Adventures with WordPress & Business


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Deploying Paid Plugins


Paid plugins often rely on license keys for automatic updates and support requests. However it’s the wild west when it comes to how their licensing systems work. Seems like every plugin author ends up implementing their own licensing system. I discovered this as I was recently creating bash scripts to automate deploying various paid plugins.

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Easily Avoidable Website Outages


Site monitors are a good way to detect major issues with websites. Over the years I’ve begun to notice a few common reasons why websites go offline. You might be shocked to know that most times it has nothing to do with the web host. Instead it comes down to a few scenarios which are

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Moving a VPS from Digital Ocean to Google Cloud


WordPress websites need to managed by someone who can keep after things 24/7 if you wish sleep well at night. That’s why for hosting WordPress websites I rely on managed WordPress hosts like Kinsta. Kinsta has the staff and sysadmins to do just that. If something goes offline in the middle of the night, they

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Phone Support Hacks from Google Voice to Twilio ☎️


I have a confession: I really don’t like using my phone for business. If you are a customer of Anchor Hosting, I do my best to hide this fact. Don’t get me wrong, there are situations where a simple phone call is far more efficient at solving technical problems than emailing back and forth. That

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Find and Replace Hardcoded File References


Generally finding and replacing old URLs can easily be accomplished using WP-CLI’s search-replace command. However that only makes changes to the database. Hard-coded file references may still exist. This can be handled with a few commands over SSH, however if done improperly you can easily break everything. In order to perform these replacements safely I

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Fathom’s Internal API


I’m a big fan of Fathom Analytics. It’s the perfect alternative to Google Analytics and something I’ve been using since early 2018. One thing Fathom lacks is an official API which lead me to do some pretty crazy monkey patching in order to extract data from my self-hosted Fathom instance. Rather than wait for an

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WP-CLI Database Backups with Emojis


My preferred way to backup a WordPress site is directly on the web server using SSH. The database backup part is performed with WP-CLI like so: This will output a .sql file which can easily be imported. I’ve been using this method for nightly database backups for the last few years. However, I recently discovered

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WordCamp Lancaster 2019


This year I spoke at WordCamp Lancaster, the annual one day WordPress conference here in my home town. I gave a talk in the beginner track titled The Lean Mean Maintenance Machine. It was an overview of why maintenance is necessary for WordPress, tips for keeping maintenance work lean and some thoughts about the future

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