The first days of June have passed and we're happy to announce some changes for Meta Box and extensions. If you haven't updated the plugins, it's time to do now. And read below for details.

Facebook Group

The community for Meta Box is growing and we need a better place (rather than just the support forum) to discuss about things related to Meta Box, WordPress and anything else. The Meta Box Users group has been created for that purpose. If you're on Facebook, please join us.

Meta Box Users Group on Facebook
Meta Box Users Group on Facebook

Share Admin Menu

This week we have an important update for Meta Box and all the extensions. The version 4.14.10 introduces a share menu in the WordPress admin area, that all extensions can hook into to add its own menu. Specifically, you'll see only 1 top-level menu called "Meta Box". If you install MB Custom Post Type, you'll see 2 submenus for "Post Types" and "Taxonomies". If you install Meta Box Builder, you'll see a submenu "Custom Fields". That also works for Meta Box AIO and Meta Box Updater.

This is what it looks like (notice the admin menu). Click to view full image.

Shared Meta Box admin menu
Shared Meta Box admin menu

Why do we do that?

Well, the reason is simple:

  • We want to keep everything in one place, so users don't have to "find" them when they need. Previously, you'll have to find menu "Post Types" for creating custom post types (plugin MB Custom Post Type), or "Settings → Meta Box Update" if you want to enter your license key (plugin Meta Box Updater). Each of them has a different location and that's confusing.
  • We don't want to pollute the WordPress admin menu. Keeping everything in one place takes only 1 menu item and that's clean. Adding so many items to the admin menu makes it like a mess and is discouraged.

What extensions are affected?

The update is done for the core Meta Box plugin (version 4.14.10+) and the following plugins:

And the following plugins will be updated soon to support that:

What happens if no extension is activated?

In previous versions, Meta Box doesn't add any admin menu or settings page in the WordPress admin area. So a reasonable question is when no extension is activated, is there still a shared admin menu?

The answer is no. There will be no admin menu. And Meta Box will just work like in previous versions.

Full Composer Support

After introducing Composer support for the premium extensions, there is a growing number of requests for bundling Meta Box extensions (selectively), including free extensions in a package. And in this blog post, we have shown you how to do that with free extensions. There's also a video tutorial in case you prefer watching over reading.

So, at this moment Meta Box fully supports Composer: for core plugin, for premium extensions, and for free extensions. You can use Composer to create a library for yourself or for your clients to hide all the dependencies or hide the long list of plugins in the WordPress admin area.

We also created a sample composer.json on the Library, so take a look.

MB Custom Post Type Updates

We also updated the MB Custom Post Type extension to make it easier for users. There are 2 important updates:

  • Supports moving the custom post type menu to a sub-menu of an existing top-level menu.
  • Menu position can be selected from a dropdown, instead of entering the position number, which is user-unfriendly.

Of course, it now uses the shared admin menu from Meta Box. Thus, there's no need for the "About" page anymore. Instead, it's integrated into common "About" page of Meta Box.

We also removed the auto-redirect after plugin activation.

Meta Box - Beaver Themer Integrator Updates

We also updated the Meta Box - Beaver Themer Integrator this week. We made an improvement that only shows extra settings only when a proper field type is selected. For example: when you select a field with type "image_advanced", then an extra setting "image size" will appear. If a field doesn't have any extra settings, then nothing appears at all.

We also added support for date format as requested. You're able to show the date string in any format you want.

Meta Box Builder Updates

The Meta Box Builder extension now supports editing meta box's ID. That makes you easier when you want to embed it in the shortcode for frontend submission or user profile.

We also fixed output for the page template rule for the show/hide extension.

Other Updates

There is a minor update for MB Revision, which no longer shows a fatal error if Meta Box is not updated. The MB Frontend Submission also got an update for the rwmb_frontend_after_process hook which now accepts a parameter post_id.

There is also an update on the look & feel of the support forum and the comments section of blog posts. We hope you like it!

So, that's it for this weekly updates. In the next week, we'll be working on some issues reported in the forum and release the updates for Meta Box Builder, Meta Box Updater and Meta Box AIO.

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