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[forty-two!] minus nineteen: well, at least i have a system now

centaur 0

Recently, when digging through old posts, I was reminded that Classic Editor posts are broken in WordPress – all the paragraph breaks are gone, and the content is mashed up into one grey wall of text. Thanks, WordPress, for forcing everyone to switch to a worse editing experience AND breaking all our old content.

[hang on a second, i have to start clicking around at random places on the page to try to find the widget or control that will let me start typing again after inserting an image, because software USABILITY has been replaced by “user experience” folks from a graphic design background who have mistaken making things LOOK GOOD IF THEY HAD BEEN PRINTED for the very different ACTUALLY WORKING WELL AS A TOOL – I’m looking at you, WordPress Gutenberg, Dropbox Paper, and everything like you where you have to hover or click or click and select and hover random parts of the page to make it work. Okay, I can start typing again.]

[[ and yeah it just did it again while i was just fricking typing ]]

Ok we’re back.



Anyhoo, I have like a thousand old posts (1371 published, according to the dashboard), but the block converter for fixing these no longer works. I wish I had discovered this problem earlier, but I just didn’t expect to have to do blog archaeology when I moved to Gutenberg.

Regardless, however, I now have a system. I open the All Posts page on the WordPress dashboard, and scroll backwards in time until Classic Editor posts start showing up – nice that they provide that nudge to get us to use the new editor, isn’t it. Once I find some Classic Editor posts, if you hover – AAAAARRRRRGH, don’t mind me – I say, if you hover, you get the option to open with the Block Editor. FORTUNATELY, this is ACTUALLY a link and not a bizarre Javascript pseudo-button – Good WordPress, Good WordPress, have a cookie – and a right click will allow you to open this in a NEW WINDOW.

SO! I go down one entire page of results, opening them in a new window, until I’ve hit all the Classic Editor posts on that page. This creates a gazillion tabs, true, but then you can click on each tab in turn, and there’s a simple three-click process which will activate the block editor, convert the old text, and – BAM! – update. Optionally, one more click will bring up the updated post so you can doublecheck it before closing the tab.

The process is laborious – but it’s easy to get a whole page full of results at a time, and you can’t easily lose your place, as you close your tabs as you go. I’ve gotten through 3 pages of results so far, each with 50 posts, so I’ve updated probably something north of 150 pages.

There are 25 more pages of posts to go, but it doesn’t take more than 30 minutes, so I can do one a day for about a month and rescue all the old pages.

A lot of work … but at least I now have a system.

-the Centaur

Pictured: The House With The Impressive Tree In The Front Yard, found in a nearby neighborhood, as photographed in Night Mode on my Android phone during a walk with my wife.

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