Homeland Stupidity

WordPress 1.5 Ellington

Update 31 Mar 2005: All the issues addressed below have been marked resolved by the WordPress developers. You can test a nightly dated 2005-04-01 or later if you want to verify resolution.

Since 1.5.1 and later are released, and fix the problems addressed here, this software should be considered historical.

Update 11 Mar 2005: The issues with pages have been marked resolved by the WordPress developers. I have not yet seen a resolution for the issues with categories. I have every confidence that all of these issues will be fixed in the eventual 1.5.1 release. You can test a nightly dated 2005-03-10 or later if you want to verify resolution, but for production sites (i.e. your blog) Ellington remains your best bet for the moment.

What? Why? How?

Not long ago, the WordPress team released version 1.5 of their semantic personal publishing platform (that’s a fancy name for blog). I have been a fan of WordPress since the first time I laid eyes on it, and have occasionally contributed a patch here, a plugin there, and today, I’m contributing criticism and code.

Originally I was going to write here about some of the last minute changes that went into the 1.5 release, exactly how they were broken, and why it’s a bad thing to introduce new features less than 24 hours before you ship a product. But that’s whining, and I figured it would be better to actually do something about it.

In particular, two changes to WordPress 1.5, checked in just hours before the official
release, caused pages and categories to break in various ways. No one got a chance to test these changes before they were rolled out to everyone as the final “Strayhorn” release. What happened is simple: The last nightly build before release was dated 2005-02-14, the new code was checked in, and then someone created the “official” release archives. How? Why? I don’t know. I just want my category pages and my static pages to work right.

So I got my hands dirty and went digging through the changes made between 2005-02-14 and 2005-02-15 strayhorn, all 1930 lines of them. After yanking out the new, broken features, I have created a new release of WordPress 1.5. Codenamed “Ellington,” it is identical to 1.5 Strayhorn in every respect, except for the removal of the new page cache and category cache code which caused various problems for people trying to use those features.

It’s my intention that this code should be used as an interim solution only, until the WordPress developers come up with fixes for the code in question, and should only be used by those people needing a fix for categories and static pages. Otherwise, continue to use 1.5 Strayhorn.


You have three options for obtaining 1.5 Ellington. You can download the usual .tar.gz or .zip files, or you can download a patch file which can be used to update an existing Strayhorn installation to Ellington. (This is only appropriate for those people comfortable with the UNIX command line, or the WP developers themselves.)

Before you download I also want to clarify one thing: This release is completely unofficial. To the best of my knowledge, it is not endorsed by the WordPress development team (although some of them have visited here). While the changes I have made are actually quite minimal, it is entirely possible I have made a mistake, and my mistakes should not reflect poorly upon WordPress or the WordPress developers. Their mistakes, however, are a different story–

Here’s hoping that all of your experience with WordPress is happy and trouble-free. Enjoy!