WP-CLI v2.6.0 Release Notes

A new release of WP-CLIWP-CLI WP-CLI is the Command Line Interface for WordPress, used to do administrative and development tasks in a programmatic way. The project page is http://wp-cli.org/ https://make.wordpress.org/cli/ is available as of today: WP-CLI v2.6.0. For this release, we had 57 contributors collaborate to get 311 pull requests merged. 🎉

The pandemic is still controlling our daily lives, and as a side-effect we still notice a significant reduction in contributors to WP-CLI, probably due to the lack of in-person contributor days.

As always, big thanks to the WP-CLI sponsors that make the continued maintenance possible – even with a reduced number of contributors. ❤️

Apart from the numerous bug fixes that were included in this release, we also managed to snuggle in a few new features that add to the power or convenience of your CLICLI Command Line Interface. Terminal (Bash) in Mac, Command Prompt in Windows, or WP-CLI for WordPress. experience, so I want to spend a few paragraphs going over some of the noteworthy changes. As always, you can also skip directly to the detailed changelog if you prefer.

PHPPHP PHP (recursive acronym for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor) is a widely-used open source general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for web development and can be embedded into HTML. http://php.net/manual/en/intro-whatis.php. 8.1 Support

WP-CLI now officially supports PHP 8.1. All commands are being extensively tested against PHP 8 and the actual development is currently being done on PHP 8.1 as well.

However, keep in mind that PHP 8.1 support is not fully there for WordPress CoreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress., and especially for a large part of plugins and themes. Due to the nature of the changes that PHP 8.1 brings about, it is very easy to break perfectly compatible WordPress Core or WP-CLI via the actions/filters system. Keep this in mind when trying to diagnose PHP 8.1 compatibility issues and trying to deduce where the erroneous code is to be found.

Tabular data showing a timeline with supported PHP releases, with only 8.0 and 8.1 currently in active support.

For those of you who are not closely following the PHP release cycles, please be aware that only PHP 8.0 and 8.1 are currently actively supported versions. WP-CLI sticks with the WordPress Core PHP support policy (+ 1 year), which means we’re still spending huge amounts of efforts to keep everything running all the way down to PHP 5.6 at the moment.

If you want to help the maintainers in their work, please ensure that all your sites run on the latest PHP versions, and nag your hosting providers to move everything over to the latest and greatest. WordPress will only bump the minimum version when the number of active sites on PHP 5.6 has dropped to an insignificant amount.

New commands for managing application passwords

The following commands were added to allow CLI users to create and manage WordPress application passwords:

  • wp user application-password list
  • wp user application-password get
  • wp user application-password exists
  • wp user application-password update
  • wp user application-password record-usage
  • wp user application-password create
  • wp user application-password delete
WP-CLI examples of creating a new application password and then listing all existing application passwords for that same user.

Although you could technically already work with application passwords by directly controlling the WordPress user-metaMeta Meta is a term that refers to the inside workings of a group. For us, this is the team that works on internal WordPress sites like WordCamp Central and Make WordPress. table, this now provides a clean APIAPI An API or Application Programming Interface is a software intermediary that allows programs to interact with each other and share data in limited, clearly defined ways. that abstracts away the technical implementation. See the Application Passwords: Integration Guide to find out more about how to use them.

New global flag: --context

A new global flag --context=<context> was added which allows users to select the WordPress context in which WP-CLI is supposed to execute its command(s).

One of the main goals is to allow WP-CLI to run updates on premium plugins and themes without requiring any special setup. From our initial testing, this allows a large range of popular premium extensions to just work™️ with WP-CLI in terms of their update procedures.

Possible values for this flag with this initial release:

  • cli: The context which has been the default before introduction of this flag. This is something in-between a frontend and an admin request, to get around some of the quirks of WordPress when running on the console.
  • admin: A context that simulates running a command as if it would be executed in the administration backend. This is meant to be used to get around issues with plugins that limit functionality behind an is_admin() check.
  • auto: Switches between cli and admin depending on which command is being used. For this initial release, all wp plugin * and wp theme * commands will use admin, while all other commands will use cli.
  • frontend: [WIP] This does nothing yet.

Roadmap: By default, the --context flag will be set to cli with this initial release (v2.6.0). With WP-CLI v2.7.0, the default will change to auto. This gradual deployment will allow hosters and site owners to run tests on v2.6.0 by manually setting the context before the default behavior is changed.

If you want to use the future default of --context=auto right away in your present operations, you can do so by adding the necessary context: auto line to your global wp-cli.yml configuration file. Feel free to check the documentation on WP-CLI configuration files if this is new to you.

We also have a new hook to support this new global flag: before_registering_contexts. This hook behaves like a filterFilter Filters are one of the two types of Hooks https://codex.wordpress.org/Plugin_API/Hooks. They provide a way for functions to modify data of other functions. They are the counterpart to Actions. Unlike Actions, filters are meant to work in an isolated manner, and should never have side effects such as affecting global variables and output. with one argument: array<string, Context> $contexts. When hooking into this hook, the callback should return (a potentially modified) $contexts value. This can be used to remove or override bundled contexts or add new ones.

To make this work, the hook functionality in WP-CLI (provided via WP_CLI::do_hook()) was modified to return the first argument if arguments were provided.

Thanks to Cloudways for the special support and testing of this new flag with the goal of solving the “premium updates problem” for everyone.

Configurable WP-CLI cache settings

The WP-CLI file cache can now be configured via the following environment variables:

  • WP_CLI_CACHE_DIR – Directory in which to store the cached files. Default value: "$home/.wp-cli/cache".
  • WP_CLI_CACHE_EXPIRY – Time after which cached files are automatically purged, in seconds. Default value: 15552000 (6 months).
  • WP_CLI_CACHE_MAX_SIZE – Total size of the file cache after which older files are purged, in bytes. Default value: 314572800 (300 MB).

This not only allows you to fine-tune the WP-CLI cache behavior for the best balance between available storage and bandwidth usage, it could also be used to share cache storage between installations/users (beware the security implications, though!).

Use custom names/locations for the wp-config.php file

The different config * commands now accept a new flag --config-file=<filepath> that allow you point the different manipulations towards a custom location, that might not even fully adhere to conventions for the WordPress wp-config.php file.

This allows you for example to use the config set command for a configuration file outside of the WordPress document root (and parent folder).

Keep in mind that you’re on your own when it comes to making WordPress understand the structure and bootstrap correctly!

Generate a dotenv file from your existing wp-config.php file

For all the 12-factor app fans out there, WP-CLI has learnt a new format for its config list command: --format=dotenv. This will take the existing configuration key/value pairs in your wp-config.php file and render them in a format that you can use in a .env file.

WP-CLI example of list the contents of the wp-config.php file into a file in dotenv format and then showing the result.

Combine with the previously mentioned --config-file to extract the dotenv file from an arbitrary location, even without a WordPress installation present.

Allow pluginPlugin A plugin is a piece of software containing a group of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They can extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress websites. WordPress plugins are written in the PHP programming language and integrate seamlessly with WordPress. These can be free in the WordPress.org Plugin Directory https://wordpress.org/plugins/ or can be cost-based plugin from a third-party/theme enumeration without forcing an update check

Previously, when you run plugin list or theme list, WP-CLI would automatically run a check in the background to see if updates are available. This is slow and expensive to do, and might not always be what is needed, especially in scripting scenarios.

This automatic check for updates can now be disabled for these two commands with the --skip-update-check flag. This can drastically speed up some scripts and make them more reliable.

New flag --strict for adapting the filtering of taxonomies by post type

When retrieving taxonomies for a given post type, the old default behavior of WordPress (through the use of get_taxonomies()) is to only show those taxonomies that have as a sole associated post type the requested one. Taxonomies that have multiple associated post types, including the requested one, are not returned.

WordPress had added a newer mechanism via get_object_taxonomies() that would return all taxonomies that are in some way associated with the requested post type, even if other post types are associated as well.

WP-CLI now has a new --strict flag for the taxonomy list command that defines whether the strict filtering (the old default) should be used, or the more sensible inclusive approach should be used via --no-strict (or --strict=false).

We’ve opted to make this new, more sensible approach (i.e. --no-strict) the new default, so be mindful of that if you’re using taxonomy list in a script somewhere.

Another round of improvements to the i18n * commands

As with all of the recent releases, the i18n * commands have received yet another round of overall improvements to keep in sync with the localisation requirements of WordPress Core.

From new flags like --subtract-and-merge, --update-mo-files & --location and multiple improvements to the way JavascriptJavaScript JavaScript or JS is an object-oriented computer programming language commonly used to create interactive effects within web browsers. WordPress makes extensive use of JS for a better user experience. While PHP is executed on the server, JS executes within a user’s browser. https://www.javascript.com/. syntax is parsed all the way up to the support for the new theme.json format, all your localization needs should be accounted for (at least for now).

Make your to check out the detailed logs to find out more and play around with the new functionality when you get the chance!

With super admin permissions come super admin consequences!

WP-CLI now mirrors the behavior of WordPress core and triggers various hooksHooks In WordPress theme and development, hooks are functions that can be applied to an action or a Filter in WordPress. Actions are functions performed when a certain event occurs in WordPress. Filters allow you to modify certain functions. Arguments used to hook both filters and actions look the same. when you grant or revoke the super admin status to users.

The following actions are being triggered now but the super-admin add & super-admin remove commands:

  • grant_super_admin (before changes, always executed)
  • granted_super_admin (after changes, executed only on success)
  • revoke_super_admin (before changes, always executed)
  • revoked_super_admin (after changes, executed only on success)

Changes to the default branches

In order to make the language used in the code and documentation of WP-CLI more inclusive, work has started to change the name of default branch across all repositories. From now on, the default branch name across the WP-CLI GitHubGitHub GitHub is a website that offers online implementation of git repositories that can easily be shared, copied and modified by other developers. Public repositories are free to host, private repositories require a paid subscription. GitHub introduced the concept of the ‘pull request’ where code changes done in branches by contributors can be reviewed and discussed before being merged be the repository owner. https://github.com/ organization is main.

This change is currently a work in progress, as it unfortunately causes open pull requests to be automatically closed and often become unsalvageable. The current progress of this effort can be monitored here: wp-cli/wp-cli#5598.

Keep this in mind when you want to check out the latest development state of a repository or contribute by creating a PR!

Detailed change log

To avoid too much noise in the list above, the following types of pull requests have been omitted:

  • PRs that only bumped dependencies to their latest version.
  • PRs that only fixed a typo in the documentation.
  • PRs that add an allow-plugins rule to Composer


  • Disable deployments on forks [#389]
  • DeployDeploy Launching code from a local development environment to the production web server, so that it's available to visitors. from main branch [#385]
  • Revert usage of Mustache fork [#373]
  • Use latest branch for Roave security advisories [#357]
  • Add DEB build workflow [#345]
  • Add RPM build workflow [#344]
  • Switch to dev-master for wp-cli framework [#333]


  • Adapt VERSION from 2.5.1-alpha to 2.6.0-alpha [#5605]
  • Fix Composer stack tests [#5599]
  • Detect and ignore BOMs [#5597]
  • Check github.repository_owner in automerge workflow [#5591]
  • Revert addition of the Mustache PHP 8.1 workaround and update dependency [#5590]
  • Use Mustache work-around for PHP 8.1 compat [#5588]
  • Use fork on schlessera for Mustache PHP 8.1 fix [#5587]
  • Re-add subcommands on all composite commands that are overwritten [#5584]
  • Fix default mysqli error reporting mode for PHP 8.1+ [#5582]
  • Add --context flag [#5581]
  • Make cache size and expiry configurable via environment variables [#5576]
  • Updated default branch for roave/security-advisories [#5575]
  • Fix wrong variable name used in argument parsing [#5564]
  • Fix regression that broke extending existing commands [#5563]
  • Add a SECURITY.md file [#5562]
  • Update credits [#5556]
  • Pass in arguments to before_run_command hook [#5554]
  • Change “Fake Site” site name to “WordPress” in core multisite-install command [#5552]
  • Add missing docblocks [#5551]
  • Make logger accessible and add colorization control to Quiet logger [#5549]
  • Fix OOM issues when exporting to STDOUT [#5546]
  • Allow WP_DEBUG_LOG to override the debug.log location [#5511]


  • Document the exec global parameter [#397]
  • Provide example of optional positional arguments [#390]
  • Added create table statement. [#389]


  • Update zh-cn translation file [#422]
  • Update build status badge [#416]
  • Fix quick links anchors in German translation [#415]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#72]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#89]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#135]
  • Document special EOF anchor [#136]
  • Add --config-file argument to process custom configuration files [#104]
  • Add dotenv format option to config get command [#102]
  • Escape values to avoid breaking them within single quotes [#95]
  • Update the wp-config.php template [#139]


  • Update download_package() function signature [#197]
  • Support case-insensitive filesystems when pruning files after update [#196]
  • Do not exit on error but pass on error [#193]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#77]
  • Adapt feature test to use HTTPSHTTPS HTTPS is an acronym for Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure. HTTPS is the secure version of HTTP, the protocol over which data is sent between your browser and the website that you are connected to. The 'S' at the end of HTTPS stands for 'Secure'. It means all communications between your browser and the website are encrypted. This is especially helpful for protecting sensitive data like banking information. with example.com [#78]
  • Promote a non-200 response from the cron spawn test to an error [#66]


  • Refactor --defaults flag handling [#205]
  • Adapt mysqldump message string to check for in tests [#201]
  • Set 'utf8mb4' when exporting without '--default-character-set' option [#199]
  • Add decimal numbers to wp db size [#163]
  • Add --defaults flag to remaining commands [#206]
  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#214]
  • Fix table existence check in db columns [#210]
  • Adapt feature test to use HTTPS with example.com [#216]
  • Fix “WP_DEBUG already defined” test failure [#220]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#65]


  • Support PHP 8.1 [#331]
  • Update example input to reflect example output [#326]
  • Document default post type filtering for post list command [#321]
  • Correct the home URLURL A specific web address of a website or web page on the Internet, such as a website’s URL www.wordpress.org when listing sites [#312]
  • Adapt http => https URLs [#339]
  • Add application password commands [#330]
  • Better error message when trying to delete super admin [#304]
  • Recalculate menu order on insertion or deletion [#275]
  • Add strict/no-strict mode for taxonomyTaxonomy A taxonomy is a way to group things together. In WordPress, some common taxonomies are category, link, tag, or post format. https://codex.wordpress.org/Taxonomies#Default_Taxonomies. list [#256]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#60]


  • Ensure post attachment meta is exported correctly [#89]
  • Only add needed user when filtering by --author [#88]
  • Adapt tests [#87]
  • Fix categoryCategory The 'category' taxonomy lets you group posts / content together that share a common bond. Categories are pre-defined and broad ranging., tag and term names missing in export [#86]
  • Add the_title_export filter and cdata for item title to export [#77]
  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#93]
  • Adapt feature test to use HTTPS with example.com [#94]


  • Fix test issues [#293]
  • Fix incorrect examples [#290]
  • Check for WP_Error on bulk updates [#294]
  • Add support for PHP 8.1 [#306]
  • Replace one-time-login with a sample plugin in the tests [#302]
  • Add --skip-update-check flag to plugin list and theme list commands [#300]
  • Ensure bundled themes don’t interfere with update tests [#311]


  • Fix tests [#268]
  • Add subtract-and-merge flag [#267]
  • Use more inclusive language in argument description [#266]
  • Add new --update-mo-files flag to make-json [#265]
  • Add new --location flag to omit source code references [#264]
  • Add ext-mbstring to list of suggested dependencies [#263]
  • Prevent adding JS comments to multiple strings [#261]
  • Fix string extraction when using template literals [#260]
  • Update version constraint for mck89/peast [#259]
  • Fix plural extraction in JS [#258]
  • Remove now unneeded workaround in JS scanner [#256]
  • Extract strings for translation from theme.jsonJSON JSON, or JavaScript Object Notation, is a minimal, readable format for structuring data. It is used primarily to transmit data between a server and web application, as an alternative to XML. [#254]
  • Fix string extraction from block.json [#253]
  • Add support to IterableCodeExtractor for symlinks. [#249]
  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#293]
  • Add new field to translate in theme.json [#292]
  • Fix JS string extraction with unsupported argument type [#296]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#71]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#111]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#20]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#153]
  • Add missing intermediate_image_sizes_advanced filter argument for WP 5.3+ [#150]


  • Only allow secure Composer versions [#144]
  • Support PHP 8.1 [#143]
  • Fetch default branch for GitHub packages [#146]
  • Support common default development branches [#148]


  • Update TTY checks [#145]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#54]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#49]


  • Fix testing on WordPress trunk version [#297]
  • Ignore .github directory in .distignore [#295]
  • Allow for diverging PHPUnit version specifics in tests [#304]
  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#301]


  • Fix offset handling when doing chunked replacements [#162]
  • Add strict comparisons for color tests [#163]
  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#166]
  • Adapt feature test to use HTTPS with example.com [#167]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#72]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#58]


  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#48]
  • Trigger core actions when granting or revoking super-admin permissions [#20]


  • Append new widgets to the bottom of a sidebarSidebar A sidebar in WordPress is referred to a widget-ready area used by WordPress themes to display information that is not a part of the main content. It is not always a vertical column on the side. It can be a horizontal rectangle below or above the content area, footer, header, or any where in the theme. [#52]
  • Decouple tests from default theme widgets [#51]
  • Add PHP 8.1 support [#53]


  • Adapt tests for polyfilled test case [#36]


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#release, #v2-6-0