Fixing Bugs

A great way to contribute to the development of WordPress is to help 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. bugs. Having a good working knowledge of PHPPHP The web scripting language in which WordPress is primarily architected. WordPress requires PHP 5.6.20, 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., or CSSCSS Cascading Style Sheets. is recommended.

First, if you have found a bugbug A bug is an error or unexpected result. Performance improvements, code optimization, and are considered enhancements, not defects. After feature freeze, only bugs are dealt with, with regressions (adverse changes from the previous version) being the highest priority. in WordPress, please makemake A collection of P2 blogs at, which are the home to a number of contributor groups, including core development (make/core, formerly "wpdevel"), the UI working group (make/ui), translators (make/polyglots), the theme reviewers (make/themes), resources for plugin authors (make/plugins), and the accessibility working group (make/accessibility). sure you report it. Please search Trac first to see if the bug has already been reported before creating a new ticketticket Created for both bug reports and feature development on the bug tracker..

Once you’ve either found an existing TracTrac An open source project by Edgewall Software that serves as a bug tracker and project management tool for WordPress. ticket or created a new ticket for the bug, you can get to work.

If you want to help, but don’t know which bugs to fix, review the Finding Bugs to Fix section below.

Overview Overview

WordPress uses Subversion for source control. You will want to check out a working copy of WordPress using a Subversion client (such as Tortoise SVNSVN Subversion, the popular version control system (VCS) by the Apache project, used by WordPress to manage changes to its codebase. on Windows, using the command line on Mac and Linux). For more, read the Subversion article.

One of the many benefits to using a version controlversion control A version control system keeps track of the source code and revisions to the source code. WordPress uses Subversion (SVN) for version control, with Git mirrors for most repositories. system is that you can create a simple text file, called a patch, that shows exactly what you’ve changed – the lines of code you added, modified, and removed. A patch is also called a diff, for differences.

If you are not familiar with how WordPress is written and organized, read the article on the WordPress Codebase.

Once you’ve figured out how to fix the bug by modifying WordPress coreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress. files, you should create a patch. Review the Creating a Patch documentation.

Once you’ve created a patch, upload it to the Trac ticket using the Attach file button, and add has-patch to the workflow keywords. Please don’t overwrite any existing, previous patches.

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Finding Bugs to Fix Finding Bugs to Fix

If you want to fix bugs in the core parts of WordPress, but don’t know what to fix, here are some suggestions on finding one:

  • Try starting with tickets that have been tagged with the ‘good-first-bug’ keyword. They’re great for getting familiar with the process before attempting to solve more complicated problems.
  • Look through the ticket report for the latest release, in particular the Needs Patch group.
  • Look through the ticket report for “early” tickets. These tickets have been marked by contributing developers as needing attention early in the WordPress releaseRelease A release is the distribution of the final version of an application. A software release may be either public or private and generally constitutes the initial or new generation of a new or upgraded application. A release is preceded by the distribution of alpha and then beta versions of the software. cycle. Generally, this means a trusted core contributor has shown interest in it, “blessing” the ticket to a certain extent.
  • Look through the Awaiting Review report. These tickets have not yet been slated for the next release of WordPress, but if a developer takes an interest in it, that can change.
  • There are individual reports of tickets for a number of specialized areas: you may be interested in writing unit tests (see Automated Testing), working on or providing feedback for user interfaces and user experiences, tickets of interest to the mobile development team, and tickets requiring more documentation in the Codex.
  • If you are interested in tickets from a particular component, you can use the Query feature of Trac. For example, all open XML-RPC tickets, all open Multisite tickets grouped by milestones, and all open Accessibility tickets.
  • The WordPress development team has daily discussions on bug triagetriage The act of evaluating and sorting bug reports, in order to decide priority, severity, and other factors., and weekly project meetings. For dates and times, see the 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. on Make WordPress Core.
  • Consider joining the wp-trac mailing list to follow the discussions in every Trac ticket. Also follow along on Make WordPress Core, and potentially other Make WordPress blogs.

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