Category Archive DevBlog


“Text File Widget” is live on WordPress.Org

My first plugin – “Text File Widget” is now live on the WordPress Plugins Repository.
It’s a proper job – complete Readme.Txt file, Banner, and Icon.
Looks great!


Here’s the link:

It’s a very simple plugin, all it does is display the contents of a text file as a widget. I couldn’t believe that there wasn’t already a plugin for this, so I wrote one..

It replaces end-of-line characters with a “
” for clarity.

Here’s the plugin page:

Any problems with it, contact me via WordPress.Org (hit the plugin’s “support” link) – let’s do everything properly!


I’ve just created my first WordPress plugin!

I've just created my first WordPress plugin! Click To Tweet
I found that no existing plugin did exactly what I wanted to do: display the contents of a text file as a sidebar widget, so I made my own, from scratch.
[There was a plugin that displayed the contents of a text file whenever a shortcode was inserted, which was ok for inside pages and posts, but not widgets.]
While I was at it, I realised how easy it would be to add a shortcode handler as well, so I did.
It’s a pretty specific plugin, only for my “” site – not for general release, but it’s a start. (Look for the “Basher’s Daily Tip” widget in the RH sidebar..)

I could easily create a generic “display text file as widget” plugin, though. I’ll think about it.

I also think it would be useful to have an online “plugin boilerplate generator” that did all the boring stuff leaving only the custom code bits to do..
I may do that, too..

Any comments or suggestions gratefully accepted as usual:


Need any help? | WordPress Site Problems Fixed!

Locked out of your WordPress site due to a bad plugin?
Database clogged up and bloated?
Site performing like it’s wading through treacle?

Then Get In Touch!

Let us do the work for a reasonable fee. Ask for a quote!

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Feedwordpress / links rss error fixed.

We had an error with epn rss feeds with feedwordpress. Nothing was Coming through.
Obvious solution was to replace the rss feeds. So we did, using the “links” manager as it’s quicker than fwp. And we got back unfiltered rss based on keywords only. It turns out that link manager chops the ends off the urls! Took a week to work that out.. had to re-enter all urls using fwp..

Posted from WordPress for Android


Auto-publish posts to Social Media (Digg, Facebook, Reddit etc)

We’re currently trialling OnlyWire to get posts automatically published on social media sites.
How it works:
1. Sign-up for an OnlyWire account.
2. Configure your website details
3. Configure your social media channels
4. Install and configure the “submitter” on your machine.

We’re using the RSS feed option, so OnlyWire reads the feedburner RSS feed, and creates posts from that.
As a result there’s (almost) no overhead on the website. It just sees an RSS client.

So every post is echoed on Digg, or wherever, and becomes a backlink to your site. RESULT!

We’re currently using the free trial version (restricted to 300 posts).

Sound good? Give it a go…



Login Blocked by misconfigured LDAP connector plugin

I manage a multi-site WordPress installation for a client.
Before Christmas, they installed an LDAP connector plugin, but never got around to configuring or testing it.
Unfortunately, the default settings prevented using the WordPress login as a fallback.
So everyone was locked out. So I tried the usual database>wp-settings>active-plugins workaround. There was nothing there!
So I tried the old faithful “rename the plugin folder” routine. Jackpot.
I was then able to get in.




January 18th is STOP SOPA day.
All q292u sites will be participating in the SOPA blackout (18.1.2012)
Sites will remain dark from 8am EST to 8pm.
For information on what this is all about, visit



January 18th is STOP SOPA day.
This site will be participating in the SOPA blackout (18.1.2012)
The site will remain dark from 8am EST to 8pm.
For information on what this is all about, visit


ESSENTIAL Plugins for WordPress

WordPress is immensely powerful straight out of the box, but it’s possible to add pretty much ANY functionality you want, and it’s usually for free.

This is a list of the TOP Plugins we use at
They are in no particular order.

ESSENTIAL anti-spam system. Free to non-commercial users.
Filters out unwanted (spam) comments automatically, and provides stats on what it’s doing. ESSENTIAL.

Redirects all RSS feeds to your Feedburner feeds. So you can control all RSS activity. From there you can do e-mail Subscriptions and much more.
Including automatic TWITTER integration! Get a feedburner account. ESSENTIAL.

Handles ALL aspects of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). Options to rewrite article titles, handles Keywords, meta tags, everything. There’s also a “PRO version. You won’t need it. ESSENTIAL.

Handles advertising on your site. Very comprehensive. Individual ads are created and then made into groups. You can then position the groups as widgets, in posts and on pages. Ads have start and end dates, and tracking can be switched on or off. Better than maxbannerads. STRONGLY RECOMMENDED

Creates a mobile version of your site on the fly. All you need to do is access the site via a mobile device. The interface looks like Apple iOs.
Very smart. ESSENTIAL There’s a PRO version as well.

Automatically adds relevant tags to your posts as you create them, based on post content. It’ll find tags you hadn’t thought of. STRONGLY RECOMMENDED.

Add relevant eBay listings to your posts and pages. This plugin is NOT free, but it’s worth the money. Simply set it up, and use shortcodes to position ads. Now includes a widget as well. RECOMMENDED.

Automatically creates posts on your blog, based on predefined RSS feeds. Excellent. RECOMMENDED.

Excellent caching plugin, creates static version of all your posts and pages as they are created. Far better than SUPERCACHE.
ESSENTIAL if you use a lot of plugins, or have a lot of visitors.

Some themes automatically add all pages to navigation menus. This is how to stop it. Adds a checkbox in the editor. ESSENTIAL.

Automatically generates and submits sitemaps to Google. You can also submit these to Yahoo and Bing, yourself. Helps with SEO. ESSENTIAL.

Automatically create scheduled database backups and e-mail to yourself.
Simple and effective. ESSENTIAL.

SMART 404.
Attempts to redirect 404 errors to relevant pages based on search query, and URL requested. Reduces bounce-rates. ESSENTIAL

Mail From.
Simply changes the return e-mail address for automatically-generated e-mail messages to something like “”. ESSENTIAL.

Google Analytics.
This adds Google Analytics tracking code to all your pages and posts, so you can keep tabs on everything. You need an analytics account. ESSENTIAL.

Adds social bookmark icons to your posts. Allows your readers to recommend your posts on DIGG, REDDIT, SLASHDOT, etc. STRONGLY RECOMMENDED.

Adds links to other relevant posts on your site. Engages visitors, and keeps them on your site longer. STRONGLY RECOMMENDED.

The new kid on the block. Allows visitors to mark relevant posts, adds kudos and visibility on Google.

Allows visitors to “LIKE” your site on Facebook. Facebook is a massive audience, not to be ignored. STRONGLY RECOMMENDED.

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