Solve WordPress WP Super Cache Error “Page not cached by WP Super Cache. Could not get mutex lock.”

I recently attempted to get a new site up and running with WordPress and the WP Super Cache plugin on Dreamhost. After configuring everything and being confident things were working just great, I started receiving errors at the bottom of the page that said “Page not cached by WP Super Cache. Could not get mutex lock.”

The FAQ page for WP Super Cache mentions how this is a file locking issue. A possible solution would be to modify the wp-content/wp-cache-config.php and uncomment the following line:

$use_flock = true

It also mentions setting $sem_id to a different value. So I changed the following line:

$sem_id = 5419;

to

$sem_id = 5420;

These steps didn’t work. So I was lost as to what to do next.

Fortunately the WordPress Forums proved useful with the solution. As dragonwize suggests, I set the “wp-content/cache/wp_cache_mutex.lock” to writable via FTP client and things started working once again.

I Miss Shopping at The Record Store

Yeah yeah, it’s another post that makes me sound old. But, I miss the way shopping for music was in the old days

Today, I decided to break out a few of my old CDs and rip them to my computer. While I was holding the original Foo Fighters album, I noticed a CD Warehouse sticker on the back of it. It made me remember that great feeling you’d get whenever shopping in a music store. I miss that feeling.

I remembered finding the artist I was looking for, then furiously looking between the albums for that one gem of a song I couldn’t live without.  By the end of the visit to the store, I would often have several CDs I couldn’t afford. So I’d be forced to decide which album I liked more.

I’d only get this feeling from actual music stores like Tower Records, MusicLand and Rolling Stone, not big box stores like Best Buy because the music stores would literally have everything by every artist. I would be overwhelmed with the selection and the purchasing decisions I had to make.

Finally, when I got home with the album, I’d listen to the entire thing. I’d discover several tunes I’d never heard before.

These feelings are lost when it comes to purchasing digital music. You simply type in that one song you like, and press Enter. Since it’s so easy to find that hit single, I don’t think people enjoy entire albums as much anymore.

Anyway… It’s an experience I miss dearly. I miss shopping at the record store. Sure there are a few record stores still left, but it just isn’t the same. The selection just isn’t like it used to be.

Does Thesis 2 Suck?

I purchased the Thesis theme about a 2 years ago with the promise that I would be able to get the new Thesis 2 when it was released. So I setup Thesis version 1.5 on my blog and patiently waited for the 2.0 release. Then I waited some more. Then after a year and a half with still no Thesis 2, me and much of the Thesis community began to think that maybe it would never arrive. Just when I lost hope, Thesis 2 finally arrived and became available for download.

That first day, I was so anxious to get Thesis 2 loaded on my blog and start using it. I read a few of the instructions for installing and using it, but like most techies, I figured I could just skip over them and figure it all out while using it. After about 20 minutes of messing around with Thesis 2 though, I was left confused. Confusion led to frustration. Frustration led to sadness. Where were the simple fields to fill in things like font size and color? Where was my “Big Ass Save Button”? Where was the ease of use I had become so accustomed to? They were gone, and what appeared before me was a complicated mess. I immediately began to think Thesis 2 sucked. With that thought, I logged out of my blog and carried on with my life, never intending to look back.

A couple of months later, I began to think that maybe I missed something on Thesis 2. So I gave it another try. I watched several of the tutorial videos before tackling it this time. But once again, I found myself confused about how to use the system. So I Googled other blogs to see whether or not others thought Thesis 2 sucked or if it was just me. I found quite a few bad reviews. Once again, I gave up, intending never to look back.

Another week went by, and I had some maintenance to do on my old site that was running Thesis 1.8. I went into the classic Thesis interface and made a few quick changes with ease. It was then that I realized I had been looking at Thesis 2 the wrong way. Thesis 1 and 2 are completely different products. Thesis 1 is the simple to use framework for novice coders. Thesis 2 is for the big boys, the advanced users who really want to do something serious with their site.

I originally felt that I shouldn’t have to take the time to learn how to use Thesis 2 when Thesis 1 was so easy to use. Maybe it’s also because I’m lazy. Like anything in life though, if you want to do something great, you have to learn how first. With that, I began to play around with Thesis 2 some more. I watched more tutorials and with little effort came up with a pretty decent looking website (the one you see here, built in under an hour). The ability to move blocks around my entire site and place items like comment boxes, bylines and post thumbnails right where I wanted them was worth the learning curve alone.

Thesis 2 Post Boxes
The ability to drag and drop areas of your page anywhere you like is the most powerful element of Thesis 2.

Now, after spending a weekend getting to know the system better, I’m starting to realize that you can do some very powerful stuff with Thesis 2. It doesn’t suck! The problem is the expectation that Thesis 1 users have for version 2. If you have the expectation that Thesis 2 will do everything Thesis 1 does only better, you’re only going to be disappointed. In reality, they are two totally different products. They should probably be called different names. Maybe Thesis 1 should be called Thesis Basic and Thesis 2 should be called Thesis Pro. Though, I do believe that Thesis 2 should have an editor that is similar to the one in version 1 as an option. Maybe that will come in time.

For now any Thesis user should be satisfied with either version. It just depends on how far you want to take your site. Purchasing the Thesis framework will still provide you with both options. Both are great for any WordPress Website.

Update: Thesis 2.1 has been released! This new version addresses many problems users experienced with version 2.0. There is even a new “Classic Responsive” theme that allows you to modify the design similar to the way you can with version 1.0. DIY Themes have also released a ton of documentation to go along with version 2.1 to help you get acclimated to the way the system works.

Is Windows 8 Really That Awful?

I keep reading the blog posts about Windows 8 and how bad it is. People say it’s awful, unnecessary and difficult to use. I upgraded to Windows 8 about 2 days after it was released. I had tons of problems getting some of my hardware to work properly, and a freezing issue that seems to have fixed itself with an update. Despite having these problems, I’m still not sure what all the fuss is about. It’s really not all that different from Windows 7 and you can easily find any corner of the OS by using the wonderful search option.

I also love the giant tiles on the Start menu. They aren’t only useful for a tablet computer, but as a friend pointed out, excellent when using Windows on a large screen like a TV.

As for Windows 8 on mobile devices, people seem to like it. Microsoft did a lot of testing with users that go back to the Zune devices. Despite the fact that the Zune is a failed product, Microsoft still gained a lot of insight on what mobile users like and dislike. Windows 8 is the result.

People freaked when Windows 95 came out. Once users got used to the OS though, it became the standard Windows interface we all know and love today.

Yes, the interface in Windows 8 is different. You won’t know where everything is when you first use it. But once you get the hang of things, you’ll breeze through menus and find anything in seconds.

Feel free to fight it though and stick with Windows 7, or restore the old Start menu. As for me, I don’t see what the big deal is. I’ll keep using Windows 8 and accept change.

Exclude Adsense From Specific WordPress Posts

For one reason or another, you may decided that you don’t want Google Adsense ads appearing within certain posts on your WordPress blog. It’s a difficult task since you most likely added the Adsense ad code within the template file.

Using PHP and with just a slight change to your code, you can exclude Adsense ads from specific posts.

Let’s say that I want to exclude Adsense ads from 3 posts:

  • How to Enjoy Your Vacation
  • The Best Android Apps
  • WordPress For Dummies

I would exclude each one by using the slug for each post with this code
<?php
if (!is_single(array('how-to-enjoy-your-vacation','the-best-android-apps','wordpress-for-dummies')))
{
?>
Your Adsense code
<?php
}
?>

You can also exclude posts via the post ID.
 if (!is_single(array('133','145','200')))  
{
?>
Your Adsense code
<?php
}
?>

Exercise Through Doing Chores

I recently had to admit to myself that I haven’t been as active as I once was. Playing baseball really kept me in shape and when I stopped playing, I started gaining a bit of weight. I had a gym membership but I quickly realized it wasn’t for me. The idea of paying $20 a month to drive to a crowded place to torture myself for 30 minutes is not the best use of money or time.

I’ve recently realized there are a ton of chores that can be done around the house on any given day. Last week, I fixed our leaky toilet. Needless to say there was a lot of bending over. When I woke up the next morning I was very sore. Despite this, I had yard work scheduled. So I powered through the pain to get it done. I’ve come to realize that after all of this work I feel amazing though. I have more energy and feel stronger, just like after working out.

So I’ve decided that I shall find a chore to do every day and get it done. The chore will be my workout. This way, I’m killing two birds with one stone. I’ll be getting exercise as well as getting stuff done instead of wasting money and time driving to a gym.

Of course, working hard at chores is not a complete health solution. I’ll do a few curls, crunches and pushups and maybe play Wii Fit every now and then also. My target weight is 180 pounds. I’m not going to share what I currently weigh though. 🙂