Why You SHOULDN’T Upgrade To WordPress 3.4

Well it had to happen sooner or later. The WP dev team have released an update that’s broken jquery plugins everywhere and the uproar has just started.

So we’ve seen WP 3.4 released and had first reports of the Slide Out Tabs plugin breaking. We’ve fixed it – go back to your download page to get the new 1.0.2 version and you should be fine.

The fix for this looks like it just needs these lines of code modified to suit and added to your plugin if you’re a developer or brave enough to hack at these things yourself.

add_action(‘wp_head’, ‘pgst_loads_scripts’);
add_action(‘admin_head’, ‘pgst_loads_scripts’);
function pgst_loads_scripts(){


Our next steps are to check any and all of our plugins that use jquery. We would have normally done that as part and parcel of a new WP release but my regular dev is part way through a home move and it didn’t get done in his absence.

The problem has occurred it seems because the jquery library now doesn’t get called first like it always has done. Who knows why the WP dev team have done this and the likelihood is it will get changed back in 3.4.1 and my guess is that will happen quite soon.

In the meantime it looks like there could be a fairly easy fix and that just means tweaking all our plugins to add the new code that forces the jquery library to be called first. This might cause problems with other plugins so we could need to be quite careful about how we apply it.

The learning point of this story is…

Don’t be an early adopter. Let other people test any new code out first and let them feel the pain. Just because WP is “nagging” you to update to the latest version doesn’t mean you should.

By the same token, don’t let any software you use auto-update itself. Always go into the options or preferences of ANY software (including your browsers) and turn off auto-update. In 99.99% of cases it won’t make a dang difference to you day to day, but it will almost certainly save you from some pain at one point or another. Let other people report the bugs and when it looks like all is clear, you go do the update yourself.

I don’t know about you, but I can’t afford to have unscheduled losses caused by bugs in new software.

Finally, that’s one of the key reasons I like the free PortableApps so much. You can keep a backup of all your working apps just by copying the files to a backup location. If the new update breaks or you don’t like it, you can easily go back to the old version by just copying the files back. Dead easy.

And if you ever have to re-install your OS, then all your portable stuff can be up and running almost immediately.

-Frank Haywood

Posted by Frank Haywood


Hi Frank,

yes… However, if we don’t upgrade, it takes only a few days to having the Big Boss alerting that we put our visitors at risk…


Rick Howard

Hi Frank,
Thank you very much for the update. I, like some got burned and had to uninstall the plugin and use my backup blog. ALWAYS BACKUP As I am very busy right now with a new launch coming up I did not have time to look into the problem. As always in IM marketing it’s the priorities.

Again thanks, you are always there for everyone and that is the most important thing. As in life sometimes bad things happen but you were there.

Rick Howard

PS. Please remind everyone to always backup. It saves a lot of headaches. I know because I learned the hard way.

Frank Haywood

Hi Rick,

You’re welcome.

And you reminded me – the other problem I forgot to mention with WP updates is that they’re often one way. Once you’ve upgraded there’s not always an easy way back as the database structure sometimes gets amended too. That means even if you get all the previous version files and overwrite the new version, it fails because the old code references fields that no longer exist in the new version.

Been there, got the t-shirt labelled “Nightmare!”

So yes, backing up regularly and definitely before upgrading is a must. I learnt the hard way and it’s a shame people don’t get more of a warning about this.


Diego (SEO services)

Hi Frank,

Great and very informative explanation!

“Who knows why the WP dev team have done this and the likelihood is it will get
changed back in 3.4.1 and my guess is that will happen quite soon.”

I guess that any jquery based plugin will be affected so I would really appreciate if you could keep us updated when they revert or create a fix about this change.

All the best,

Frank Haywood

Hi Diego,

Thank you and will do. The funny thing is, it doesn’t seem to have affected my other plugins, BUT I’ve just thought of something while writing this and I’ll have to go check that out now just in case.

I’m just wondering if the fix we just did to this plugin has also helped the other plugins too as I ran them all together instead of one at a time – D’oh!


Diego (SEO services)

> Thank you and will do

Thanks Frank.

You have become an important source of information regarding WordPress.

BTW: Following your advice, I have purchased the new Image editor plugin.

All the best,

Diego (SEO services)

> I’m just wondering if the fix we just did to this plugin has also helped the other plugins

Yes, since the script loaded it will probably work on all of the plugins that use it on the same page.