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127 comments to Feedback

  • Bug report: filtered indexed words are not used to get the word’s first letter. (Is this the right place for bug report?)

    Hi, I’m a french speaking guy and I’m using AZIndex to build a dictionary on my website. In french, we must handle accented letters, so I had to tweak a bit with the excellent “DISPLAY INDEX FILTER” feature. Basically, I wanted to group words starting with “Γ©”, “Γ¨” or “e” all together above the E. But I wasn’t able to do so because it seems there is a little bug:

    Have a look at az-index-cache.php:818, you build the $item array with vars such as $sorthead.
    Then line 830, you apply the filter I tried to use.
    But at line 837 you call:

    $item['initial'] = $this->get_base_initial($sorthead);

    Here you should call this line to take filtered value in account:

    $item['initial'] = $this->get_base_initial($item['sort-head']);

    Thanks a lot for the excellent work you have done on this plugin!

    • Doh! Thanks Arnaud. What happened was that I tested the filter and got it all working properly, then realized that people could mess up by attempting to set ‘initial’ to something other than the first character of the sorted heading, so I added that final reset of the variable, and made the careless mistake. I will update the code and put out the fix.



  • Thanks for this plugin. I updated to .80 but I am still having problems. The page previews fine, but soon as I publish it I get a white page with “no input file specified” at the top left. Am I missing something?

    • Rudy, there definitely something wrong, but I believe it may be something to do with the way your server is handling your permalinks, rather than AZIndex. If you Google the phrase “No input file specified” and “WordPress” together, you will find that there are a good many others who have come across this problem, and none of them is using AZIndex.

      One fix that seems to work for some is to edit your permalinks settings (in http://…/wp-admin/options-permalink.php) and remove the slash at the end, so I would give that a try. (A clue that it might work is that your preview is working fine, and previews do not use permalinks, but the ‘?page=nn” format instead.

      I don’t have a clue as to why this only seems to be happening with a page with an AZIndex shortcode on it (you could try deleting just the square brackets from around the shortcode and see if the ‘no input file’ problem still exists or not — if it does, then AZIndex is definitely not causing your problems).

      Let me know if that helps.


  • Mike, removing the slash at the end of the permalink did the trick! Also, deleting the square brackets still gave me the ‘no input file’ message, so theoretically it can’t be AZIndex. But I couldn’t duplicate the problem by posting a new blank page using a slashed end permalink, so I still don’t understand what is going on. Anyway, I’m glad AZIndex is finally working. Thanks for the tip.


    • Excellent. Glad that worked. I think the problem is something to do with the way your Apache server is configured, but I don’t profess to understand much more than that.

  • Faidon

    It seems that I lost my earlier comment!

    Mike, is it possible to make/show the headers and/or subheaders as links? and at the same time limit or control the number of posts/items under each of theose headers? For example only the last thee items may be displayed under each heder/subheader…
    Just a thought!
    Thanks for your good work

    • Hi. Faidon. I don’t know what happened to your previous comment. If it was here (and not on the old site) then there is no record of it (not even in the spam bucket).

      I’m not exactly sure what you are asking for. Headings and/or subheadings are already links, but I think you must be talking about something else. If you give me an example of what you want, that might help.

      As for limiting the number of items that appear under one heading. No, that’s not possible, but again, I am not sure what you are asking for, exactly. Another example would be good.



    • Faidon

      Thanks for picking it up Mike
      here is what I have in mind:
      Possible with AZIndex?

    • Hmm. You can’t do this directly with AZIndex — there is no way to filter out the older items the way you would want to. You can only filter by tag or category. However, if there was a way to tag only the most recent items in each category/tag (you could write some code to do it, if you know how) then you could do something like this. The code would have to untag the older articles as new ones were added. (You could do this manually, by adding a tag to the new article and removing the old at the same time, but doing it automatically would be better in the long run.)

      You would also have to write a custom comparison function to sort subheadings (the post titles) in date order, but that’s only a few of lines of code. Then you create an index with categories as the headings, post titles the subheadings, and the date (inserted using the azindex_display_item filter) as the description.

      So it can probably be done, but not without writing some PHP code to maintain the tags (there might be another plugin that can do this, I don’t know) and sort them by date.

    • Mike –

      Do you have an example comparison function to sort headings by post date?

      This would also be a nice built-in option for the admin side to have a “sort by:” option where you can sort by date, category, heading, title, author, etc and then a check box to sort in reverse order.

      Awesome plugin!

  • Faidon

    Thank for picking it up again

  • Just happened across your plugin by mistake. What a wonderful mistake! This is an exciting project to me.

    I did an auto-install so didn’t even follow the good hygiene of uploading it myself and it just worked. I’m honestly floored by how easy it is and how, well, it just works.

    I installed and created two index pages in under 15 minutes.

    Instead of making everything fit into sidebars, your approach of building a plugin that actually builds a page is fantastic. I hope you will consider doing similar projects for Tags and Links.

    I’ll sit on it while it’s still in beta, but if it doesn’t blow up in the next month, this is definitely worth a contribution (I hate the word “donation” since it’s not like we’re not getting anything for the money πŸ™‚

    Many thanks,

    Glenn Caleval

    • Hi Glenn, thanks for the kind words, and I look forward to your contribution πŸ™‚

      As far as the beta designation goes, the only reason I’m keeping it on there is that some of the functionality is still incomplete — two things in particular:

      1) I will be refactoring the HTML generating code to produce less quirky HTML for the links and the items (to make it easier to apply styling of your choice).

      2) The collation (sorting) of indexes in other languages is not working that great yet. I’m not sure how much I can do there since it’s a hugely complex subject to tackle.

      Otherwise, it’s looking very stable at the moment. Nobody has reported any problems with the latest version (0.8.1) though I suppose that could mean no one is using it!

      But as long as you don’t upgrade the same day I put out a new major version, I don’t think you will run into too many problems going forward. I usually jump on anything I’ve broken within 24 hours or so, so if you ignore the nags in the Admin page for a few days, it’s usually very safe to upgrade after that.

  • Mike,

    great plugin, except nothing in theindex links.

    I mean I’ve installed it ok and it’s displaying an index, but none of the titles link to the posts.

    Where did I go wrong?

    I’m using the latest version of the index on wp 2.7.1 and am running it on my local server.

    • Hi Mark — you’ve encountered a common problem — you turned on the “Group items…” option, but that only works if you have headings and subheadings in your index. Unfortunately the side effect of this combination of just headings and this option is to give you an index with no links!

      All you need to do is go back into the settings page and deselect the “Group items with the same heading…” option and you will be fine.

      In the next version of the plugin, I have added some code to prevent people from selecting this setting unless they have subheadings selected, because it’s an easy mistake to make, and can leave users scratching their heads!

      Hope that works for you.


  • Great plugin and it seems also that you’re working really hard to enhance it so here are a few more suggestions:

    1. It has already been mentioned about jump index list and the use of in the templates; but I would really like to see that the individual Index created would have a few features to add an index and how it should be defined, ie letters only and/or including numbers.

    2. Possible to enable excerpt of the listed articles.

    Kind Regards

    • Hi Kim. yes, I’m still working on new features which will roll out over the next few months.

      Regarding your suggestions —

      1) I’m not sure what you mean about “jump index list”. Templates is definitely something I will look at, though probably not until I have version 1.0 done. I will look at more options to define what should be in the index, but there will always have to be a balance between flexibility and usability. There is a point where adding more options will make the plugin harder to use (and keep bug-free).

      2) Allowing excerpts from posts (as opposed to the excerpt *of* the post) is a possibility. I deliberately omitted that option because it would mean having to load the contents of all the posts when sorting the index, which might cause memory and/or performance issues, especially on shared server accounts or with big indexes.

      There are ways to mitigate these problems, but it would probably mean adding even more options to the settings page, which I am reluctant to do.

      One of the things I will continue to do, which will help in all the cases where there are not options available to do something you want, is to add filters so that you can write a little bit of code to do exactly what you want.

      For example, even though there is no option for adding excerpts of posts to the index page, you can actually do this by using the item display filter. Of course, not everybody is a PHP programmer, so it’s not for everyone, but I’m hoping that over time, others will share and contribute their own filter code and we can build up a library of useful filters for AZIndex.

  • Mike –

    Great plugin. One suggestion: How about an external css file?

    Other than that, I love it – I’m going to be using it as a way to display some of the latest deals that I’ve compiled.

    The link on my name should take you to my deals & specials page to see it in action.

    Thanks again – I’ll check for updates later to see if you add an external css file.


    • Hey Matthew. You’re not the first to suggest an external CSS file, and you will be pleased to know that the next version (probably out before the end of March) will allow you to use an external CSS file instead of the embedded one. At the very least, you will be able to exclude the embedded CSS from the page, so you can add it to your theme’s stylesheet instead.

      Glad you are finding the plugin useful. Your subject matter is certainly… interesting πŸ™‚


  • Glad you like the subject matter πŸ˜‰

    Another thing that we found was the use of the span tag has created a styling issue for us in FireFox –

    But not to worry , we changed out the spans with divs and all is good now

    I don’t know what other ramifications this would have for others, but the difference is subtle, but very exacting (having to do with styles being ignored in certain situations with spans)

    Our particular use was with groupings of sub-categories, and we couldn’t increase the padding between the head and subhead.

    We’re fixed up, so no worries, but thought that you might be interested to look into it for future versions.

    You can look at our corporate resources page where we’ve changed it over using divs, if you want to see it in action

    Thanks again for the great plugin


    • Hey Matthew. A redesign of the generated HTML is definitely on the cards, and you’re not the first person to comment on the use of the span tag πŸ™‚ . I haven’t done any work on that code yet–and I will be giving plenty of notice of the changes, since it may affect anyone does use the default CSS stylesheet.

      It’s interesting, though, that you could not increase the padding between the headings and subheadings, though. I thought I had done exactly that with an example index on my old site. I will have to look into that.

  • Hi there!
    Just been trying to intergrate your (wonderful) plugin to use it as a replacement for my horribly static KB index ( however I can’t seem to find a way to get it to only display the sub pages of the KB.
    If you could let me know if this is possible/how to do it I’d be most greatful!

    Many thanks,

  • Hi James, unfortunately, you can’t automatically select only sub-pages to include in your index, but there is an easy way to get the same result.

    If you install a plugin like “Simple Tags”, you can add tags to pages, and once you can tag pages, you can do one of two things:

    1) Tag the pages you want to include in the index, and specify that tag name in the settings page (Include/Exclude tags option)

    2) Or tag the pages you don’t want in the index and exclude them from the index by specifying the tag name in the settings page with a “~” sign in front of it. (e.g. ~toplevel).

    If you have a lot of pages to add to the index, then the second option is probably better and it means that you don’t have to tag every new subpage you add to your blog.

    I hope that helps.


  • Geoff

    Is there a way to create a title above the list? Something like ‘related posts’? Also it would be good to be able to limit the number of links returned eg. to five or ten (at random?). Though I guess I could make a selection by tagging some manually.

    Anyway thanks for is a great plug-in. Being able to insert the list anywhere on any page is terrific.

    • Hi Geoff,

      There is no provision for a title within the plugin itself, but you can always place a title above the shortcode of the index in a post, a page, a widget, or the theme template (wherever you put your index) and it will appear above the index in your blog. (You could also add the title to the index HTML in the Display Index filter (see the reference section) but that gets a little more complicated.)

      In hindsight, allowing you to specify a title in the settings page and then not providing any way to use it does seem a little silly πŸ™‚ . Maybe I should add another option to include the title…

      As for limiting the number of items displayed in an index and/or providing a way to select items at random (or some non-alphanumeric way, as in ‘related posts’), well, that’s not really the purpose of the plugin as it is designed. I do understand that it would be nice to have a generic way to select posts (and other things like tags, categories, etc.) and display them in the form of an index, and I might get around to doing something like that eventually — perhaps another plugin based on the same code — but that’s a fair amount of work and there is a long list of features and fixes still waiting for me to get around to working on!

  • Esther

    Hi, first thanks for this great and useful plugin! I am wondering .. is there a way to include german umlauts to the alphabet in a way that they are listed in the ‘right’ order and not at the beginning, i.e. Γ€ after a, ΓΆ after o and ΓΌ after u?
    Thanks for any tips and keep up the good work!

  • Is there a way to organize the categories themselves.

    If you look at this page, I would also like to order the Programs not alphabetically, but by the parent category which is a school.

    It would look something like this.

    Vanarts (School)
    Animation (Program)

    Vancouver Film School (School)
    Digital Design (Program)

    Foundation (Program)

    Thanks in advanced. Great plugin by the way.

  • Mike can you integrate a Captcha somewhere into the add url form please on any upcoming updates! I am so tired of wasting precious time deleting blackjack, slots or other completely unrelated link suggestions the spam bots have come up with.



  • Greetings Mike,

    First, thank you for a very powerful and useful plugin. I am using it to create a scholarly research tool — an indexed bibliography — and the AZ Plugin is what makes it possible.

    I just installed Google’s Chrome browser and noticed that Chrome messes up the placement of certain fields — easier to see than explain:

    You will notice the author names, which should appear at the top of each article title, is often displaced to the end of the title. An odd an inconsistent error on Chrome’s part…

    Any thoughts or comments on this?

    Dr. Strangelove
    University of Ottawa

  • Hi Mike,
    Thank you for fixing the bug I reported to you in February! (see 1st comment of this post)

    I went through the log file of my mysql server to analyse my blog performances and discover that AZIndex do a query for each item in the index. It means 300 queries for my 300 words index.

    SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 181 LIMIT 1
    SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 359 LIMIT 1
    SELECT * FROM wp_posts WHERE ID = 120 LIMIT 1

    Furthermore, it does those 300 queries each time I press the refresh button. Is it normal or did I do something wrong? I expected the plugin would cache its result but I can’t make it work. Does it rely on another cache plugin I did not install?

    Thanks for the answer if you have any clue,

  • Per


    Been playing around with this beauty but am now running into a problem when accessing the index:

    Fatal error: Call to undefined function mb_strtoupper() in /home/******/public_html/wp-content/plugins/azindex/az-index-cache.php on line 863

    Tried clearing and even disabling cache to no avail. Any ideas?



  • mark

    i love the plugin and have been using it for a glossary page. the one feature i would recommend adding is on the multi-page function have the option to page based on alphabetical heading instead of just by the number of posts. So if you click “b” the index shows all “b” page/post links.

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