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Old 13-04-2013, 10:08   #1
driver8
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Question Wordpress - build your own website - howto, tips & links - beginners to advanced

Always wanted to make your own website, but don't know where to start ? Did you register a .com ages ago, but don't know what to do with it ? Well, plenty of us here were like that too a few years ago, but have a few sites under our belts now. So take the plunge and give it a go !

Wordpress.com = completely free website creation & hosting for personal blogs.
You can create a url something like : BethInIndia.wordpress.com or MikesRecipes.wordpress.com for free (and move to a paid option later).
Choose a theme that suits your content, collect together some photos (& videos) and start writing about your adventures ! If you get stuck, there are loads of discussions & forums around the web, or post your questions on here.

Wordpress.org = free blogging & site-building software to use on your own self-hosted site/s. This is what we will mainly be talking about in this thread.
Sign up for a hosting package over at forums favourite Vidahost and they'll give you a free .com (domain registration) and offer cheap pricing and an excellent support website. Prices start at £17+vat/year, but best value seems to be the 'Starter Package' - £58+vat for 3yrs, and you can host upto 6 different .coms.
Use the Vidahost 'cPanel' to install Wordpress (WP), choose & install a free theme and you're good to go.
Note that WP has evolved a long way from its blogging origins, and many business website are now created with it - for example check out the showcases at WP, HongKiat and ManageWP.

One word of caution though, before you dive in - whilst WP is seen as an excellent, powerful, and scalable website development tool, and one of the easiest ways to develop & maintain your website, it's not as easy or intuitive as using Excel or Powerpoint. It's a very steep learning curve without a drag-&-drop wysiwyg interface, so if you want your site to look & behave in a specific way you will need to roll up your sleeves and get stuck into some simple customisation coding. (Just sign up for free at WP.com and play with the dashboard & settings, select a theme and write a few posts).

Continued from here - "The official Wordpress thread" 2010-13 which hit 50 pages.

I'll update this first post as we go along, with all the best links & advice.

Starting Out
WordPress.com vs WordPress.org - good summary article
The Best WordPress Related Websites on the Internet (Oct-12) - amazing list
3 Simple Steps to Setting Up Your First Self-Hosted WordPress Site
The anatomy of a WordPress theme - excellent infographic at Yoast

Add these to your RSS Reader (Feedly) - keep up to date
WPMU blog, ManageWP blog, WPhub, WPbeginner, WPlift, WPdaily, WPjedi, WPtuts+, Paulund, Planet Wordpress, doitwithWP

Wordpress Themes - the design 'skin'
Wordpress.org - look for the 'Featured' and 'Most Popular', and when you find one you like goto the author's website for a full preview
30 Free Responsive Themes - good roundup, from April 2013. "Responsive" = website auto-adapts to better display on a phone/tablet.
ManageWP’s Free WordPress Themes of 2012
Top 10 Free Responsive WordPress Themes (Oct-12)
80 Premium Like Yet Absolutely Free WordPress Themes
20 Free WordPress Pinterest-Style Themes (Jul-12)
Site 5 Themes
YIthemes - free & pro versions
Theme Horse - free & pro versions
20 Top Free Responsive WordPress Themes
The Exhaustive ManageWP Guide to WordPress Theme Frameworks
120 Free WordPress Themes from Premium Theme Developers
10 Top Free WordPress eCommerce Themes of 2013
Theme Seller Reviews: Winners and Losers
Comprehensive reviews of 12 of the most popular WordPress theme sellers – Elegant Themes, WooThemes, Graph Paper Press, Organic Themes, Themes Kingdom, Theme Trust, ThemeZilla, Obox Designs, iThemes, Press75, StudioPress and WPZoom.
ThemeShaker - excellent search page of quality free/paid themes
30 best free magazine themes

Wordpress Plugins - 25,000+ - add functionality to your site - slideshows, social media, contact forms, shopping cart, etc.
Wordpress.org - look for 'Featured' and 'Most Popular', then checkout the screenshots & support tabs.
(1) ChoosePlugin, (2) SearchWPplugins, (3) plugins.uproot, (4) rankWP - Plugin search engines - The official WP site has limited search functionality, so try these to narrow down plugins to best-rated, recently updated, etc
ManageWP’s Top 100 Free WordPress Plugins of 2012
20 Great Free Plugins You Have Never Heard Of

Backing Up
How to Backup WordPress Sites to Dropbox
Backup Your Blog to the Cloud with These WordPress Plugins
Plugins : BackWPup, BackupWordpress, Duplicator, Xcloner

Site Security
8 Simple WordPress Security Measures
How to Scan Your WordPress Site for Potentially Malicious Code
The 10 Things You Need to Know to Secure Your WordPress Site
WPsecure - latest vulnerabilities list
Plugins : WordFence, Better WP Security, Bullet Proof Security
Brute Protect

Site Tweaks
Speed Up WordPress From 8 Seconds to 1 Second or Less
How to Get The Most Out of Your .htaccess File
What is a WordPress Child Theme? - and why everyone needs to set this up. See also : official WP documentation, and a detailed tutorial, or use a plugin - Child Themify with a tutorial (hardly needed).

Managing Multiple sites (from a single dashboard)
InfiniteWP - plenty free features, with paid addons
ManageWP - manage 5 sites for free
Mashable : The Beginner's Guide to WordPress Multisite

Developer
How To Become A Top WordPress Developer
Lifehacker: Top 10 Pro Tips and Tools for Budding Web Developers and Designers
Useful Tutorials For Creating Your First WordPress Plugin

Business
33 Ways to Get Help For Your Blog (Without Breaking the Bank)
Website Creation Questionnaire - starting points to discuss with your (first) client
.
.
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Last edited by driver8; 17-10-2013 at 12:03. Reason: extra info & links added
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Old 13-04-2013, 16:19   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driver8 View Post
Hmmm ... I see what you mean, Psycho, but not sure I've come across an easy way to do that. It must be possible, but I don't recollect reading about this as a WP plugin. What you're after is some sort of content creation, to aggregate different sources into a customised news portal type of thing - very popular at the moment with the likes of Flipboard and that Yahoo! app.

BUT after a quick google, it looks like RSS aggregation might be the way to go, where your main site pulls in the RSS feeds from the micro-sites - how's this ? -

WPmayor: Best RSS Aggregators
http://www.wpmayor.com/plugin-review...for-wordpress/

WPMU: How to Set Up a Curated News Aggregation Site with WordPress
http://wpmu.org/how-to-set-up-a-cura...ith-wordpress/

WP plugins 'aggregator'
http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/tags/aggregator

feedwordpress plugin
http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/feedwordpress/

wp-rss-aggregator
http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wp-rss-aggregator/
Thanks for these. I'll have a better look into them tomorrow!

I have seen this sort of thing used on other sites, but I'm not sure if it is custom code or a plugin.

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Old 13-04-2013, 20:12   #3
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This one's just gone live - theme written from scratch, no plugins, just some jquery and the colorbox library.

(I'm only the coder, so if you love or indeed hate the design, I can't take the credit or the blame)

http://www.formula-recruitment.com/
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Old 14-04-2013, 07:46   #4
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Time to add a bit more security to your Wordpress sites...

Huge attack on WordPress sites could spawn never-before-seen super botnet
http://arstechnica.com/security/2013...-super-botnet/
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Old 14-04-2013, 08:10   #5
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Forgot to post this yesterday, but guessing most people will have stumbled across it by now (although the news still seems to be confined to tech sites so far).

Large Scale Botnet Brute Force Attack Targets WordPress & Joomla Sites - click to choose your favourite news outlet, and sucuri blog has several indepth articles about this.

If you're already tight on security, you should be OK - if not - time to batten down the hatches !

1) Setup another admin login with a strong password, and delete the "admin" default profile -- this is the single best thing you can do.

2) Install a security plugins, such as Better WP Security - highly recommended - has a great dashboard to guide you through tightening up your site (but give yourself 30mins to do this properly).
And if you want belt & braces, install Wordfence too (although the scan is not for the paranoid, as it picks up lots of false positives).

(And it took me so long to write this, res has beaten me to it ! )
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Old 14-04-2013, 08:42   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driver8 View Post
(And it took me so long to write this, res has beaten me to it ! )
hehe, sorry about that - your post was much better as well...

Anyone installed the Better WP Security plugin? It says that it renames quite a few default things. Does it behave well with other plugins?

Will probably install it anyway when I have a few spare minutes.
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Old 14-04-2013, 08:38   #7
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I seem to remember a while back that someone wanted a plugin like this - you're in luck - new release -

Plugins Genius
Role-based active plugins manager. Choose which plugins should be active for each WordPress role in the backend and in the frontend.
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Old 14-04-2013, 09:09   #8
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hi res (!) - yep, I've been using it for a while, and apart from an update glitch a year ago (which the author fixed in a few hours) it works well, and OK with other plugins too (including Wordfence, above). These 2 plugins are well documented, but of course if you make things too tight you can lock yourself out !
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Old 15-04-2013, 11:00   #9
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I am using Better WP Security, no issues so far
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Old 15-04-2013, 11:36   #10
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I've lost sites before now but never via a plugin or via Wordpress, all of mine have been via a SSH attack directly to the server. Hence I make sure everything is backed up daily on my most used sites.
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Old 15-04-2013, 11:48   #11
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I just installed and set up the Better WP Security plugin on my main website.

I've removed all the ones in Red, most are now Green or Blue, and I have one Orange.

I didn't want to make them all Green just because it looked like there could be compatibility problems with plugins that I use.

Cheers,

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Old 16-04-2013, 12:32   #12
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After installing Better WP Security yesterday and making adjustments, I now can't remember what my new login details are. I'm now locked out!

I'm sure I tried what I set up yesterday!

Psycho

EDIT: Panic over. I had to reset my password and now I'm back in. I set it to what I'd been trying... and was sure was what I did set it to!
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Old 16-04-2013, 12:51   #13
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Just in case others haven't done so, I just had to update my Timthumb files. This was how my website got hacked last time. I now have a Timthumb scanner to make sure they are up to date.

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Old 23-04-2013, 06:13   #14
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A Set Of Free WordPress Themes That Actually Look Good

Plugin : BruteProtect - useful in the light of recent hack attacks - a cloud-powered Brute Force attack prevention plugin. We leverage the millions of WordPress sites to identify and block malicious IPs.

Plugins Garbage Collector - useful if you have an oldish site, or like to experiment with different plugins - but backup first - scans your WordPress database and shows what various things old plugins (which were deactivated or uninstalled) left in it. Cleanup is available.
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Old 23-04-2013, 14:14   #15
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Calendars. Which one do you use? I was looking at that Ajax Event Calendar and it looks pretty good.
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Old 23-04-2013, 14:26   #16
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Never had the need for one myself - what do you want it to do ?
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Old 23-04-2013, 15:14   #17
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Events. Meetings, conferences & workshops.
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Old 23-04-2013, 15:24   #18
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If your running WordPress on your own domain, a few simple key things you can do.

Make sure the table prefix is not just wp_ make it dfhrtuhgo_wp_ or somthing.
Make sure your username is not 'admin', so simple but where most brute force attacks come from.
Install limit logins plugin http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/...pts/changelog/
Decent password.
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Old 25-04-2013, 14:51   #19
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When I first started reading up about WP and how easy it was to use, I imagined it would be drag-&-drop out of the box !

Good roundup here - anyone used any of these ? Best WordPress Drag and Drop Theme Builders

Last month I did some web research of my own, and came up with the idea that Catalyst might be the best option (or Genesis Framework with Dynamik on top). Anyone else considered these ?
.
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Old 25-04-2013, 15:21   #20
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I think I was the same but soon noticed you needed to do a bit more than drag-n-drop. But it didn't take too long to pick it up the basics... not that I'm an expert or anything, but our website is nice and works well.

Some of the recent security issues are a worry. Hopefully there is less chance of a hack if you've got some good WP security plugins in place.

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