May 26th, 2019

Important Salient Update For New Envato Requirements

The v10.5 update is finally here! Over the past few months, Salient has been rebuilt to comply with the new Envato requirements. We are happy to announce that a higher quality version of Salient is now available. Since much has changed, it’s important as an upgrading user to become familiar with the notable differences to ease the transition.

Before Updating

The rest of this article only applies to existing Salient users which are upgrading. If you’re a new user simply head over to the getting started page and begin building 🙂

Plugin Territory Functionality

One of the biggest changes Envato is now enforcing is the separation of theme applicable functionality and plugin applicable functionality. Because Salient first entered the market over 6 years ago when the guidelines were very different, we were faced with challenges with how to separate everything without disrupting our large user base. Upon first updating Salient to v10.5, you’ll notice a new dismiss-able notification in the admin panel which will let you know which Salient specific plugins are available/not active and allow you to easily install/activate them.

In total, Salient now has two plugins that are required – the Salient WPBakery Page Builder and the Salient Core. All of the other plugins are optional and can installed/activated as needed in your setup. If you are not modifying Salient from a child theme, once you’ve activated the needed plugins for your site there should be nothing else you need to do besides from clearing your cache. If you are using a child theme with modifications to theme templates or functions, see the next section in regards.

Function name changes

This entire section only applies to users who are using a child theme with modifications beyond CSS. If you do not fall into that category, feel free to skip to the next section.

As of May 31st 2019, all authors are required to ensure that functions have a unique prefix to avoid conflicts with other plugins. While this is already what we’ve done for years, we’ve located a handful of older functions that needed to be renamed. If you’re using a child theme and have copied files or functions into it, there is the potential that your child theme will call functions that no longer exist (resulting in a fatal error). For now, we’ve included a fallback file that points all old function names to the new ones, but it’s recommended you go through your child theme and start updating old files that use any of the fallback functions. A full list of the functions can be found in salient/nectar/helpers/update-assist.php

After Updating Quick Checklist

1

Install/Activate new Salient plugins

Ensure that you activated the Salient Core plugin and other needed optional plugins for your site. If you fail to do so, your page builder elements will not render.
2

Verify a child theme is not conflicting

If you're using a child theme and see some things that do not look right after updating, quickly verify that there is no conflict between your custom code and the new version by temporarily switching to the parent theme.
3

Clear all of the cache

If you have any caching plugins active, they must be cleared after updating since many files have changed. Additionally, remember to clear your browser cache too.

How does this all benefit you as a user?

There are multiple immediate benefits:

  • Salient is now lighter and more modular. You can now choose what you want and do not want with more precise control, leading to higher performance. Also because the underlying structure of Salient has been reworked, future development/designs and features can be added in a sustainable manner.
  • Data will not be lost if you decide to change themes down the line. For example, previously if you created a portfolio through Salient and switched themes, you’d be out of luck. The data would no longer be accessible as it was all apart of the theme itself. Now that the content creation aspects of the theme are separated into plugins, Salient will focus on handling the styling, as WordPress themes were always intended to do. This means that you can retain your data when changing themes and can potentially re-style it to fit your new theme.
  • Given the nature of the new requirements, we figured it was a perfect time to also dedicate time to refactor our existing code to make it something that we’re proud of. All of the theme specific CSS, Javascript, and PHP files have seen a significant improvement in organization, reusability, and clarity.

In Summary

This is the most significant alteration of Salient to date. While many of the changes are under the hood, they leave Salient in a position ready to take on the future. As an upgrading user, be aware of the key differences and review the documentation that covers the new Salient plugins/theme options.

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