A plugin to clear recalcitrant caches from inside WP Engine

We’re using WP Engine to host various clients, notably the Rolling Stones site, and we’ve been very pleased with both the service and the performance of their hosting platform. There’s always something though, isn’t there? I don’t think I’d really be happy if there wasn’t. In this case it’s the fact the Varnish caching layer that sits between the site and the visitors caches “non-200” responses for 24 hours. So what does all that mean? What’s the actual problem here? Continue reading A plugin to clear recalcitrant caches from inside WP Engine

Issues with embedding Vimeo videos with HTTPS URLs

As documented in WordPress trac ticket #20102, there is an issue with oEmbeds from some services which have started allowing/using https URLs rather than http URLs. The ticket documents an issue with the oEmbed functionality, oEmbed is the technology which allows you to paste a YouTube URL into your blog and have that converted to an embedded YouTube video when someone looks at the post. The problem is that the list of “safe services to embed from” does not account for URLs prefixed with the secure https protocol (as opposed to the non-secure http which is used for most web traffic which simply does not need the security).

The solution from ticket #20102 should be included in the next release of WordPress (hopefully), but in the meantime you can use this quick plugin I wrote which implements the new providers list, I’m waiting on WordPress.org plugin approval but in the meantime here’s the Github URL: HTTPS oEmbed Providers on Github

Download the files as a “zip”, unzip on your computer, then upload to your WordPress plugins directory; or upload the zip through the plugins page in your WordPress admin area.

The plugin is designed to warn you when the next version of WordPress is released, when hopefully you can deactivate and delete it.

The plugin only enables HTTPS for the providers which are already listed by WordPress, it does not add new providers (i.e. if you want an extra oEmbed provider then you need to look elsewhere, sorry).

(Post updated after publication to, hopefully, make the problem clearer.)

Page load hooks in the WordPress admin area

There are a number of really handy hooks, each of which are specific to a page in the WordPress admin area. You can use these action hooks to enqueue scripts on particular pages, to process form requests, etc, etc.

Despite these hooks being so handy, and despite using them a great deal, every time I want to use one I have to dig through the code to try and work out how they work and what they’re called… so for my own benefit, here’s what I think is a complete list: Continue reading Page load hooks in the WordPress admin area

Interspersing your post listing with date headers in WordPress

Update: OK, so at least one person wanted it as a plugin, so feel free to download Intermittent Date Headers.

Here’s a code snippet that’s not really worth making into a plugin. It’s designed to put date headers into your main post listing page. As an example, you could end up with:

Heading: March, 2008
Post: dated 15th March
Post: dated 28th March
Post: dated 29th March
Heading: April, 2008
Post: dated 1st April
Post: dated 4th April

Continue reading Interspersing your post listing with date headers in WordPress