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How to develop your own WordPress Plugin

If you want to become a WordPress plugin development expert, there are a few things you need to know. In this article, we will cover the basics of plugin development and some tips on how to get started.

First, you need to have a good understanding of the WordPress codebase. This will allow you to develop plugins that are compatible with the latest WordPress version.

Second, you need to be familiar with the WordPress API. This will allow you to create plugins that interact with the WordPress core.

Third, you need to have a good understanding of the WordPress coding standards. This will ensure that your code is clean and easy to read.

Finally, you need to be familiar with the WordPress plugin repository. This is where you will submit your plugins for review and approval.

Now that you know the basics, let’s get started with plugin development.

The first thing you need to do is create a file called “yournamedplugin.php” in your plugin’s directory. This file will contain the plugin’s header information. You can also start by using this plugin boilerplate.

The header information should include the plugin’s name, version, author, and description, like this:

<?php /** * The plugin bootstrap file * * This file is read by WordPress to generate the plugin information in the plugin * admin area. This file also includes all of the dependencies used by the plugin, * registers the activation and deactivation functions, and defines a function * that starts the plugin. * * @link http://example.com * @since 1.0.0 * @package Plugin_Name * * @wordpress-plugin * Plugin Name: WordPress Plugin Boilerplate * Plugin URI: http://example.com/plugin-name-uri/ * Description: This is a short description of what the plugin does. It's displayed in the WordPress admin area. * Version: 1.0.0 * Author: Your Name or Your Company * Author URI: http://example.com/ * License: GPL-2.0+ * License URI: http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.txt * Text Domain: plugin-name * Domain Path: /languages */ // If this file is called directly, abort. if ( ! defined( 'WPINC' ) ) { die; } /** * Currently plugin version. * Start at version 1.0.0 and use SemVer - https://semver.org * Rename this for your plugin and update it as you release new versions. */ define( 'PLUGIN_NAME_VERSION', '1.0.0' );
Code language: PHP (php)

Next, you need to create a function that will be called when the plugin is activated. This function should register the plugin with WordPress.

function activate_plugin_name() { require_once plugin_dir_path( __FILE__ ) . 'includes/class-plugin-name-activator.php'; Plugin_Name_Activator::activate(); } register_activation_hook( __FILE__, 'activate_plugin_name' );
Code language: PHP (php)

Next, you need to create a function that will be called when the plugin is deactivated. This function should unregister the plugin from WordPress.

function deactivate_plugin_name() { require_once plugin_dir_path( __FILE__ ) . 'includes/class-plugin-name-deactivator.php'; Plugin_Name_Deactivator::deactivate(); } register_deactivation_hook( __FILE__, 'deactivate_plugin_name' );
Code language: PHP (php)

Now that you have the basic structure of your plugin, you can start adding features.

One popular feature to add is an options page. This page will allow the user to configure the plugin’s settings.

Another popular feature to add is a widget. Widgets are small blocks of content that can be displayed in the sidebar or footer of a WordPress site.

Once you have added all of the features you want, you can package the plugin and submit it to the WordPress plugin repository.

If you follow these steps, you will be well on your way to becoming a WordPress plugin development expert.

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Dan Weezer

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