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 #445 here.
It’s Episode 445 and I’ve got plugins for Resetting WordPress, Disavowing, Site Protection and ClassicPress Options, all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!
John: It’s Episode 445 and I’ve got plugins for Resetting WordPress, Disavowing, Site Protection 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 according to the Mueller Report, you are listening to WP Plugins A-Z, the best ClassicPress/WordPress podcast in the Universe. A big thank you to the No Agenda Show for their contributions of ideas and the occasional sound click.
All right, so off we go. Now, we’ve got some really great stuff for you today and of course before I get started, don’t forget, get out there and subscribe to the Newsletter. Hit everyone in the mouth, let them know about WP Plugins A-Z and that you can catch it live every Thursday at noon on our YouTube channel or just go to wppluginsatoz.com/live.
And it’s Episode 445 and we may be in the matrix. A glitch has occurred and while we had a great start with comments and feedback and a couple of recommended plugins have arrived, well it’s sort of slipping again. Come on folks, let’s keep this going. I need your support to keep the show going. There are lots of ways to support the show.
I’ll cover them a bit later in the show. This is Number 5 of 52 episodes for 2020, working to provide you with the best WordPress/ClassicPress show on the interwebs. And I’m still looking for that participation from you, my Producers.
This year I really need your help as the sword of Damocles is hanging over our heads, so keep the feedback coming. Let me know what’s good, bad, indifferent, and lots of ways you can get here and support the show.
All right, so all the little bits and pieces are out of the way in the front, let’s dive into some news and information, and we’re going to get a little bit fun with it!
Well, we’ve got lots of tech news. All right, so let’s have a little fun with that. I’ve got to tweak them a little bit. I’m gonna have some fun and as I mentioned, the No Agenda Show off the top, borrowing some of their clips.
So first off, we’ve got an article here from BlogAid and this is an article about what Chrome Version 80 is going to do. They were talking about blocking third-party cookie tracking. This is going to effect – for those of you that do effect for those of you that do advertising on your site, this blocking of cookies – which is not only going to happen from Chrome, it’s going to happen from Firefox, from Mozilla, it’s going to happen from Internet Explorer, Microsoft – all the major players are going to start doing this. They’re going to start blocking third-party cookies.
Now, there’s several things you can do about it. Read this article from Mayana over at BlogAid. It’s a really good, in-depth article. She writes a lot of great content and has a lot of great tips and information, so check her out. But you’ll want to go read this article and find out a bit about what’s coming down the pike about cookies and how they’re going to be blocked and how it could be impacting you and some of the things you need to do. One of them, you’ll need to be upgrading to at least Version 7.3 of PHP to help manage your stuff. So you’ll want to get on top of this and if you’re not already on top of it, start looking into it because it is going to impact you, especially if you run advertising on your website from third-party sources.
I’ve got a couple of other bits and pieces here. Of course, this is dealing with WordPress and Gutenberg. This is a YouTube video talking about – it’s a live demo Q&A about themes and the full site editing experience for WordPress. They’re doing some experiments here and they’re showing you what is envisioned with Gutenberg and how Gutenberg is envisioned to be a full site editor. You know, meaning it’s going to edit more than just theme stuff and blocks and headers and footers; it’s going to edit a whole lot of stuff. They’ve got a lot of stuff planning and coming down the pike for Gutenberg.
Now personally, I don’t think it’s a good thing but lots of people do. Leading into that, we’ve got some proposed stuff that’s coming up with WordPress 5.4 and these are some design functions that are coming up: some major Quora updates, they want to update the Editor, they’re going to set up – update the opt-in settings for themes, automatic updates for column and plugin screen, they’re going to – they’re looking at resizable editor, group blocks – just a whole list of stuff that is planned for design for 5.4 of WordPress, which is in development right now. Another link you’ll want to follow up.
Another big thing that’s happening with WordPress is they’re planning to make XML site maps into the core. They want to stick the XML site maps in the core. While this could be a good thing, it could be a bad thing also. It all depends on the implementation of this, because one of the things with site maps that you get through plugins such as Yoast, etc., you have some control over that site map and how it’s created. You can limit how many items or stuff is in it. I mean, if a site map gets too big, you could choke a Google bot on that site map if you’ve got lots and lots of content. You’ll also want to make sure that you don’t get duplicate site maps such as tags, posts, pages – all of them that come in under the same one, whereas a post might be in multiple tags, it might be pages.
All of those things can create and choke out your site maps, so you’ll want to read a bit about what they’re planning and how this could impact you and what will happen, because it sounds like they’re going to make site maps a part of it. I guess Yoast has been part of the development of this, so maybe it’s going to be a good thing and maybe from what I’ve read on this, they want to allow plugins to enhance what the core does. So you will start to have another plugin to go with it but for those that don’t use a plugin and just in the core, they’ll automatically have site maps which could help them if they are a small site. So there’s a lot that goes into this. You’ll want to read up and check this one out. I’ve got the following article up on it. This is an article from the Tavern talking about just what I was talking about and what they’re doing with the update on the XML site maps feature.
So that’s pretty much all I’ve got for news and information today. You’ll want to take a look at these links in the Show Notes to find out a bit more about them and what is up with it.
All right, so let’s talk a bit about… this show is supported by you, the Producers, and it’s a value-for-value model, meaning if you get any value out of it, give some value back. You can give any type of value back you want. You can support the show by donating money to help the show. Simply follow the links in the Show Notes. Any donations $50 and over, you get your note read out on the show and any links you stick in the Show Notes are linked back to you or wherever you want them to go.
You can submit artwork to the show. That artwork is used for the cover art for the iTunes feed, the podcast feed that goes all out, it’s embedded in here. It’s the artwork used on the posts on the website. It’s a really great piece of artwork. Every week I’ve got several pieces lined up for quite a few shows now, which is nice. But if you would like to knock them out, please submit your artwork at the WP Plugins Art Generator. Submit articles, news, and information. Submit plugin suggestions for a review. You don’t have to be the developer to submit those plugin suggestions. Anyone, if you’ve got a favorite plugin and you think others should know about it, submit it to me. I’ll make sure they get to know about it.
Create a monthly donation over at Patreon. All those donations really help out and I like to acknowledge the Producers who have supported the show in the various ways. This week, the show art comes from Angel Lemus of Koa Digital with his little great piece about The Matrix on here, and this week’s artwork is a really great piece of artwork here – and let’s see if I can bring it up real quick. I know where it’s located, so I’ve just got to make a couple of clicks here, clickety-clack. Yeah, I know for those of you who are listening to the plugin downloaded later, well, it doesn’t always come through the way you’ll probably want it to, and that’s unfortunate. Maybe you might watch it live, so that would be kind of cool.
So let’s take a look here for those of you watching the livestream – there you go. Here’s the artwork from Angel Lemus. You get your sneak peek of it every week before the show goes live. It’s a really cool little piece of art, Matrix-inspired, which is, you know, the inspiration for what this week’s show is. We’re glitching in The Matrix.
A big thank you to all the Producers who came in under $50 and to those who’ve set up weekly subscriptions. You remain anonymous and I thank you very much. Those small subscriptions really help out and a big thank you to those who have hired me because of the podcast. That’s as good as donating to the show.
Okay, so I believe it is time to jump into the actual meat and potatoes of the show.
Okay, so what do we got? We’ve got ClassicPress Options. I do have some ClassicPress Options this week. Of course ClassicPress, that fast-growing fork out of WordPress and it is coming into its own. It seems a little bit of news from ClassicPress. There have been some requests in the WordPress support forums for plugins, specific plugins where people were asking about support for ClassicPress. Some of them are old; one of them is relatively recent.
This was a request that came in asking for them to support WordFence – that’s an older one. That was an older one asking WordFence support. It came in for the plugin TablePress, asking them to support it, and they were talking about how they couldn’t support it because of issues. But this is information that is really great and useful. So if you’ve got some ClassicPress stuff, go look it up. Go check out these links in the Show Notes. They can be very valuable for you.
Okay, ClassicPress – some general information. This is an article from Azure – all right, off we go…
AzureCurve, and this is an article talking about ClassicPress development with GitHub. It’s a series of index that she’s doing. It’s really interesting articles. Go check out AzureCurve. It’s got some really great articles there about ClassicPress and what is happening in that world.
Now we do have a ClassicPress plugin this week. This one comes from ZigPress and it is called ZP Disabled Users.
This is a free ClassicPress plugin. It allows administrators to disable user accounts, preventing users from logging in and logging them out if they are already logged-in. It’s a way to block users from your site if they’re misbehaving, a very useful tool.
You can customize a meta key that the disabled status is stored under in the user meta data. You can also decide whether anyone with edit users’ capability can edit or enable users, disable or enable users, or whether only admins the manage options can do it. So it could be a very useful tool if you’ve got a members site and you want to be able to manage and turn off and boot users. Go check this plugin out. It is made specifically for ClassicPress although as they say, it does work with WordPress currently, but it is a ClassicPress-specific plugin.
Now on that little note there, we’ve got some information coming up here, and that is that the ClassicPress-specific plugin list over at the ClassicPress forums, there are more plugins in there! It’s been a couple of weeks since I looked in there and there was only 42 the last time I looked. There are now 49 plugins in there, so it is growing, which is nice to see. We’ve got some new ones in there; I’ve got to pick out the ones that I haven’t reviewed and start bringing them in over the next few shows. So maybe with a little luck I’ll find even more plugins to bring in. So if you’re looking for ClassicPress-specific plugins, check out the link in the Show Notes or just go to the ClassicPress forums and look for plugins built specifically for ClassicPress.
Other ClassicPress resources you’ll want to check out, you’ll want to go check out the ClassicPress Club and see what they’re up to. He puts up news and information as he gets it and it’s an alternative place to get information about ClassicPress, so make sure you check them out.
Okay, it is time to dive into the WordPress plugins for the show. What have I got for you for WordPress plugins?
Give me a second here. For some reason my notes are jumping around all over the place. All right, there we go. WordPress plugins! The first one I’ve got for you here is called IP Address Approval. This is a plugin that is similar to what I use over on an intranet site that I work on for a client. What it does for you is it allows blocking and allowing IP address or IP address ranges to access your website. It can be used to protect an intranet site from outside access.
It can also be used to protect your public site from unwanted IP intrusions.
This looks to be a pretty decent plugin aside from the one caveat that you have to use their API and third-party system to run through it. Now, I was kind of excited about this and I thought well, you know, I’ve got a plugin that I’ve been working at getting forked that does all this, but it does it on your own website. They’re using a third-party service, so I’m not 100% certain how it works or what it can do or what information they’re tracking.
I mean, they do tell you when they first set it up, they’re going to log the following information into your database: your blog owner name, your username, your email, your blog ID, your domain URL, your current theme name, your WordPress version, and your plugin version. You know, that’s a lot of information I think to log on you, you know, for a plugin that’s going to help protect you. So I’m of two minds of this plugin.
One the one hand, it’s great. Really nice, easy, something simple for people to set up. On the other hand I’m like why do you need all that tracking for it, and that’s just me because I don’t like giving away any more than I absolutely have to to get the job done as far as information to a third party, and I really dislike depending on third-party services. In the 20 years I’ve been doing this, I’ve seen too many third-party services collapse and too many people loose all their data or everything they had connected to it gone down the tubes.
So while it looks like to be a great plugin, I still can only give this a 3-Dragon rating. You can go check it out, the IP Address Approval plugin. As I said, it looks to be pretty good. It could be very useful. But again, you have to give up a fair chunk to use it.
Next up I have for you the WP Post Disclaimer. So you can disavow that post by putting a disclaimer on that post page as you have written it. Now this is a really great looking plugin. It allows you to create a disclaimer that you can be placing it at the top, bottom, or even in the middle of the content of your page. You can set this plugin so it does it sitewide as a universal disclaimer or you can set it on an individual post basis, so this could be something very useful.
For instance, if you have a website and you belong to an affiliate network and you need to put a disclaimer on there that’s on everything, you could put this in there, and have it just put it at the bottom of the page. If you have something where you’re writing a post about specific information and you need to make a disclaimer about that specific information, you can use this to do that.
A really great little plugin. It does seem to look like it works very, very well and you might have to do a little CSS to make it look prettier than the default stuff out of the box. But all in all, something that could be worthwhile for you if you need a disclaimer for your website. Go check this one out. It is WP Post Disclaimer and I give it a 4-Dragon rating.
Okay, the next one I have for you is WP Reset. This one was sent in by Ivan Jurisic – okay, I’m butchering it. I’ve got Ivan right, I’m pretty sure. So we’ll go with Ivan Jurisic and this is called WP Reset (as I’ve already said). This plugin has one purpose and one person only – well, not completely. It does a couple of different things, but its main purpose is to completely reset your WordPress site database to the default installation values with a single – well, a couple of clicks actually – not a single click. You’ve got to verify. Yes, you know you’re going to wipe out all the data on your site; please click here.
Now, it does come with a snapshot thing that’s with it to allow you to take a snapshot of what you got before you reset it and then you can come back and reset the snapshot to restore the snapshot. I haven’t tested that feature, but it does sound kind of promising. And the biggest thing I can see this used for of course is if you’re doing development or you’re like me and you have a couple of experimental sites that you’re always throwing junk at and every once in a while, you’ve got to reset that site. Usually what I have to do is I have to wipe the whole thing, wipe the database, and then reinstall WordPress from scratch. This could save a lot of time. You know, about 5 or 10 minutes’ time and every 5 or 10 minutes saved is 5 or 10 minutes you can go do something else, like go camping or out to the range and shoot a gun. So hey, if it can save you time, save some time.
So anyway, a really great looking plugin. It does – when it resets it deletes all posts, pages, custom post types, comments, media entries, users. Some of the things it does not delete or modify though, which is useful. Any media files you have, they all remain in the uploads folder – untouched but will no longer be listed under the media admin.
No files are touched, plugins, themes, uploads – everything stays. The site title, WordPress site address, site languages – all of that is untouched and the currently logged-in user that resets this, that user information is reinserted into the database and you continue on your merry way. So this is a very useful plugin if you’re doing development or experimentation and you’re always wiping out a WordPress website.
So that’s all I’ve got there for the plugins and of course this show currently brought to you by…
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Okay, and the contests – the contest only has two days left where you can win a $25 Amazon gift card donated by me, John Overall, and it is sponsored by JohnOverall.com. Save yourself $25 on your next Amazon purchase! Get in there, enter the contest. The contest expires January 31st and I will announce the winner in the next show. Just got to wppluginsatoz.com/contests for more information.
All right, and that’s pretty much it. I’m going to close this show out with the following plugins I covered: the IP Address Approval, which I gave a 3 to; the WP Post Disclaimer, which I gave a 4 to; the WP Reset, which I gave a 4 to; and then of course I covered up the ClassicPress plugin which was – what was that one again? Please, please, please fill my brain – the ZP Disable Users plugin, so I think I gave that one a 4 – at least I should have.
All right, so make sure you go check those out and a couple of quick reminders. The next WordPress Meetup in Victoria is February 25th and it will be about assessing your website host, where I’ll be covering all the things you need to look at to get yourself a good quality host. Or you can just sidestep all that and switch all your hosting to JohnOverall.com Hosting. It’s much better than most everything out there you’ll find anyway. All right, and for more information on that, go to wppluginsatoz.com/meetup.
The latest interview is up on the website. Go check that one out with Kenny Lundbäck from WP Hydra Code, a really great interview. And if you want to know more about me and my insanity and, you know, there’ll be a little story about this beard coming out soon, go check out theroguestavern.com, because this of course is the first beard I’ve ever grown in my life for those of you that catch the image on YouTube. I’ve never had one before.
Anyway, that’s pretty much all I’ve got. I’m going to let my girl take us on out of here.
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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.
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