. Would you be kind enough to shoot me an email? (ozh at planetozh dot com)

  19. Adrienne Doss
    Adrienne Doss Published |

    Hi there! Just wanted to let you know that the Structure and Visionary demos are returning a database error. Tried to find your e-mail address, but … well, what Ozh said. πŸ™‚

  20. J Mehmett
    J Mehmett Published |

    As I said before, I’m really in love with the new style of the widgets panel, but I have a problem with them, may be it’s popular among peeps.

    Once I drag the widget into the sidebar, I cannot edit that certain widget unless I save it first. The problem is that it reverts back to the widgets panel when I click “Edit”, so I must hit “Save” then edit it, then re-hit “Save”, which kills TIME.

  21. Summer
    Summer Published |

    The text box glitch seems to be only IE related, doesn’t seem to happen Firefox or Safari, but I likewise had the same issue when testing in Exploerer.

  22. Nick
    Nick Published |

    Is there any way you’d share your secrets about how to build a video center like you did in your themes. I don’t even want the whole center, I just want to be able to have a playlist that plays the videos in teh same space/spot… please help?

  23. Leonard Klaatu
    Leonard Klaatu Published |

    I personally like 2.5. I’m not a designer/coder – but I know enough to be made fun of. So far I’ve not experienced any discomfort with the upgrade.

  24. brian meagher
    brian meagher Published |

    Justin, you make some great points about the new widget admin page. I only had the default 8 or 10 widgets, and I hated having to drag AND scroll up the page to place them in the sidebars.

    Thanks for opening our eyes to the better way of managing so many widgets.
    @J Mehmett – Save Edit Re-save is a pain. With enough comments, 2.6 may fix this?

  25. Monika
    Monika Published |

    to manage 50 widget ready sidebars is heavy πŸ˜‰ if you have drag&drop or the new way

    but try to rearrange one widget to another sidebar and you get grey hairs with the new way…text widgets loose their content..

    it would be great if we can safe the content andoption for a widget and arrange it to this or another sidebar is a second or first way.

    most of the users need *to see * what they have done -this feature is gone,


  26. Anonymous
    Anonymous Published |

    I like this option, I create right now a “404 sidebar” for avoid show adsense there.

  27. Ultime dal fronte WordPress 15-2008
    Ultime dal fronte WordPress 15-2008 at |
  28. K
    K Published |

    I actually dislike the Widget functionality. As what Monika stated, text widget “contents” disappear if you are trying to move it on and off. I have lost at least 8 text-widgets and its content. And there’s no way to create another text-widget, so now I have to learn how to “hardcode” it on the stylesheet.

    I like the older version’s drag and click widget panel, it’s more easier that way. However I have downloaded the Dashboard widget plugin but it seems as if having a problem with Safari browser.

    I want the old feature back.

  29. davcheong
    davcheong Published |

    Its only happen when using the IE, while using the firefox, i didn’t see any problem. Maybe some coding required to mod this new WP version

  30. Mario
    Mario Published |

    I support the widget style in Wordpress 2.5, it’s less space consuming.

  31. widgetguy
    widgetguy Published |

    Personally I like the new panel, although I am going to miss wrestling with the drag and drop…

    Also just to that I have made a simple Javascript app for generating the template php code for wordpress widgets… http://programming.has.no.com/widgettemplate/

    Might save you some time if you make many widges

  32. Une semaine avec Wordpress #10
    Une semaine avec Wordpress #10 at |
  33. luq
    luq Published |

    i guess this is the one negative feature about 2.5, everything else has got better, hopefully in the next version the widget preferences will be switched back to 2.3 style

  34. Jim L
    Jim L Published |

    I can understand your point that if you have something like 50 sidebars the new version of the widgets panel might be more useful. My guess is the majority of WP bloggers have 1-3 sidebars though, so that usefulness is lost with the majority. If I had to choose between the old version or the new version, it would be a no-brainer, the old version. I agree we don’t have to necessarily revert to the 2.3 version if something is done to make the 2.5 version more usable. If nothing changes though, 2.3 was better in my opinion.


  35. Jim L
    Jim L Published |

    Good points. It’ll be interesting to see how it plays out in the next few months.


  36. Rai
    Rai Published |

    I appreciate it that WP2.5 has made major improvement over the previous version. But still, I can’t get over the fact that I can’t just simply drag one widget from left to right.

    I have a post about this here.

  37. Huug
    Huug Published |

    It’s absolutly plain crap. Why? Read this.

  38. Reading Circle Books » » WordPress 2.5 Widgets — Taking the Load Off Your Mind
  39. In Defense of WordPress 2.5’s New Widget Manager | WordPress Expert
  40. stonedoubt
    stonedoubt Published |

    I prefer the new widget panel. The only thing I don’t like is that if you add 2 text sidebar items they interfere with each other.

  41. angela
    angela Published |

    I like it, the only thing I can’t get use to is having the publish button right beside the entry box, I’m so used to scrolling down to see it under it. That and, the blogroll is now shown as ‘links’ and most of all, under manage, when I’m clicking an entry it takes me to edit it — you have to click the ‘published’ link to view it. I still can’t get rid of that habit.

  42. WordCast | WordCast 11: Bodily function control
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  45. iPaul Pro
    iPaul Pro Published |

    Hey Justin,

    I am familiar with conditional tags and the 2.5 widget system, was just wondering: could post a sample code for a conditional widget? I’m using the Wordpress Sandbox to build my theme, and currently have 2 sidebars. Perhaps you could give me an example for a single.php conditional widget?

    It would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  46. iPaul Pro
    iPaul Pro Published |

    Figured it out: heres an easy way, just wasn’t thinking about it correctly. Thanks anyway.

  47. nullrend
    nullrend Published |

    I am one of those who intensely dislike the new widget administration page. Reading through the comments here it seems the main complaints are:

    *Lack of drag&drop: Yes, if you had lots of sidebars (the name will stick, get over it) it got a bit hard to get widgets in the right places. But for 90% of people it was a lifesaver. Easy and fast widget management.

    *Text and RSS widgets cannot be moved across sidebars without copying them out of the browser and then pasting them back in. Check Huug’s comment and the link he put up.

    All in all this ‘new’ interface is not a step back, but rather a jump back. Even now, with WP2.6 out and WP2.7 development geared up this stands as an unresolved usability issue. While asking ‘how many times do you move widgets around’ is a valid question, keep in mind when developing a theme you move stuff around a lot, specially widgets. You will run into issues when switching back and forth between a 1-sidebar theme and a 2-or-more sidebars theme.

    Now for solutions… myself I think the best way to solve this would be to heavily AJAXify the whole damn thing, enabling fast and easy drag&drop. Perhaps instead of having to use a drop down selector on the right side of the page to switch between sidebars they can just be displayed at the same time in their current form.

    This is the kind of things that make people switch to other platforms, be another blogging platform like Movable Type of a full-fledge CMS like Drupal.

  48. WordCast 11: Bodily function control | WordCast
  49. Albert K.
    Albert K. Published |

    it’s much better in wp 2.7, isnt it?

  50. Jessica
    Jessica Published |

    You can get this drag & drop feature working also using WP 2.8.1 Beta 1 or 2 and the latest development version of WP Ecommerce.

  51. mauro
    mauro Published |

    may be sidebars for specific categories?, sidebar_cat1, sidebar_cat2. I’m actually using that configuration in many sites!

  52. steroizi
    steroizi Published |

    yes albert is much better in wp 2.7 πŸ˜€ try it

  53. In Defense of WordPress 2.5′s New Widget Manager

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