I can be no good at plugins. My default answer is an easy “no” when a request is made at WSU to add one to our setup. Each plugin we install adds overhead as the immediate responsibility for maintaining security, performance, and support lies on the web team, not the plugin author.
This is okay and is actually a really great relationship when the plugin is done right. For an Excellent++ plugin, we’ll likely never need support, though we may submit well written bug reports and/or code to resolve issues.
My (current) criteria:
- Does one thing very well.
- Follows WordPress code standards. Bonus for documentation standards.
- Standard core notifications for available updates if hosted elsewhere. Number in a bubble, just like any plugin from wordpress.org.
- No extra admin notifications of any kind not related to actual relevant admin tasks, except on a settings screen specific to the plugin.
- A documented process to contribute code and open issues for bugs via GitHub or another sensible public repository.
- If a premium plugin, a single, unlimited license is available for a multi-network, multi-site installation of WordPress. Charge a bunch, but consider that we aren’t likely to use support resources.
I’m sure there are many, many plugins out there that meet this criteria and I’d like to have a list. If you know of one, please add a comment!
Next, I’ll need to make a list of plugins that meet all these criteria and should also have a landing page where it’s easy to contribute dollars. 😉
Responses and reactions
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I am based as it is my own plugin but these are the things I try to look at and I am continously looking to improve the code and experience.
I'd also be keen to hear of pieces of functionality that people really want or need that exist in plugins that *don't* meet this (really rather perfect) set of criteria. Would be good to either help plugin authors get ship-shape or fork and improve if the author isn't willing to or can't accept the help.
I'm biased toward developer-oriented plugins, but here's my list of plugins that fit this criteria.
* Posts to Posts.
* Rewrite Rule Testing.
* User Switching (mine).
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