Updataed August 9th, 2018: Added additional links to the ACF section, with the announcement of creating blocks from within ACF admin – birgit
Updated August 4th, 2018: I added a paragraph about the WordPress 4.9.8 release and added more resources. — Birgit
A few month ago, Riad Benguella, core developer on the Gutenberg team, talk about the Gutenberg project at WordCamp Paris: “
Gutenberg, the future of content creation to WordPress
Riad’s slide 28 inspired a short video with the bullet points into English and called them the “Status Check: 8 Truth about Gutenberg” in my video. Here is the longer version with comments and resources for you, who want to dive deeper into the issues and get past the noise on the Internet.
This week, with its release 4.8.9, a whole lot of more WordPress users became aware of the new editor codenamed Gutenberg and might have followed the call to “Try Gutenberg” on their sites. The number of active installs of the feature plugin jumped from 20,000 to 50,000 within the first 24 hours of the update. That also raised the noise level in support forums, and reviews. WordPress volunteers worked hart tackling the various issues and answering some of the concerns raised in those posts.
Gutenberg is still in active development, and the next step is the merge proposal for which all compatibility issues encountered need to be researched and fixed, and if not solvable provide fallback solutions.
This is a post for those who need some reassurances on what will work, what should work and what still needs to be worked on, when Gutenberg, the future for content creation, finally lands in WordPress 5.0 as the default editor. Let’s get started.
Table of Contents
- Status Check #1: All Themes are compatible by default
- Status Check #2: You can deactivate Gutenberg with a Plugin
- Status Check #3 Meta-Boxes work
- Status Check #4: ACF is compatible with Gutenberg
- Status Check #5: Gutenberg will be the default editor for Custom Post Types
- Status Check #6: Gutenberg supports Shortcodes
- Status Check #7: Accessibility is really important for Gutenberg
- Status Check #8: Gutenberg won’t replace TinyMCE but us it
Status Check #1: All Themes are compatible by default
As Gutenberg stors the content like the current editor in “post_content” and all Themes basically just place that content on to the site, all themes are compatible by default. They might need adjustments to for single blocks, each block has default layout already. In theory that is.
Here is a screen recording of a Theme Test for Twenty-Sixteen at WP4Good
That being said, not all themes, support the new styles of align-wide or align-full styles for images or cover images. We found a plugin in the repository, which might helps you to augment your current theme.
A few more resources for theme developers:
- Getting your theme ready for Gutenberg by Bill Erickson
- Make your WordPress Theme fully compatible with Gutenberg
- Theming with Gutenberg Course with Zac Gordon and Joe Casabona
Status Check #2: You can deactivate Gutenberg with a Plugin
Actually, there are quite a few plugins now available that allow you to various degrees, control how your site interacts with Gutenberg:
“Restores legacy editor or enables Gutenberg selectively by post types or post ID.” Released by the team of WordPress VIP, it allows you to enable / disable Gutenberg on a more granular basis: per post types or even per post id. It works with the Gutenberg Feature Plugin as well as after Gutenberg will be merged with Gutenberg Core in WordPress 5.0
This plugins also allows you to disable Gutenberg for particular custom post types or individual pages and posts. It’ll also work with WordPress 5.0 and your settings work through the transition.
Installed before the release of WordPress 5.0 it diables Gutenberg entirely and you can use your site as before.
“This free “Classic Editor Addon” plugin changes the default behaviour of the “Classic Editor” plugin; and then some.”
“The “Classic Editor” plugin doesn’t remove Gutenberg by default. With this free addon we set the option that controls this from no-replace to replace, so no additional action is needed anymore. This is what the Classic Editor should have done out of the box.
In addition to this most basic requirement, the “Classic Editor Addon” removes the Settings link from the main Plugins page and removes the plugin’s Settings from the Settings > Writing screen. Also the drop down buttons Gutenberg adds to the post type screens is replaced with the regular “Add New” button.
Last but not least the Classic Editor Addon suppresses the Nag screen that is slated to arrive in the Dashboard with WP version 4.9.8.The plugin’s authors: Pieter Bos and Greg Schoppe.
In short: It’s a plugin that promises a few additional rail guards so the new editor and removes it’s traces from your site.
A week ago we collected the 12 Methods to avoid Gutenberg in post. No surprise it was the most read post last week.
Status Check #3 Meta-Boxes work
That’s the video of an edit screen after installing Gutenberg with all plugins still activated. Scrolling through the meta-boxes for the following plugins and themes:
- Edit Flow
- Seriously simple podcasts
- Yoast SEO
- Web Mentions
- Script section for Genesis
- Layout selection of Genesis
They all work and data is retained in the database for editing and display.
The handbook lists the Common Compatibility issues with meta boxes:
- Plugins relying on selectors that target the post title, post content fields, and other meta boxes (of the old editor).
- Plugins relying on TinyMCE’s API because there’s no longer a single TinyMCE instance to talk to in Gutenberg.
- Plugins making updates to their DOM on “submit” or on “save”.
Status Check #4: ACF is compatible with Gutenberg
ACF refers to a very popular plugin called Advanced Custom Fields.
On August 8, ACF published an update which let a lot of site owners and consultant relax a bit on the Gutenberg topic.
WP Tavern also wrote about it:
Its lead developer, Elliot London, published a Q & A regarding the plugin’s Gutenberg compatibility on their blog at the end for February.
Visually, the new editor is very different, but the relationship between ACF and “Post Content” has remained the same.Elliot London, lead developer of Advanced Custom Fields
Field groups will continue to sit below (and around) the “Post Content” area in a similar fashion. They’ll require only a few minor CSS tweaks to integrate with Gutenberg’s minimal style.
Status Check #5: Gutenberg will be the default editor for Custom Post Types
Issue 2457 # — explains the whole thing (August 2017)- The discussion was quite long and a few people provides some great in sites. It seems to be clear that there will be a ‘block-editor’ post type supports attribute for custom post types with custom controllers.
Earlier this week, I tested a handful of plugins that register Custom Post Types like Team, or Events, and I was pleasantly surprised how well they work with the Gutenberg editor out of the box. Adding new posts or editing old ones in the Gutenberg editor was actually an improved experience. It might make me an early adopter to go all in on Gutenberg with some of our clients sites.
Status Check #6: Gutenberg supports shortcodes
And they work really well, using the “Shortcode” Block.
Here is an example from the Sponsors plugin
Status Check #7: Accessibility is really important for Gutenberg
And the accessibility team is hard at work with the Gutenberg team to get this right. There have a vast array of open GitHub issues list.
Here is a run down of the problems and what a critical issues to be fixed before the merge proposal by team lead Rian Rietveld:
There is still a lot of work to be done though.
Status Check #8: Gutenberg won’t replace TinyMCE but us it
Firstly, the TinyMCE user experience (toolbar, dialogs, writing flow) can also be found hiding in the Classic Text block. Customizations that previously worked with TinyMCE will continue to work with the Classic Text block. (…)
Secondly, Gutenberg uses the TinyMCE core rich text editing engine in the Editable component. The Editable component is similar to a super-powered textarea element, enabling rich content editing including bold, italics, hyperlinks, etc.Gutenberg myth-busting: 10 answers on the future of content creation in WordPress