I think this change has made for a rather poor user experience.
Upon loading the page, the Available tab body displays "Plugin list is loading ...". When "done", instead of seeing the populated table it displays " Use the search field above to search for available plugins."
But experienced users are used to seeing a full list of plugins and react as OP did - "Hey something is missing!"
New users will have no idea what to search for. Even experienced users could be confused. Must you search by name, labels (what are the labels, where is the list ?), does it match descriptor ... ?
A user cannot be expected to scroll down the release notes (further w/every release) and find the reflected notes
" It no longer shows all available plugins by default; use search field to find plugins. They are now sorted by popularity by default."
provides little guidance without reading the PRs and issues; most people don't even scroll the LTS notes!
The Managing Plugins Documentation page is not updated to reflect the new UI either.
- Provide a help icon beside the search box with a detailed search explanation (Similar as on other pages (configure, job, etc.))
- Documentation - Update the Managing Plugins page to reflect new usage pattern. Installation page could be cleaned up too.
- Provide pre-filled guidance in the Search box - "Start typing to match names or labels ( wildcard"*" or "%")" that disappears when you focus tor type the box.
- Given the plugin list is already loaded just not displayed, provide a radio button " ( o ) Show all plugins " option
- Make the Search field dual purpose; add a drop-down list of labels to choose from