[wp-hackers] Multisite Users and 500 Server Errors

Mika A Epstein ipstenu at ipstenu.org
Wed Sep 25 18:22:10 UTC 2013

How many editors do you have ghost writing?

If it's a matter of too many users on too many accounts, what about 
making a Ghost Writer account, and giving JUST that account access to 
all the sites? Then you tell people to log in as that account to write 
posts. It's obviously not a perfect solution, as it removes 
accountability per-person, but it may stop the server issue.

The other option would be to not have your ghost writers log in to WP, 
but I doub't that'd be sustainable either.

Jesse Friedman wrote:
> Mika, thank you for taking the time respond
> They just need to be able to access all sites. They ghost write for all of
> our clients. We have 500+ sites now and grow by 10 a month. It's 
> impossible
> to manage user access by giving editors an editor role in each and every
> site.
> The other issue with that, is as I mentioned causing major server issues.
> Jesse
> On Wed, Sep 25, 2013 at 1:43 PM, Mika A Epstein<ipstenu at ipstenu.org> 
> wrote:
>> What capabilities do they need that they don't have?
>> You say they don't need to be able to edit themes and plugins, but 
>> what DO
>> they need to do? :)
>>> Jesse Friedman<mailto:me at jes.se.com>
>>> September 25, 2013 10:13 AM
>>> I have a rather large Multi-Site Network (over 500 websites). We 
>>> host all
>>> our clients sites and also write for them. So I'm in a weird situation
>>> where I need to provide editors and writers "super admin" like access.
>>> However I don't want those users to have super admin rights. We tried
>>> using Extended Super Admins
>>> http://wordpress.org/plugins/**extended-super-admins/<http://wordpress.org/plugins/extended-super-admins/>which 
>>> basically allows
>>> you to take away capabilities from super admins which is nice but it
>>> uncovered a flaw.
>>> When you're a user on more than 50 or so sites on a WordPress 
>>> network, the
>>> server often fails at trying to serve up pages, especially
>>> /wp-admin/network/users.php and wp-admin/network/sites.php, causing 
>>> a 500
>>> Server Error. This isn't a problem for true Super Admins, because they
>>> aren't technically users on any site.
>>> The ESA plugin mentioned above makes you a user of every site you visit
>>> (once you visit the site it makes you a user of that site so you can 
>>> edit
>>> the ESA options for that site) which if you have a small network is 
>>> no big
>>> deal. But eventually all my users end up getting 500 errors when the
>>> server
>>> tries to identify all the sites they're a user of.
>>> So I need help trying to figure out a workflow for my writers. They have
>>> absolutely no reason to go into the Network area, edit sites, themes,
>>> plugins etc... I trust all of them but at the same time it's just 
>>> too much
>>> access for them.
>>> I'm thinking I could just keep a list of the writers in a file and hook
>>> into all Network level saves and ask if user name == "johnd" do not 
>>> allow
>>> things to save. Then I can also user their username as a class in 
>>> the body
>>> tag and just use CSS and JavaScript to hide the entire dashboard.
>>> Has anyone done anything like this?
>>> Does anyone have a better solution?
>> --
>> Mika A Epstein (aka Ipstenu)
>> http://ipstenu.org | http://halfelf.org
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