WordPress 3.9 Update

WordPress Version 3.9, code-named “Smith” in honor of jazz organist Jimmy Smith, was released to the public on April 16, 2014. WP 3.9 provides a smoother media editing experience for users.

WordPress, the world’s leading web publishing platform and content management system just keeps getting better.

WordPress Version 3.9, code-named “Smith” in honor of jazz organist Jimmy Smith, was released to the public on April 16, 2014. This version aims to close the gap between editing and publishing content, and focuses on providing a smoother media editing experience for users.

If you currently use WordPress to power your website, you will see an update message inside your WP dashboard when you next log in …

WP3.9 Changes

WarningRemember to always back up your WordPress files and database before upgrading!

If you need help updating your WordPress site to the latest version or backing up your site, please refer to these step-by-step tutorials:

According to the official WordPress 3.9 release announcement, the new WordPress version features the following:

  • A smoother media editing experience.
  • Improved visual editing – speed, accessibility, and mobile support. You can paste content into the visual editor directly from your Word processor software (e.g. Microsoft Word) without having to clean up any hidden styling code junk.
  • Edit images easily – quicker access to crop and rotation tools, scale images directly in the editor.
  • Drag and drop your images right onto the editor
  • Image gallery previews right in the editor
  • Showcase music and clips with simple audio and video playlists
  • Live widget and header image previews in the Customizer
  • Stunning new theme browser

WordPress 3.9 - Improved Visual And Media Editing

WordPress 3.9 - Gallery Previews

WordPress 3.9 - Audio And Video Playlists

WordPress 3.9 - Live Widget And Header Previews

WordPress 3.9 - New Theme Browser

WordPress 3.9 – What’s New

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Below is a list of some of the new changes, fixes and improvements made to WordPress in version 3.9.


  • The “update” message has been restored to the dashboard


  • Add “Return to post editor” link from Revisions screen
  • A “View Post” link will now show for any post an author can read
  • Distraction Free Writing mode is now responsive to any size device


  • Edit images from the Add Media modal
  • Improvements to the “Attach Media” pop-up interface
  • Better support for auto-playing videos
  • Drag and Drop files into the editor
  • Full-screen Drag and Drop zone in Distraction Free Writing
  • oEmbed support added for imgur and meetup.com


  • Small improvements to comment administration screens, link colors, language tweaks


  • Widget Customizer management
  • Upload header images with cropping in the Customizer
  • Improved theme install workflow


  • Admin auto-complete improvements
  • Make sure the “Send this password to the new user by email” toggle option value is remembered


  • Improved focus styles for form elements throughout the admin
  • Keyboard accessibility added for theme install screen and theme action buttons

Install Process

  • Make it easier to customize the install process
  • Passwords with apostrophes are no longer allowed on installation

A number of technical fixes and improvements were also made to WordPress. For more details about these, visit the official WordPress v3.9 release page here: WordPress 3.9

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Martin Aranovitch is the founder of WPCompendium.org and the author of The Small Business Digital Manager. WPCompendium.org provides hundreds of FREE tutorials that show you how to use WordPress to grow your business online with no coding skills required! Get our FREE "101+ WordPress Tips, Tricks & Hacks For Non-Techies" e-course with loads of useful WordPress tips!

Originally published as WordPress 3.9 Update.