By Dmitry Kann 5 min read
This post  in Russian

In the run-up to Christmas, an exciting new version Comentario 3.1.0 has been released!

Comentario is a fast and powerful free comment server for web pages, written in Go.

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas (AI-generated image).
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas (AI-generated image).

What’s new

There’s been a number of changes in this release, and the most noteworthy ones are as follows.

Gravatar support

Gravatar has become a de-facto standard for low-maintenance user profiles. You register on the service once, add an avatar image, and it will automatically appear on every other website that supports it. From now on, Comentario’s on that list, too.

Users were already able to upload a custom avatar in their profile, this upgrade adds the Download from Gravatar button:

Gravatar button in User Profile.
Gravatar button in User Profile.

There’s more: if Gravatar is enabled in Comentario Configuration, it will also be downloaded automatically upon registration, and updated whenever the user logs in.

This setting will also enable automatic avatar fetching for users imported from Commento or WordPress (but not Disqus, because its export lacks user email information).

Import from WordPress

Following up on the subject of import, 3.1.0 adds support for importing comments and commenters from WordPress. WordPress is arguably one of the most popular website engines, and now Comentario is able to load its RSS (a.k.a. WXR) data dump.

The Domain Import screen has also got a facelift:

Domain Import page, with WordPress source selected.
Domain Import page, with WordPress source selected.

Moreover, Comentario now supports direct import from .gz and .zip archives, as well as from uncompressed files. It can also handle .zip archives containing folders.

Markdown improvements

We’ve switched the Markdown parser engine from (the seemingly discontinued) Blackfriday to the fast, flexible, standard-compliant goldmark library.

Among other things, this change enables for a better control over the used Markdown features.

One of them is so-called hard line breaks: a line break in the comment text will now be properly rendered in HTML:

Twinkle, twinkle
Little star

will make two lines, and not one as before:

Twinkle, twinkle
Little star

HTML sanitizing has been largely improved. The rendered HTML will now only contain a restricted subset of enabled tags.

The Comment Deletion dilemma

Historically, any deleted comment in Comentario was only marked as such, and its text removed, but it would still be visible in the comment list. The main reason for that was preserving any replies to that comment.

Commento, the predecessor to Comentario, had a special data-hide-deleted tag attribute to completely hide removed comments on a page, but that seemed a poor design decision. To encourage consistent behaviour, it should be configured either globally, or at least on a domain level.

That problem belongs in the past now. The new release provides several options for handling of deleted comments.

Configuration setting

The Show deleted comments setting controls whether deleted comments are shown in the comments list. Its default state is On, which is compatible with the previous behavior.

When set to Off, a deleted comment will be hidden in the comment tree immediately, as well as all its child comments.

The Show deleted comments switch.
The Show deleted comments switch.

This switch doesn’t affect comment display in the Administration UI, though, since it has a separate filter button for that.

Purge Comments operation

The Domain Operations page’s got a new Purge Comments button that will permanently remove all comments marked for deletion, as well as any replies to those comments.

Another option allows you to delete all comments by deleted authors (previously, those weren’t deleted either):

Purge Comments confirmation dialog.
Purge Comments confirmation dialog.

Removal options when deleting/banning user

When the user is about to delete their profile, there are new options that control their “legacy” in the service:

Delete Account confirmation dialog.
Delete Account confirmation dialog.

The user can opt to mark all their comments as deleted, or to remove them permanently (including replies).

Exactly the same options are also available in the Administration UI when banning or deleting a user.

Ban User confirmation dialog.
Ban User confirmation dialog.

Snippet attribute editor

The Domain Properties page has now a special Options button that reveals a form helping you configure the HTML snippet used to render comments:

HTML snippet option editor.
HTML snippet option editor.

Maximum nesting level

An attentive reader will have noticed a new setting on the above screenshot: the Maximum visual nesting level. It affects the way nested comments are rendered and defaults to 10. It doesn’t limit the actual comment nesting level, only how they are displayed.

Here’s an example of a comment tree with the maximum level set to 2:

Comment tree with max. two levels.
Comment tree with max. two levels.

… And More

Other changes include:

  • User avatar display on the User Properties page (Admin UI).
  • Commenter Signup dialog now enforces strong passwords.
  • Fixed image rendering in comments so that it’s never wider that the comment itself.
  • Fixed statistics display so that it doesn’t take deleted comments into account.
  • Numerous other bugfixes.

See CHANGELOG for a complete list of changes.

Live Demo

You can see the new version, as well as its Administrative UI (login with email admin@admin and password admin), on the demo website:

Comments Live Demo Administrative UI Demo


If you’re interested in trying out Comentario, you can start with these documentation pages:

There’s more to come — stay tuned!

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