Support » Plugin: Content Aware Sidebars - Unlimited Widget Areas » I don't see any "Content Aware Sidebars" at all :-(

  • Resolved mluther


    I installed the “Content Aware Sidebars” plugin (version 1.0) onto my website. My WordPress is version 3.4.1. I’m using the Twenty Eleven theme, with no modifications.

    In the WordPress dashboard, I went to I chose
    “Show with all pages”, “Show with all forums”, “Show with all topics”. I then clicked “Publish”.

    A message says “Sidebar updated”. I click on the “Manage widgets” link ( I then add a few widgets to the newly created sidebar. I then go to a page on my website, but I don’t see any widgets at all!

    What is wrong? Please help me. Thank you.

    Update, when I activate another theme (Responsive), I can see the sidebar. The problem seems to lie with the Twenty Eleven theme. How can I get the Content Aware Sidebars to show up in the Twenty Eleven theme?

    Thank you.

Viewing 8 replies - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
  • Plugin Author Joachim Jensen


    Thanks for the feedback.

    As the problem seems to be theme related, my guess is that it is the “Host Sidebar” that is not set correctly in your new sidebar. The “Host sidebar” is that sidebar that your content aware sidebar should replace/merge with. Just go to the sidebar edit screen and scroll down; here you’ll find various settings.

    Did this solve your problem?

    Dear Joachim Jensen,
    Thank you for your reply.

    When you say “go to the sidebar edit screen”, do you mean:
    (Titled Edit Sidebar)


    (Titled Edit Plugins) ?

    If (A), do you mean to say that I should change Exposure, Handle, or Merge position?

    If you say “Handle”, my “Replace” options are:

    1. Main Sidebar
    2. Showcase Sidebar
    3. Footer Area One
    4. Footer Area Two
    5. Footer Area Three

    If (B), what exactly do I write in the code?

    Thank you?

    Plugin Author Joachim Jensen


    Yes, I mean A, and I am referring to the Handle option where you can select a host sidebar. The host you select will be the area where your widgets are placed.

    Try selecting Main Sidebar and save changes.

    Exposure should be changed if you only want to display your sidebar on archive pages or singular pages. Default is both. Merge position is how your sidebar should act if it is going to merge with its hosts widgets.

    Dear Joachim,

    Thanks for confirming that you mean (A).

    “Replace” “Main Sidebar” was already selected. I put a check into all the boxes on the “Edit Sidebar” page (Show with all posts; Show with all pages; Show with all forums; Show with all topics; Show with all Replies; Show with all Categories; Show with all tags; Show with all Page Templates), but I still do not see the Content Aware Sidebar or any of the widgets.


    Dear Joachim,

    I discovered something about Twenty Eleven. I changed the page/post’s template from “Default Template” to “Sidebar Template” and I now see Content Aware Sidebar in my Twenty Eleven-themed website. But sadly, there’s no quick way to tell Twenty Eleven dashboard to have a sidebar in the bbpress forum pages.

    Plugin Author Joachim Jensen


    You’re right about the theme incompatibility for TwentyEleven and bbPress (

    It seems that bbPress uses TwentyTen as theme base by default, and as the Main Sidebar for TwentyTen and TwentyEleven differs, it simply does not show up with TwentyEleven. I do not know if there is a theme for TwentyEleven to bbPress, as is currently down. I suggest that you keep an eye on that page when it comes up.

    Content Aware Sidebars normally relies on the sidebars already registered by the theme, so if these are not “correctly set up”, the same will happen to the content aware sidebars.
    If you know how to edit themes and do not want to rely on theme sidebars, you can insert display_ca_sidebar() anywhere on your site in the templates. This will handle all content aware sidebars that have the setting “Handle: Manual”.

    Thanks for your informative post. I’m learning a lot.

    I don’t know how to edit thems, but would like to try your suggestion. What must I do to see the display_ca_sidebar()?

    Plugin Author Joachim Jensen


    Take a look at to get started with editing themes. It requires some basic knowledge about HTML, PHP and CSS.

    display_ca_sidebar() is a PHP function to use in the Template Files, commonly called a Template Tag. This Template Tag will handle and display the beforementioned content aware sidebars independently of any sidebars registered by a theme.

    I would gladly insert the function in your theme for free, but unfortunately I do not have the time because of work and studies – which also explains my late replys and why the plugin hasn’t been updated yet.

Viewing 8 replies - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
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