Adventures with WordPress & Business


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Disabling Emails on WordPress Staging Sites


Using a staging site is great for troubleshooting however typically you don't want your staging site sending out any email notifications. Luckily there is an easy solution to this problem by using both Log Emails and Disable Emails plugins. With these two plugins installed and activated all outgoing messages will be disabled and logged within the WordPress dashboard.

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Keeping Paid Themes & Plugins Updated


WordPress makes is fairly straightforward to update your themes and plugins. Tools like ManageWP make it easy to update everything for all of your WordPress sites. That said, keeping your paid themes & plugins updated can take extra effort. Here are some tips to make sure your WordPress sites receive all of their updates. Activate

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WooCommerce Keyless Activation System for Extensions


The main WooCommerce plugin is free but WooCommerce is more than just a single plugin it’s an entire ecosystem unto itself. Recently WooCommerce changed how they handle their paid extensions. They switched from license keys to a license activation system which requires you to connect your WordPress website with your WordPress.com/WooCommerce account. Without license keys

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WP Engine and Email Notifications


Having your website send emails successfully is more difficult than it should be. Earlier this year WP Engine moved all of my dedicated servers over to Google’s infrastructure. Google’s has some pretty strict rules with emails which help keep their infrastructure spam free. While this does present a bit of annoyance, there are workarounds. Here

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Talk from WordCamp Lancaster 2017


In March I gave my first WordCamp talk at WordCamp Lancaster called “Staying Sane While Maintaining Hundreds of WordPress Sites”. It was a great experience and I will plan on a future talk. I was hesitant due to the fact that it was my first time and is therefore a little rough. Even so, the

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Remote commands over SSH from WordPress (Using phpseclib)


I commonly want WordPress to run code, like a bash script, directly on the command line. In PHP there is a set of functions which is commonly disabled for security purposes. That includes exec which is PHP’s command to do just that. Rather then running the bash script directly on the web server, an alternative is

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Backup Offloaded Amazon S3 Uploads


If you’re using WP Offload S3 to free up local storage then you’ll also need to backup your Amazon S3 uploads. Rather than running two separate backups, one for the website and one for Amazon S3, the following is how I do handle using a single backup bash script. Rclone can incrementally sync S3 and SFTP

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Resolving SFTP Errors After Server Migrations


Have you ever connected to a web server over SFTP? If so then it’s likely you’ll see one of these errors at some point: remote host identification has changed , host keys changed, offending key for IP or something similar. This is somewhat common due to how SFTP operates Your computer tracks sftp/ssh connections in a file caused

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Triggering WordPress AJAX Callback from PHP


WordPress makes it easy to run PHP code from Javascript. This is extremely useful for running custom code without reloading the page. The following part I’m using to send backup snapshot emails. jQuery(".anchor_commands input.button").click(function(e){ var data = { 'action': 'snapshot_email', 'post_id': form.post_id, 'email': form.email }; // since 2.8 ajaxurl is always defined in the admin

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Consolidating WP Engine Servers


I host most of my WordPress websites with WP Engine. I’m currently managing 681 WordPress installations spread across 4 dedicated WP Engine servers, and as of one month ago I had 7 dedicated WP Engine servers. The following is some more depth look at why I ended up upgrading and merging my WP servers. A

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