Lost Your Tags and Categories? Beware of Your WordPress DOT com Account!!!

by on March 14, 2012

in consumer


This is a duel edged report… on one aspect I learned that when you install a WordPress.com (WPC) plugin that needs an API and access to your wordpress.org (WPO) self-hosted blog, you might be in for a world of trouble.

Also, despite all manner of advertising saying that allowing a WPC plugin access to your WPO blog does not slow your blog down… I say bushBA to that!

Where Did My Tags and Categories Go?

I’ve had a brusimm blog “entry” over on WordPress.com (WPC) for sometime now. Quite a few years actually. But the other day I had been tinkering with it and then when I was done, I decided to actually create a new blog where I would start to point to my other blogs and the things I talk about.

I fully formed the blog where WP obviously created a database file and such over there and I put in a few entries and away I went.

(Background: I had installed some WordPress plugins that had to allow WPC access and an API key was required between the entities. I never thought about how integrated the two would become because of that.)

Then a few days later I had logged in here on Brusimm.com and as I was writing a new post, I noticed that my tags and categories were gone.

This was distressful because I have a few plugins that work off of these two entities, and sure enough, those plugins were belly up at that moment of what I can only now call, entertaining distress.

I touched base with my most excellent host, HostGator, and they indicated they didn’t see any issues on their end and I started to ponder WTH was up and realized that this was an interesting problem that seemed to coincide with my new WPC blog. (Which, BTW, looked eerily like my WPO self-hosted interface!)

But Where Did My Self Hosted WordPress Database Go??

So I headed over to my .com side of things and decided I really don’t need that blog over there and I can just get rid of it and simplify my day. I was thinking this because of the timing and such… I start ‘it,’ and then my problems over here started up.

I deleted my brusimm.wordpress.com blog. G’bye!

Then “stuff” hit the fan!

First, all my tags and categories showed back up. Cool. But then a few minutes after that my posts started to disappear from here, my self-hosted blog. Then I started to encounter a database error message in place of my hard work. And finally, when all was said and done, all the problems went away. But that’s because after about five minutes, here on my .com site, I was looking at the “Five easy minute install” window instead of my own blog.

Wow… that would have made a great funny scene in a movie somewhere… but just not right then.

I did not touch a single option or window or button on this new look for this blog… zoinks! Because sometimes you need to back away from the keyboard. If I had hit the install or whatever button, who knows what record would have been overwritten. And it’s a good thing I did.

Giving Access To WordPress.Com Has Its Downside

Apparently I gave WP.com access to my wp installation via an API key when I installed the plugin WordPress.com Stats, a visitor stats tracking plugin.

A BTW Observation: Ever since then, my own access to my blog seemed pretty slow.

Somehow, this plugin I was using that needed an active WordPress.com account and an API key gave that account complete and total access/control to my account and installation of wp here on brusimm.com, that I have hosted on HostGator.

Then when I deleted my blog over on wp.com, since that account had some form of full control via that plugin, deleted my own database here on HG.

I had contacted the support staff over at WordPress.com and they were pretty cool/fast about responding and they disassociated my .com account from my database over here.

As soon as the WP.com guys disconnected that account from my hosted wp installation there on HostGator, everything came back. My tags returned, my categories were there, and oh yea, the entire database and blog were back as if they never left!

I do want to make clear that even though this seemed insidious, like a MS trick or what not, it was probably something I did in giving my account over there full access to here. I don’t remember doing that, but obviously installing the plugins and granting access probably did the trick that set me up for this excitement.

I also was informed after the fact, now that we nailed down the site response time, that the API call to WP.com was indeed a load-time killer. Go figure!

I Made Decisions Based Off Of Bad Information

I recently broke out my entertainment and NASCAR entities because I hated how slow my blog had become. It was a decision I had been pondering for quite some time and I finally did it because I hated the idea of my readers having to sit around for a few moments more than necessary to access my content.

So I broke them out into their own spaces and they had been like that for some time, about two weeks when I had encountered this issue between my WPC and WPO installations.

Of course, the moment my WPC account was disassociate from here, the site is now lightning fast and I’m pretty ticked. Ticked that I made a huge decision based off of some unknown issue causing load time issues, when all along it was wordpress.com that was introducing the lag. The very same WPC that said it’s stats are stored on their own server and it doesn’t slow down your site when their plugin is installed. LIE!

I should have known something was up when they stopped supporting their stand-alone stats package and pulled it into this all-in-one package (JetPack) that seemed to replicate all my other independent plugin installations. Grr.

Kudos To Everyone Involved

Despite my trauma, I have to say that everyone everywhere was quite responsive to my personal, life altering woes.

The staff at WordPress.com responded quickly to my distress call, and AS ALWAYS, the team at HostGator was all over the situation too, even if they were stumped that nothing was going wrong from their end.

All in all, despite this weird and frightening snag, the staffs involved were awesome in helping me tackle my problem, because as a user trying to figure out what I had to do to disconnect my .com account from this installation of WP, I’d have to say “good the *! luck” trying to figure it out. I wasn’t having any luck!

If I go back to wp.com, I am NOT associating with anything related to this consumer awareness website. New email, new name, new everything… that’s if I go back. And I don’t really have a reason not to, now that I know better, except for the fact that I’m already running ragged as it is.

If you ever lose your tags and categories, well, here’s one horror story to ponder! Thanks for coming by!

Bruce E. Simmons, Owner/Editor & so-so Writer of:
Brusimm.com , CinemaStatic.org ; NASCAR-Bits-and-Pieces.com .
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