WordPress 6.4 Development Cycle

WordPress 6.4 will be the third major release of 2023. The following release team and its cohorts are contributors who answered the call for leadership volunteers and interest. This release aims to galvanize participation and shared ownership for those that identify as gender-underrepresented in the WordPress open sourceOpen Source Open Source denotes software for which the original source code is made freely available and may be redistributed and modified. Open Source **must be** delivered via a licensing model, see GPL. project. 

This post is shared earlier than in past releases to encourage new contributors to engage now and shadow the 6.3 release and consider whether you, too, would like to join the merry 6.4 cohort of contributors.

Release team

All release decisions will ultimately be this release team’s to make and communicate while gathering input from the community.

Release Cohort 

The Release Cohort are those contributors who committed to assisting the release team and supporting the goal of the gender-underrepresented lead release by spearheading efforts in their respective focuses. All contributions from all community contributors are welcome, whether you are part of a cohort or can contribute to a single PR. 

Release Schedule

April 7, 20236.4 Pre-planning post.
June 5, 2023Developer Cycle post.
July 18-25, 2023Alpha Begins, Trunktrunk A directory in Subversion containing the latest development code in preparation for the next major release cycle. If you are running "trunk", then you are on the latest revision. is opened. 
September 26, 2023BetaBeta A pre-release of software that is given out to a large group of users to trial under real conditions. Beta versions have gone through alpha testing in-house and are generally fairly close in look, feel and function to the final product; however, design changes often occur as part of the process. 1. From this point on, core contributorsCore Contributors Core contributors are those who have worked on a release of WordPress, by creating the functions or finding and patching bugs. These contributions are done through Trac. https://core.trac.wordpress.org. will focus on testing and fixing bugs discovered during beta testing. Begin writing Dev Notesdev note Each important change in WordPress Core is documented in a developers note, (usually called dev note). Good dev notes generally include a description of the change, the decision that led to this change, and a description of how developers are supposed to work with that change. Dev notes are published on Make/Core blog during the beta phase of WordPress release cycle. Publishing dev notes is particularly important when plugin/theme authors and WordPress developers need to be aware of those changes.In general, all dev notes are compiled into a Field Guide at the beginning of the release candidate phase. and the About page (SlackSlack Slack is a Collaborative Group Chat Platform https://slack.com/. The WordPress community has its own Slack Channel at https://make.wordpress.org/chat/. archive, ZIP download).
October 3, 2023Beta 2. Test the beta release, fix bugs discovered during beta testing, and continue writing Dev Notes and the About page (Slack archive, ZIP download).
October 10, 2023Beta 3. Test the beta release, fix bugs discovered during beta testing, and continue writing Dev Notes and the About page (Slack archive, ZIP download).
October 17, 2023Release candidaterelease candidate One of the final stages in the version release cycle, this version signals the potential to be a final release to the public. Also see alpha (beta). 1. Publish the Field GuideField guide The field guide is a type of blogpost published on Make/Core during the release candidate phase of the WordPress release cycle. The field guide generally lists all the dev notes published during the beta cycle. This guide is linked in the about page of the corresponding version of WordPress, in the release post and in the HelpHub version page. with Dev Notes, commit the About page, begin drafting the release post, hard string freeze, and branchbranch A directory in Subversion. WordPress uses branches to store the latest development code for each major release (3.9, 4.0, etc.). Branches are then updated with code for any minor releases of that branch. Sometimes, a major version of WordPress and its minor versions are collectively referred to as a "branch", such as "the 4.0 branch". for the release. (Slack archive, ZIP download).
October 24, 2023Release candidate 2. Update the About page images and continue drafting the release post (Slack archive, ZIP download).
November 1, 2023Release candidate 3. Update the About page images and continue drafting the release post (Slack archive, ZIP download).
November 6, 2023Dry run for release of WordPress 6.4 and 24-hour code freeze (Slack archive).
November 7, 2023WordPress 6.4 is released (Slack archive, ZIP download)!

How to contribute

To get involved in WordPress core development, head over to TracTrac An open source project by Edgewall Software that serves as a bug tracker and project management tool for WordPress., and shadow a 6.3 ticket by subscribing to and watching how contributors patchpatch A special text file that describes changes to code, by identifying the files and lines which are added, removed, and altered. It may also be referred to as a diff. A patch can be applied to a codebase for testing., test, comment, and commit as part of the release cycle. Need help? Check out the Core Contributor Handbook.

If you want to dive deeper into the upcoming WordPress versions, join the weekly meetings in the #core Slack channel, which occur every Wednesday at 20:00 UTC, and the editor-focused meetings in the #core-editor Slack channel, every Wednesday at 14:00 UTC.