update plugin marcus green moodle

Marcus Green, from York St John University, was one of the presenters at the IEUK Moot in 2016. He recognized that, when Moodle comes out with a new major revision, that update tends to “break” to one degree or another existing plugins. Marcus took the opportunity of the Moot to present on the topic of how to update a plugin for Moodle 3.0. Specifically he looked at the Question Practice Activity plugin.

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Check out the video of his presentation below, followed by a summary of key points:

In this presentation Marcus covers:

  • He first talked about how he discovered the plugin needed to be updated, by simply installing it in Moodle 3.0 and receiving the error messages
  • The difficultly level and different between creating a plugin from scratch and updating an existing plugin
  • The importance of checking github to make sure updates don’t already exist that just haven’t been published on the Moodle plugin database
  • First step: put the plugin in github (and why this is important)
  • Next: you need a development environment like XAMPP/WAMPP/MAMP/LAMP and X-debug
  • Why you need an integrated development environment (he uses netbeans, but phpstorm is also pretty good)
  • How to turn on debugging in Window
  • What logging is and why its important
  • The things you tend to forget, like backup and export, incrementing version numbers and sanity check strings
  • What to do with non working code
  • Examples of the types of enhancements you can implement
  • Making sure you test with many different themes (especially Essential)

Check out the whole presentation here.

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Have you ever updated a plugin? Tell us about your experience in the comments below!

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