Author Archives: Dave

APUC (Automatic Plugin Update Checker) plugin for WordPress

With the advent of automatic updates directly from the admin interface I’ve switched dTabs over to the WP Plugin Repositoryn and dropped support for APUC. This page remains as a historical reference.

Description

Allows Wordpress plugins to automatically check for updates without them needing to be stored in the WP Plugin Repository.

Download apuc_v1.zip (8KB)

If you find this plugin useful then please consider making a donation to help fund it’s further development.

You may be wondering I made this plugin when WP automatically checks for plugin updates anyway. I’ve been thinking of including this functionality in dTabs for quite a while now, but I stopped development when it was annouced that WP 2.3 would support update checking. However it has become apparent since it’s release that WP 2.3 can only check for updates for plugins stored in the WP Plugin Repository (i.e. GPL only) so I decidied that I would prefer to retain control over my plugin and develop the functionality for myself. I was orginally planning to simply include this as a part of dTabs, but as it grew in complexity and size I decided that it should be an optional componant which other plugins could be free to use.

User info

So why should I install this plugin?

To recieve a notification when enabled plugins have updates.

How do I know whether the pluggins I use support update checking?

Check the list of plugins on the Updates subpanel of the Plugins admin panel, all enabled plugins are listed here.

What should I do if a particular plugin does not support update checking?

Try politely requesting that the plugin author take a look at this page and point out that they only need add one line to the plugin file and host a small text file in order to support checking for updates ;-)

Won’t it take up loads of resources and slow down my blog!?

The plugin only checks for updates upon viewing the admin panel, so it won’t affect your readers at all. It adheres to a strict schedule checking for updates of each plugin at predefined intervals to minimise it’s use of resources, but inevitably it may add the odd millisecond to the loading time of admin pages.

How is my privacy protected?

APUC downloads data regarding the latest release of a plugin from a server and compares it to the installed version locally, so that no information regarding you or your blog and it’s setup is sent anywhere.

Developer info

Why should my plugin support APUC?

To notify it’s users of new releases – helping to ensure everyone is up-to-date and therefore minimising support requests for old versions, while maintaining control over the storage and distribution of your plugin. It’s a cliché, but I guess the question is why should you not support APUC, since all it takes is the addition of one line of text to your main plugin file and for you to host a text file containg the latest version number. Easy!

Requirements

This plugin requires Wordpress Version 2.3 or greater.

Installation

  1. Extract apuc_v1.zip on your local machine.
  2. Upload apuc.php to your Wordpress Plugins directory.
  3. Activate Automactic Plugin Update Checker in the Plugins section of the admin control panel.

How to enable automatic update notifications in your plugin

Simply add Version Check URI to the top of your main plugin file (after Autor URI) which points to a readable file (e.g. a html file) containing the following
Latest version: 1.1
(obviously insert the actual latest version number)
The only requirement is that your version number is in the form of major.minor[.revision[.build]] etc (basically as many or as few numbers separated by full stops as you like), and this has to match the version number in the top of your main plugin file. The plugin then simply compares this version number to that of the installed version and alerts the user when an update is available, providing a link to the plugin URI as specified in the main plugin file.

Alternatively you can specify a specific download URI along with the latest version, but this is completely optional:
Latest version: 1.1
Download URI: http://www.yourpluginuri.com

Additionally you can specify a schedule for update checking (again completely optional):
Next check value: 10
Next check unit: days

Next check unit can be set to days, weeks, or months. If you don’t set either of these values, the plugin will automatically check for updates after one day, one week, one month, and then every three months.


Download apuc_v1.zip (8KB)

Donate

If you find this plugin useful then please consider making a donation to help fund it’s further development.

However, please note (in the nicest possible way) that making a donation will not guarantee the inclusion or development of a particular feature (it probably won’t hurt either though ;-)).

Known Issues

Let me know

Future

Any ideas welcome!

History

Version 1 18/12/2007

  • Initial release

If you would like to request any particular features for this plugin then feel free to reply to topic or send an email to apucsupport[at]dynamictangentconceptions.dtcnet.co.uk . Please note that while I will try my best to help, development of the plugin is very time consuming so unless it’s a tiny adjustment don’t expect any fast results ;-)


Support and Feedback

If you’re having any problems or need any help then please feel free to reply to this post for support regarding any aspect of the APUC.

I no longer support this plugin, but feel free to leave comments.

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