With Site Health Check WordPress will “catch and pause problem code”.
The 5.1 Beta 1 release is part of what WordPress calls its Site Health Check, which focuses on stability, security and performance improvements to the whole WordPress ecosystem. The software will stop or pause bad code from running, allowing a user the ability to log an issue in his Dashboard. In prior releases, a user had to FTP files to support personnel or reach out to their web host for resolution.
WordPress also plans to update its “minimum supported php version to 5.6” in April of this year because 85% of WordPress sites are using this version or above. Support of older versions will stay in place as far as security updates and some bug fixes, but the company states that those who stay on prior php versions won’t be able to upgrade to newer versions of the CMS.
For web developers, WordPress claims that 5.1 Beta 1 has major benefits, one of which is a custom cron (time-based scheduling system) handler. Overall, the changes in 5.1 Beta 1 will give developers more power over their code and the ability to better understand any bugs. So far, the company has addressed 360 tickets about this test software while making improvements along the way.
For more information visit the official release page.
How to update WordPress
If you’re familiar with how WordPress normally releases updates, this version won’t appear on your admin console. Instead, you’ll have to navigate over to the WordPress Beta Tester site or download it. If you choose to use the beta tester option, you need to select the “bleeding edge nightlies” option as this is the current test name for the release. The company does state, though, that this is test software and should not be used on a production site because downgrading may not be possible.