I haven’t written much at all about the WordPress plugins that I typically use, but I would like to do that at some point. The Ozh’ Admin Drop Down Menu Plugin isn’t really one that I use much, but I did want to write something about it.
There are a ton of WordPress plugins out there as you very well know, and some are worthy of a review or at least a mention. I tend to go with the philosophy that the fewer plugins you’re running on your site the better. If there’s some functionality I need to add, I first look for a solution other than adding a plugin, and most times I am successful at this.
When I first got into WordPress, I basically loaded every plugin I could find! I know many of you who are new to WordPress probably do the same without thinking twice. In my opinion it’s better not to bog your site down with unnecessary plugins.
I was sitting here this evening taking a breather from some of my client work and thinking about what I could write a new post about. I happened to have come across the Ozh’ Admin Drop Down Menu Plugin today by accident and kinda like it, so figured I’d write a little something about it.
I’d say this one falls into the “it’s not absolutely essential” category, and is more about improving the user experience in the WordPress dashboard. I’ve used plugins before that restyle or reorganize the WordPress dashboard like the Fluency Admin Plugin for example. I loved this one for a while then for some reason came back to the standard WP Dashboard.
Ozh’ Admin Drop Down Menu Plugin
The Ozh’ Admin Drop Down Menu Plugin will replace your standard vertical WordPress admin menu that appears on the left side of the screen with a new compact horizontal menu at the top of the screen. I activated the plugin today on the site, and really like how it opens up more screen real estate when viewing the dashboard, comments, posts or any of the other elements in the admin area.
The plugin places all menu options at the top of the screen, with each sub-menu item appearing in a drop down list. I often find myself searching for the something like the “Pages” section even though I’ve seen it there a gazillion times but for some reason, my eyes just skip over it and I find myself moving the mouse pointer up and down trying to find it. Really strange. But after working with this plugin, it feels so much easier to find what I’m looking for. It might be the fact that the menu is now horizontal and I’m certain the drop down helps alot.
Ozh’ Admin Drop Down Menu Plugin Options
The plugin comes with numerous basic and advanced options. With the basic options you can change the color of the menu to pretty much any color you want, you can remove the famfamfam icons in the drop downs, or you can shrink the entire menu to a compact mode which will show only the icons and no text. This is just like the compact mode on the standard WordPress admin menu. Some of the advanced options allow you to remove the whole header bar to open up more screen space, you can break long menu lists and make top links clickable amongst other things.
One possible bug I noticed is that when viewing the comments page, it shows 178 pages of comments and I know I don’t have that many.
I’ve only been using the plugin for a day or so, but at this point, I’d give it a thumbs up. I’m not certain if it’s just a novelty and will wear off for me but time will tell. For now, I’m liking it and it’s helping me get to where I need to go a little faster and with less searching.
If you’ve used the plugin and have an opinion about it or just want to share your experience, go ahead and do so in the comments.
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