WordPress 5.8 is here. Widgets editor is now block-based widgets editor by default. This is huge improvement release and this gives users new ways to customize their sites using the rich library of core and third party blocks. Existing widgets and third party widgets will continue to work and can be used alongside blocks. In most cases, users might need to restore the classic widget editor and disable the widget block editor.

Here are the three ways to restore classic widget editor:

Using the Classic Widgets plugin

Classic Widgets is an official plugin maintained by the WordPress team that restores the previous (“classic”) WordPress widgets settings screens. It will be supported and maintained until at least 2022, or as long as is necessary.

With Classic Widgets plugin installed, the Widgets Block Editor can be toggled on and off by deactivating and activating the plugin. Users can keep using the Widget Options plugin.

Using a filter

The use_widgets_block_editor filter controls whether or not the Widgets Block Editor is enabled.

A site administrator may include the following PHP code in a mu-plugin to disable the Widgets Block Editor.

se_widgets_block_editor filter controls

A site administrator may add their own function. For example, the Widgets Block Editor is disabled for a specific user.

use_widgets_block_editor filter

Using remove_theme_support function

Themes may disable the Widgets Block Editor by calling remove_theme_support( ‘widgets-block-editor’ ).

A site administrator may add the following PHP code in functions.php file of the child theme.