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This is a spin of: how to create child WordPress plugin

I am using a plugin that I use and like a lot, but there is a feature that I need and it seems like the author is busy with life. I am a PHP developer so I could hard code my feature to his plugin, but this way on the next update I will not be able to update without loosing my changes. I have seen that there are some plugins out there that are addons/child to other plugins and they will not work unless you have the main/mother plugin installed.

So my question is what is best to do in this situation? What steps I should take to make sure that after updating the main plugin my child plugin will still work?

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Personally I'd either write my own plugin with a if plugin x exists clause or just edit it and send the code off to the developer saying "I have added a feature to your plugin, hope you like it" kinda deal.

Realistically though, in my own site I just edit the code and be done with it cause I know that plugin will be there cause I put it there and won't remove it. If he is too busy to respond to feature requests he is probably too busy to update his plugin so that shouldn't be a problem, just be sure to remember that next time he does update though.

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