WordPress 4.9: New Features & Fatal Error Protection

WordPress 4.9: New Features & Fatal Error Protection

WordPress 4.9 is the latest major update to the popular content management system, bringing several enhancements and improvements. This version focuses on streamlining site building, boosting developer experience, enhancing security, and overall refinements. For website owners and developers, upgrading to WordPress 4.9 is highly recommended to leverage the new capabilities.

Enhanced Site Building Experience

WordPress 4.9 makes the process of building and managing a site much smoother through UI and UX improvements.

More Reliable Theme Switching

One common frustration site owners faced was losing menu and widget customizations when switching between themes. WordPress 4.9 resolves this issue by ensuring menus, widgets, and other settings persist when a new theme is activated. Now, transitioning between themes is more seamless.

Improved Menu Creation UX

The menu building experience is now more intuitive with better drag and drop capabilities. Rearranging menu items is easier with visible guidelines indicating the placement. Overall, the entire menu creation process is now more beginner-friendly.

Developer-Focused Enhancements

For developers and advanced users, WordPress 4.9 brings helpful improvements like refined APIs and inclusion of useful tools.

Customizer JS API Improvements

The Customizer JS API has been improved for a faster development experience. Changes in preview areas now reflect quicker without delay. There is better support for dynamic content rendering as well. These benefits make building custom WordPress sites more efficient.

CodeMirror Integration

The CodeMirror library is now integrated into WordPress Core for code editing purposes. It replaces the previous Ace Editor with improved usability. CodeMirror also enhances accessibility for those relying on screen readers or keyboard navigation.

Fatal Error Protection

One major security enhancement in WordPress 4.9 is the introduction of fatal error protection. This shields your site from crashes due to plugins or themes causing fatal errors.

How Fatal Error Protection Works

Essentially, WordPress 4.9 isolates faulty code execution to prevent crashes. When a fatal error occurs due to a plugin or theme, WordPress logs the error and skips the broken code. This allows the rest of the site to remain functional instead of a white screen of death. This added layer of protection safeguards your site’s stability.

Additional Features and Improvements

Beyond the highlighted changes above, WordPress 4.9 contains other useful additions like:

  • Autosave revisions for Customizer settings to easily revert unwanted changes.
  • Improved widget editing interface for managing sidebars and placements.
  • Better support for responsive embedded videos.

Updating to WordPress 4.9

Updating to the latest version is a best practice for performance and security. For WordPress 4.9, here are tips for a smooth update:

  • Back up your site fully before updating.
  • Use a staging or development environment to test the update first.
  • Update plugins and themes for compatibility.
  • Follow the one-click update in wp-admin or use auto-updates.
  • Monitor your site for any issues after updating.
  • Revert to a previous version if major problems occur.


WordPress 4.9 is a worthwhile update for all users with improvements ranging from site building to fatal error protection. For site owners, the UI enhancements create a more seamless editing experience. Developers will appreciate the new APIs and tools for improved workflows. Updating to 4.9 ensures you leverage the latest capabilities and security of WordPress.

For additional resources and information, consider the following:


What are the key benefits of updating to WordPress 4.9?

The main benefits are a smoother site building process, enhanced security through fatal error protection, improved Customizer and widget management, and various refinements under the hood.

Do I need to update my plugins or themes before updating WordPress?

It is recommended to confirm plugin and theme compatibility with WordPress 4.9 first. Some may need updates to work properly.

What if I encounter issues after updating to WordPress 4.9?

First, revert to a previous version if the issues are major. Then troubleshoot potential plugin or theme conflicts. If problems persist, you may need to seek technical support.

Is the update to 4.9 mandatory for security?

While not absolutely mandatory, updating to 4.9 is highly recommended for the added security protections. Fatal error protection can help shield your site from threats.

What steps should I take before updating WordPress?

Make a full backup of your WordPress site and database. Test the update in a staging environment first if possible. Ensure plugins and themes are 4.9 compatible. Then proceed with the update in production.”

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