WordPress 6.3 “Lionel”

WordPress 6.3 “Lionel”

Say hello to WordPress 6.3 “Lionel,” named after Lionel Hampton, the celebrated American jazz artist. A prolific jazz vibraphonist, pianist, and percussionist, Hampton gained notoriety working in harmony with greats from Charles Mingus to Quincy Jones and as bandleader of the eponymous Lionel Hampton Orchestra. His artistry and charitable work have been recognized with a Grammy, a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and the National Medal of Arts.

Be sure to turn up the volume of the musical stylings of Lionel Hampton as you discover all “Lionel” has to offer.

With “Lionel” you can create beautiful and compelling websites more efficiently than ever. Whether you want to build an entire site without coding or are a developer looking to customize every detail, WordPress 6.3 has something to pique your interest. As you unpack and explore this latest release, you will discover updated functions and navigation designed to help you work and create with less effort, design tools that give you more control over layout, and added functionality enriching the site-building experience.

“Lionel” marks a major chapter in the evolution of WordPress as a tool for expression. It’s the culmination of years of work from hundreds of contributors, bringing a more powerful and cohesive editing experience for crafting websites with blocks. It continues the quest of making web publishing approachable for everyone—so it’s also just a new beginning!

Matías Ventura, WordPress 6.3 Release Lead

What’s inside

This momentous release opens new possibilities for the creative expression of designers, creators, and builders. Powerful tools and refined controls give users confidence and allow them to easily manage their sites.

Do everything in the Site Editor

WordPress 6.3 brings your content, templates, and patterns together in the Site Editor for the first time. Add pages, browse style variations, create synced patterns, and enjoy fine-tuned control over navigation menus. Spend less time switching across different site areas—so you can focus on what matters most. Creation to completion, all in one place.

Image titled "Do everything with the Site Editor"
Do everything with the Site Editor

Preview Block themes

Experience block themes before you switch and preview the Site Editor, with options to customize directly before committing to a new theme. 

Image about previewing block themes titled Previewing Themes depicting "Previewing: Organizer"
Preview a new block theme before you switch and commit

Create and sync patterns

Arrange blocks and save them to the ‘My Patterns’ section for use throughout your site. You can even specify whether to sync your patterns (previously referred to as “Reusable blocks”) so that one change applies to all parts of your site. Or, utilize patterns as a starting point with the ability to customize each instance.

Image showing the new My Patterns section in the CMS.
My patterns: All your patterns in one place

Work faster with the Command Palette

Switch to a specific template or open your editor preferences with a new tool that helps you quickly access expanded functionality. With simple keyboard shortcuts (⌘+k on Mac or Ctrl+k on Windows), clicking the sidebar search icon in Site View, or clicking the Title Bar, get where you need to go and do what you need to do in seconds.

Image depicting the new Command Palette
Get to know the new Command Palette

Sharpen your designs with new tools

New design controls bring more versatility for fine-tuning, starting with the ability to customize your captions from the Styles interface without coding. You can manage your duotone filters in Styles for supported blocks and pick from the options provided by your theme or disable them entirely. The Cover block gets added settings for text color, layout controls, and border options, making this powerful block even more handy.

Image representing the new design tools in the Site Editor
New design tools

Track design changes with Style revisions

With a new audit trail, you can now see how your site looked at a specific time. Visualize these revisions in a timeline and access a one-click option to restore prior styles.

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Style revisions: See your style revision history

Annotate with the Footnotes block

Footnotes add convenient annotations throughout your content. Now you can add and link footnotes for any paragraph.

Image depicting the new Footnotes Block
Add footnotes effortlessly with the new Footnotes Block

Show or hide content with the Details block

Use the Details block to avoid spoiling a surprise, create an interactive Q&A section, or hide a long paragraph under a heading.

Image depicting the new Details Block
Display or hide content with the new Details Block

Performance gets a boost

WordPress 6.3 has 170+ performance updates, including defer and async support for the Scripts API and fetchpriority support for images. These improvements, along with block template resolution, image lazy-loading, and the emoji loader, can dramatically improve your website’s perceived load time.

Accessibility remains a core focus

Incorporating more than 50 accessibility improvements across the platform, WordPress 6.3 is more accessible than ever. Improved labeling, optimized tab and arrow-key navigation, revised heading hierarchy, and new controls in the admin image editor allow those using assistive technologies to navigate more easily.

Other highlights

Set aspect ratio on images

Specify your aspect ratios and ensure design integrity, especially when using images in patterns.

Build your site distraction-free

Distraction-free designing is now available in the Site Editor.

Rediscover the Top Toolbar

A revamped Top Toolbar offers parent selectors for nested blocks, options when selecting multiple blocks, and an interface embedded into the title bar with new functionality in mind.

List View improvements

Drag and drop to every content layer and delete any block you would like in the updated List View.

Build templates with Patterns

Create unique patterns to jumpstart template creation with a new modal enabling access to pattern selection.

Changes in PHP support

Support for PHP 5 is discontinued. The new minimum supported version of PHP is 7.0.0.

Failed update safeguards

WordPress will now auto-restore the previously installed version of plugins or themes if something goes wrong during a failed manual update.


Learn more about WordPress and 6.3

Explore Learn WordPress for quick how-to videos, online workshops, and other resources to level up your knowledge of the latest features in WordPress. 

Check out the WordPress 6.3 Field Guide for detailed developer notes to help you build with WordPress and get the most out of the latest release. Read the 6.3 release notes for additional technical details about this release, including feature recaps, installation information, file changes, fixes, and updates.

Read and subscribe to the Developer Blog for even more helpful WordPress content. 

WordPress is a global software platform

61 locales have translated 90 percent or more of WordPress 6.3 into their language. Community translators are working hard to ensure more translations are on their way. Thank you, gracias, ありがとう, धन्यवाद, and ευχαριστώ to everyone who helps to make WordPress available in 200 languages.

Contributing to WordPress

WordPress believes in democratizing publishing and the freedoms that come with open source. Supporting this idea is a large community of people collaborating to strengthen the software. A big thank you to everyone who makes WordPress.

Our community of contributors has always been what makes WordPress wonderful. You are what makes sure our project continues to thrive, and our software remains secure, usable, and impactful. Thank you so much for joining together to make the web (and the world) a better place!

Josepha Haden Chomphosy, Executive Director, WordPress.org

WordPress 6.3 arrives thanks to more than 650 contributors’ collective passion and effort in at least 52 countries. This release also includes over 205 first-time contributors! 

The 6.3 release squad

The 6.3 release was led from start to launch by an active set of contributors from across many disciplines. Over several weeks, they kept the release on track and moving forward by connecting ideas, resolving issues, and removing roadblocks.

6.3 contributors

Complimenting the release squad is a diverse group of contributors whose global collaboration delivered hundreds of enhancements and fixes, ensuring a stable release for all—a testament to the power and capability of the WordPress community. 

Özgür KARALAR · 6adminit · Aaron Jorbin · Aaron Robertshaw · Abha Thakor · abhi3315 · Abhishek Sharma · Abir · abitofmind · Adam Silverstein · Adam W. 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WordPress support forums

Many thanks to the community volunteers who contribute to the support forums by answering questions from WordPress users worldwide.

Get involved today

If contributing to WordPress appeals to you, learning more and getting involved is easy. Discover the teams that come together to Make WordPress and explore the product roadmap on the core development blog. You can also use this interactive tool to help you decide which team is right for you.

Looking toward the future

20 years ago this past May, WordPress shipped the very first version, 0.7. What started with a blog post from co-founder Matt Mullenweg and a subsequent comment by co-founder Mike Little eventually evolved into the world’s most popular web publishing platform.

WordPress software continues to evolve and iterate based on the needs and desires of its robust and diverse user community. This release is the capstone of Phase 2 along the WordPress development roadmap. As the community looks to the future, all efforts turn to 6.4 and, subsequently, the transition into Phase 3, which is expected to introduce powerful collaboration tools to the website creation and management experience.


6.3 Haiku

A capstone release
Ships tools for building great sites
Collaboration

Source: WordPress 6.3 “Lionel”

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