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How to WordPress:  the basics, part 2
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How to WordPress: the basics, part 2



An introduction to creating your own website (or blog) using WordPress. At the end of this series you should have an understanding of how WordPress works and be able to create a basic site.

An introduction to creating your own website (or blog) using WordPress. At the end of this series you should have an understanding of how WordPress works and be able to create a basic site.



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  • I’m Rick RadkoI design & develop software, websites, web applications -> at my company R-Cubed Design Forge -> I started building websites and web apps in 1996.something that is different about me, -> I was originally a hardware design engineer -> But now you will find me mostly with my head buried in computer code -> I’m also equally comfortable doing graphic design workI’ve been using WordPress for over 4 years now: - it’s been my main website platform for the last 2 years - I’m also a co-organizer of The Ottawa WordPress GroupSlides are posted on slideshare -> link will be at the end too
  • My contact infoSlides are posted on slideshareI will be at the happiness bar tomorrow morning from 10 until noon

How to WordPress:  the basics, part 2 How to WordPress: the basics, part 2 Presentation Transcript

  • “How to WordPress: the basics” Part 2Rick Radko WPOTTAWA, Ottawar3df.com June 13th, 2012
  • Who am I?Rick Radko – R-Cubed Design Forge  Software, web and app designer/developer.  Creating web sites since 1996.  Artistic and creative engineer.  WordPress enthusiast.  Co-organizer of: The Ottawa WordPress Group. http://wpottawa.orgSlides are posted at:  http://www.slideshare.net/r3df© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 1
  • Who are you?© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 2
  • Learning about WordPressWordPress is BIG, lots of features  Take small bites!  and keep chewing…  Ask questions  Everyone was new to WordPress at one time© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 3
  • Side NoteDuring the part one presentation the question ofhow old WordPress is came up:  The first version of WordPress was released May 27, 2003© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 4
  • Contents - Part 11. About WordPress2. The dashboard3. Intro to the settings panel4. Posts and PagesFor part 1, see: http://www.slideshare.net/r3df/how-to-wordpress-the-basics-part-1© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 5
  • Contents - Part 25. Menus6. Widgets7. Resources8. Plugins9. Themes10. More WordPress settings11. Users© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 6
  • Menus© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 7
  • Menus  The menu currently on our test site© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 8
  • Menus – based on page order  The menus on the test site right now are created from the page list.  WordPress takes hierarchy and order from the page list, with home added at the start.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 9
  • Menus – based on page orderMenus  If we add “Another Page”, it appears in position alphabetically.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 10
  • Updated menu© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 11
  • Ordering menus – based on page order  Changing the menu order requires numerically ordering the pages at each level.  To change hierarchy, change the page parent.  You can edit these settings in the page editor.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 12
  • Quick editor  Or you can use the quick editor, which is faster for reorganizing pages.  Hover on the page title and select “Quick Edit”.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 13
  • Quick Editor  Change the order and parent for each page as needed.  Note: the display order in the page list does not update immediately, you need to reload the page.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 14
  • Quick editor  You can also change many of the settings that we looked at previously in the full editor.  The same is true of posts, in the post list.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 15
  • Ordering menus the better way  This ordering process works to organize your menus, but it is cumbersome. If you need to insert a new page, you often need to re-order a lot of pages.  Even if you don’t organize menus this way, you will still need to be familiar with the concept to add hierarchy to your URL’s.  Since version 3.0, we’ve had a new way to do menus, the “Navigation Menu” system, or “Nav Menus”© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 16
  • The nav menu systemUnder Appearance there is a Menus tab…  Need admin privileges.  Need a theme the supports nav menus.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 17
  • Nav menusNav menus lets you build menus that areindependent of the page order and hierarchy  The menu builder is drag and drop  It’s a bit more work, but I recommend that the page hierarchy matches the menu hierarchy to get nice matching URL’s. You only need to do the hierarchy (parent setting), you don’t need to order your pages to match the menu.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 18
  • Create a new nav menuCreate a new menu© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 19
  • The new menu© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 20
  • Add menu items© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 21
  • New menu items© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 22
  • Rearrange the menuDrag and drop items to change order andhierarchy.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 23
  • Setting the theme locationSome themes may have many locations forplacing menus.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 24
  • The new menuThe test site now has a new menu, independent ofthe page order and hierarchy.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 25
  • Widgets© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 26
  • WidgetsWidgets are tools or content items that you canadd, arrange, and remove from the widgetizedareas of your theme.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 27
  • Widgets can be anywhere a theme definesOriginally widgets were only in sidebars, but nowthemes can have many areas for them includingheaders, footers, sidebars and special front pagespaces.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 28
  • Managing widgetsThe Widgets admin is in the Appearance menu.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 29
  • Managing widgetsDrag and drop widgets into or out of the Widgetareas.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 30
  • Managing widgetsRemoving the meta widget.  It’s not really needed and takes up sidebar space.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 31
  • The revised sidebar© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 32
  • A twitter widgetA twitter widget added to the sidebar.  A plugin was added to get this widget.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 33
  • Resources© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 34
  • WordPress.orgWordPress.org, the official source for all thingsWordPress.  Theme repository – get free and commercial themes.  Plugin repository – get plugins.  The “codex” – find documentation.  Support forums – get help.WordPress TV: WordCamp and other videos.  http://wordpress.tv/© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 35
  • WordPress.org  WordPress icon menu on top left of the admin bar will take you there.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 36
  • WordPress.org© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 37
  • WordPress.org – theme repositorySearch for themes.  1000’s of themes.  Themes are reviewed before release.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 38
  • WordPress.org – plugin repositorySearch for plugins.  1000’s of plugins.  Currently plugins are not reviewed.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 39
  • WordPress.org – documentationThe “codex”.  Everything from the basics to code documentation.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 40
  • WordPress.org – forums“support” forums  Can seek help with WordPress issues, including themes and plugins from the repositories.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 41
  • Other helpGoogle “WordPress + some topic”  Caution, many articles are out of date and may no longer be relevant.Books  Lots of books, make sure it’s current.  Digging into WordPress is a great book, covers WordPress in depth.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 42
  • Other helpWordCamps “WordCamp is a conference that focuses on everything WordPress.” – WordCamp Central  Montreal: WordCamp Aug, 18/19, 2012.  Toronto:  Has a user WordCamp scheduled for Sept 29/30, 2012.  Has a developer WordCamp scheduled for Nov 3/4, 2012.  All sorts of WordCamps world wide http://central.wordcamp.org/© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 43
  • Plugins© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 44
  • Adding and managing plugins  Cannot add plugins to a site on WordPress.com.  You can enable which ones you are using, and change settings.  Go to Plugins in the main nav menu© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 45
  • Updating pluginsALWAYS BACKUP FIRST!!!  Updates are easy, just click the link.  Updates can break your site, back-ups make it easy to undo.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 46
  • Plugin update status screen© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 47
  • Update plugins in the WordPress updaterCan also update plugins using the WordPressupdater – BACKUP FIRST!© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 48
  • Adding pluginsAdd plugins from the Add New item under thePlugins menu item.  Search for plugins based on keywords, or name.  I entered TinyMCE Advanced.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 49
  • Add plugins search resultsThe search results.  Several similar and/or related plugins may be shown.  Descriptions, ratings and version are shown.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 50
  • InstallInstall TinyMCE advanced  Click the install.  A good idea to back up first!© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 51
  • Install statusA screen similar to the update page, showing theinstall status.  Some plugins will auto-activate, most you need to activate.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 52
  • Plugin listingTinyMCE Advanced installed and active.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 53
  • TinyMCE settingsThe Settings area  A new menu item has been created for the settings page.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 54
  • Plugin SettingsPlugins usually (and are supposed to) createoption pages under the “Settings” menu item.  Some plugins create menu items in almost any other section.  Tools, Dashboard, and sometimes Plugins are common menu locations for hiding settings pages.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 55
  • Finding/Choosing pluginsChoose plugins with:  good download volume  recent updates  responses in the forums  high ratings  good compatibility ratingsWhere do you find this information?  Some of it was on the plugin search listing.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 56
  • Finding/Choosing pluginsThe plugin search listing, plugin information.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 57
  • Finding/Choosing pluginsThe details view gives some more detailedinformation.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 58
  • Finding/Choosing pluginsDetails view:  Some more plugin info, but still not all.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 59
  • Finding/Choosing plugins  All of the details for a plugin are on the plugin repository.  Look at the last updated date.  Check compatibility.  Is it popular? (downloads)© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 60
  • A plugin with issuesSigns there may be problems:  Poor support? 5 weeks no answers, although some plugins have their own forums and don’t answer here.  There will always be some broken reports, but more broken than works is not good.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 61
  • An example of a good plugin  One of the top rated Google analytics plugins.  Note, even though this is a good plugin there are complaints about it. (it’s almost impossible to be compatible with everything)© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 62
  • Choosing plugins  Good, popular plugins will have complaints about them – lots of users under different conditions, plus some users with unreasonable expectations.  Need to look at the total picture, not absolute values when evaluating plugins or you will eliminate good plugins.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 63
  • Google analytics pluginUsing a Google Analytics plugin is highlyrecommended:  Get features like excluding admin traffic from stats.  Some have dashboard stats summaries.  Some add advanced tracking and tagging features.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 64
  • Beware of unknown pluginsThere are many plugins not on the WordPress.orgrepository.  Many of these plugins are very good – most good plugins not on the repository cost to use. (“commercial” plugins are not allowed on the repository)  Many are not good, and may contain malware:  http://blog.sucuri.net/2012/02/new-wordpress- toolspack-plugin.html *plugins on the repository are not guaranteed to be clean, but malware is usually spotted quickly by users© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 65
  • Plugin final notes  Remove unused plugins, they can be a security issue.  The Timthumb vulnerability did not need to have the plugin be active in order to be exploited.  Keep plugins, even inactive ones up to date!  Install a backup plugin AND USE IT!!!© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 66
  • Themes© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 67
  • ThemesA theme defines the look and feel of your site.  Sets the graphics, colors.  Sets the widget locations.  Defines page and column layout.  Can be changed relatively easily.  Beware lock-in.  Cannot add themes on WordPress.com.  You can enable which one you want to use, and you can change settings.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 68
  • TwentytenOne of the themes that comes with WordPress© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 69
  • Widget locationsTwentyten has 6 widget areas, 5 are being used  Empty areas are usually hidden© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 70
  • Page layoutsTwentyeleven (another included theme) hassidebars on some pages© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 71
  • Page layoutsand not on others© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 72
  • Page layouts  Some themes  have layout options  have templates for layouts  will need a child theme to modify layouts  Not too hard to do, but does require some coding.  DO NOT ALTER THEME FILES!!!© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 73
  • Adding/managing themesThe theme admin page  Go to Appearance in the main nav menu© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 74
  • Theme options - header© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 75
  • Theme header© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 76
  • Theme options - background© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 77
  • Theme background© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 78
  • Adding/managing themesNew 3.4 theme customizing preview© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 79
  • Theme customizing previewChange theme options  Live demo site, changes not on real site until you save© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 80
  • Adding/managing themesThe theme admin page – select the install tab© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 81
  • Adding/managing themesFinding a new theme  Select some search parameters© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 82
  • Adding/managing themesSearch results – expand details© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 83
  • Adding/managing themesAs with plugins  you get more detail on WordPress.org  but less info than for plugins© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 84
  • Adding/managing themesChoosing themes is less clear than plugins.  You need it  to look good for you  have the features you want  And still  have support  check the forums  check the last update date  be good/reliable  check the ratings© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 85
  • Adding/managing themesInstall the theme© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 86
  • Adding/managing themesThe usual install status screen© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 87
  • The new theme Note that the while the site looks different, the content and widgets are the same.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 88
  • Final notes for themes  Test on a trial site  Local install or  Subdomain on hosting  Beware free themes not from WordPress.org  Many good commercial themes not on WordPress.org© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 89
  • WordPress Settings© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 90
  • Reading settingsFront page settings  Set blog (latest posts) or static (any page) front page (Home page)  Some post display settings© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 91
  • Reading settingsFront page settings  blog (latest posts) on front page  Reverse chronological display of posts© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 92
  • Reading settingsFront page settings  Set static front page  Set-up Blog page, and Home page first  Blog page is an empty page – title of your blog© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 93
  • Reading settingsFront page settings  Home page will usually have content© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 94
  • Reading settingsFront page settings  Set static front page  Select you pages© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 95
  • Static front pageWe now have apage for our homepage.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 96
  • Theme driven front pageSome themes havevery sophisticatedhome pages, whichmay have no“content”.  Neither posts or pages are shown© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 97
  • Writing settingsEditor Size  I usually find the default editor size of 20 lines is to small and up it to 30-40.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 98
  • PermalinksChange off of the default permalink setting  Anything other than default is good© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 99
  • Settings - permalinksPermalink settings change the way the URL isdisplayed.Default sample page URL:  http://wordpress.dev1/?page_id=2The sample page is now:  http://wordpress.dev1/sample-page© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 100
  • Users© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 101
  • User levelsStandard User LevelsMost to least powerful  Super Admin – Networks (multisite) only  Admin - can do anything!  Editor  Author  Contributor  Subscriber – can do nothing, comment only© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 102
  • User rolesSuper Admin  Someone with access to the blog network administration features controlling the entire network.Administrator  Somebody who has access to all the administration featuresEditor  Somebody who can publish and manage posts and pages as well as manage other users posts, etc.© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 103
  • User rolesAuthor  Somebody who can publish and manage their own postsContributor  Somebody who can write and manage their posts but not publish themSubscriber  Somebody who can only manage their profile and comment© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 104
  • User security issues“admin” user -> remove if you have one  Subject to brute force attacks  Do not use your admin account for posting blog items if possible  Use a lower level account© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 105
  • ContactRick Radko  email: wpinfo@r3df.com  twitter: @r3designforgeSlides at:  www.slideshare.net/r3df© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 106
  • The End© 2012 Rick Radko, r3df.com 107