Official Facebook plugin for WordPress – SSL Error Solved

This took a day to get working, mainly because of a badly worded Facebook error message. After installing the Facebook plugin on a site, an error message appeared at the top of every Dashboard page:
“SSL must be enabled on your server for Facebook Social Publisher to work.” Seems clear enough doesn’t it?

This WP installation was on a virtual host server, so I studied up on configuring SNI using mod_ssl, created the virtual host section in the Apache config file, bought an SSL cert, installed it, debugged permissions to get the whole thing working. 1 day gone.

Except that didn’t fix the error message! It was still there on each dashboard page. Googling revealed no useful information. So I headed over to the Facebook Developer site to file a bug report. Their bug report form had a bug in it: it would insist you had to enter information in the Tag field, even though I already had done so.

I finally got the answer on the WordPress support forums. It’s nothing to do with SNI or SSL or any of the above. You have to install the curl program to work with PHP on the server. I did so and the error message went away. Talk about a misleading error message… Thanks for wasting my time, Facebook!

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