Long time WordPress fans mourned the loss of the WP-Plugin Manager, a WordPress Plugin that not just helped you manage your WordPress Plugins, but checked for updates and new Plugins to add to your WordPress blog.
Well, hope springs eternal and Matt Read has come out with The WordPress Installer – The Plugin.
Still in beta testing but available for download and use only for WordPress 2.0 and higher versions, it features:
- Installation directly from WordPress Plugin zip files.
- Manages files for installation.
- Easy removal of Plugins installed with the Installer Plugin.
- Check for Plugin updates.
- Automatically download and install updates with a single click.
To use the program with WordPress 2.0 blogs, Matt Read explains it is very simple to use:
Installer will add sub menus in “Presentation” and “Plugins”. One is for installing plugins and the other form themes. I’ll let you figure out which is which.
When go to the Installer page, you will see two feilds. One labelled Local File and the other Remote File. If you want to install a local file, browse to it in the Local File feild. To install a remote file, just copy and paste the URL of said file in to the Remote File feild. Then click install.
To uninstall a file just click Uninstall the Installation History section.
In order for the automatic check for updates features to work, WordPress Plugins must have certain header information in order to help Installer check for updates. The process of providing updates of Plugins uses an XMLRPC server. Owen Winkler, host of Red Alt and the popular Asymptomatic, adds:
If you’re a plugin developer, you may want to check out the Installer and see about adding those headers to your own plugins. And instead of fretting about how to host an XMLRPC server to transmit your updates, check out the RedAlt Plugin Version Service, which can handle all that for you.
If this works well, expect to see more WordPress Plugins be updated to work with the Installer. If you are a WordPress Plugin author, then I’m sure that Owen and Matt would appreciate your feedback and testing help.