Sitewide tags pages for WordPress MU

For WordPress MU only. My latest plugin is the sitewide tags pages plugin.

This is the initial release of a plugin that creates a set of pages like the WordPress.com Hot Topics pages. It’s a lot more simplistic, but by feeding posts into one blog it also creates a sitewide feed of all posts plus feeds of any tags and categories too.


Sitewide Tags Options

WordPress MU is a multi blog version of WordPress that runs on WordPress.com. If you use the regular version of WordPress this plugin is not for you and you can ignore this post.

PS. In other MU news. Raanan has a new post on the Publisher Blog about Nationen! blog, a new Danish blog site based on WordPress MU that looks rather nice!
The site was developed by Incsub who are also the guys behind wpmu.org where you’ll probably find all sorts of useful nuggets of MU goodness on a regular basis!

WordPress MU 1.3.2

WordPress MU 1.3.2 was tagged earlier today. This is a major security update that brings together the fixes in WordPress 2.3.2 and a number of critical WordPress MU specific security problems.

Details of the fixes will be posted to the WordPress MU forum next week to give administrators time to upgrade. This release should be seen as an urgent upgrade.
Thanks to Alex Concha for his help with this release.

Please note: If you have plugins that uses options.php to save it’s options you must whitelist those options using the new add_option_update_handler() API. More information on this can be found on this forum post.

Download WordPress MU here

WordPress MU 1.3

Finally, after what seems like an age, the download page has been updated with the new WordPress MU 1.3 release.

WordPress MU is a multi-blog version of WordPress which runs on millions of blogs all over the world. The major blogging site, WordPress.com uses it as do many others.

This is a sync of WordPress 2.3.1 which includes native tagging support as well as many bug and security fixes.
WordPress MU specific features include:

  • Better admin controls for the signup page. It can be disabled in various ways.
  • Upload space functions have been fixed.
  • The signup form is now hidden from search engines which will help avoid certain types of spamming.
  • Profile page now allows you to select your primary blog.
  • Database tables are now UTF-8 from the start.
  • If you’re using virtual hosts, the main blog doesn’t live at /blog/ any more.
  • The WordPress importer now assigns posts to other users on a blog.
  • A taxonomy sync script is included in mu-plugins but commented out. It hasn’t been tested much but if your site has many hundreds of blogs it might be worth spending some time on a test server. Replicate normal traffic patterns and see if the server can cope with the upgrade process. If not, then look at the sync script, uncomment it and iterate over all your blogs with a script.

Developers – get_blog_option() will never return the string “falsevalue” again. That bug has been squished and it now returns the boolean value false.

This forum thread on the new release is worth watching. Any problems will surface their first.

Thanks to:
Everyone on the MU forums for your help in tracking down bugs.
ktlee and momo360modena for all your patches. They’re very welcome and a huge help.

Extensive documentation is being built up on the WordPress MU Codex by many people, including Martin Cleaver who bugged me about moving the docs from Trac and about telling everyone that documentation help is always needed.

Ireland.com uses WordPress MU

Damien alerted me to the fact that the new Ireland.com blogs are using WordPress, and so with much excitement I hit the site and browsed around. A quick look at the source showed that they are in fact using WordPress MU which is rather neat.

Ireland.com is the website of The Irish Times, a major daily newspaper here. It’ll be great to see journalists blogging there, but only if they are allowed free reign. If they pull it off, they’ll bring a lot more attention to the site.

So far, only two blogs are operating. On the Record is a music blog written by Jim Carroll, and Price Watch by Conor Pope. Conor’s first post is Window or aisle? €15 please, a short post exploring new charges by Aer Lingus. I don’t see a Trackback link there but hopefully they’ll allow trackbacks and pingbacks sooner rather than later.

Welcome to the ireland.com blog page. We have two blogs, one written by music journalist Jim Carroll, using his weekly column On The Record as its cornerstone. This blog will shed light on the machinations of the music industry at home and abroad. From today, the consumer-focused PriceWatch section will also be carried in blog form on the site. Written by Conor Pope, the blog will be updated throughout the week and will allow users to post details of rip-offs, ask questions and perhaps even highlight bargains they have spotted.

Update on Sep 8, 2009 They’re not using WordPress MU any more unfortunately. Looks like a Windows based system, with ugly urls. The links to the blogs above are broken as a result. Disappointing.

WordPress MU 1.2

Go grab the new WordPress MU 1.2 from the download page now. This is primarily a bugfix update but it also has a security fix and all WPMU site owners are encouraged to upgrade.

I’ll post to the MU forums in a few days time with details of the security fix. It’s a short one-liner that can be applied within minutes if you can’t upgrade.

Update: After you update, go to “Site Admin->Themes” and click Save. That will update the allowed themes list because it was changed a few days ago.

Edit: a few issues with themes and .htaccess rewrite problem appeared overnight. These have been fixed now. If you updated to 1.2 then download the new 1.2.1 version and copy these files into your install:

  • wp-admin/themes.php
  • htaccess.dist
  • wp-includes/version.php
  • wp-admin/admin-db.php
  • wp-admin/themes.php
  • wp-admin/wpmu-themes.php

You didn't hear? Upgrade now!

On the off chance that you haven’t heard the news yet. You should upgrade your WordPress install straight away. Don’t hesitate, do it now. Don’t pause to grab a cup of coffee. If you’re just waking up then rub the sleep from your eyes and jump to the download page and grab WordPress 2.1.2.

Long story short: If you downloaded WordPress 2.1.1 within the past 3-4 days, your files may include a security exploit that was added by a cracker, and you should upgrade all of your files to 2.1.2 immediately.

Users running from svn code aren’t affected, but then you probably already knew that already didn’t you? You should be subscribed to Hackers and Testers lists.

Don’t worry if you’re running a WordPress MU site. That isn’t affected, although you should upgrade to the latest 1.1.1 release as that fixes a number of problems with 1.0 as well as merging in some security fixes from WordPress core.

WordPress.com users have nothing to worry about.

Catch it if you can! WordPress mu 1.1.1 escaped!

Despite my best efforts to put off releasing WordPress mu 1.1.1 for another day it slipped through my fingers, tarred and zipped itself into neat bundles on the download page and screamed at all and sundry that it was free.

So, go on! Download and enjoy. As always, try it on your development servers before pushing it live, just to make sure it doesn’t conflict with anything else you’ve installed. We’re tracking the development version of WordPress itself so any new features that you see there will be in WordPress mu too. And if you haven’t looked before, the mu timeline will give you a good idea of what’s changed recently.

Some highlights:

  • PHPMailer is now used for email delivery. Once you configure it to use a local smtp server email literally flies out the door.
  • “No Options” are saved. Well, WPMU already had something like this for storing false option values but now it’s much better. Thanks Ryan for fixing that in MU.
  • Ryan’s In The Trunk post has a pretty good list of the new features you can expect in this release.

The new WordPress UTW gotcha

(Later – Scroll to the end of this post for a small patch to fix the problem with disappearing tags!)

As seen elsewhere and of course on the official blog, WordPress 2.1 was released to much fanfare yesterday.

It works great, I’ve been using the development version on my blogs for quite a while now and until recently it worked swimmingly. It still does, but some time in the last 2 weeks Ultimate Tag Warrior stopped working properly. Whenever someone made a comment on a post the tags on that post would be deleted. It’s gotten so bad now that I’m moderating all comments, and opening those posts in the editor before approving the comments.

A half-way fix is available but moderated comments will still delete the tags so once I verify that the fix does what it does comment moderation will go back to the way it was before.

You should upgrade WP-Cache to the new 2.0.22 release too. It fixed problems I was seeing here with comments and posts not showing up until I deleted the cache manually. Yay!

If you’re interested, a new WordPress MU release will follow in a day or so. More here.

I forgot to mention, do I recommend you upgrade to WordPress 2.1? Yes. If you run a site that is in any way popular your database server will thank you. WordPress uses the MySQL query cache in a much more efficient manner than ever before when reading posts. Make sure your query cache is activated and tweak it until you hit the sweet spot. It’ll make a big difference when your server is under load.

Fix Fix Fix!

HandySolo spotted a simple fix for the tag problem! Check out the thread on this post and scroll to the entry by 082net.com where he outlines a simple fix for the disappearing tag problem. I just tried it and it works!

Here’s a temporary patch for resetting tags.
Modify ‘ultimate_save_tags()’ function on ‘ultimate-tag-warrior-actions.php’ about line 502:
if (isset($_POST['comment_post_ID'])) return $postID;
if (isset($_POST['not_spam'])) return $postID; // akismet fix
if (isset($_POST["comment"])) return $postID; // moderation.php fix

Even with the fix above, deleting a comment will delete the tags, and sending a trackback/pingback will do the same. 082net.com fixed that too. You can remove the above fix and apply the following.
Around line 862 of ultimate-tag-warrior-actions.php find the following chunk of code:

// Save changes to tags
add_action('publish_post', array('UltimateTagWarriorActions','ultimate_save_tags'));
add_action('edit_post', array('UltimateTagWarriorActions','ultimate_save_tags'));
add_action('save_post', array('UltimateTagWarriorActions','ultimate_save_tags'));
add_action('wp_insert_post', array('UltimateTagWarriorActions','ultimate_save_tags'));

Replace that code with:

// Save changes to tags
add_action('save_post', array('UltimateTagWarriorActions','ultimate_save_tags'));
if($wp_db_version < 3308 ) { // if lesser than WP 2.0
  add_action('publish_post', array('UltimateTagWarriorActions','ultimate_save_tags'));
  add_action('edit_post', array('UltimateTagWarriorActions','ultimate_save_tags'));
  add_action('wp_insert_post', array('UltimateTagWarriorActions','ultimate_save_tags'));
}

PS. Stephen Spencer has discovered why UTW doesn't always work with custom permalinks. This is a longstanding bug, and it's why I had to use the ?tag= format on my photoblog.

Ask the developer

On January 20th I’ll be speaking at BarCamp South East on the subject of WordPress.com and WordPress MU. The talk is titled, “WordPress.com – running the biggest wpmu site in the world” which is vague enough that I could talk about anything but I’d like to know what you want to hear.

Public speaking isn’t my strong point, I prefer to be behind the keyboard, or looking through a camera lens but sometimes you have to push yourself to do unfamiliar things. Here’s my go at public speaking.

Talks will be in 45 minute slots and I would like to make mine more of a discussion forum like the WPMU talk we had at WordCamp way back in August last year. It went really well and everyone got something out of it.

Subjects I’m considering include:

  • Merging code from WP core which is horribly exciting, have you ever seen vimdiff in action?
  • Site stats – did you know we publish them?
  • Hardware – server porn. How do we handle the load generated by Slashdots, Diggs, and almost 600,000 blogs?
  • Hooks and plugins – new hooks in the signup process and wpmu admin backend.
  • Anyone interested in working from home and virtual company issues? Automattic has employees in at least four countries.

So, if you’ll be there I want to hear from you. If you won’t, I still want to hear from you because I’m sure Bernie or someone will record the talk and put it up online.