WordPress 4.0 Benny is here! Let’s review:

by | Sep 10, 2014 | WordPress Tutorials

WordPress 4.0 was released this week and your Dashboard is asking you to update! Want to scoop before you dive in? Here it is!

Please Update to WordPress 4.0 Benny

WordPress 4.0 Features

Although the version number might suggest BIG changes, the upgrades in this numbered version of WordPress are not as significant as the last release, Smith (3.9). The contributing WordPress developers continue to enhance the user experience and have incorporated more modern user interface elements to WordPress 4.0 Benny:

Endless Grid Media Management

Ooh, funtimes! The media manager now displays all your images, music, and other media in an endless grid format! Also, if ya click on an image, you can scroll through all of your media from that window. Kinda cool. Not a huge difference, but definitely an improved user interface.

WordPress 4.0 Media Library

Enhanced Page and Post Embed Management

Now you can SEE what a video looks like when you embed it in a post or page! Before WordPress 4.0 embeds looked like this:

Embedded media in WordPress pre 4.0

Now just copy and paste your video URL into the visual editor and you’ll get a great preview of exactly what it’ll look like:

Just copy and paste your video URL into the visual editor and you'll get a great preview of what it'll look like!

Enhanced Page and Post Editor

The visual editor has been improved to get what some people feel is more appropriate real estate, given that WordPress is essentially a writing platform at it’s most basic function. When writing in the visual editor, it will expand to accommodate your copy/media and the editing tools (kitchen sink) will stay at the top of your screen (sticky) as you scroll down. It’s kinda difficult to explain with words so I did a little screen recording for you:

This is probably my least favourite update in the new release, but that’s probably because I spend more time doing things OTHER than writing pages and posts in WordPress. So it takes me a couple more swipes of the fingers to get down to my SEO plugins and stuff. Not a big deal 😉

Plugin Management Upgrades, oh my!

I’ve saved the best for last. My most favourite upgrade in WordPress 4.0 is to the plugin screen. In my opinion this has been the most neglected section and was in need of a revamp. It’s all pretty with images, improved searching, and a more intuitive experience overall.

WordPress 4.0 Plugin interface

So how do you update to the fabulous Benny?

From your WordPress dashboard, you’ll see a notification to update. Click “Please Update Now”:

Please Update to WordPress 4.0 Benny

If you haven’t backed your site up recently, now’s a good time to. Next, click “Update Now”. Easy Peasy.

How to update to WordPress 40

More helpful resources:


There you have it. If you’ve got any questions about the new version or WordPress in general, let me know in the comments!