Troubleshooting

Store Locator Plus works well in most installations, however WordPress is heavily modified by plugins and themes that add thousands of lines of code to your site.  Some plugins and themes are professionally developed while others are built on a whim.    Not all plugins or themes are created equal, and not all are fully tested before being “released into the wild”.   The combination of thousands of themes, thousands of plugins, and a wide variety of production quality created millions of variations of WordPress installations.    While our plugins work well in most standard scenarios, there are always going to be environments that cause problems.  Hopefully these troubleshooting tips will help. Many issues can be found by using a browser debugging tool.

Common Issues

White Screen
PHP coding errors or incompatibility between the code and specific PHP version running on your server.

Map Not Rendering
WP4.5 updated to a stricter version of jQuery which broke lots of plugins and themes.
More about the [href#] error and why our maps stop showing when other stuff breaks.
Your site does not have a valid Google Map API key.

SLP Plugin Disabled
You did not upgrade your add ons to the latest version.

Import or Other Feature Went Away
You did not upgrade your add ons to the latest version.

Things That Break The Locator

These are the most common reasons why the locator stops working on a site:

Did you just upgrade to WordPress 4.5?

Read our WordPress 4.5 Breaking JavaScript (aka Where Is My Map?) article.
This is a classic case of another plugin or your theme breaking JavaScript.

New or migrated site?

Any locator map you setup or moved since June 22,2016 will need to register with a Google Map API key. 

Updated WordPress or SLP?

You have not upgraded your add ons to the latest version.
Read “Upgrading Store Locator Plus” on our docs site.

Your server does not meet the plugin requirements:

Your site running the latest minimum versions of PHP or MySQL required by WordPress.

Your site has disabled the WordPress AJAX handler.

Your site has disabled the REST API handler.

Troubleshooting Videos

No Locations

This is NOT the same thing as the map not showing.  See below for no map issues.

The best way to see what is going on is to look at the Debugging entry on this page and follow the section about “Debugging JavaScript”.  Web browser tools such as Firebug found in Firefox are very helpful. Especially the Network/XHR panel that shows the communication to your WordPress server via AJAX.  It will show the post request and the results returned.  If things are breaking there is usually an error message in the results that are coming back. When posting questions in the forum for support it is useful to include the error messages if you are uncertain of the impact

FORCE LOAD JAVASCRIPT WARNING

If you have this box checked , all kinds of crazy things can happen and Store Locator Plus settings may not work properly on your site. Even things that seem unrelated.  When you first check the box off, a warning message will appear. Subsequently the message will not keep popping up. Check under General/User Interface  and Force Load Javascript for more information.

Additionally, there are many themes and poorly constructed plug-ins that use old JavaScript or  jquery ui that can cause Store Locator Plus to not work.  SLP is updated frequently to ensure it works  with  the latest WP versions.

 You can see common issues that effect many plug-ins under  WP Support Forums.

AJAX Blocked

It is common for web hosts and system administrators to disable the built-in WordPress AJAX processing.   Store Locator Plus requires AJAX to be enabled.   This typically manifests itself with the AJAX call to the admin-ajax.php script not executing.

You can test this by directly surfing to the admin-ajax script on your server with a URL similar to this:

/wp-admin/admin-ajax.php?action=csl_ajax_onload&addressInput=&ignore_radius=1

This should return a JSON response showing curly braces that start with {“success”:true,…

If it comes back with nothing, or a warning/error about being blocked, your AJAX security is not set properly.  Check you web server log files and talk to your system admin for assistance on configuring access to WordPress AJAX scripts.

Search Parameters

If the map is rendering but the search is not behaving as expected, read How Search Works.

Check your radius and make sure the default is large enough.  Keep in mind there are two sets of parameters in the (User) Experience panels.  There is a radius and number of results parameter “at statup” for the function “show locations at startup” if checked will show locations when map is first shown.

Also check that the map zoom is set far enough out to show locations.

Different Host or Domain Name

Some sites use a variety of host and domain names for different sections of their site.   Web servers and browsers will block most AJAX requests that do not original from the same host and domain as the back end server process.    The easiest way to manage this conflict is to use web configuration, such as Apache’s mod_rewrite rules via the .htaccess file,  to redirect AJAX requests to the proper URL.

Map Issues

WP4.5 updated to a stricter version of jQuery which broke lots of plugins and themes.

More about the [href#] error and why our maps stop showing when other stuff breaks.
Your site does not have a valid Google Map API key.

Using Firefox To Debug Map Display Issues

We strongly recommend using Firefox and the Developer Tool or , for more technical detailed the add-on Firebug . to track down any problems with the CSS or JavaScript on your site. 90% of the problems with the map not appearing are due to either bad JavaScript prior to the Store Locator code being called, or themes that overtake all image output. The map is very image heavy using hundreds of small images from Google’s server to draw the map. If your theme does not play well with images it can override the settings we’ve built into the plugin.

See our Troubleshooting Videos list above for help with debugging your site with Firefox.

Map doesn’t display after Updating

Your site is most likely forcing jQuery to version 1.5 (or older) which is 3+ years old. WordPress Best Practices dictates you should NEVER specify a version of jQuery in a plugin or theme. Your sites plugins should use the built-in version supplied with WordPress. A patch in version 4.3.08 of SLP will check to see if jQuery.Callbacks are active. If not it will disable many of the extended features in various SLP 4.3 add-on packs that rely on the core jQuery Callbacks object.

Note: jQuery Callbacks were added 3+ years ago and are considered a key feature for robust interactive web applications. Recommended course of action is to track down the offending technology and ask the author to use a newer version of jQuery or, preferably, simply allow WordPress Core to do the work for them via wp_enqueue_script( ‘jquery’ ).

JavaScript Problems

Issues with the JavaScript part of the plugin usually manifest themselves by showing the search form but either a blank map, a map that is all gray, or a map that appears but search does not work. To debug these issues use the Firebug add-on with Firefox as noted above.

Store Locator Plus map rendering is managed by the slp.js JavaScript file.  It sets up the communication with the built-in WordPress AJAX handler, admin-ajax.   Your server must be setup to allow the built-in WordPress AJAX handler to execute.

The PHP JavaScript connector did not load

We have come across this error on several installations. The short answer to this problem is that something in the WordPress installation prevented the Store Locator Plus JavaScript component from loading. This means that the map system cannot communicate with Google. This prevents the map from appearing and search results from working properly on your locations page.

Here are some issues we’ve come across that cause this to happen:

    • PHP version is < 5.2, this generates an error message that you will not see in the browser. Any error message will prevent the JavaScript PHP file from loading.
    • PHP Error Reporting Enabled, if PHP error reporting is enabled and ANY PLUGIN has bugs, uses deprecated WordPress functions, or uses deprecated PHP functions they will generate an error message. This error message can be hidden in the browser if the error happens in something that is creating page header information. This will also break the page loading process and prevent the JavaScript PHP from loading.
    • Plugin Errors, any plugin that does not load properly and does ANYTHING with page header output will break and thus cause a domino effect prevent the Store Locator Plus PHP JavaScript component from loading.

In many cases the cause of the maps not loading is because our PHP JavaScript file could not load. We can often detect this and pop-up the “PHP JavaScript connector did not load” warning. However we cannot catch all errors.

One of the best tools for searching for errors in the HTML page headers is to use Firefox with the Firebug plugin. Turn on the console and check the responses tab for any errors. We have resolved many client installation and map problems with this plugin. More often than not we are finding errors in other plugins, themes, or server configuration settings on the servers. No, our plugin is not perfect and is not 100% bug free (we wish it were) but we are no longer finding bugs in our plugin as the primary culprit in broke installations.

The PHP JavaScript page header is a critical part of a working Store Locator Plus installation. Since it loads very late in the page creation process it is susceptible to failures from almost anything else you may be loading on the page or your WordPress site. The the map is not loading and you are receiving this message get some page debugging/tracking tools like Firebug and isolate any plugins that are generating coding/output errors.

Manage Location Issues

Manage Locations not showing locations

The initial release of the plugin had some coding errors that prevented the plugin from showing locations when certain characters were present or if the list was too long. v1.4 and higher has resolved many of these issues.

If you chose to display more than 1,000 locations on the Manage Locations tab, go to the SLP General tab and reset the manage locations display. This reset option is available in version 4.4.30 of the base plugin.

You Do Not Have Sufficient Permissions

If you are getting the message “you do not have sufficient permissions to access this page” when trying to access the “Manage Locations” or “Map Settings” page, but “Add Locations ” is working it is because another plugin is interfering with the submenu management module in WordPress. You will likely find that any plugin that has a separate sidebar menu with multiple entries underneath will only work on the first entry. There is little we can do to remedy the situation without risking breaking other plugins. We suggest deactivating other plugins, one-at-a-time, until you find the plugin causing problems then ask them to rewrite their menu and submenu process and admin panel filters to ensure the basic menu system remains intact.

Installation Issues

PCLZIP_ERR_BAD_FORMAT

This error most often occurs when the user installing a plugin file cannot unzip the file to the local drive.   The reasons for this include:

    • Incorrect permissions on the plugin directory.
    • Incorrect permissions on the uploads directory.
    • Overly restrictive SE Linux settings.
    • Insufficient disk space on the drive where WordPress is installed.
    • Disk quota on user account has been reached.
    • Disk quota on server account has been reached.

Debugging

The “Map” Page

JavaScript Issues

The first thing to do when you are having a problem is to check for JavaScript conflicts.  It is the number one reason that Store Locator Plus fails.    If JavaScript breaks, even from within another plugin, it can prevent SLP from loading.    Use Firefox with the Firebug add-on. Or checkout the newer Firefox Developer tool for a step by step.  Turn on the console and script debugging and look for errors.  Also check to make sure the /store-locator-le/js/slp.js script is loading on the page where your map is supposed to appear.

Admin and Map Issues

Read about WordPress Debugging.

Reset Everything

As a last resort, especially if you or a system admin has been playing with WordPress data tables, you can “blast it all to the default setup”.

  • Start by deactivating all of your Store Locator Plus add-on packs; keep Store Locator Plus activated.
  • Install The Store Locator Plus Janitor add-on.
  • Go the Janitor tab.
  • Click on Settings on the left sidebar.
  • Click the “Reset SLP Options” button.
  • Deactivate SLP Janitor and Store Locator Plus.
  • Activate Store Locator Plus.