Latest Easter Updates for UpdraftPlus and UpdraftCentral released

During the recent Easter holidays, the UpdraftPlus team have been working hard getting the latest updates out to our loyal customers. Our newest updates are for UpdraftPlus 1.16.12, UpdraftCentral 0.8.6 (Free) and UpdraftCentral 0.8.2 (Premium).

The latest update for UpdraftPlus includes the fix of an regression issue which caused PcIZip unzips to run slow. Thanks to this fix, we are confident that your experience with UpdraftPlus will be better than ever before.

Another new feature that we are excited to share is the new option that allows UpdraftCentral Premium users to suspend a site. There are numerous reasons that may require you to suspend a site; these can include the non-payment of hosting fees or even a violation of policies. With the latest UpdraftCentral update, you now have this option directly at your fingertips.

The changelog is as follows. We recommend the update for all users.

UpdraftPlus 1.16.12

  • FIX: Regression which caused PclZip unzips to be very slow
  • TWEAK: Add stream_meta to the list of log tables and tables not requiring search/replace

UpdraftCentral 0.8.6 (Free)

  • FIX: Fix fetching of updates fails if permissions fail on one site
  • TWEAK: Add parameters to some filters
  • TWEAK: Add specificity to some general CSS
  • TWEAK: Update bundled UUDRPC library to version 1.4.18
  • TWEAK: Backup status checks are now performed less often once a backup lasts longer than 3 minutes

UpdraftCentral 0.8.2 (Premium)

  • FEATURE: Add capability to suspend a site

 

 

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New and updated “How to use site-to-site WordPress Migrator” video released

UpdraftPlus Migrator is a powerful, easy to use and popular feature that enables users to clone or migrate a source WordPress site to a destination WordPress site in just a few minutes.

We are pleased to announce that a new and updated UpdraftPlus Migrator “how-to” video guide has now been released. As this was the most requested video on our YouTube channel, we are happy to provide Migrator users with a detailed guide to take you through the full process of migrating a WordPress site.

While there is an in-depth written Migrator guide, we know that many users prefer the visual and audio instructions that a video tutorial video provides. We always try to give as many different options for support and guidance as possible and hope that this new Migrator how-to video will be a useful helping-hand should you need any additional instruction.

Check out the video and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments section below; Also share with us any ideas you may have if you think there are any other how-to videos you would like to see.

 

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WP-Optimize announce release of new leading image compression feature

WP-Optimize announce release of new leading image compression feature

As mentioned in our previous preview blog, we have been hard at work developing a new image compression tool for the latest WP-Optimize 2.3.0 (free + paid) release. Our image compression service is an easy to use and handy imaging tool that allows you to quickly and easily optimise, compress and resize images on your website.

How the image compression option will look in WP-Optimize

As unnecessarily large website images can cause frustratingly slow website loading speeds, we identified the need for a new image compression tool within WP-Optimize. Large images can impact on a websites user experience, bounce rate and SEO performance, but with our new image compression options you can improve these factors without compromising quality.

How Image Compression Works

By using the best-in-class Lossy and Lossless compression techniques; WP-Optimize can offer massive savings in image file size and saves the new compressed file in your image library.

If you have a lot of images on your website, you can also use our bulk editing option to compress as many images as you want at the same time – or even set-up ‘Auto-Compress’, which enables you to set WP-Optimize to automatically compress your images as and when they are uploaded.

In order to achieve big savings and increase speed, WP-Optimize gives you the option of choosing either Lossy or Lossless image compression. When using image compression methods, you may find that there may be a slight loss in image quality, but rest assured it will hardly even be noticeable. The Lossy compression method can achieve greater space savings when compared to Lossless, but Lossless compression allows you to keep file data and the original image quality.

For more information on the difference between Lossy and Lossless compression and what kind of results you can expect with WP-Optimize, be sure to check out our in-depth recent blog on this subject.

WP-Optimize doesn’t limit you and will let you work with your favourite kind of images, allowing you to compress NG, JPG, GIF, BMP and TIF pictures up to 5mg in size. Our image optimisation service even allows you to backup your original files so you can quickly restore them in case you make a mistake or need the original full quality image.

You can also be assured that should you wish to remove the WP-Optimize plugin for whatever reason, your compressed images will remain unaffected, allowing you to keep all your new and original content and maintain full control over your website.

Be sure to let us know any feedback comments you may have in the comment section below.

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UpdraftPlus release latest update: Includes fixes for resuming an interrupted restore and Dropbox server issues

UpdraftPlus are happy to announce that we have released brand new updates for both the UpdraftPlus Free version (1.16.11) and UpdraftPlus Premium version (2.16.11).

As part of our efforts to continually improve UpdraftPlus, we have fixed the option of the user being able to restore the update from a point of error that was encountered during the restoring process. Issues that could occur during a restore might include a restore time-out, loss of connection or an unintended error. This option saves users time as you will not have to restart the restore process from the beginning again should you encounter an issue.

Another change we have made to the latest update includes a number of helpful tweaks to the Dropbox backup process. As users have had some issues with their servers using Dropbox, the update will hopefully help keep things running more smoothly and resolve these problems.

As well as this new feature, the latest update also come with several other fixes and tweaks to hopefully help improve your overall UpdraftPlus experience. .

The changelog is as follows. We recommend the update for all users.

  • FIX: Issue which prevented the downloader UI being removed during a manual entity download (regression)
  • FIX: Regression in 1.16.10 whereby restore resumptions did not correctly resume because the jobdata had not been loaded
  • TWEAK: Update UpdraftCentral description and internationalize strings
  • TWEAK: Handle HTTP/2 responses from Dropbox on some operations
  • TWEAK: Add a timeout on Dropbox quota look-up operations during backup, in response to cases of faulty outgoing HTTP proxies
  • TWEAK: The backup_finish() method should not have been private; could cause a harmless PHP abort when manually stopping a backup
  • TWEAK: Wrong variable context could cause failure of SFTP progress recording
  • TWEAK: Update to the current series (4.6) of yahnis-elsts/plugin-update-checker (paid versions), thereby inheriting improvements including suppressing some unnecessary background updates checks“`

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Lossy vs Lossless image compression – A guide to the trade-off between image size and quality

With the launch of WP-Optimize’s new smushing image compression feature, many people may be unaware of the advantages and disadvantages of the Lossy and Lossless compression methods. This blog will explain in detail what kind of results and savings you can expect to achieve with each compression format. 

Lossy Compression

 

 

 

 

 

 

The most popular image compression for most users is Lossy, which can be categorized as achieving greater space saving compression (compared to Lossless), but losses some of the data and image quality from the original image in the compression process. While you can save more data with Lossy, the data saving isn’t completely without cost, as with increased compression comes a slight increased degradation in the image quality and the inability to you reverse the compression, which results in the permanent loss of file metadata.

You should choose the Lossy method of compression If you are purely trying to reduce the size of your images and save data. But remember that the advantage of smaller files will be tempered by the small reduction in quality in your images and the permanent loss of metadata.

This isn’t to say that your new compressed image will resemble a digital camera photo from 2002 however. The image will still be very high quality and present as a professional and clear image, but you may start to get some compression artefacts appear with high levels of compression.

With Lossy compression enabled, the below image was compressed from 230.26 KB to 64.92 KB, giving an almost 75% reduction in size.

Original JPEG image

How image looks converted with Lossy compression

Original image zoomed in 300%

Lossy image zoomed in 300% – 230.26 KB to 64.92 KB, a 75% reduction in size

Lossy Summary

Pro – Can reduce the images to small sizes and save lots of file data, making your website load quicker and perform better.
Con – The smaller you make the file size, the lower the quality of your original image. Deletes original image data permanently.

Lossless Compression

Lossless is a term that refers to a class of data compression algorithms that compresses your image, but allows the original data to be restored and reconstructed from the compressed file data should you ever need it. Lossless compression differs to Lossy by maintaining the original image quality, while reducing the image data size by removing unnecessary meta-data from the submitted files (usually JPEG or PNG files). The main benefit of this type of compression is that the user has the ability to keep all the original data and revert to the original image, but can still achieve a smaller file size, without sacrificing image quality.    

As previously mentioned, one of the main benefits of Lossless compression is being able to keep and restore every single bit of data that was within the file after it is uncompressed. This is in contrast to Lossy compression, where metadata is not saved during the compression process and results in data being unable to be restored should you wish to reverse the compression.

As a Lossless image will only temporarily delete the file data, this allows it to be transferred quicker, which results in faster loading speeds for your website. While the amount of space you will save is not as much as if you were to use Lossy compression, it does give you higher quality images and the option to fully restore should you need it.

With Lossless compression enabled, the below image was compressed from 230.26 KB to 172.18 KB, giving just over 25% reduction in size.

Original JPEG image

Converted with Lossless compression. Every pixel is identical to the original image – only the file size is smaller

Original image zoomed in 300%

Lossless image zoomed in 300% – 230.26 KB to 172.18 KB, a 25% reduction in size

Lossless Summary 

Pro – Decreases image file size but maintains original quality of image. Full restoration of data available.
Con – Using Lossless compression results in larger files sizes in comparison to Lossy compression, which can result in slower loading speeds.

Custom

We understand that some users may wish to decide their own balance between maximum compression and best image quality. With the custom option, you can manually choose which settings your prefer for image compression and save them for future use.

Overall Compression Summary

Making a choice between Lossless or Lossy compression depends on what you want to achieve and what works best for your site and users. In general terms, if you have a website that needs to showcase high quality photographs (such as a wedding photography business), you should stick to Lossless compression as it will still display your images in their original highest quality. But if your site is for a local garage for example, where the highest quality images are not so important, Lossy compression could work best as original high quality photos are not essential to the success of your business.

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