Upfront Editor versus Upfront Builder


I am working to create a new theme for my client. I think what I have discovered is that I am working in Editor versus Builder. Please clarify for me what the difference is and how and why each is accessed. For example, if I use the top menu bar Upfront, I have learned this is the Editor. Whereas, if I use the Dashboard option Upfront, and then select Builder, I have learned this is the Builder.

I believe that when I thought I was saving changes to my theme by using the Editor choice, I was merely making modifications to that theme and not updating it. Is this true?

Best Regards-

  • Dimitris

    Hey there Becky Bruso,

    hope you're having a beautiful day! :slight_smile:

    UF Editor which comes with every UF child theme, stores all settings into the database, making these changes site-specific. It can be triggered via the admin top-bar "Upfront" link and should be used to site-specific modifications and content wise stuff.

    UF Builder plugin now, it store every change in files (either in a new created child theme or in the files of the child theme that you edit). These changes aren't site-specific and can be carried over into another installation by exporting/installing the child theme. It can be triggered via Upfront -> Builder.

    I believe that when I thought I was saving changes to my theme by using the Editor choice, I was merely making modifications to that theme and not updating it.

    It could be possible to think that you're using Builder while you were on Editor as they share the same design even though the have some differences in their functionalities. This is already pointed out to our dev team and we may see some design changes between them.
    As for now, you can distinguish these as Editor is using a URL like "yourdomain.com/?editmode=true" and upon saving you see a message like "Saving...", while Builder is using a URL like "yourdomain.com/create_new/uf-luke-and-sara" and upon saving you got a message like "Exporting layout..." :wink:

    Hope that was some help, feel free to post back here is more assistance if required!
    Warm regards,

  • Dimitris

    Hey Becky

    I want to delete the changes I made with the editor and keep all my edits purely at the theme level. Is there a way to do this?

    You can do so if you navigate to Upfront -> General and under the "Debug Options" click the "Reset Theme" button. After doing so, also click the "Reset Upfront cache". :wink:

    If you can't find the "Debug Options" options, go to Upfront -> User restrictions, ensure that "Can See/Use Debug controls" are set for your user role and click on "Save changes" either way. Then the "Debug Options" should be visible. :wink:

    Warm regards,

  • Robert

    Hi Dimitris,
    Great answer. I wish we could get this info in docs. It would save us a lot of time.
    I'd have a question too in this discussion.
    If we want to create a page layout for one site only we would head for UF Editor.
    If we need a certain page layout (e.g. with vertical menu on left sidebar) on one group of pages we would do this with creating a new page template. Can we do this with UF Editor?
    As I was able to investigate, page templates are only changeable in UF Builder. Therefore if we need customized positions of a menu on the page, we have to use a UF Builder.

    And one more question: Are Spirit, Fixer, Scribe and others already child themes of Upfront theme?If they are we don't have to create child themes of them if we want to change them, don't we?
    Thank you.


  • Dimitris

    Hello there Robert,

    hope you're doing good today! :slight_smile:

    UF Builder can be used to create default page templates, as shown here
    and better illustrated in the Templates Hierarchy here

    These will be the default templates that new pages (or virtual pages/endpoints) are going to inherit. Here's how to edit a template in the file-level via Builder:

    Having said, let's go to UF Editor now. It's used to make site specific changes, including layouts. These layouts are not the same as above page templates (theme files), but are getting stored in database and it's the way UF has to store different layouts per page.
    So despite the page template it's being used, you can make some changes into a specific page based on that and create a new layout template (not page template) and then use it in other pages too. Here's the corresponding settings in UF Editor:

    Hope that was some help! If you have more queries about Upfront, and as this is a thread of another member who is still getting email notifications about new replies here, please do reach us in our live chat support page here https://premium.wpmudev.org/live-support/

    Also our introduction course can be helpful for you (keep in mind that's free of charge as long as you're a WPMUDEV member!):

    Warm regards,

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