Advanced Custom Fields v3 beta

With no custom tables, all the data is wp native which means better compatibility across servers / websites and other plugins. Beta testing will start shortly, after which, a RC version will be available, and then the full version via the wp plugins website.

Currently, there is no update script from v2 to v3. This is to avoid the many problems that come with updating data. Depending on how well beta testing goes, I will attempt to write an update script. For now, think of this as upgrading from Expression Engine 1.7 to 2.0, its a completely new build!

ACF v3.0.0 beta 2 will include an update script from v2.x to v3. Initial testing has shown very promising with 100% of data migration success! v3 will copy across all yoru acf data into the new format but the beta versions will not delete the old data. Please backup your database before running the upgrade. Thanks

How to help

You can help make ACF better by downloading and installing the v3 beta (link below). Please make a note of any problems you com across, then head over to the support forum category for v3 beta and create a topic with a good description of the problem. Please look to see if your problem has already been listed to save doubling up of topics.

Write like this:

I created a field group with a repeater of wysiwyg and images. I have assigned the group to a custom post type “Project” and a taxonomy of “Website”. When I add a new Project and select Website as a taxonomy, the fields don’t show up. I removed the taxonomy rule and tested adding a new project and it worked! I think there is a problem with the taxonomy rule. Thanks

Not like this

The taxonomy doesn’t work. You said it would. I’m going to use magic fields.

What’s new?

  • ACF doesn’t use any custom tables anymore! All data is saved as post_meta!
  • Faster and more stable across different servers
  • Drag-able / order-able metaboxes
  • Fields extend from a parent object! Now you can create you own field types!
  • New location rule: Taxonomy
  • New function: register_field($class, $url); (tutorial is on it’s way)
  • New Field: Color Picker
  • New WYSIWYG Options: Show / Hide media buttons, Full / Basic Toolbar buttons (Great for a basic wysiwyg inside a repeater for your clients)
  • Lots of bug fixes

What’s new in beta 3?

  • Text field decodes html entities for api (you can type in html into a text field and it will render as html when called via the api)
  • Text domain lang files are now named incorrectly (translations should work? maybe?)
  • Options page fancybox is working again
  • Default Values work (default now works with repeater sub fields!)
  • Upgrade script works with options values
  • Upgrade script works with repeater fields


Please find the links to download the v3 releases

Thank you for reading

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10 Oct 2011

Sounds great! I would really appreciate an update script though as I use this plugin on quite a few sites. One of which, has hundreds of posts that rely on it. It would be a real shame if these sites had to be stuck in v2 for all eternity.

Now that you’ve phased out custom tables, this won’t be a problem again will it?

Federico Schafer

10 Oct 2011

Hi Elliot! This is GREAT!! I have already bought the repeater addon and really love it.
Now this is really good news. I’ll check this new release out. The changes made are really really welcome.
I´ll be waiting for the register_field function tutorial !

Federico (from Argentina)

Ejub Bicic

10 Oct 2011

I will definitely help testing the beta and report bugs, I really love this plugin! You’re doing a great job! Hope you’ll have time to create a update script, I would donate if that’s what it takes, timesaver when you run the plugin on several wordpress sites. Thanks! And again, keep up the good work!

Ejub Bicic

10 Oct 2011

Thanks for the update script, perfect! I’m running wordpress 3.3 beta 1, should I still report bugs?


10 Oct 2011

The updater did not work on one of my sites. Not a big deal–the site wasn’t in production–but I thought I’d say something. All the data appears to be in the database, the site just isn’t recognizing it now.


10 Oct 2011

Hi Chris,

Thanks for the comment but did you read the section about “Write like this / Not like this” ???

I would appreciate it if you could post a topic on the support forum with a detailed explanation of your situation. You comment raises a lot of unanswered questions.

What didn’t work with the updater? What data seems to be in the database? How isn’t the site recognizing it? Did you notice new rows of data in the postmeta table? Any sign of things working? Do the field groups work? do the values appear? does anything work.

Christopher Wulff

10 Oct 2011

Love this plugin and the incredible pace of development! Great work.

I noticed in the announcements for WordPress 3.3 that they were now making their add/edit post editor available to plugin editors so you wouldn’t need to load your own. Is that something we’re likely to see included? I just find the visual/html tabs much easier to work with than the html box pop-up that strips any formatting.

Thanks again and I hope you’re developing something new that we can pay for. I’ve bought everything you’ve offered and this is still the steal of the year.


10 Oct 2011

Thanks mate. I’ll try to get the html tabs working in the new wordpress. The current wysiwyg api is pretty bad.


10 Oct 2011

Just successfully migrated a standalone site currently under development with over 4000 pages using ACF fields and repeaters throughout. The Metabox issue was making admin really tough, so pleased that is fixed, really looking forward to some detail on the customisation of fields.

Keep it coming!


10 Oct 2011

Woohoo! Mate, that’s awesome!


10 Oct 2011

Sorry, on further inspection the migration did not go that well, the pages I checked initially were all fine, but I am starting to find issues with some repeated fields not being available, I have uninstalled and restored from a back-up.

I have added more detailed comments to the bugs thread in the forum.


10 Oct 2011

Delighted to see active development continuing. My biggest feature request would be to be able to output the code for our custom meta boxes. A paid extension that could do this would be fantastic, as theme developers could design their meta boxes easily using ACF, output the code and add their custom meta boxes to their theme within functions.php, distributing their theme without any plugin dependencies etc.


10 Oct 2011

It’s definitely possible. I’ll look into it in the next update


10 Oct 2011

Looks like the main Post/Page editor breaks in WP 3.3 Beta 1, although there are a lot of big changes there with the new version of WordPress. Hopefully that doesn’t cause you too much of a headache.


10 Oct 2011

I’m 100% behind the order-able metaboxes, the main feature I thought was lacking from v2. A firm handshake to you.

Mike Rodriguez

10 Oct 2011

I have updated to version 3.0 on about 5 sites running ACF with repeater fields and the options page, the update script worked like a charm. Metaboxes are working fine. One small issue, is that with the color picker field, I select the color I want and the entire field turns that specific color, but when I publish the post, the field turns to white again, with the color code remaining intact. Is that even a bug, or is that how it’s just meant to be?

Either way, Great plugin and a great update. Where is there a donation link for the plugin?


10 Oct 2011

Cheers mate. No donation, just your support is much appreciated.
I’ll do some more testing on the color picker. Good feedback, thanks

Logan Greer

10 Oct 2011

I’m currently working on a site for a client, and it looks like ACF is EXACTLY what I need. Especially in it’s 3.0 iteration. Unfortunately, the site needs to be completed soon!

So I have two questions:

1) When is the proposed release date of v3.0?

2) If I develop the site with the v3.0b2, will it be updated (or updatable) when the final release comes out?

Marlus Araujo

10 Oct 2011

Great work!

Now that there is no custom table, is it easy to search, query, group and order posts by ACF fields?

Thank you for developing such an awesome plugin and the frequent updates!


10 Oct 2011


Is it possible to put a repeater inside a repeater? This is the single most wanted feature by our company.

I’m not sure if it’s not possible or if I missed something.

Adam D

10 Oct 2011

Sounds pretty cool 🙂
Nice to see the new version using post_meta so intergration should be a lot easier and cleaner!


10 Oct 2011

Elliot, you are amazing! No custom tables is simply fantastic news—now we’ll be able to import/export WXR files and still get to use ACF in all its glory. Thanks for all your hard work!

Holly Knott

10 Oct 2011

This looks great! One thing I’m confused about – is there a stylesheet associated with it? How does WordPress know where on a page to display these custom fields, what size to make them, etc.? Is that handled in the normal stylesheet?

Federico Schafer

10 Oct 2011

Hi Elliot. Some feedback from testing beta2:

I noticed that after activating the ACF and using it a bit, the regular custom fields drop down gets “poluted” with ACF meta_keys that could be hidden (with an “_” preceding its key in the code). Some examples ar “allorany”, “layout”, “position”, “rule”, “show_on_page”, “field_4e9f….”.

One small suggestion (also from previous releases): when adding a new field, you type the field label and when ACF automatically generates de field name (ID), it does not replace accented characters like á, é, í, ó, ú that are really common in Spanish and other languages. This usually leads to accidentally have IDs with invalid characters.
It would be great if ACF would replace them with ther equivalent unaccented (á -> a, é -> e…).

Hope this helps a bit. Sorry for my English.

Your plugin is GREAT. Keep your outstanding work.




10 Oct 2011

Hello Elliot,

Awesome plugin keeps getting even better all the time, which is just GREAT! 🙂

I’m really looking forward this final release of 3.0 and hopefully you get all the small and little bigger bugs fixed away. My main concern at the moment are editor labels, which I’ve pointed out on support forum also(TinyMCE button labels and localization broken).

Sorry if I’m too pushy on this one, but since I don’t see it on ToDo -list, I’m a little pessimistic. Hope you understand 🙂

Anyway, good job and keep rocking to make this plugin one of the best on the market!


10 Oct 2011

Hi Elliot,
that is all great news! It will make ACF an even better plugin than what it already is!!!
Will download and start beta testing right away. Sticking for now with wordpress 3.2 until official release.


10 Oct 2011

I have installed beta 3 two days ago on a scratch project, and it works like a charm.
This seems quite normal, as issues in this new release should be in the data upgrading.

My remarks :

– I already use ACF in other project, and I am very pleased to see drag&order functionnality is back !

– I have not used WYSIWYG or color picker.

– I like the new Taxonomy rules, while it doesn’t perfectly fits my need :
I would love to be able to define “show when post_type is xxx and taxonomy is yyy or zzz”.
That is something to consider for a future development in my opinion.

– I just see we can now create our own field types : WAOOOOH !
I will test this anytime soon, but that’s is AWESOME !

Well to conclude, that’s a great piece of work your doing…
Thank you SO much.


10 Oct 2011

Admin Custom Columns doesn’t seems to work anymore for me.
I tested beta 2 & beta 3.
Does anyone experience the same or have a solution ?


10 Oct 2011

I have another bug issue with the Location Rules admin UI.

My failing setup is :
– Page Type is equal to Child Page
– Page Parent is equal to … {bugged dropdown} …

The drop down output is very strange, apparently it has my pages’ structure, but with the title label at each line. Therefore, I can’t manage to find & select the good parent page.

Do you experience the same ?

Gabriel Tadeu

10 Oct 2011

Hey Elliot, I’m testing the third version and i found a bug.

When i choose use the acf in a particular page children, the dropdown show the same name for all options:


10 Oct 2011

I think I found a new bug on the select field :
‘Allow Null?’ & ‘Select multiple values?’ options doesn’t save their value.
I am using latest beta 3.

By the way, I am still having trouble with the new Taxonomy Rule Location Option.
A new option ‘Taxonomy Hierarchy’ with : ‘is parent of’, ‘is child of’, ‘is equal to and child of’ extra set of options would be definitely so good, don’t you think ?


10 Oct 2011

I have installed ACF V.3 Beta with repeater activated.
I added a file field within a repeater field.
When I go to the Add Post Page I see the words “no file selected” with a Button “Add File”. However pressing the button does not do anything.

I’m Guessing this is a bug! Please Help.

James McKenzie

10 Oct 2011

Hey Elliot,

Version 3 beta 3 is looking really good! I’m so happy you’re using the built-in wordpress tables for storing custom field values. Its going to make my life so easy transferring all my custom fields I set up in other plugins over to ACF.

I run a multi-site that needs the same ACFs on each site. Are you planning on re-introducing the Import/Export feature?


Niall O'Brien

11 Nov 2011

I believe it’s on the roadmap – it a required feature in my opinion, as I like to dev on a local WP install, and then migrate changes to the live site.
Loving the plugin so far, using it in conjunction with Custom Post Type UI (Enhanced) with fantastic results. Thanks Elliot!

Everyone else, please log your bugs in the correct place:


11 Nov 2011

Can anyone help me ? When I click “upgrade database” nothing happens. I just get a blank screen. All of my wordpress options are in the left column, but the main part of my page just goes blank.

Also – when I go into the pages – there is no longer a wysiwyg editor. It just dissapeared – before trying to upgrade. I can’t get it back.

I even deleted the plug in – then re-installed it, and it is still asking for the database updgrade, and the previous fields for the acf plugin are still there…figured it would delete it completely, but it did not.

I am not a “pro” at php – this took me a very long time to get working in the first place…please feel free to email me directly c h a d m u s g r o v e @ l i v e . c o m.


11 Nov 2011

Hi, i just updated to the new version and all hell broke loose 🙁 I really need to know how can i solved this because after so much work…now its just frustrating..

I was using this code to get my post_objects : $local = get_post_meta($post->ID, ‘local’, true);

And $local return the post_object ID! With that i could get all data from that post object…but now it seems that it doesn’t return an ID anymore but an object like this: a:1:{i:0;s:4:”1411″;}

Because of that everything is broken now 🙁

Please help me solve this urgently!
Thanks u in advance


11 Nov 2011

Hi there,

thanks for this amazing plugin!

An amazing feature to add would be the possibility to create a search widget that scans through multiple ACF and retrieves the pages / post that match all search criteria.

There is currently no simple way of doing this and i think a lot of people could benefit from such an implementation!

In my scenario, i am trying to search properties and filted by number of guest properties can host, number of bathrooms, etc..

I have already posted in the support forum but i thought i’d share the idea here too!

Thanks again,



12 Dec 2011

We need taxonomy field!

Martin Tomov

12 Dec 2011

Hi Elliot,

Thank you for your great work on the ACF plugin. It really does a great job and saves a lot of time, especially the repeater. I see on the WP extend site it says “Compatible up to: 3.3”. Sorry for the stupid question but is it supported in 3.3 or is supported up to 3.3 (and the last WP release is not yet supported). I am asking you this before I upgrade all the sites I am using your plugin with just to ensure that all of the new things in WP Sony will be supported – like new single media button etc.

Thank you for your time and keep up the good work!



1 Jan 2012

Nice! Great work. Does this version includes revisions tracking for the custom fields ?


3 Mar 2012

Hi Elliot,

I have purchased your ACF 3.0 and I consider it a great plugin.
I have noticed a bug in the select field and I have notified it to you.
I have wrote you several email and I have also post a topic on the support forum with a detailed explanation of the issue but I never received a response.

Here you will find the post url:

Thanks in advance for your support.

Thanks again

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