EBN UI changes on Settings page

We are introducing more changes to the UI. This time we have touched the Settings page. We felt that there is too much information on one page so our main goal was to divide those settings into more logical sections.

Now, instead of having just one “Settings” page, we have three pages:

  • Account Settings
  • Billing Settings
  • Blog Networks Settings

On Account Settings, you can update your personal information like email, full name, password and API Key. At the bottom, you also have credentials to the mailbox.

Billing Settings is where you can see on which plan you are currently on. You can also update your payment information, change subscription (upgrade or downgrade) and cancel your subscription.

We have also moved the Blog Networks Settings to its own page where you can add, update or remove Blog Networks.

Besides splitting the Settings page, we’ve also polished the design so that it is more consistent throughout the site.

WordPress 5.0 update

The WordPress 5.0 is the biggest release of the year. With the controversy surrounding this release, we’ve decided to disable our automatic update feature until all kinks have been resolved. You can still manually update the WordPress core, at your own convenience. 

What’s in the new version and will it affect EBN?

The WordPress 5.0 update will not affect how our users use EBN. We will still take care of security, regular daily backups, and your blogs’ uptime.

Like other releases, the 5.0 update packs minor bug fixes, changes, and improvements. But what’s stirring polar reactions from everyone is the biggest update – the Gutenberg Editor. This update is going to raise a lot of activities in the next few weeks as everyone learns to contend with the new editor.

With the Gutenberg update, it will most likely affect themes and plugins too which is why we highly recommend testing things first (can’t stress this enough) before pushing forward with the update.

Until the dust settles and we’re sure that our users will not wake up with broken blogs because of the update, we will keep the automatic feature disabled.

EBN UI changes on Blog List and Activity

A few days ago we’ve pushed some UI changes to the Easy Blog Networks app. The goal of these changes was to polish the existing interface and to remove elements which we feel aren’t needed. To avoid any unnecessary confusion, we will review those changes one by one and explain our thought process behind it.

Blog List Changes

Blog List changes

Let’s start with blog list view. We’ve moved the “Add New Blog” button from the blog list table in the main section to the left panel on the top. We’ve also made it bigger so it is more convenient to click on it. Below it, we’ve modified the look of the “Blog Usage” and “List Blogs” elements to match the updated look and feel.

The information is still mostly the same except for one minor thing – we hide filters that only have one option. For example: If you have all your blogs with correct DNS, then we will hide “By DNS” filter, but if you need to update the DNS for any of your blogs you will see the “By DNS” filter.

In the center of the page, we’ve swapped pagination and search because it feels more natural.

We’ve also polished those elements. In the blog list table, we’ve removed the “Network” and the “Added” columns. “Network” information is already available in the left panel via the List Blogs filters and “Added” information is not that important to be shown on the blog list page. You can find this information in the blog’s Info Page.

We’ve also removed the “Info” button in the last column of the blog list table because it had the same functionality as if you were to click on the domain link in the “Blog” column. So here we just removed duplicated functionality.

The last two minor changes were to the indexation and health icons in order to make the design more consistent.

Activity Changes

Activity changes

On the Activity page, there was only one minor modification. We’ve replaced the “Mark all as read” button at the bottom with the “x” mark in the top blue notification on the right. This feels more natural because you don’t have to scroll to the bottom in order to mark all notifications as read.

More changes will come in the next few weeks mainly to Blog View and Settings page. We will provide you with regular updates on our progress.

We hope you like the changes, and if you require any further information, feel free to contact us.

EBN System Update #25

For the last 6 months, we’ve been working hard on making EBN source code as easy to maintain as possible.

The majority of EBN is written in Python and as some of you know the End of Life for Python 2.7 has been set to 2020 (ref). I’m happy to announce that we’ve already rewritten all our code to Python 3.6 so there are no worries regarding Python 3 migration in the future.

There were two side-effects in the process of the migration: 1st was a slight speed bump on the EBN app (5-10%) and the 2nd was that we’ve introduced a few bugs (because rewriting 100k+ lines of code just cannot be done without any mistakes). But we’ve been working very hard to eliminate all those problems and we are comfortable to say that our base code is even more stable than it was before we started migrating from Python 2.7.

Beside migrating to Python 3.6 we’ve also done a lot of quality of life improvements. Here are a couple of them:

  • Users can now automatically upgrade, downgrade or cancel their subscription in EBN app. Before, these involved a few more steps and relying on support to accomplish these things for you which equally translates to wasted time.
  • Deleting blog immediately was a feature that was frequently requested by our users and we heard you. Now the “Delete” button on blog view instantly removes the blog from the EBN app.
  • We are constantly checking and updating our Indexation Check to perform even better. Some of you have maybe noticed that a few weeks ago Google has changed the search results page so we had to adapt very fast.
  • Users can now pay in 3 different currencies. Before you could pay only in USD, now you can also pay in GBP and EUR. The system will select the currency for you based on your location.
  • Some of our bigger users had problems when they try to download their blog list. Now even if you have 500+ blogs you can request blog list download and this will start a task in the background which will upload the .csv/.odt file to AWS S3 bucket (aka “the cloud”) from where the user can download the file without any problems.

And last but not least we are happy to inform you that we have a new and improved Help Center which is now also housed on Intercom. The search function is now 10x more accurate than before, so for any queries, just type a keyword in the chat and it should return all relevant documents (answers to most queries are already there).

New WordPress themes available when adding a new blog

Great news! We have added 30 new themes to our list of default themes to give you more options to choose from. When adding a new blog, our system installs a random theme from this list. You can also optionally select any of these theme on the Add Blog form under WordPress Settings (optional) -> Active Theme.

List of default themes includes carefully selected themes that are popular, updated, and fast.

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