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iThemes Security (formerly Better WP Security)
Worst Ever Don't Bother, no Support (9 posts)

1 star
  1. lenrapp
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    I installed this on one of my blogs and didn't put in a lot of the so called features that would make it more secure, but could present issues. Today I was working on a new blog and decided to install the plug-in on that one. My mistake.

    I clicked on one option that required I manually add code to the WP-Config file:

    //BEGIN Better WP Security
    define( 'BWPS_FILECHECK', true );
    //END Better WP Security

    My mistake. Once I did, I couldn't locate the WP Config file, had no idea where to find it or add this code and now the site is down completely. I am trying to now restore the site from my hosting companies back up.

    Who would take a risk of screwing up their entire sites when there is no support and the maker takes no responsibility because things can go wrong. Too risky. Hope OI can now restore my two sites.

  2. mixix
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Well as you explicitly pointed out - it is your lack of technical skills and understanding of the WP architecture that led to the failure of your website, not the plugin's fault.

    My advise - delegate code changed to the plugin instead of trying to do manually if you're not comfortable with it. Second, if the site is down you apparently made incorrect changes somewhere and broke PHP syntax. Get a techy friend to have a look at the files you tampered with.

  3. lenrapp
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Here is why I rated it so low. The options do not warn a user properly that they can absolutely pull down their site if they have no coding skills instead of having full instructions on how to modify the config.php file there is nothing offered other then you have to add this code to the WP-config.php file.

    Do you assume that all WP users that install your plug-in can understand this instruction? I am comfortable with going to the files to make changes, but exactly where do I insert that code? A screen shot would be helpful, don't you think?

    Instead I clicked on the one option button and couldn't find the right place to insert the code and there was no way to restore the site, it was down.

    I spent many hours trying to undo this but had to finally ask my host company to restore the entire site from an earlier back up. I lost a day of work with this mess, only because I clicked on that one option. You need to have a stronger warning message on the options that require hand coding or knowledge of PHP and if not, you need to have a better tutorial on how to do this.

    A video on YouTube would be great, embedded in your site, or as I said screen shots.

    I want others to understand that they better have a good back up of their entire site should they click on the wrong option on this plug-in because it can take the entire site down.

  4. DazzelDum
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Thank you lenrapp.
    I am sure it is an amazing plugin, but when these plugins are too complicated for those of us who dont understand the technology, we need more easy explanation and specific training.

    The only reason I am considering this plugin, is because of Blog Defender by Matt Garret. I am not an affiliate of his, but Matt takes us through each part and we check the site. He used parts of three plugins, this is one of them.

    Although from what you wrote I am thinking twice about it.
    No disrespect to the author,I see the hard work put into it but some of us just cant understand how to use it.

  5. lenrapp
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    I will go and check it out. I run an organization of photographers and journalists and make it very clear to our members what they need to know about working in WordPress on our sites. I do screen shots and more.

    You can see two of these on our site at:

    http://internationalpress.com/blog/blog/impress-author-guide/

    http://internationalpress.com/blog/blog/advanced-authors-guide-to-impress-part-1/

    Since hundreds of thousands of WordPress users have chosen this platform, if I were to do a plug-in like this one, I would take the extra time to explain it in detail.

    Why would anyone want to use this when he has warnings on each step that says it could interfere with other plug-ins, or you are totally on your own and there is no support. Why would he indicate you have to hand code files without assuming that the average user might not understand how.

    Now unless he put a warning upfront that said, this is for advanced users only who are comfortable with coding and others shouldn't install this plug in because it could cause you to lose your entire site, I see no reason to use it.

    Sure it might be a great plug in if used properly, but as I found out, on simple click on one of the many unclear options took my site down and I had no one to turn to for help.

    I will check into the Blog Defender, I have found out that paying for some of the new plug-ins I just bought for our new site going up at: http://internationalpress.org was worth the money. I would prefer to pay and see that a few thousand people use it and gave it a good review and their is superior support then get a freebie and have to make a donation and still not get any support.

    Just my thinking...I give all of our members one on one support and our instructions and info on our Member Support blog is quite extensive.

    Len

  6. lenrapp
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Just checked out the blog defender website, looks like another scam. I would never buy it and trust that this guy is not doing exactly what he tells you he is helping you prevent.

    Looks like another guy trying to sell Sham Wow to me and I have been around for a very long time.

  7. DazzelDum
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    I can imagine how awful it must have been to lose your site. SO much hard work.mAnd then more hours on finding out how to restore it.

    You said you are now using a paid plugin for security? Can you tell me which one? If it is allowed on this forum.

    I agree that support is so important on a plugin like this.
    Most of us are not advanced users. But security is so incredibly important.

    I will also check out your site. Be well and thank you for the correspondence.

  8. lenrapp
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    I did some research and found one that not only seems to do the job but won't mess you up. Check out WordFence, they offer a free plug-in and it is very easy to configure and very elegant. They offer a paid version and a free one, I am trying the free one now and it looks quite good. Here is what they already reported on google bots:

    They let you block and that don't look right and more.

    Mountain View, United States crawled http://internationalpress.org/robots.txt
    21 minutes ago IP: 66.249.73.236 [block] Hostname: crawl-66-249-73-236.googlebot.com
    Browser: Googlebot version 2.1
    Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; +http://www.google.com/bot.html)

    They issue an API key as well...their website is at: http://www.wordfence.com

    You can see the difference in trusting your site to a real company vs. a coder who can mess up everything on your site.

    I am testing it now on one of my new WP sites to see how it works out and will replace others I have on my other sites once I am sure it is the right one for us.

    Hope this helps.

    Len

  9. DazzelDum
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Thank you, I will check it out. I have seen it before and it looks good. It looks like the best one.
    Let us all know what you think about it after you have used it.

    Also, to be fair to Matt Garrett and BLOGDEFENDER.
    It is a great training. Very detailed and more comprehensive than just the plug ins. He is so detailed that we can make our own decisions on what to enable. Also, he responds very quickly to questions.
    He is NOT a scam. He just isn't right for you.
    And I am learning that other plugins may be better. The training is inexpensive but he definitely put some hard work into it.

    Thank you for your great correspondence! Mary

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