Mailster - Frequently Asked Questions
How can I send emails?
When you want to use Mailster you don’t need to browse to a website, login there and do something to send the message there – you just use your favorite mail client.
Simply write an email to the mailing list’s address – and nothing else. In our quick start example you would send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org – via Outlook, Thunderbird, Webmailer, any way you like.
Do I need to purchase WP Mailster Club / Society / Enterprise every year?
No, you do not need to purchase the paid WP Mailster versions every year. There is no problem with continuing to use your “old” installations/downloads – they will continue to work. The limitations/restrictions only apply again, when you install a (free) release that was downloaded after your subscription period over your existing installation.
Why take the emails so long to be delivered? How can I speed up sending?
WP Mailster is a part of WordPress which is a PHP based web application. That means: it can not act/run without being triggered and it can not run forever when triggered. This is a technical limitation coming from PHP, not from Mailster or WordPress.
Triggering means that somebody accesses the site. During the page load Mailster is handling the jobs to do (mail retrieving/sending).
Thus mails can only be send/retrieved when somebody is browsing your site, otherwise the delivery is delayed or never done. As your site might not be browsed every few minutes 24×7 we recommend you to use a cronjob that opens the site periodically (e.g. by a command-line tool like wget).
If you cannot create a cron job we can offer you to host a job for you on a server of us (in return for a small yearly fee). Click here to learn more.
What are send errors?
Please read the section about send errors in our troubleshooting documentation.
Why are there "locked" emails in the mail queue?
The mail queue shows all emails that are planned for sending. The ones that are locked (red lock symbol) are already prepared for sending. Every outgoing email goes through this status. So there is nothing to worry about – all emails will go out at some point.
Can you provide Mailster in other languages as well?
We defintely want to. But as our ressources are limited all translations (except English and German) are made by volunteers.
If you are a native speaker in a language that we do not support yet and are interested in helping us please visit our translation project on Transifex. Simply register at the site and request to be added to the project / language.
Why does my header/footer image not show up in the emails? How can I display an image in my mail header/footer?
The reason is that the link to the image is relative (images/banners/MailsterBannerNewsletter.jpg) and does not contain the URL (http://www….) the image has to be retrieved from. You have to make sure that the URL is included.
A potential pitfall is the WYSIWYG-editor in WordPress- some editors strip out the URL of the site ending up in a relative link. You should be able to disable this behaviour in the editor’s settings.
Why do I get a "Certificate failure" error message upon checking the inbox connection?
You might get an error message like this when checking the connection settings: “Certificate failure for [server] Server name does not match certificate” or “Certificate failure for [server] unable to get local issuer certificate”.
If you use your own mailing server (with a self-signed certificate) you need to deactivate the automated certificate check to get a connection to your inbox. Do this by adding the following line in the special parameter box: /novalidate-cert
What does the message "Problem identified: PHP IMAP extension not installed" mean?
Your server needs the PHP IMAP extension installed (see system requirements), otherwise Mailster can not work at all. There is nothing that we can do about that, you need to contact your hoster and see whether they can enable/install the PHP IMAP extension.
If that is not possible you need to use a different hoster providing a more suitable environment.
Please note that it does not matter whether you want to use IMAP or POP3 for accessing the mailing list inbox. You need the extension in both cases, it is not specific to the IMAP protocol.
Why is the "New mailing list" / "Edit mailing list" screen empty?
Why do I get a "Unable to create selectable TCP socket" message when checking the mailing list inbox settings?
Your webhoster uses a PHP configuration (typically mod_php) that only allows a certain number of processes to be opened through a library of the PHP IMAP module. In shared environments this can lead to the above error when Mailster opens the inbox throught the PHP function imap_open.
This problem is caused by the webhoster’s environment – you need to talk with your hoster whether they can solve the issue for you. If they can’t do this you are not able to execute Mailster in that environment.
Why do I get "Connection refused" or "Network is unreachable" messages although I use the correct mailbox settings?
In most situations this connection errors show up when your webhoster (where Joomla/Mailster is installed) is blocking outgoing connections such as connection attempts to 3rd party email servers. This is done to avoid spam sending. Please contact your hoster so they configure their firewall to allow you to send emails.
Why do I get a white screen? / Did Mailster crash my site? / How can I login now?
A white screen appears when there was an error 500, which is a code for “internal server error”. To be able to see the actual error message you need to enable the error reporting in Joomla’s global configuration. Set this setting to “Maximum”.
What if you cannot login to the site?
In case Mailster is the component making trouble (e.g. because of the above described fatal out of memory error): don’t worry, there is a way to login to the site by telling the Mailster plugin to stop it’s execution. The Email Forwarder plugin can be disabled by putting a file “no_mst_plg_exec.txt” or “no_mst_plg_exec” into the directory [joomla]/administrator/components/com_mailster. It is not important what is in the file, but the filename has to be exactly one of the both mentioned variants.
After creating the file you should be able to login to access your site’s backend, again.
Then deactivate the Mailster mail (email forwarder) plugin in the Plugin Manager (putting the status to “disabled”).
If you already know that this problem is due to a very large email sitting in the inbox: directly navigate to your mailing list’s settings, in the “Tools” section and use the link to delete the first email from the inbox. After fixing the error do not forget to reactivate the mail plugin.
Why does my website show this error "Fatal error: Out of memory (allocated [...]) (tried to allocate [...] bytes) in [...]/administrator/components/com_mailster/[...]"
Your issue is very likely coming from a large email causing an PHP out of memory error. This is resulting from the fact that every PHP environment has a memory limit. This limit is hit when the email is tried to be retrieved from the mail server.
Please remove this email from the mailing list in question. Either through a mail webfrontend or with the “Delete first email in inbox” tool the “Tools” section in the mailing list’s settings.
In order to prevent have this happen in the future:
- Raise the PHP memory limit. Your hoster can help you with that.
- Introduce a maximum email size for Mailster. You can find this setting in the “List behaviour” tab of the mailing lists settings. If larger emails are in the inbox, Mailster will not try to process them but simply delete it and tell the sender what happened.
Why do I get "Strict Standards" messages like "Strict Standards: Only variables should be assigned by reference"?
This appears due to your PHP environment settings. The messages are not critical in any way. Those errors are just notifying to use better coding standard. You can either disable this through the php.ini configuration or by setting Joomla’s error level configuration to “Normal”.
To modify PHP environment’s settings, see this article for help: Disabling Strict Standards in PHP 5.4. If this is beyond your level of technical comfort you should contact your hoster to help you with that.
Why do I get "Notice" messages like "Notice: Undefined offset" or "Notice: Undefined property"?
Notices are the least important of warnings that a PHP environment will report. According to the official PHP website, notices are generated when: “the script encountered something that could indicate an error, but could also happen in the normal course of running a script.”
We generally recommend to disable the error reporting on your Joomla Site.
Another approach is to modify PHP environment’s settings, see this article for help: How do I turn off PHP notices?. If this is beyond your level of technical comfort you should contact your hoster to help you with that.