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BuddyPress, Profiles, Avatars and Gravatars

  • Scotm


    I’ve had several instances of Buddypress in testing for months, and currently have the latest versions of WPMU and Buddypress on a test server. It seems to me there is a disconnect within Buddypress/WPMU when it comes to the handling of avatars/gravatars.

    What I know:

    – the wpmu admin can set a default avatar to be used within Buddypress for those who haven’t uploaded a personalized avatar or are without a gravatar. This is fine, and seems to work without an issue on my test servers (although the avatar does not seem to follow the user for blogs).

    – if you don’t have a gravatar and attempt to upload a personalized avatar, it ususally screws up and you’re left with either a black image, or no image, or some variation of the crop feature not working. Despite my best efforts and many others in the forum, the avatar upload/crop feature is still buggy and I’ve yet to get it to work consistently.

    – i’ve found that users with gravatars experience no problems at all.

    Since Automattic now owns, would it not make sense to remove the ‘upload avatar’ function in the Buddypress profile entirely (it is prone to issues given different hosting environments, installed software base, etc.) and figure out a way to make signing up for a Gravatar simple right within Buddypress?

    I am aware of a plugin (Easy Gravatars) that in theory at least enabled a blog owner to sign up for a Gravatar without leaving the site. While this plugin does not seem to be updated and/or currently working, I think it provides a great opportunity to fix this annoying issue once and for all.

    If I’m off base please chime in and set me straight.


Viewing 4 replies - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)

  • michaelmarian

    @michaelmarian page source showed that my avatar image looked something like “ Image Library not loaded”.

    The solution was to get the GD Image Library turned on.

    1) open php.ini in wordpad and uncomment the line


    2) copy the php_gd2.dll from the C:php5extras folder and place with the php.ini file

    3) in IIS open Application Pools and right click on DefaultAppPool and select Recycle ( you don’t have to restart IIS)

    Then I used the Change Avatar page and finally after weeks of tooling around my avatars are loading. Yahoo!!



    I still believe the universal solution is to sync buddypress with within the profile area in BP. Rather than have users upload an avatar, have them sign up for a gravatar and be done with it. The cropping issue is in part tied to the presentation of the larger avatar, a feature which I believe is pointless anyhow.

    Does anyone know a way to do this?


    @scotm I agreee 100%. Maybe this plugin could be adapted to BuddyPress:




    Yes, I’ve looked at that exact plugin. Unfortunately, if you read the comments it appears the plugin is not working since Automattic acquired Does that make any sense? You would think Automattic would do everything it can to speed up the use of gravatars and to make it easier to signup within WordPress. Surely someone smarter than me can use that plugin as a base for what’s needed here?

    Andy, can you chime in here?


Viewing 4 replies - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
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