[wp-hackers] Plugin Settings Menu Location

Alexander Beutl xel at netgra.de
Wed May 14 23:29:53 GMT 2008

>A user knows what plugins they have and have not activated
Users don't know anything they only use stuff. They do not care how the
admin made things working they just use them. If you can not understand this
you never set up a blog for a client - but maybe you would be able to
imagine a client is happy enogh if he just finds what he'd search under
manage right there at manage.

> > Something else to consider is the weight of precedent: almost all of
>> the popular plugins I can think of...
>... do it the wrong way. Insert "jump off a bridge" analogy here.
Ok - Matt has made WordPress the #1 Blogging Platform in the world all by
himselfe. It wasn't the comunity nor the plugin builders. /irony-off
You say all those plugin builders are wrong? Where would WP be without them?
Not nearly where it is now - so they can not be such wrong at all nor did
they jump off a bridge.

>my plugin configuration pages are going into the plugins menu.
Please do me a favor and overthink this issue when you create a plugin where
a 'user' (not admin!) needs to be able to manage or write anything. I do not
give admin-login to my clients and I don't allow the plugin menu for them.
It is fine to add pages like the one of akismet there, since they are
PluginSetup and will never be needed again. Sometimes I allow settings -
sometimes I don't. If I do not I wouldn't want one to mess around with the
settings and therefor wouldn't want any settings somewhere else. If I do
allow them, but do not allow plugins I want exactly this: Don't change
plugins, do not install/deinstall them and do not start managing them. But
if you want - change the options.

You know: The menu also deals with the permissions and therefor one really
needs to think it over what a pages really does and one should add it to the
right menu...

>I think that some kind of standard should be
>established so that when an admin or a user wants to change a setting,
>they know where to go to do that

Standards are nice as long as there is something which can fit into
standards rules. Since WP Plugins do totally different stuff and hook into
everything WP offers they need to spread the menues around just like they
spread features.

The recommendation is: Think about what you do before you do it and ask
yourselfe where someone would actually search for something. If you only
have settings it should be obvious. If you have an installation routine you
wouldn't even need a menu entry - if there would be any possibilities to ask
the admin for some installation data which wouldn't need to change at any
time. This would be a nice feature!

Another one is: Put your stuff where the users which should be able to use
it will be able to do and there where users which shouldn't aren't able to.
The last one can easily be dropped, since it is easy to check permissions
and die if they aren't met. The first one can not since when there is no
"plugin" menu you can not access any "plugin menu pages". No matter how hard
you try. Therefor you shoulnd't place anything which an editor, author or
contributor would need access to inside plugins menu obviously - no matter
if it is part of a plugin or not.


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