Poor Response Time

I’ve been out of pocket for the past few weeks, for anyone who has submitted a bug or help request, I apologize.  I am back in North Carolina and have some time to address some of the questions and help requests which have queued up since before Christmas.  I have answered a few Email Users and WordPress Google Form questions in the WordPress Support Forum but if you haven’t heard back from me, don’t hesitate to ping me again.

Email Users v4.6.2 released

This morning I released version 4.6.2 of Email Users.  This release addresses several translation issues and updates the Bulgarian translation.  More importantly, this release adds an integration with ItThinx Groups!  This new feature is one that has been requested several times and I finally had the time to work on it.

You can download the update from the WordPress plugin repository or find the update on your Dashboard.

Email Users v4.6.2-beta-2 now available

I am close to releasing Email Users v4.6.2.  This update addresses some issues in the README file and some translation string issues on the Options page.  There is no new functionality or bug fixes since beta-1.

I would like to get as many of the translations as possible updated before releasing 4.6.2.

Email Users Beta (209 downloads)

Email Users v4.6.2-beta-1 available

This morning I posted the first beta release (beta-1) of Email Users 4.6.2.  This release includes integration with the ItThinx Groups plugin.  I also took the opportunity to refactor the code for integration so code isn’t unnecessarily loaded when a plugin isn’t installed and clean up the plugin’s ReadMe file.

If you use ItThinx Groups I would appreciate any feedback you can provide.

Email Users Beta (209 downloads)

Where did all of this wp-SwimTeam stuff come from?

You may have noticed an influx of content (posts, pages, etc.) related to wp-SwimTeam and wonder where it came from.  For the past four years I have been developing, enhancing, supporting, etc. a WordPress plugin called wp-SwimTeam.  This plugin can be used to manage the registration, volunteers, participation, and other aspects of running a youth swim team.  Several groups have used it for Masters Swimming as well but it is targeted at youth swim teams.

I first started wp-SwimTeam to support our local neighborhood team when my wife was the swim team chair.  Over the years it grew in features to the point where it was fairly comprehensive.  My children no longer swim and my involvement in swim team has largely ended but I still maintain my plugin because (a) people use it and (b) I still feel it serves a need and it doesn’t take much of my time to continue supporting it.

I have always had a separate web site for wp-SwimTeam but over time that came to make less and less sense. In fact, I had some people contact me on this site and some on the other site so I had questions and solutions on both sites.  I decided that I would migrate everything here So I exported all of the content and then imported it.  There were a few hiccups, mostly around downloads but I think everything else came over ok.

The old URL redirects to the wp-SwimTeam page on  this site.  From time to time you may see updates for wp-SwimTeam or phpHtmlLib in addition to the normal flow of information on Email Users and WordPress Google Form.

Email Users v4.6.0 released

This morning I released version 4.6.0 of Email Users.  This release addresses the problems with addresses appearing in the CC header instead of the BCC header which cropped up in v4.5.4 and v4.5.5.  This version has gone through quite a bit of testing to ensure the problem with addresses was fixed.  In addition to this critical fix, there are also a couple of minor new features now available.  If you were running Email Users v4.6.0-beta-4, this version is nearly identical.  The version is different and the default string for the new footer was trimmed eliminating the version number.

  • Significantly improved debug functionality to chase down mail header issues.
  • Check added to determine if wp_mail() has been overloaded by a theme or plugin.
  • Rewrite of mailusers_send_mail() fucntion to construct headers as arrays instead of as a single string. The string would sometimes not break correctly and recognize the Bcc: field.
  • Implemented new email footer option.
  • Cleaned up presentation of Options page.
  • Implemented new omit display names option.
  • Updated language translation files.

You can find this update in the WordPress plugin repository or on your Dashboard.

Email Users v4.6.0-beta-3 now available

If you’ve been following the Email Users Support Forum, you are aware that for the past couple of days I have been chasing a bug which affects some users and places all of their intended recipient email addresses in the CC header instead of the BCC header.

This has been a challenging bug to find as it doesn’t happen on any of the systems I have access to.  Fortunately I had a few users affected by this problem willing to help me and I appreciate their assistance.  I am not sure how I would resolved this problem without their assistance.  Again, thanks.

So what was the problem?  The WordPress wp_mail() API allows you to pass extra header information as part of the mail content.  Email Users makes use of this by constructing a BCC header which contains all of the email addresses for the intended recipients.  The wp_mail() function supports headers as a single string or an array of headers, each header as an array element.

Up until this evening Email Users had constructed all email headers as a string.  With a large number of email addresses this string could end up being very long.  However, I don’t believe the length of the string had anything to do with the problem.

When wp_mail() receives headers as a string, it tries to intelligently decompose them.  In some cases it appears that the string wasn’t splitting correctly which means the BCC field wasn’t ever seen.  The “Bcc:” text became part of an email address which was subsequently discarded because it resulted in a bad address.

Email Users v4.6.0 has a rewrite of the mailusers_send_mail() function plus some new debug functionality which helps resolve these sorts of issues.  Additionally, the new debug is under user control so can be turned on and off as needed.

Email Users Beta (209 downloads)

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For testing this new version, I recommend turning Debug on until you’re comfortable with the the structure of the email addresses.

Questions or comments -don’t hesitate to ask.

Debugging the Email Users CC issue

For the past few days I have been chasing a reported issue where Email Users is putting recipient addresses into the CC header instead of the BCC header.  This has been a challenge to chase down.  To assist in this I have add a bunch of  new debug and checking to Email Users.

Email  Users will now check and report if wp_mail() has been overloaded by a plugin or theme.  Since wp_mail() is a pluggable function, this is the one area which is really out of the control of Email Users.  Simply knowing if wp_mail() has been overloaded is very helpful.

Additionally, I have finally found a way to initiate a complete email which is aborted just prior to the email actually being sent.  The content of several internal structures is displayed on the Dashboard so the email headers can easily be examined.

This build is in DEBUG mode which means it will never actually send an email unless wp_mail() has been overloaded in which case all bets are off.  Please visit the Settings page first to determine if wp_mail() has been overloaded.  If it has, do not send any email but let me know which plugin or theme has overloaded wp_mail().

Email Users Beta (209 downloads)

Email Users v4.5.3-beta-4 now available

This morning I pushed out beta-4 for Email Users v.4.5.3.  This latest update addresses the duplicate header information discovered by Andy Fragen.  I had already fixed the problem with the TO header Andy noted but was unaware of the duplicate MIME-Version header.  It turns out, there was also a duplicate X-Mailer header as well.

By default wp_mail() sits on top of PHPMailer.  WordPress does not check for either the MIME-Version header nor the X-Mailer header.  Unless specifically set, PHPMailer will add its default values for these two headers which is what was happening.  It appears that some systems are sensitive to duplicate headers and reject the messages and others do not.  This definitely explains why it is difficult to reproduce reports that come in of users not receiving email.

Because wp_mail() is pluggable, other mail implementations may be expecting these headers to continue to exist.  What I have done is added two new options to add the headers as Email Users has been doing all along.  By default these two options are off because PHPMailer duplicates them and I expect most people use the default WordPress implementation.

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I also improved the information panel I added recently to report the existance of any filters which may interact with Email Users.  For the most part these filters don’t do any harm however they can change override the FROM information in the email or the format which may be unexpected. The new information in the panel is nothing more than a note that something else may be affecting your email outside of Email Users (e.g. why is my From name different than what I set?).

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Please report any issues with this latest beta update.

Email Users Beta (209 downloads)