Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Why is it every new WordPress update causes me nightmares!

Why is it every new WordPress update causes me nightmares!

By Strictly-Software

Why is every time I upgrade to the latest version of either WordPress or Jetpack (a tool built by WP) I end up with a big bag of shit lumped all over me?

I never upgrade on the first new main version but when it's 3.9.2 you would think it would be safe to upgrade however the problem is that even though WordPress may have updated a load of their code plugin authors would have no idea of the changes until too late to make the changes.

Unless they have the urge to run round like headless chickens re-writing code and trying to work out what has gone on they might be left with their own plugins not working or causing issues.

The number of times I have updated WordPress or Jetpack to find
-Statistics not showing - another plugins dashboard shows instead
-Omnisearch breaking the site.
-Share buttons causing JS errors due to cross protocol scripting and other issues.
-Cloudlflares "SmartErrors" interfering with the automatic plugin update functions and causing /404 urls instead of nice "update plugin" options.

I could go on.

This weekend was one of those weekends as I stupidly decidided to upgrade on Saturday morning. Ever since I have had:
-Emails not being sent out and posted on the site through the Postie plugin.
-My own tagging plugin not tagging for some unknown reason, I think it is a memory issue where if you have over 5,000 tags the number of regular expressions done could be a problem. I always now keep the number of tags under that limit with a clean out now and then.
-Incorrectly formatted content in posts.

It has been a nightmare and in future I am thinking of just keeping to the versions of the plugins and WordPress codebase that I know works instead of constantly upgrading - unless due to security issues which should be easily sorted with some decent .htaccess rules, firewall, CloudFlare and some tools on your server like DenyHosts and Fail2Ban etc.

Plus the odd plugin like Limit Login Attempts helps prevents those bad boys knocking on your admin door all the time!

As a WordPress developer actually said to me once whilst chatting over a discussion on the WP forums - "they are not going to re-write the code from the ground up as there are not enough developers to do it" Instead they spend their time making funky widgets and little wizbang "ooh look at that" type of tools.

Even though a big team like Automatic with such a widely used program, yet full of crap code, and if you have looked at the WordPress codebase you will know how crap it is. And this comes from the mouth of a WordPress developer as well as myself after a long discussion on the forums.

Apparently they won't create a new version to the side of the old one whilst carrying on with the current one due to not having enough developers who know the code well enough to build it from scratch.

It seems to have started off as a small CMS project like a lot of systems then grew like a monster out of all control and now it is uncontrollable so to speak.

So I am fed up with debugging other peoples plugins, hacking WordPress and trying to work out what is going on with serious analysis of mail / error / access logs. So I might just stick to what is working and safe - plus keeps me sane!

It seems WordPress themselves have been hacked recently with a mobile porn vector recently: BaDoink Website RedirectMalicious Redirections to Porn Websites on Mobile Devices and I cannot even get to the plugin site at the moment to complain about the 4 things I have on my current list so maybe their site is down as well.

Who knows. If it wasn't free and such a commonly used tool people wouldn't use it if they knew what code lay beneath the surface!

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Cloudlfare SmartErrors Causes 404 Errors On WordPress Plugin Updates

Cloudlfare's SmartErrors Causes 404 Errors On WordPress Plugin Updates

By Strictly-Software

The other week I wrote a message on the forum on WordPress about an error I was getting when I tried to do an automatic plugin update from one of my sites: Getting A 404 When I Try To Auto Update A Plugin.

The question was:

I am using the latest software and I haven't had to update a plugin for a while now but tonight I noticed Jetpack was out of date on one site and not on another (both on same server, same plugins and behind CloudFlare with WP Super Cache - which has been having issues lately??)
Anyway when I try to auto update a plugin on this one site the following happens.
1. The password field is full to the brim with *********** on my other site I just have the same number of **** as the word beneath it (inspect and change type="password" to "text" to prove it.
2. When I hit update it goes straight to a /404 page e.g mysite.com/404
3. It then shows a greenish page that says "sorry we couldn't find what you were looking for" here are some suggestions. A cloudflare page.
4. I have asked Cloudflare about this but I have had problems before with Omnisearch being enabled causing similar issues and also I cannot use any JetPack stats as the URL /wp-admin/admin.php?page=stats just takes me to WP-O-Matics dashboard.
I have checked WP-O-Matics source code and CANNOT see anything about going to that URL.
Is this to do with something WP has done or Cloudflare or both. The password box full to the brim with ****** on one site but not the other suggest something with WP is going on.
Thanks for your help

Now that I have just gone through Cloudflares settings to check what I had on I have realised that the site I didn't have the problem on (also behind Cloudflare) didn't have SmartErrors enabled.

The site that didn't let me auto update plugins from Wordpress DID have SmartErrors enabled.

I disabled the SmartErrors app and then tried an auto update on the broken site. It worked!

So that is the cause of any problems you may get if you try and update your plugins from within WordPress and get a /404 error and a greenish Clouflare page with some links to other pages.

I don't know if it's a Cloudflare issue or a WP issue but if SmartErrors are on it's an issue!

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Customer Reviews of Strictly AutoTags version 2.9.7

Custom Reviews of Strictly AutoTags version 2.9.7

Here is what people are saying about it!

By Strictly-Software

The new PRO version of Strictly AutoTags is out version 2.9.7 which you can buy for merely £40 from either my site: www.strictly-software.com/plugins/strictly-auto-tags or on etsy.com.

With Etsy.co:m I have to constantly check an old email account OR the site for sales or messages.

Sometimes this can cause issues if you are using Etsy's own message system as I don't get the messages straight away as they don't email to my main account so I won't know about them.

If you are going to buy the plugin I would prefer you did it from my own site: www.strictly-software.com/plugins/strictly-auto-tags as I get notified straight away. Plus if there are any problems I can help solve them ASAP.

If you cannot find my email address or the contact link doesn't work you can always email me at Email me,

Reviews of Strictly AutoTags

Here are what some of the people who have used my plugin have said about it. Just a quick Google Search will give you more than enough sites talking about it. Here are some of the best reviews.

Manage Your WordPress Tags with Strictly Auto Tags
Tagging was such a chore for me before that I am going to get the paid version of Rob’s Strictly Auto Tags plugin so I can run it with all the extra features and avoid the tagging problems which caused me to get rid of them all before. I did find tags to be a good thing and I do see that they add to traffic and the chance for my blog posts to be found. So, doing away with tags was a good experiment, but I’m bringing them back now. Very glad to have found a plugin to do a lot of the work for me. Sure, I could have ignored all the past posts and just started tagging from here, but that would bug me. I am a bit all or nothing in that way.

I'm so happy I received the paid version. It was a giant goof up and neither of our faults :(.
WOW is all I can say, the extra features in the paid version are just, GREAT!
If you like the free plugin, you will LOVE the paid version!
Dugg Brown

From BlackHatWorld
This is from a forum about the best tagging plugin to use in WordPress.

Best one is "Strictly auto tags"
Works just like a charm and its hell simple to use.

I find 'strictly auto tags' better than simple or tagpig. Fast and superefficient.

I am using two plugins at same time. Auto tag plugin and strictly auto tag plugin. I have set some fixed number of tags from both...Auto tag plugin is good as it fetch some keywords from Yahoo and tagthenet while strictly auto tag is really cool...once you will use...you will love it...

From the BlackHatSEO Forum

I need to start out by saying that no automated tool is going to be able to match the abilities of a good editor or content architect. There are tools, however, that will help streamline the process and take a large amount of that potentially heavy load off your back.
My go to solution for this scenario is the Strictly Auto Tags plugin.
Geoffrey Fortier

WordPress Reviews on Strictly AutoTags
Simple, Powerful and Effective... a MUST have!!!
I love how easy it is to auto-generate relevant tags on all posts or just the ones that are not tagged already.
There are some valuable options in the settings area to fine-tune what you want the plugin to do for your particular site. Great work!
I wish more free plugins were this powerful and effective at doing what they are designed to do.
By lazy_sunday, January 30, 2013 for WP 3.5

Great Tagging Plugin
Am using this on a sports site and it's picking out player names, team names, organisations etc no problems.

By VATCalculatorPlus, May 22, 2014

Great plugin 
it does what it says. 
thanks for such a nice plugin for tagging... 
By anuragk098, October 28, 2013 for WP 3.7                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
User Friendly
User friendly, save lot of time, Increase SEO,INCREASE TRAFFIC
By muqeetsoomro, May 4, 2013

Other sites
Top must have WordPress plugins > http://www.justin.my/2011/11/top-must-have-plugins-for-your-wordpress/
Best SEO WordPress plugins > http://robertmstanley.com/tag/strictly-auto-tags/

Now you have seen some of my reviews I hope that will ease your mind about the quality of the plugin, it's usefulness and ability to increase your sites SEO.

However when used in conjunction with another one of my PRO plugins, Strictly TweetBOT, which has automatic configuration so that the Strictly TweetBOT plugin is linked to the latest edition of Strictly AutoTags.

This means that when a post is being tagged no tweets are sent until the tagging is completed so that post tags and categories are available to be used as #hashtags in your tweets!

The PRO TweetBOT version has an option to disable this auto configuration feature so that tweets are send out immediately after an article is posted.

However I don't recommend turning this on unless you are having problems and are willing to always use default hashtags within your tweets.

I use these two plugins in conjunction with each other on sll my sites and with the new PRO Strictly TweetBot's delay options you can now put your new post into a caching plugin and stagger out your tweets to prevent Twitter Rushes.

With the great dashboard feature and "Test Configuration" option it really is a great tool for autobloggers and when used in conjunction with Strictly AutoTags it makes AutoBlogging a great way to make your site look like it has regulatr unique content as well as unique tweets with relevant #hashtags.

Check both plugins out on my site:

Strictly AutoTags
Strictly TweetBOT

Or on Etsy.com

Strictly Software Etsy.com Shop