This morning I finally pushed Autoptimize 2.8.2 out of the gates which was a relatively minor release with misc. small improvements/ bugfixes. Only it proved not that minor as it broke some sites after the update, so here’s a quick postmortem.
7h33 CEST: I pushed out 2.8.2
7h56 CEST: first forum post about a Fatal PHP error due to wp-content/plugins/autoptimize/classes/external/php/ao-minify-html.php missing
7h58 CEST: second forum post confirming issue
8h01 CEST: responded to both forum posts asking if file was indeed missing on filesystem
8h04 CEST: I changed the “stable version” back to 2.8.1 to stop 2.8.2 from being pushed out.
8h07 CEST: forum post replies confirming the file was indeed missing from the filesystem
8h15 CEST: I pushed out 2.8.3 with the fix
8h22 CEST: confirmed fixed by first user
8h26 CEST: confirmed fixed by second user
Root cause analysis
One of the improvements was changing the classname of the HTML minifier to avoid W3 Total Cache’s HTML minifier being used. For this purpose not only small changes were made to the HTML minifier code, but the file was also renamed from minify-html.php into ao-minify-html.php. The file itself was present on my local filesystem, but I did *not* svn add it, so it was never propagated to the wordpress.org SVN server, resulting in it not being in the 2.8.2 zip-file causing the PHP Fatal “require(): Failed opening required” errors.
Every svn ci has be proceeded by an svn stat, always. I’ve updated my “go live” procedure to reflect that.
Additionally; I strongly advise against automatic updates for Autoptimize (and I don’t auto-update any plugin myself), not only for major f-ups like mine today, but also because any change to how (auto-)optimization works needs to be tested for regressions. And if you have a site that generates money somehow, you really should have a staging site (which can auto-update) to test updates on before applying on production.
My advice; try HTML Forms if you have rather standard contactform-like forms and you’re not looking for something fancy (which CF7 is not either), try Formidable if you need drag & drop form building or if you (will) need more flexibility/ integrations.
Up until now Autoptimize, when performing image optimization, relies on JS-based lazyloading (with the great lazysizes component) to differentiate between browser that support different image formats (AVIF, WebP and JPEG as fallback).
As JS-based Lazyload is going out of fashion though (with native lazyload being supported by more browsers and WordPress having out-of-the-box support for it too), it is time to start working on <picture> output in Autoptimize to serve “nextgen image formats” where different <source> tags offer the AVIF and WebP files and the <img> tag (which includes the loading=”lazy” attribute) with JPEG as fallback.