The version 3.9 update of the Uncanny Groups for LearnDash plugin includes some interesting updates that may really transform how the tool is used by some customers. Given the magnitude of the changes, this is also one that we recommend testing on a Staging site first.
Let’s jump right in to what’s new in the release and how it might affect your site.
BuddyBoss Social Group sync
You asked, we listened. A lot of people use the BuddyBoss theme and platform with our Uncanny Groups plugin. BuddyBoss does include a sync tool for LearnDash groups, but it doesn’t work properly when users are added or removed from groups managed by our plugin. It also doesn’t sync LearnDash groups created with our plugin to new BuddyBoss groups.
So, in the Uncanny Groups 3.9 release, here’s what’s new if LearnDash Group Sync and Auto Create Social Group settings are enabled in BuddyBoss > Integrations > LearnDash on a BuddyBoss site:
- When a LearnDash group is created by the Uncanny Groups plugin, an associated BuddyBoss social group is created.
- When a user is added to a group from the Group Management page in our plugin, the user is added to the associated BuddyBoss group. If the user is a student they are added as a “Member”. If the user is a Group Leader they are added as an “Organizer”. This works for adding single users, adding multiple users and adding users via CSV import.
- When users are removed from a group from the Group Management page, they are removed from the associated BuddyBoss social group.
- When users are added or removed by an administrator from the LearnDash edit group page, we sync the change to the associated BuddyBoss group.
If you use BuddyBoss groups, these changes are probably a very welcome surprise. All of these behaviours are automatic and based on the settings in BuddyBoss only; there are no settings to change in Uncanny Groups to add this support.
Support for semicolon delimited CSV files
For non-English users of our plugin, your Group Leaders can now export CSV files from Excel and have them work without having to change region settings or use something like Google Sheets. (For some regions and languages, Excel automatically exports CSV files with a semicolon delimiter instead of a comma, but previously our user import only support comma delimiters.)
Performance improvements for LearnDash Groups
One of our developers took his frustrations with LearnDash performance on sites with a lot of groups and turned it into a new performance tweak. By default, the list of groups in LearnDash LMS > Groups in /wp-admin/ shows a column that includes a count of the number of users, courses, and Group Leaders in a group. On sites with a lot of groups, these lookups can slow down load times to show groups a lot and the information isn’t always necessary. We ended up including the option to turn the column on or off if people don’t need it, and by doing that, sites with a lot of groups will see a big performance increase (with the compromise, of course, being that the data is no longer output in the group list).
Show legacy LearnDash group data
In recent versions of our plugin (including this one) we have improved the performance of Uncanny Groups reports and key generation. For ProPanel users, there were a handful of situations where data in our reports would not exactly match ProPanel; this was due to LearnDash storing progress and enrollment data in multiple locations in the database. This was usually corrected by running the Course and Course Access List upgrades from LearnDash LMS > Settings > Data Upgrades, but we wanted to provide an option for users to choose the slower (but from sources matching ProPanel) report generation option.
Uncanny Groups 3.9 updates and fixes
Details of all updates are of course in the full changelog, but we wanted to draw your attention to a few highlights that you might notice as you use the plugin:
- LearnDash recently changed how new assignments are named to make them more unique, but this in turn created formatting issues in our Assignments report since we listed the full file name. We have no changed file names to a View link instead.
- The list of courses on the Group Management page is now ordered alphabetically.
- Group keys are now deleted when a group is deleted, even if WooCommerce is not active (there were some scenarios where deleted groups might still have orphaned keys stored in the database).