WordPress 3.3–Mercury Throws Shadows On Code Poetry

Wordpress Logo(Astroblogging) WordPress’ catchphrase is “Code is poetry”, which is about as romantic as some programmers get. The brand spanking new version of WordPress, 3.3, however, released on the Mercury Station just as Mercury was going direct shows what happens when poetry meets shadows.

Those for non-astrologers that are a little lost with the first paragraph, Mercury is the planet of communication. It rules anything that has to do with communications, including the written word and computer code. Two to three times a year Mercury appears to travel backward in its orbit when the Earth overtakes speedy Mercury’s position in the solar system. During this time, all sorts of communications go wonky, email messages disappear, travel gets delayed, cars breakdown and computers go caput. Astrologers breathe a sign of relief when Mercury goes direct again, but we also know that we aren’t out of the woods yet. Only until Mercury the point in the zodiac where it originally turned backward on its course, when it is out of the shadow period, is communications harmony restored in the heavens.

So it was when 3.3 was released on the very day Mercury went direct, but still in the shadow period astrology bloggers everywhere who use WordPress drew in a sharp intake of breath. Jeffrey Kishner advised us in our astrology bloggers facebook group:

WordPress 3.3 upgrade is available today, right when Mercury stations direct. This is a conspiracy by Matt Mullenweg to destroy your blog. OK I’m kidding, but I think it would be wise to wait a few days, do some testing, before you hit “update.”

Chris Brennan added that we should back up our databases.

Of course, me being a rash Aquarian didn’t take Jeffrey seriously and dashed off:

I updated Astrology Explored and it works just fine. But then again I bought my new used car when Mercury stationed, so I’m waiting for the shoe to drop on that one.

But in the end I encountered a small glitch which I’ll tell you about in a minute but other people weren’t so lucky.

Paul at ineedhelpwithwordpress.com reported that the plug-ins WP SEO Pix and Popup Domination didn’t play welll with the new version of wordpress.

Others reported problems with the Visual and HTML tabs disappearing or just plain problems with upgrading through the admin panel.

Moderator Ipstenu at WordPress.Org Support printed this master list of plugins with problems:

* Reports on twitter that the Postie plugin breaks 3.3 admin.

* Popup Domination (a plugin NOT available on the WordPress repository) is breaking 3.3. There is an update, but as this is a premium (i.e. you buy it) plugin, you’re not going to get a lot of support here.

* IntenseDebate is showing a miss-match of comments pending.

* Count Per Day breaks the Media Uploader.

* Advanced Access Manager causes a white screen of death.

* TubePress interferes with drag’n’drop in the Admin area.

* White Label CMS breaks image insertion.

* All In One SEO reported to lose all custom menu label tags.

* Improved Page Permalinks reported to cause newly published Pages to produce 404s.

* Ad blocker plugins may conflict with the visual editor.

* Viperbar may become de-enabled and lose all settings.

* Google XML Sitemaps 4.0Beta7 has blank line

* WordPress MU Domain Mapping doesn’t let you change settings. The dev version fixes this.

* WordPress MU Sitewide Tags Plugin also has issues, please try the dev version of that plugin too.

And reports these theme conflicts:

WooThemes framework breaks the upload/insert media link. Per their site, refreshing your cache will fix this (props Drew!)

Atuhualpa has some issues with plugins that use the updated jQuery (reported Dec 10th)

For a more complete list check out his trouble shootings posts at wordpress.org.

The Code Ninjas at WordPress recommend as first fixes:

– flushing any caching plugins you might be running, as well as server and/or browser caches.

– deactivating all plugins (yes, all) to see if this resolves the problem. If this works, re-activate the plugins one by one until you find the problematic plugin(s). If you can’t get into your admin dashboard, try resetting the plugins folder by FTP or PhpMyAdmin. Sometimes, an apparently inactive plugin can still cause problems. Also remember to deactivate any plugins in the mu-plugins folder. The easiest way is to rename that folder to mu-plugins-old

– switching to the Twenty Eleven theme to rule out any theme-specific problems. If you can’t log in to change themes, you can remove the theme folders via FTP so the only one is twentyeleven. That will force your site to use it.

– manually upgrading. When all else fails, download a fresh copy of the latest.zip file of 3.3 (top right on this page) to your computer, and use that to copy up. You may need to delete the wp-admin and wp-includes folders on your server. Read the Manual Update directions first!

My little problem was that I couldn’t update my posts after publishing. After swearing, I got to work finding documentation and found others had the problem too. For me however, the fix was a simple as updating my Jetpack plug-in which includes a proofreader. Others have not been so lucky.

As we wait for the Coding Ninjas to work out the bugs this astrologer has a little piece of advice:

Ask the astrologers when is a good time to put out a new release!

Image published under a Creative Commons license from Flickr.


Beth Turnage authors Astrology Explored as well as being publisher of Astrology Media Press. Beth is available for private consultations. You can contact Beth at starrynightastro@aol.com.

About Beth Turnage

Astrologer since 1986 and blogger since 2007, I write a lot. Some people like to read it.
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2 Responses to WordPress 3.3–Mercury Throws Shadows On Code Poetry

  1. I had to deactivated every single plugin and test one by one. Turns out it was due to not having upgraded all my plugins. But I just upgraded to the latest 3.3.x and I’m having the same problem I did before (not being able to add new widgets). Almost makes me want to move to squarespace.

  2. Beth Turnage says:

    Hi Jeffrey,

    Geez, even the newest version? Maybe this is your punishment for taking Matt Mullenweg’s name in vain. Or 3.3 is doomed!

    Did you try the first suggestion: flushing any caching plugins you might be running, as well as server and/or browser caches? Did you try updating the plug-ins again? (Worth a try.)

    Hope you work things out soon. Squarespace! Bite your tongue!


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