Q: I have created a notification rule, but I do not receive emails. What could it be?

A: Most of the time the reason is a not matching rule. To be sure that your rule matches, activate the “Log” feature in the rule settings and after a post change check out the log entries. If there is no log entry, your rule did not match. To figure out why your rule does not match refer to Debug rule.

Q: PSN is sending multiple emails for one notification rule at the same time. What is the problem and what can I do to prevent this?

A: It is very likely that this happens when another plugin is saving posts, especially when it is a frontend post submission plugin. Some of them update a new post several times in the submission process to add categories, tags and / or custom fields. Every update triggers the WordPress internal action “transition_post_status” (http://codex.wordpress.org/Post_Status_Transitions). PSN relies on this action and every time it occurs, it will match the notification against the post update. In most cases it is not necessary to update a post multiple time in one request. It is just lazyness of the developer who is not aware of the side effects. Everything can and should be handled with one post update. So please contact the developer of that plugin you use and ask him/her to change the behaviour of post creation / updates to just update a post once per request and unique post statuses.

If that is not possible or you need a faster solution, please try PSN’s “Limitations” feature if you haven’t already. It tries to log all rule matches and if you set the limit to 1, the rule will only trigger once. Well, in most cases. Some frontend plugins work with asynchronous AJAX requests and fire multiple requests at the same time which can not be handled correctly.

Another explaination can be that your rule is not exact enough. Example: Your rule matches status before “anything” and status after “anything”, which can be called an imprecise configuration. If a post gets updated multiple times in one request, e.g. from “new” to “draft”, from “draft” to “pending” and finally from “pending” to “publish”, that rule would match every transition. In this case, if you just want to notify the “publish” event, you have to adjust the rule to be more precise, e.g. to match status before “pending” and status after “publish”. To get to know which statuses a post is running through, you should create a “Debug rule” and check the logs.

If this happens with user submitted posts, we recommend to switch to the plugin Frontend Publishing Pro which does not trigger multiple posts transitions in one request and therefore works great with PSN.

Q: I am using WP Job Manager. When a new job is being submitted via front-end form, the regarding PSN rule does not create notification emails. What could it be?

A: We know of that issue on WP Engine hosted servers. Their object cache prevents the events on front-end post submission to be executed. Please deactivate WP Engine’s object cache on your dashboard and purge all caches. Read more about the WP Engine cache on WP Engine support

WP Engine deactivate object cache

Q: No emails are genereated for posts submitted via front-end. What could be wrong?

A: One reason can be caching plugins which offer object caches. Those object caches can have an impact on the post save process. They may prevent essential events from being triggered.

In case of W3 Total Cache, please try to deactivate the object cache.

Disable W3 Object Cache

Q: I am using WP Job Manager. When a new job is being submitted via front-end form, I receive two emails. What could it be?

A: When a job is submitted via WP Job Manager’s front-end form, the post passes two status transitions. 1: [post_status_after] : preview [post_status_before] : new 2: [post_status_after] : pending [post_status_before] : preview

So if your rule is listening on all those statuses, it will trigger twice on a job submission. The solution is to adjust your rule to only listen to one of the two transitions, e.g. from “pending” to “preview”.

Q: Does PSN support HTML mails?

A: Yes. Starting with version 1.5 PSN supports HTML mails. You can manage your mail templates for reusability. See Mail templates.

Q: Why will my special characters in HTML mails not display correctly in my email client?

A: Please make sure, that you set the right encoding in your HTML mail template. Use the example HTML email template from the PSN resources which uses <meta http-equiv=”Content-Type” content=”text/html; charset=UTF-8” /> in the html header for unicode support. Please check out this tutorial: Which doctype should I use in HTML email?

Q: Can I use PSN to notify about new comments?

A: No. PSN does not work with comments. Its focus is to react on post status transitions.

Q: When I go to the settings page, I get a white page.

A: The “WordPress White Screen of Death” can have many reasons. The best option is to check your server’s error log. If you find an error message like “Fatal error: Allowed memory size of [xyz] bytes exhausted ...” it is very likely that your server’s PHP memory limit is very low, propably 32 or 64 MB. The default is 128 MB. To increase the memory limit to 128 MB, put this line of code in your wp-config.php file.

define('WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '128M');

If you do not know what your memory limit is, check your webhoster’s PHP info page or create one for yourself and search for “memory_limit”. If this does not fix it, please contact the support.

Q: Is PSN compatible with the plugin “Advanced Custom Fields”?

A: Yes. PSN can access all custom fields of a post and use them as placeholders in your custom email text. Checkout this screenshot to learn how easy it is: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BlRyb_8CMAARUiv.jpg:large

Q: Is PSN compatible with the free plugin Edit Flow?

A: Yes, PSN support all custom post statuses and so it works perfectly with Edit Flow.

Q: Can PSN handle media library items like images?

A: No. Media items do not have status values like posts have (published, pending and so on). WordPress does not fire the “transition_post_status” event for media item changes on which PSN relies. So PSN cannot treat media library items.

Q: I have a custom script to edit / publish posts. Does PSN support it?

A: PSN relies on the WordPress internal action “transition_post_status”. This gets triggered whenever a post gets changes. Every custom script with the purpose to change or submit posts should implement this action. If so, PSN will support your custom script. If not, implement the “transition_post_status” action or ask your developer to do it.

You find more information about the “transition_post_status” action on this WordPress codex page: http://codex.wordpress.org/Post_Status_Transitions

Q: Can I upgrade from Lite to Premium to keep my notification rules?

A: Yes. In your WordPress plugins section, deactivate the Lite version but do not delete it, because this would delete the database table which stores your rules. Then upload the Premium version and activate it. On PSN’s “Overview” page run the Selftester (right sidebar) to be sure that the database layout is up-to-date. The Premium version uses the same database tables as the Lite version. You will find your formerly used rules in the “Rules” section. To remove the Lite version from your plugins list, delete its directory “post-status-notifier-lite” on your server (e.g. with a FTP tool of your choice).

Refer to the Upgrade Howto for more details about how to upgrade from Lite to Premium version.

Q: When I update the plugin via the WordPress backend, I get the error “Download failed. Forbidden”

Error message Download failed. Forbidden

A: This error message indicates, that there is a problem with your Premium version license code. Please check if you have inserted it in the options page of the plugin. Check the documentation about Premium license code.

After you have inserted your license code, please refresh WordPress’ update information by using the button “Check Again” in Dashboard / Updates.

Check update information

This is neccessary to update the download link with the license code you just entered. Then try to update the plugin again.

Q: Can I set a custom FROM? I need to set the FROM name, not the FROM email address. Is it possible?

A: Yes. You can set the custom FROM either per rule or as a default for all rules in the options.

This is the docs chapter for setting a custom From inside a rule: http://docs.ifeelweb.de/post-status-notifier/rules.html#from

And this is the chapter about the default from in the options: http://docs.ifeelweb.de/post-status-notifier/options.html#default-from

To use a name as From, use this syntax:

Sender Name <sender@domain.com>

Like for example:

ifeelweb Support <info@ifeelweb.de>

Q: When I upgrade from version 1.4 to 1.5 I get the error “Fatal error: require_once(): Failed opening required ’.../plugins/post-status-notifier/lib/Ifw/Wp/Plugin/Loader.php’ in .../plugins/post-status-notifier/post-status-notifier.php on line 13

A: This is a conflict between two versions of the plugin. It is most likely that your web server has performance enhancing / caching modules activated like memcache, apc, or opcode which keep scripts of the old plugin version in their caches. Please restart your webserver or empty the caches of these modules to fix this error.

Q: I have PSN installed on a WordPress Multisite system. Is there a simple way to check all the sites and update the databases?

A: The patch button in the plugin backend only appears, if you overwrite the plugin files on the server without deactivating / activating the plugin (skipping the default plugin update process). In this case the plugin recognized a version mismatch and needs to run the patcher manually to update the necessary database tables.

If the plugin passed the default WP update process, the internal version checker gets updated and the patch button will not appear. So for updating from version 1.4 to 1.5 please copy / overwrite the plugin files and then deactivate and activate the plugin through your WordPress plugin backend. This is network compatible of course.

For future updates you can use the WP backend as PSN supports auto updating since version 1.5. You just have to insert your license code in the plugin options.

Q: I get a PHP warning message: “Warning: parse_ini_file() has been disabled for security reasons.”

A: This means your hosting company or server administrator has disabled one or PHP functions that are used by PSN. Usually they do this in an attempt to tighten security, perhaps after a flaw has been found in an old or poorly written plugin. PSN requires a fully functional PHP environment to work properly. PHP with arbitrary functions disabled is not fully functional. You should ask your hosting company to consider removing the block on those functions, particularly parse_ini_file, or at least provide an exception for PSN. PSN does not use parse_ini_file in an insecure manner. Disabling that function does not increase security.

If your hosting company insists on continuing to block functions, you should consider switching to a new host that provides a complete PHP environment.

Q: I bought the “Regular License”. Can I upgrade to the “Extended License”?

A: The payment process is completely managed by Envato. Please refer to their FAQ entry which explains what to do: http://themeforest.net/licenses/faq#exceed-limitations-a

Q: My emails are always going to the spam folder. How can I avoid this?

A: There are many reasons why an email will go to the spam folder. One of the most common reasons are spam trigger words and phishing phrases. They should be avoided in subject and body of the email. Please refer to these resources to find out more about preventing emails going to spam folder: