WordPress 3.6 introduced the new get_attached_media() function that makes it really simple to retrieve all media attached to a specific post.

Previously, if you wanted to retrieve the items attached to a post, you’d do something like this:

$args = array(
	'post_parent' => $post->ID,
	'post_type' => 'attachment',
	'post_mime_type' => 'image',
	'posts_per_page' => -1,
	'orderby' => 'menu_order',
	'order' => 'ASC',
$attachments = get_children( $args );

This is pretty straight forward, but WordPress 3.6 makes it even easier by letting us use the get_attached_media() function.

Retrieve all attached media, regardless of mimetype:

$attachments = get_attached_media( '', $post->ID );

Retrieve all attached audio files:

$attachments = get_attached_media( 'audio', $post->ID );

Retrieve all attached images:

$attachments = get_attached_media( 'image', $post->ID );

Retrieve all attached videos:

$attachments = get_attached_media( 'video', $post->ID );
  1. Elliott Richmond

    That replaces one of my oldest snippets of code, makes development a little cleaner too! is that last parameter right for video? mimetype image?

    • Pippin

      Whoops. Fixed. It was supposed to be “video”.

  2. Ajay

    It’s a great addition. Unfortunately, we’ll still need to wait for people to upgrade before deploying it across all plugins.

    • Pippin

      You could do something like this in your plugins:

      if( ! function_exists( 'get_attached_media' ) ) {
      	function get_attached_media( $type, $post ) {
      		// copy the core WP function here
  3. jax

    Nice. I’m wondering how to go about using this function to query for and display attachments within a particular custom taxonomy (associated with attachments). Any ideas?!

    • Pippin

      Can you elaborate a little more?

    • jax

      Cool. Let say we have a custom taxonomy ‘attachment-cats’ that is associated to attachments. Each tax term is something like cars, boats, planes, buildings etc etc. I have 2 possible desired outcomes. 1 show separate taxonomy based galleries on a single post page using attached images/media without having to insert gallery. 2 show show a list of posts that instead of using ‘featured image’ they would use an attached image within a particular taxonomy. I know there are work arounds to above but I’m trying to avoid using custom fields for certain things. Make any more sense?

    • Pippin

      So pulling images from the posts that are filed in specific terms?

    • Jax

      No, pulling the attachments themselves that are filed in custom tax terms and outputting them separately according to their term (for instance in separate tabs – as opposed to just showing every attachment). Taxonomy meta box can be added to the ‘edit attachment’ screen. I’ll take a stab at it – thought it might have been done already

  4. yeshe

    hi, is there a way to reorder images without creating and inserting a gallery?

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