GridPane News and Last Month in Review (June 2022)

7 min read

Introduction

Hey WordPress Warriors!  June has quietly seen a massive amount of new features and updates, from the new Git integration, to the Client Portal, to the Knowledge base. We’ll take a look at all the highlights below.

Table of Contents

  1. The GridPane Git Integration
  2. PanelPress.io: Client Portal Updates
  3. Changelog
  4. Newly Published Knowledge Base Articles
  5. Knowledge Base Article Updates

The GridPane Git Integration

The big news is that our Git integration is now in private beta. This is a huge release and includes two different Git integrations options:

  1. Full Repositories
  2. Hybrid Repositories

Full Repo’s

Our full integration is what most users will be familiar with, and with this WordPress core, plugins, and themes are all managed via Git. The entire codebase is immutable and so WordPress updates can only via Git deployments.

Hybrid Repo’s

Our hybrid integration is for those of you who only want to handle specific plugins and themes via Git. Unlike the full repo as described above, the hybrid repo is not immutable, so WordPress core and any other themes and plugins not set in your repo are handled the traditional way inside the WordPress dashboard.

Pre and Post Deployment Scripts

It also allows for scripts to be run as root and/or the website’s system user both before the deployment and/or after the deployment.

Links to more information can be found here.

After the private beta it will be released into open beta, and then anyone on Developer or above with beta features activated on their account will be able to test it out.

PanelPress.io: Client Portal Updates

The Client Portal has also received a huge amount of updates.

New: Support for Custom JS

Support for adding custom JS to the header of the dashboard page (such as your own support widget for example) in the integration modal.

New: Infinite Staging

  1. Push changes via clone
  2. Push either files/DB/both
  3. Choose a Search & Replace mode

New: Quick Bar

  1. Use the Quick Bar on the right in the Site Details view to
  2. Clear all cache
  3. Enable/disable WP Debug
  4. Create a local backup

New: Grid View 

  1. Switch between the table and the new grid view in the main sites modal
  2. Screenshots from your website are automatically fetched for the grid thumbnail

New: Thumbnails

  1. Upload a custom thumbnail for a site
  2. Refresh a thumbnail

New: Profile Page

Update your Email, Name, and Profile Picture.

New: Security

  1. Enable Two Factor Authentication on the Profile Page
  2. Log out all sessions from other devices
  3. Generate 2FA backup tokens

New: Queue Manager

  1. View scheduled API requests
  2. Cancel scheduled API requests

Improvement to Roles

  1. Define with roles who can connect which site
  2. Define with roles who can push from one site to another
  3. Restrict access to Process Queue
  4. Restrict who can cancel scheduled API calls in the Process Queue

Log Updates

  1. New: White-labeled site logs
  2. Color coded logs
  3. Click a line to copy it to the clipboard
  4. Search your logs
  5. Auto-refresh logs when the modal gets opened

UI/UX Improvements

Numerous UI/UX improvements have been released. Some of these include:

  1. Support for adding a dark mode logo.
  2. Major performance improvements.
  3. Completely mobile optimized the portal
  4. All desktop features are available on the mobile version
  5. Responsive behavior
  6. Optional automatically generated background gradient based on the site you are currently managing
  7. Option to disable or adjust the intensity of the gradient

The full Client Portal changelog can be viewed directly inside of your PanelPress.io account by clicking the rocket icon in the top right-hand corner.

Changelog

The changelog has been updated. The major releases are detailed above and you can check out the other fixes and improvements on our roadmap here:

https://roadmap.gridpane.com/f/changelog/

The main release in June is the Git integration into private beta. As per usual though, there have been lots of behind scenes work in preparation for upcoming releases.

A couple of notable updates for June include:

  • PHP8 is now available in the UI for OpenLiteSpeed Ubuntu 18.04 servers
  • New Cloneover features for infinite staging (now available inside the Client Portal):
    – Infinite staging flag: -infinite-staging
    – Cloneover only database files flag: -only-db-clone
    – Cloneover only database files flag: -only-files-clone

Newly Published Knowledge Base Articles

We published 6 new articles in June, and we also created a new category page for the Git integration:

1-3. The GridPane Git Integration

The first two articles offer an introduction to the two different types of repo options available to you (Full repo’s and Hybrid repo’s), and how to configure them. The third covers how to attach your repo’s to GridPane and use our integration:

  1. An Overview of GridPane Git Options: Full and Hybrid Repo Types
  2. How to Configure Git Repositories for GridPane Hosted Websites
  3. Using the GridPane Git Integration

Updates are happening quickly so be sure to keep an eye on these articles and the Git Knowledge Base page here.

4. Do I Need a Security Plugin When Using GridPane’s Security Features?

GridPane offers a lot of security out of the box, and then a whole suite of WordPress specific security measures that you can configure on a per website basis.

A common question we get is: ”Do I still need a security plugin when using all of these features?”.

There’s no right answer to this question, but in this article we’ll provide you with some guidance on making a decision for your websites.

Do I Need a Security Plugin When Using GridPane’s Security Features?

5. Temporary URLs for Migrations and Development

A common question we get asked when many users first get started on the platform is “Does GridPane provide temporary URLs?”. The short is no we don’t, but you also don’t need them. This article covers how to create your own custom temporary URLs and the three main methods members of the GridPane community use.

Temporary URLs for Migrations and Development

6. Generate an SSH Key with Termius

Termius is a fantastic, free SSH client that you can use to easily manage all of your servers. You can also use it to generate an SSH key pair and this article will walk you through how to do this.

Generate an SSH Key with Termius

Knowledge Base Updates

In addition to the 6 new articles above, the knowledge base has received its largest update since we first moved it over from Zendesk to the GridPane website.

Categories Update

Originally, when we migrated the content over we kept the category overview pages fairly simple and laid out in the same way that they were on Zendesk – the way the community at the time was already familiar with those layouts.

However, since then it has grown by over 150 articles, and both the categorisation of articles and all of those individual overview pages linked to on the main KB page needed a major overhaul in order to make it easier to browse different topics. All of the category pages have now been updated.

There are also three additional category pages dedicated to:

  1. Troubleshooting
  2. Account Management
  3. Git

The FAQs and Policy category pages have also been combined together into one page.

I hope the update is not only welcome design update, but has been helpful in finding the information you need (and also potentially uncovering some hidden gems you may not have seen before).

I highly recommend that everyone check out the new Troubleshooting page here.

Learning Path Updates

The Security and Command Line Fundamentals learning paths have also been overhauled and updated. You can check these out here:

  1. Command Line Fundamentals
  2. WordPress Security Step by Step

The Command Line Fundamentals learning path may be particularly useful if you’re new to connecting to your servers and want to build up some basic skills (and also confidence in working directly on your servers – it’s easy than you might think).

Existing Article Updates

The following articles have also received updates:

  1. Migrating MASSIVE WordPress Websites to GridPane
  2. Do you recommend Vultr’s DDOS protection?
  3. The Client Portal WordPress Plugin and GridPane Nginx
  4. How Do I Reinstall GridPane Plugins?
  5. Easily Connect to Your Servers with Termius
  6. Adding Custom Nginx Rules for Plugins – A General Guide

That’s a Wrap!

Thanks for reading. We’ll continue to keep you posted in the weekly newsletter. Have a great July everyone!

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