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Since yesterday the wp_scheduled_auto_draft_delete cron job somehow deletes all page entries from our menus. All entries in the table wp_postmeta with meta_key = '_menu_item_object' and meta_value = 'page' get deleted in the process. By tracing back the DELETE query I found out that the menu entries are deleted by a function called _wp_delete_post_menu_item. I got the following stacktrace for that function:

#0  _wp_delete_post_menu_item(3244)
#1  call_user_func_array(_wp_delete_post_menu_item, Array ([0] => 3244))
called at [/srv/www/htdocs/biva/wp-includes/plugin.php:470]
#2  do_action(delete_post, 3244) called at
[/srv/www/htdocs/biva/wp-includes/post.php:2483]
#3  wp_delete_post(3244, 1) called at
[/srv/www/htdocs/biva/wp-includes/post.php:5645]
#4  wp_delete_auto_drafts()
#5  call_user_func_array(wp_delete_auto_drafts, Array ()) called at
[/srv/www/htdocs/biva/wp-includes/plugin.php:546]
#6  do_action_ref_array(wp_scheduled_auto_draft_delete, Array ()) called
at [/srv/www/htdocs/biva/wp-cron.php:100]

But I'm stuck here, I'm not a wordpress developer and I have no clue why deleting old drafts results in deleting attached menu entries although the main pages still exist.

Workaround: As a workaround we added the following to the top of wp-config, wich will disable wp-cron:

/** Disable wp-cron to prevent menu from getting deleted. Detailed Bug description:
http://wordpress.stackexchange.com/questions/145953 **/
define('DISABLE_WP_CRON', true);

If you are experiencing similar difficulties you might try locking the rows in the table wp_postmeta with meta_key = '_menu_item_object' and meta_value = 'page' and then tracing back the error message when WP trys to delete these rows, that's how we nailed down our error.

Reproduce the Error: It is definitely the stealth publish plugin that is causing our error, one can easily reproduce it, by doing the following:

  1. Install a fresh Wordpress 3.9.1.
  2. Install the stealth publish plugin http://wordpress.org/plugins/stealth-publish.
  3. Create a few test pages and add them to a new menu.
  4. Create a new page, with some dummy content, but do not save it!. Leave the page without saving.
  5. Change the system time 8 days into the future.
  6. The wp_scheduled_auto_draft_delete cron job will run because it runs daily and it hasn't run for 7 days as soon as you visit your page. It will then find your never saved dummy page delete it as it is older than 7 days and the menu will vanish.
  7. You might need to refresh the page a few times till the effect becomes visible.

I've recorded a screencast on how to reproduce the error (but I took not the time to comment it): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R9CTggjIfDY

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This is very strange. Auto draft only exists in that brief time when you open editor to start on a new post, but hadn't saved it even once. Why would item like that have menu items associated with it? Puzzling. –  Rarst May 30 at 10:15
    
I guess it only occurs when there are actually some drafts older than 7 days (we have a lot of drafts). Because the bug would not occur when running wp_scheduled_auto_draft_delete twice in a short time frame. For debugging purpose I always reset the DB to the problematic state to reproduce the conditions. I believe that may also explain why others are experiencing this bug in larger time frames, assuming they have not that many drafts as we have. –  Gellweiler May 30 at 10:33
    
Yes, but (1) you cannot add auto-draft to menu, (2) as soon as you save it — it's no longer auto-draft. So logically these conditions cannot coincide. Question is why do they coincide in practice. –  Rarst May 30 at 10:35
    
If you have DB state could you please dump and add to the question post item 3244 and all menu items with meta _menu_item_object_id=3244 ? –  Rarst May 30 at 10:36
2  
Without stealth publish everything seems to run fine. Thanks a lot for your help. –  Gellweiler May 30 at 11:58

1 Answer 1

up vote 4 down vote accepted

This is what normal query run by wp_get_associated_nav_menu_items() looks like:

SELECT wp_posts.* 
FROM   wp_posts 
       INNER JOIN wp_postmeta 
               ON ( wp_posts.id = wp_postmeta.post_id ) 
WHERE  1 = 1 
       AND wp_posts.post_type = 'nav_menu_item' 
       AND (( wp_posts.post_status <> 'trash' 
              AND wp_posts.post_status <> 'auto-draft' )) 
       AND (( wp_postmeta.meta_key = '_menu_item_object_id' 
              AND Cast(wp_postmeta.meta_value AS CHAR) = '3111' )) 
GROUP  BY wp_posts.id 
ORDER  BY wp_posts.post_date DESC 

This is what yours looks like:

SELECT wp_posts.* 
FROM   wp_posts 
       INNER JOIN wp_postmeta 
               ON ( wp_posts.id = wp_postmeta.post_id ) 
       LEFT JOIN wp_postmeta AS mt1 
              ON ( wp_posts.id = mt1.post_id 
                   AND mt1.meta_key = '_stealth-publish' ) 
       INNER JOIN wp_postmeta AS mt2 
               ON ( wp_posts.id = mt2.post_id ) 
WHERE  1 = 1 
       AND wp_posts.post_type = 'nav_menu_item' 
       AND (( wp_posts.post_status <> 'trash' 
              AND wp_posts.post_status <> 'auto-draft' )) 
       AND ( ( wp_postmeta.meta_key = '_menu_item_object_id' 
               AND Cast(wp_postmeta.meta_value AS CHAR) = '3244' ) 
              OR mt1.post_id IS NULL 
              OR ( mt2.meta_key = '_stealth-publish' 
                   AND Cast(mt2.meta_value AS CHAR) != '1' ) ) 
GROUP  BY wp_posts.id 
ORDER  BY wp_posts.post_date DESC 

It would be my guess that _stealth-publish stuff has no business whatsoever interfering with querying for nav menu items.

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