WordPress 5.1 was released on February 21. While this update was not as expansive as the update to WordPress 5.0 there are several new features and benefits that this update brings and it includes something for everyone. As with any update it is a good idea to make sure that everything about your WordPress site is up to date so you will want to update at some point in the very near future.

The update to WordPress 5.1 focuses on polish by improving the overall performance of the editor while also providing a better, faster and more secure WordPress. Also included are some tools for site administrators and developers. The sections below provide some detail about the new features and benefits of WordPress 5.1

For Everyone

Site Health

The new Site Health feature will show site administrators notices when they are running outdated PHP code. The Site Health feature will also check a plugin when it is being installed to make sure the PHP code is up to date and if it is not it will prevent the plugin from being installed.

Given the number of security issues that arise out of outdated plugins this is a small step towards closing many WordPress vulnerabilities and making the WordPress platform much safer for everyone.


The new block editor was a key component of WordPress 5.0. This update includes performance updates to the editor that should make it a little quicker to start and providing a much smoother experience.

Goodies for Developers

Multisite Metadata

New to WordPress 5.1 is a database table that will store metadata associated with sites. It allows for the storage of arbitrary site data relevant for a multisite or network context.

Cron API

The API has been updated and now includes functions that will assist with returning data. It includes new filters for modifying Cron storage. Another change affects Cron spawning on servers running FastCGI and PHP-FPM versions 7.0.16 and above.

New JavaScript Processes

WordPress 5.0 featured a massive reorganization of JavaScript code and WordPress 5.1 includes a new JavaScript build option.

Other Goodies

Several other developer goodies have been included. One includes updates to the values for the WP_DEBUG_LOG constant. Another is a new test config file constant in the test suite. The new update includes new plugin action hooks, short-circuit filters, improved taxonomy metabox sanitization, limited Like support for meta keys, a new “doing it wrong” notice when registering REST API endpoints and lots of more stuff.

There is a lot of new stuff that went into WordPress 5.1. Are you up to date? If you are not Nicely Done Sites offers maintenance agreements. If you are not comfortable or do not have the time do not let your WordPress site sit idly by. Keeping your WordPress site up to date is the easiest way to keep your website safe online. Make sure it gets updated and if you are not able to, consider purchasing a maintenance agreement from Nicely Done Sites to let us handle it for you.

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