WordPress 3.9 Hosting Update

In the latest release, WordPress 3.9 (codenamed “Smith” in honour of jazz organist Jimmy Smith) closes the gap between editing and publishing with some nice improvements. In this article, I’ll show you what’s new in WordPress 3.9 and how you can start using these new features!

What’s new in WordPress 3.9?

  • Improved Visual Editing:
    The updated visual editor has improved speed, accessibility, and mobile support. You can paste into the visual editor from your word processor without wasting time to clean up messy styling
  • Improved Image Editing:
    With quicker access to crop and rotation tools, it is now much easier to edit your images while editing posts. You can also scale images directly in the editor
  • Galleries:
    Galleries are now shown as a grid of images inside the editor so you see what will be published
  • Theme Customizer:
    Live widget and header previews have been added in the theme customiser
  • Manage Audio Playlists:
    Easily insert and manage audio playlists – perfect for band websites
  • Improved Visual Editing
    The visual editor is now better than ever, with improved speed, accessibility, and support for mobile devices. Pasting in content from your word processor will no longer suffer from styling issues, and posts are now even easier to edit and publish. It’s great to see that TinyMCE (the WordPress editor) has been updated to version 4.0 as part of the WordPress 3.9 update
  • Audio & Video Playlists
    Users are now able to create audio and video playlists with WordPress 3.9. They work as a shortcode, just like the image galleries do currently. Uploading audio and video files are handled through the usual media uploader, with images and everything else.From there, you have the option to add them to a playlist. A neat little feature is that WordPress 3.9 will try to automatically fetch album cover artwork using the ID3 tags in your media file. This feature is perfect for band websites that run WordPress.

Minor Updates for WordPress 3.9

WordPress 3.9.1


Release Date: May 8, 2014

This maintenance release fixes 34 bugs in 3.9, including numerous fixes for multisite networks, customizing widgets while previewing themes, and the updated visual editor. This release included improvements to the new audio/video playlists feature and made some adjustments to improve performance.

WordPress 3.9.2 - Security Release


Release Date: August 6, 2014

This release fixes a possible denial of service issue in PHP’s XML processing, reported by Nir Goldshlager of the Salesforce.com Product Security Team. It was fixed by Michael Adams and Andrew Nacin of the WordPress security team and David Rothstein of the Drupal security team. This is the first time our two projects have coordinated joint security releases.

WordPress 3.9.2 also contains other security changes:

  • Fixes a possible but unlikely code execution when processing widgets (WordPress is not affected by default), discovered by Alex Concha of the WordPress security team.
  • Prevents information disclosure via XML entity attacks in the external GetID3 library, reported by Ivan Novikov of ONSec.
  • Adds protections against brute attacks against CSRF tokens, reported by David Tomaschik of the Google Security Team.
  • Contains some additional security hardening, like preventing cross-site scripting that could be triggered only by administrators.

Ben Lacey is the Managing Director of Lacey Tech Solutions. He is passionate about everything to do with websites from design and development through to search optimisation and hosting. He started the company blog as a platform to help educate current and prospective customers about the ever changing website development industry.

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