All transcripts start from the point in the show where we head off into the meat and potatoes. They are the complete verbatim of Marcus and John’s discussion of the weekly plugins we have reviewed.
WordPress Plugins A to Z Podcast and Transcript for See complete show notes for Episode #442 here.
It’s Episode 442 and I’ve got plugins for Blocking Bots, Stopping the Nagging, Better Email Delivery, Editor Enrichment, Better SEO and ClassicPress Options, all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!
John: It’s Episode 442 and I’ve got plugins for Blocking Bots, Stopping the Nagging, Better Email Delivery, Editor Enrichment, Better SEO and ClassicPress Options, all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!
WordPress, it’s the most popular content management and website solution on the internet. And with over 80,000 plugins to choose from, how do you separate the junk from the gems? Join us for a weekly unrehearsed conversation about the latest and greatest in WordPress plugins. This is WordPress Plugins from A to Z.
John: Well good morning, good afternoon, or good evening wherever you happen to be hiding out there on the globe today. Coming to you direct from the Brewery Overlook in beautiful Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, I’m John Overall.
And I have a great show for you today but according to the Mueller Report, you are listening to WordPress Plugins from A-Z, the best ClassicPress/WordPress podcast in the universe. This is a value-for-value show, and I look forward to everyone providing some value back.
All right, so a little bit off-top here. Well, we’re off to a really great start after last week’s episode. I was really happy to hear from folks again, and it seems all is not lost in the show, but let’s keep this momentum going. This is Number 2 of 52 episodes for 2020. And as I’m heading back to my roots and helping to ensure this show’s viability and see if the community still wants to see this show around.
So if the community does not rally around the show over the next year, well, we will just retire it. But I am looking forward to the more participation from you, my Producers. This year and – I have had some feedback in this last week. We’ll get to that a little further into the show and I’m really happy that people have started to pick it up and start to talking to me again. I’ve had some plugins submitted,
I’ve gotten some feedback on what people think of the show, some of the things that’s been happening with it, all those little bits and pieces to help the show out. This little intro here will change and alter in the coming weeks depending on what’s up, what’s on the agenda. I may have other additional pieces that pop in here. It all depends on where my mind goes and as I am one of those sufferers of ADHD – oh, squirrel! Where’d that squirrel go? Oh, anyway – back to reality here. I do suffer from jumping from place to place and my brain gets lost and it doesn’t know where it’s going or what is coming next.
So at any rate, let’s pop into and talk a little bit about the news for this week, and we do have a little bit of news this week. First off, we have something from the Gutenberg news. This has kind of reminded me with Gutenberg, are we headed back into the world of GeoCities? And this is an article here rethinking themes in WordPress, and it talks a bit about how Gutenberg is headed into a full-on theme development or theme block producer, where pretty much anything goes. So it kind of reminds me – some of the things I hear kind of remind me of the gold old days of GeoCities, if you’ve been around the internet that long. As long as I have – yes, I’m old as dirt. What can I say?
So at any rate, this is a really interesting article. It’s got some really good discussions on what is going on, where the phases are, what phase they’re in, where they’re headed. It’s got a really good video here you can watch and check out some of the information. Basically, if you’re really into WordPress, find out about this. Dig into Gutenberg. If you’re not so happy with Gutenberg, well, that’s where ClassicPress comes in. Pop in and check out all the stuff on ClassicPress.
I’m kind of the mind of – I’ve got two minds, man. Either one is good for me, and I like them both. I’ll probably be working on both of them until they get so far apart that I have to choose one or the other. I don’t expect that for a few more years and who knows? Maybe I’ll win the lottery in the meantime and I can buy myself an island somewhere and retire to it.
What else have we got coming up here? We’ve got another piece of information and news here. This one here is for those of you who may or may not know, PHP 7.4 was released towards the end of last year. And this little piece of information popped up in front of me is WP Engine, which of course is a managed WordPress hosting service. They are going to stop supporting the HT Access file. Now, this caught my attention to the fact that the HT Access file is a pretty important file for your website (at least I always thought it to be).
They don’t think it is; they’re removing it. When they jump up to PHP 7.4, HT Access will no longer function on their site, and the article talks a bit about how that functionality is being dropped, what the effects of it are going to be, and how you’ll be able to use – the sort of things you’re going to have to do. You’re going to have to go into coding – PHP coding – and plugins or addons to deal with some of the functions that were put into the HT Access file, which to me doesn’t make a lot of sense because HT Access file was always a whole lot faster than that. So this is an interesting article here. There’s another link to the article in the Show Notes, which is directly from WP Engine, talking about what they’re going to do.
The other article was from another website and that’s what led me to this one. So this is something you’ll want to dig into. So is this the coming future of the web development where HT Access is going to be dropped out? I’m not so sure, but it does have some major implications and something to think about. So at any rate, go check out these articles in the Show Notes and see what’s up with them and see if it’s something that’s going to impact you. And if you’re using WP Engine, it’s definitely going to impact you.
Another final piece of information here is how to reduce the HTTPS requests in WordPress. This is a really interesting article. It goes on to discuss of course the HTTP requests or the number of requests made on your website for all the little bits and pieces that are drawn from the files to produce your website. And they’ve got a great article in here. It’s got a list of a whole bunch of different plugins that you can use, a few different steps and codes that you can use for cleaning up and decluttering your WordPress website, your ClassicPress website, to reduce the number of HTTP requests.
So go check those articles out; some really great pieces of information. And if there’s other stuff out there folks that you hear about that I don’t talk about or you think is important, please let me know. I don’t have time to read everything; I only get so much time in the day and I’m always open for people sending me news articles, information. You can send it through the Contact form at wppluginsatoz.com or you can just send me a direct email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All right, let’s talk about donors and support for this show. The show Producers, this show is supported by you, our Producers, as a value-for-value model. And I’m trying to move it to as close to the top of the page as I can to acknowledge the donors and supporters of the show, those that have given some value back and deserve to be acknowledged for supporting the show.
Now, how can you help support the show? Well one, you can donate money to help this show out. Donations of $50 and over are credited with an Executive Producer credit and in the Show Notes and their note is read out on the air.
The other, you can submit artwork to the WP Plugins Art Generator, and we’ve got some new submissions we’ll talk about in a moment. You can submit articles, news, information. Submit plugin suggestions for reviews. You can also create a monthly donation over at Patreon, and I have started the slight revamp on that.
Anything I haven’t thought of, please let me know. Now, I want to acknowledge the Producers and of course off the top here, I like to acknowledge the artist who supplied me the art this week. The art this week was submitted to me – and I’m going to do my best here – it’s submitted to me by Daniele Pais, and this is danielepais.com journal. That’s a really great piece of art. You’ll have to go download the show or go check out the show notes after it’s over to go check it out, so I’m really thrilled to have an additional piece of art from another artist here this week. And if you would like to get your art in, please submit it to the WP Plugins Art Generator. So thank you very much for your new piece of art, Daniele. I really greatly appreciate that.
This week, Executive Producers – a big thank you to all the Producers who came in under $50 and those who have set up weekly subscriptions. They will remain anonymous and I thank you very much. Those small donations have really helped the show out, and a big thank you to those who have hired me because you’ve been listening to the show. That’s as good as donating to the show, so thank you very much. I greatly appreciate that.
All right, well with all of that, I think it’s time we move on to the part that everyone really wants to listen to, and that is the meat and potatoes of the show.
Okay, so first off, what do I got for you? Well, we’re going to talk about ClassicPress options. All the items for ClassicPress, you’ve heard me talk about ClassicPress over the last year. Well, it’s – I believe it’s coming alive. I heard that Softaculous is now supporting one-click ClassicPress installs, so good on Softaculous for adding one-click ClassicPress installs to its system. So that’s one major step forward for them. There’s a lot more coming down the pike. I’ve heard a couple of rumors, I got a couple of emails from people that I seem to have lost this week, and there is some stuff coming down the pike in as far as the plugin repository for them. It’s not an exact plugin repository, but a way to get the plugins from GitHub into the backend panel for ClassicPress, so this is something to look forward to.
So what have I got? I do have some plugins for ClassicPress this week, and this was due to some work I went into last week. And before I do that though, I’m gonna pop back to the news, because I’m falling out of order here.
All right, we’ve got a little bit of news about ClassicPress. This impacts specifically ClassicPress and it does impact
Version 4X of WordPress. So if you’re still running Version 4 of WordPress for whatever specific reason and you happen to use Elementor, well, it’s no longer useful for either Version 4 of WordPress or for ClassicPress. I briefly touched upon an article on last week’s show when I was visiting the ClassicPress Club and I had to review it all after the show because I needed to get more information. And of course, I went and did some research and I attempted to update my Elementor on the WP Plugins A-Z website, and of course WP Plugins A-Z runs completely on ClassicPress now.
Well, it seems that the bloodletting has begun for plugins and themes, and what’s going to be happening in ClassicPress, affecting ClassicPress and WordPress. Elementor has dropped all support for Version 4X of WordPress, meaning that it’s no longer compatible with ClassicPress, either. This is just the beginning, I believe, as more and more plugins make their choice and themes make their choice of where they’re going to go and if they’re going to fully 100% only support WordPress 5.0.
So it was a shame; it was a sad day for me because I really like Elementor. And if I start doing more and more stuff in ClassicPress, I’m going to have to switch over to Beaver Builder or something else. So at any rate, that’s the little bit of news and information that you’ll want to hear about.
All right, back to the ClassicPress plugins. So what have I got for you this week? First off, I’ve got a plugin that I’m revisiting. This one here is CodePotent’s replacement for Tiny MCE. This is called the Enriched Editor, or as he once named it, the Advance WYSIWYG Editor for ClassicPress. I like Enriched Editor much better – much better title for it.
I finally got around to updating to Tiny MCE in my WP Plugins A-Z site and I was trying to make time for it, and I made the time finally to get it done. And the beautiful thing is as the Enriched Editor, a beautiful match – nothing lost. All the settings I had perfectly moved across and not a problem at all, except I no longer see the error that Tiny MCE was throwing all over my page. So this is a really great plugin. It’s a fantastic one. I reviewed it about a year ago on Episode 403 of WP Plugins A-Z, so go check out that review for all the stuff I put in there.
All right, and I give it currently a – still wins a 5-Dragon rating.
Okay, next up we have another one. Now, this one here is a plugin that is for WordPress but is also for ClassicPress.
Rank Math works beautifully in ClassicPress and as I replaced my Yoast (finally). I’ve been wanting to get away from them for quite some time, and again, it’s making time to do some of these things. It’s like the mechanic’s car; it’s the last thing that ever gets worked on. The developer’s website? It’s the last one that gets worked on once he starts earning an income.
So I finally got in there and replaced it, and what did I find out? Rank Math – excellent plugin, very well done with their install system, their walk-through for their – what do they call the damn thing? It’s a setup wizard, there we go.
It’s an easy to follow setup wizard. It walks you through it quite nicely, easily, and straightforward. If you’ve been using Yoast or any other number of SEO plugins, it imports all the data from those other plugins over to Rank Math and gets you all set up and cleanly. I find that once I started digging into it, it seems to be more comprehensive than Yoast. It is better at rich snippets than Yoast is – that’s the default Yoast out of the box that you’re not paying for.
This is the free version of Rank Math that I was working with, so I’m comparing the free to the free, not the free to the premium Yoast.
So the rich snippets are much better, the setup is easier, and as I said, it even pulls in all the old information, produces the same site maps so you don’t have to actually resubmit your site map but produces the same name to sitemap.xml setup. Lots of really good things in this plugins. I’ve only begun to scratch the surface on what it can do for me and I’m pretty certain it’s going to do so much better than Yoast ever did, so it gives me a thrill to get away from using the Yoast plugin.
So go check it out. It is Rank Math and I give it a 5-Dragon rating.
And remember, you can use it on your WordPress website also. It’s not just for ClassicPress.
All right, and what have we got? The same old thing for ClassicPress resources. Check out the ClassicPress Club and check out the forums. Go check out the must-have list in CodePotent’s website – all those wonderful areas.
Okay, so what do we have this week for WordPress plugins? All right, well first of what I’ve got for you is a way to stop your WordPress emails from going off to spam. Now, this plugin here was sent in to me by Thomas. He made mention of this plugin on one of my training videos that I have for the appointments plugin and he was having some troubles getting the emails to deliver from his website. He found out it was another issue, but he also mentioned this plugin. He said this was a great plugin to help his emails get delivered properly, so I said, “Okay, I’ll check it out.”
So what this plugin does for you is it goes in and it helps set up some things to allow WordPress to use the SPF sender permitted form off of your server IP record. It goes in and allows you to set a “from” setting on it, a couple of envelope setters, a few of the important features that are needed when sending your emails from your website to help ensure that when they arrive at your client’s email box, they don’t end up in their spam or junk folder. That’s what this one is for, is to stop your WordPress emails from going to spam.
I don’t know if it’s going to work in ClassicPress, but I will check that out. So at any rate, this one here is for WordPress, a really great plugin, easy to set up, works very well. Go check it out. I give it a 5-Dragon rating.
Okay, so what do we got next up for you? Have a drink; rattle some ice cubes in everyone’s ears. Okay, StopBadBots.
Now this one was a suggested plugin to me sent in by William Sergio Minozzi, and what this one does for you is it is a great way to stop the bad bots from hitting your WordPress websites. And what it does for you is it stops the bots without spiders or cloud redirection. It’s got a list that is updated regularly through online automatic updates. It blocks the bots; you don’t have to use your HT Access or robots text. Now, this could be a replacement for something we talked about earlier in the HT Access file – something to think about.
A really great plugin, really simple to use; important as much as possible to stop or slow down the bad bots from hitting your website, because those bad bots create and use up mass amounts of resources on your site, impact its loading, impacts all kinds of things in there, and the simpler, the easier ways you have to stop that, this is what you’ll want to do. They also have a premium version of this plugin and the premium version can add some additional things to it. What do they list up to their premium version? I can’t find it right now. Anyway, they have a premium version which adds additional security for your website.
You might want to check that out but due to the fact that it’s a premium plugin, well, we’ll give it a 4-Dragon rating at the moment. Go check this one out. It’s called StopBadBots and of course I give it a 4-Dragon rating.
Okay, the final plugin I have for you today is called WP Remove Admin Register Nag. Now there’s lots of plugins to remove those little nagging boxes up at the top of your WordPress admin. I’ve tried a couple of them. Some of them up there would create – you know, they’d only half remove them, create problems. Well, this one here seems to be doing a much better job than the other ones of removing the registration nags. A very simple plugin; all it does is add some CSS to hide it, because that’s really all you can do, and you only want them hidden anyway. You just want them out of the way, so you don’t have to keep clicking those bloody X’s and have them reappear the next time you load the screen.
A simple little plugin; go check this one out. It’s all it does. It sets up, remove those nags, adds some CSS code to do it. I love simple, easy plugins that do what they’re supposed to do, so of course we’ll give this one a 5-Dragon rating.
And a brief comment from Hemdien about the StopBadBots. “If you have CloudFlare, would you still use StopBadBots if the bad bots are getting through CloudFlare?” Absolutely, it may help you. CloudFlare helps out quite a bit but of course like anything, it’s not perfect. Oftentimes, the bad bots aren’t hitting your domain, they’re hitting your IP address. Once they discover your website at your IP address, they just come straight to you. They don’t even bother with your domain name, so your domain is routed through CloudFlare, which you get an IP from CloudFlare. But if you have bad bots hitting your site with CloudFlare – or before you have CloudFlare, then you’d get CloudFlare. It’ll stop all new bad bots that don’t know about your IP address, so Catch 22. It can help you out if
you’re still having the issue.
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Absolutely – I do enjoy CMS Commander. It makes my job of managing all the sites I deal with much easier. And of course as I’ve mentioned many times, I’ve been using them for about eight or nine years now, since they were brand new when they first came to my attention. You can probably find – well, I’ve reviewed them a couple of times, so just go into WP Plugins, search CMS Commander. You’ll find all the reviews I’ve done for them.
All right, now is the point for a little bit of listener feedback and I would love to have this section expand out quite a bit. And first off, what I’ve got from you is from John S., and the title of it is “Opinions: Everyone has one.” Hey, there’s a little piece that’s missing right in the center, but you can guess what that is. Anyway, he says:
“John: I enjoy your show, however the Classic Press bias has caused me to consider un-subscribing. It might be good to splinter the show in two wppluginsatoz & wppluginsatozclassic”
Well, it could be CP Plugins A-Z; I’ve got that domain, too. Well John, it’s really funny how I’m almost talking to myself here. Hi John, I’m John. Nice to meet you. Seriously – John, I had thought about that at one point, splitting the show. But I don’t think that’s gonna work it completely and I apologize for the bias. You know, the bias is slightly there but the bias is there because of my interactions with the WordPress community over the last 11 years. You know, for a while I had decent interaction with them, but for about the last seven years my interactions with the WordPress community haven’t been all that good. I guess it’s been almost a little bit over a year and a bit now, they actually banned me from the WordPress forums. You can go look up that story on my website. I was banned from there for trying to do something that I thought was good, so that’s basically what it is.
I’m gonna have to keep it as one show and have my segments out. And right now for the next year or two, much of what I talk about that is on ClassicPress can be used on WordPress, and much of what I talk about on WordPress can be used on ClassicPress. They’re kind of compatible at the moment. That’s not going to last forever, but at the moment that’s how it’s going to go. I mean, eventually I’m going to have to make a complete choice and I may have to go one way or another. But as I said, I do own cppluginsatoz.com to go with wppluginsatoz.com.
But I do appreciate the comment, John. I really appreciate the feedback and it gave me a little bit to think about. I just can’t do it. I don’t have the time for one. Two shows? One show takes enough time. So thank you very much.
And if you want to send me comments, questions, please do. I’ll read them out here, I’ll respond to them, and I’ll try to be as respectful as I can unless – if you’re disrespectful to me, expect disrespect back. So respect me, I respect you. That’s the way the world works.
Now, I have started to receive plugins again for reviews. I’ve gotten a couple of recommendations last week. I was really thrilled to see that. I’d love more developers out there or even if it’s just your favorite plugin and I’ve never reviewed it and you think other people need to know about it, you can submit that plugin. You don’t have to be the developer of a plugin to submit it to me. Submit me a plugin, if it’s yours, if it’s someone else’s, your buddy’s, someone you’re trying to promote, send it to me. I take them all, you know. And if I don’t have time to get them in, I’ll give a review that says I did not look at this plugin, but this is what I think of it based upon the descriptions and any demo sites they may have on it. So that’s the problem; you’ve got to remember it takes time to do everything, folks.
So thank you very much. I really appreciate all the support that came out after last week’s show, and I really hope that continues throughout the rest of this year to prove that this show is still viable.
Now, I do have a contest this week, and this is a contest that’s going to run for the – until the end of January, and this contest is sponsored by me, JohnOverall.com. It’s a simple one to get us on the start for a new year. You can win a $25 Amazon gift certificate. Just head on over to wppluginsatoz.com/contest, enter your name, email address into the contest. And then you can tweet it out, Facebook it out, and earn additional entries to win that $25 Amazon gift card. Nice and simple, basically in the end – you know, I get your email and I email you a $25 gift certificate, you know. Who doesn’t like free stuff? After all, a $25 gift card for Amazon could help you with your next purchase. And again, the prize is offered up by me, JohnOverall.com.
All right, that pretty much wraps everything up today. So closing out this episode, the plugins I covered were Stop WP Emails Going to Spam, which I gave a 5 to; StopBadBots, which I gave a 4 to; WP Remove Admin Registration Nag, which I gave a 5 to – I think. Did I give it a 5 or a 4? I’ll have to go look. Enriched Editor for ClassicPress, which I gave a 5 to, and then Rank Math, which I gave a 5 to.
So thank you very much everyone for showing up and listening. And for those of you listening on the downloads, hey, thank you very much for supporting the show.
A couple of quick reminders – the next WordPress Meetup is in Victoria on February 25th and the topic will be announced next week.
If you want to learn more about me and who I am as a person, go check out theroguestavern.com, where you can follow my adventures into the wild, searching for gold, hiking, camping, out on the gun range, and more.
That’s pretty much all I’ve got for you now, so until next time, take care now. Bye-bye. I’ll let my girl take us on out of here.
Reminders for the show: All the show notes can be found at wppluginsatoz.com, and while you’re there, subscribe to the newsletter for more useful information directly to your inbox. WP Plugins A-Z is a show that offers honest and unbiased reviews of plugins created by developers because you support the show. Help keep the show honest and unbiased by going to wppluginsatoz.com/donate and set the donation level that fits your budget.
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John can be reached at his website, JohnOverall.com, or email him directly at email@example.com. Thanks for joining us and have a great day.
Thanks for listening to the show. This show is copyright by JohnOverall.com. So until next time, have yourselves a good morning, good afternoon, or a good evening, wherever you happen to be out there on the globe today.