Big Calendar Plugins

I’ve been using EventCalendar3 for a couple of years. It’s a great plugin and version 3.1.4 still plays nice with WordPress 2.9.x. However, I was rolling out a new website with WordPress as CMS with a requirement for a Big Calendar. A couple of EC3 users had built big calendar capability into the development branch. The last beta version (EC3.2 beta 2) had big calendar functionality built in so I installed it. After I made the move to WordPress 2.9, everything seemed to be working fine until I realized my comments feed was returning a 404 all of a sudden. Comments on posts were feeding properly as were category based feeds and the site feed. So, I went through all the usual troubleshooting (check the forums and deactivate plugins). Turns out EC3.2 beta 2 was the culprit. When I deactivated it, my comments feed started working again.

I’ve spent a fair share of time going through the EC3 code over the past couple of years and couldn’t figure out what EC3 and comments had to do with each other. EC3 does highjack some feeds and futz with canonical redirects but everything I saw in the code seemed benign. I commented out some of the redirect functions with no luck. On my other blog with E3.1.4, my comments feed was fine and the plugin is still solid despite its apparent abandonment. Odd. After a couple of hours of troubleshooting, I packed it in.

Fortunately, I hit gold on my first stop through the WordPress plugin repository with Kieran’s excellent calendar plugin. It’s a no nonsense big calendar with two useful template tags to generate lists of events. While similar to EC3 in that it uses a separate table to store event data, it differs in that you add the events using a backend form rather than the posting method EC3 uses. You can link the event on the calendar to a blog posting (or any other url) which is a nice touch as well. Kieran’s plugin also seems pretty bulletproof as WordPress evolves.

It’s sad when a plugin withers away but plugin authors are very special people who give without compensation (for the most part) and are swamped with support requests from all kinds of folks who should have RTFM. When or if EC3.1.4 finally breaks, there’s an alternative.

EventCalendar 3 and WordPress 2.9

I’ve been testing out EventCalendar ver 3.2 beta 2 with WordPress version 2.9 RC-1 for the last couple of hours. Everything I’ve tested/used seems to be working normally without throwing any errors. I haven’t tested every feature but the basic stuff is working ok on my local installation. php 5.2.11, mysql 5.1.41, apache/2.2.13. My setting is to Keep Events Separate. I did not test ‘Events are Normal Posts.’

What works:

  • Add/delete event, including calendar popup.
  • Calendar and Upcoming events widgets.
  • js calendar month scrolling
  • tooltips popups.
  • proper linking to archive templates (monthly, daily).
  • setting ec3 options in the admin back end.

What I didn’t test:

  • calendar feeds via ics.
  • complex ec3 queries.

Overall, I’m comfortable with upgrading WordPress and keeping my essential Event Calendar functionality. Version 3.1.4 seems to be working just fine with WordPress 2.9 as well. As always, caveat emptor.

Updated 6 Jan 10

Looks like EC3.2 beta2 broke my comments feed. I have no idea why. I took it down. No problem with EC3.1.4.

WP 2.6 and EventCalendar3

With fingers crossed and backups at the ready, I updated to WordPress 2.6 this morning. I’m pleased to report if you were successful applying the unofficial patch to EC3 to make it work with WP 2.5, it should work fine with WP 2.6. Links to the patch are around here somewhere if you need it still.

Eventcalendar3 Progress?

Looks like Darrell is working on the svn for Eventcalendar3. He’s applied a couple of patches to the trunk (including Andrew’s excellent patch to correct the calendar links and make the plugin go with WordPress 2.5.x). The trunk looks pretty stable so an updated release shouldn’t be too far away. Or you can grab the trunk if you can’t wait.

More on Eventcalendar3 and WP 2.5

Quite a bit of the hits I get here have to do with the EventCalendar3 plugin and getting it to work with WordPress 2.5. It’s really not that tough to make the small changes. I go over to the EC3 mailing list to see what kinds of problems people have with the plugin. Many folks are looking for functionality the plugin just doesn’t have. More people have problems that I don’t experience with my installation so I usually check out their blog to see if I can help.

I am always amazed how many people are running outdated versions of the plugin. Yesterday, I read a couple of support requests. They were running WordPress 2.3.x or 2.5 and EC3 version 3.1.0! I’m surprised EC3 ran at all.

The current version of the plugin is 3.1.1. RC3. Even though the it’s a ‘release candidate’, it works very well with pre-WordPress 2.5 installations. So if you find your way here looking for help with EventCalendar 3, take these simple steps:

  1. Make sure you are running the most recent version of the plugin.
  2. Go to the SourceForge bug/patch directory for EC3 and grab what you need to make it work with WordPress 2.5.