Toolset 2.0 Unifies Menus, Improves Usability and Adds New Features
The most frequent problem we hear about Toolset is that “it’s powerful, but hard to get started”. This combined release of Toolset plugins makes it easier to get started with Toolset and use Toolset components “the right way”.
Toolset Plugins Versions
- Types 2.0
- Views 2.0
- Layouts 1.6
- CRED 1.6
- CRED Commerce 1.1
- Access 2.0
- Toolset Maps 1.1
- Module Manager 1.6.5
- Toolset Starter theme 1.3.7
WordPress 4.5 Compatibility
You probably know that WordPress 4.5 is about to go out next week. WordPress 4.5 removed some deprecated functions and made big changes to the taxonomy editing API. This version of Toolset handles all the issues related to WordPress 4.5 and is fully compatible with WordPress 4.5. In fact, we’re even using some of the new features in WordPress 4.5 for sorting Views by term metas (more about this in the Views 2.0 release notes).
One “Toolset” Menu
Until this version, each one of Toolset plugins had its own top-level menu. This was great, but when your left menu extends far beyond the fold, you probably want it to be shorter.
We moved all items under a single “Toolset” menu. In so doing, we also optimized the items in the menu to avoid repetitions and redundancies.
As you can imagine, the content of this menu will adjust according to the Toolset plugins that you have installed.
Unified Settings and Import/Export Screens
Together with unifying the menu, we also unified the “settings” and “import/export” admin screens. Instead of having a separate screen for each of our plugins, there is only one Settings screen for Toolset and one Export/import.
Each of these admin screens has tabs for different functions. The tabs in the settings screen are organized by subject. The tabs in the export/import screen are organized by plugin.
The missing “save” buttons in the new settings screen are not a glitch. We’ve removed all these buttons and replaced them with automatic update on change.
Front-end Display Tables
What do I need to do to display my content on the front-end?
If you’ve asked yourself this question, you’re not alone. Toolset offers you different workflows, depending on how your site is built and what Toolset components you’re using.
This release aims to make it much easier for you to create the required Toolset elements, without having to read a bunch of documents first.
When you edit a custom type, you will see a new Front-end Display section. This section tells you how to create templates for single-items, archives, Views and front-end CRED forms.
If you use only Views, it will include buttons for creating the necessary Content Templates and WordPress Archives. If you are using Layouts, it will include buttons that will create the correct Layouts and assign them to the right content.
Once you’ve created the items, the same table will let you edit them. This way, to edit the template that displays a custom type, you don’t need to go to the list and look for it. This table links to the correct element, no matter how you’ve created it.
Major new features in Toolset components
This is a shortlist of the new features and improvements. For the full lists, look at the version changelogs (links at the top of this post).
- New global and local setting to disable history management on AJAX custom searches – similarly to how Views works with pagination in AJAX requests, now you can also control what happens to the URL when doing custom search.
- Sorting a View by termmeta – if you are using WordPress 4.5 (coming out next week), you will be able to sort Views output by term meta values. This is getting added to WordPress and is now supported by Views plugin.
- Added a threshold for loading the next page for infinite scrolling – you can set how many pixels from the bottom of the page trigger the next page load.
- No more (useless) help page after activating Views – we used to redirect you to an outdated admin screen for Views help. No more of this.
- Compatibility with the Divi page builder dialogs – there were some incompatibilities between Divi and Views’ CSS and JS. All sorted now.
- Added support for reCAPTCHA V2 – the new SPAM protection system (from Google) makes it easier for humans to respond and harder for bots. Now, you can select it in CRED as the anti-SPAM measure for forms.
- Removed the “Add new Layout” popup – this change streamlines creating new layouts and removes choices which proved to be confusing.
- New options for creating layouts, where you need them – you can create the necessary layouts when editing CPTs, fields and content. When a layout is missing for an item, you will see an alert and can follow it. Also, when creating layouts from the post editor, we will choose if you need a layout for a specific item or as template.
- List child layouts in the parent – we saw that getting back to the child layout, when editing the parent, is confusing. To fix this, the parent layout displays the list of children in the “child layout” cell.
- Row can be dragged from anywhere outside of cells – we saw that it’s hard to drag rows, because the drag icon was small. To make it easier, the entire are of rows, that’s not cells, is now drag-able.
- Better feedback when layouts auto-save – similarly to what you’ll see in Google Docs, after a layout is automatically saved, it says “all changes saved”.
- Easier to assign layout to content – you can now also enter the URL of a page when assigning a layout to it. Sometimes, it’s easier to copy/paste the URL from the browser than to scroll through long lists of pages.
- WPML language filtering – when you work on multilingual sites, you will now see only content in the current admin language. This makes Layout listing pages load a lot faster.
- Improved compatibility with Divi – like for Views, this Layouts version resolves all JS and CSS issues with Divi.
- Out of the box integration between Genesis, WooCommerce and Layouts – Genesis isn’t completely compatible with WooCommerce. We’ve added this compatibility to our Genesis integration plugin, so it’s a lot easier to build sites with Toolset, Genesis and WooCommerce.
- Fixed compatibility problems with ACF plugin – again, so CSS and JS glitches that had to be resolved.
- Separated admin screen to tabs and individual updates for different sections – the admin screen of Access, just until now, was huge. If your site had many post types, you had to wait a while for Access admin to load. Making changes was even worse. Now, the admin screen is organized according to groups (tabs). In each group, there’s a separate section for each item. Loading Access admin is now super fast and making changes is easy.
- Improved support for controlling the access to the standard posts and pages – posts and pages have somewhat different permission control than custom types. Access now supports this fully, letting you control both custom and standard types.
Toolset Maps 1.1
- Enter addresses as map coordinates (latitude / longitude) – up until now you could only enter map locations as street addresses. So, if you wanted to plot coordinates in the Sahara, it could prove challenging. Now, you can specify locations by latitude and longitude, even if there’s no nearby address.
- Termmeta and usermeta address fields – you can use “address” fields for terms-meta and user-meta and now you can select them as the source for markers on a map.
- Address fields values from parent posts – when you use parent/child relationships, you will be able to add a $parent attribute and set the fields to come from the parent of the post being displayed.
- Add a map anywhere and get it updated when needed – now you can insert the map shortcode anywhere in the content (not only in the View loop) and any View can refresh the markers on it.
- New map interactions – You can simulate click and hover events on a marker.
Download and Update
Since WordPress 4.5 breaks compatibility with older plugins, you will definitely need to update Toolset plugins before updating WordPress.
The easiest way to get updates is from inside the WordPress admin. Make sure that Toolset plugins are registered for your sites. You can register as many sites as you need. Then, go to the Plugins admin screen and update all from there.
You can always download Toolset plugins from your the Downloads section in your Toolset account.
Toolset plugins have related code. You have to update all the plugins that you are using together.
As always, we recommend backing up your sites before updating ANY plugin or your theme.
Coming Next to Toolset
The entire Toolset team was busy, until right today, testing and verifying that this release is clean. Next, we continue on new features.
We are planning a fast development cycle for Toolset 2.1. The highlights of the upcoming version are still around usability and “getting started”. Major features include:
- New Dashboard for Toolset, which makes it easy to create custom types, add fields and taxonomy and design their front-end display.
- Getting-started videos, played from inside the admin, showing you how to do things for the first time.
These are the major new features, but other features will also be included. For CRED, we’re looking at AJAX form submission and multi-page forms. For Toolset Maps, we have a list of small/medium features to add. Views will be getting full support for filtering WordPress Archives.
You already know that we love your feedback. Leave your comments with questions, ideas and suggestions and we’ll reply.