Does SiteHealth Say You Should Increase your PHP Version and You thought You Had?

The WordPress back end now has a setting in Tools that shows ‘Site Health’. It tells you about any issues.

It may say you have a critical issue and should increase your PHP version to the latest version. And you thought you had because PHP version says you have 7.3 (the latest at the time of writing).

Do you have MultiPHP Manager?

Multiphp Manager was introduced by the Cpanel team with Easy Apache 4. Multiphp manager allows you to select the server default and the PHP version on a per-domain basis.

So in fact, you could have PHP 7.3 set as the server’s default PHP version but that may not be the version set for your individual domains.

To change the PHP version for the individual domains, go into cPanel and then Multiphp Manager.

Once you are in there, search for the domains and Choose the PHP version to 7.3 from the drop-down menu, and click on Apply.

About Plugins in the WordPress repository

There was a time that being in the WP repository seemed like a guarantee of a well-coded plugin.

But nowadays we are getting used to hearing horror stories of hacked plugins and plugin authors who sell their plugins to buyers who turn out to be unscrupulous and who add malicious code.

It’s a real problem. Take a look at wpvulndb∙com for a long list of compromised or vulnerable plugins.

Litespeed and the advanced-cache file

You may see advanced-cache.php as a drop-in in your plugins folder.

The advanced-cache.php file is used by many caching plugins to signal that a cache is active. When this option is checked and this file is detected as belonging to another plugin, LiteSpeed Cache will not cache.

The easiest way to find out what other plugins may be using advanced-cache.php is to FTP into the server and open the file and check its contents. If it is Litespeed, it would say ‘LiteSpeed Cache’ within the file.

Which begs the question of why it is there because the way it handles caching because the LiteSpeed Cache plugin for WordPress does not need an advanced-cache.php file.

For this reason, there is no real logic in this file. So why include it at all? You will find the answer by opening the file, and if Litespeed is the active caching system you will read that:

  • Setting the WP_CACHE global variable requires that an advanced-cache.php file exists.
  • This variable can help to increase compatibility as other plugins can check it to determine whether or not a cache is currently being used.
  • It can also help to avoid conflicts with other full page caches such as W3 Total Cache, etc.