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| WordPress

The External Videos plugin allows you to automatically collect and dispay the videos from an external site such as your YouTube user channel. External Videos creates a post for each video automatically. For example, it finds all the videos of the user "Fred" on YouTube and adds them each as a new post type. The videos can be presented in a gallery using the shortcode [external-videos]. There is also a widget to add a list of the most recent videos in a sidebar.

This plugin can be very useful if you are following a channel that produces videos periodically. Once they are published to your video channel, they automatically show up on your site. Currently supported sites are: YouTube, Vimeo, and DotSub.

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| WordPress

The WordPress user profile comes with the ability to add social network IDs for AIM, Yahoo IM, and Jabber/Google Talk. However, most of those networks or either dead or dying. So what if you want to add Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin or other more popular social networks to your user profiles?

ThemeFuse Extend User Profile is the answer. This plugin comes with fields for social network links, but you can also add more and create custom profiles for your users.

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| WordPress

wptouch-logoWPtouch automatically transforms your WordPress blog so that it is easy for visitors to read on their mobile phones.

It works with iPhone, iPod touch, Android, Palm Pre, Samsung touch and BlackBerry Storm/Torch mobile devices.

WPtouch doesn't replace your normal site theme for larger screens, only for smaller devices.

Here's how to make WPtouch work on your site:

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| WordPress

Logo-budypressBuddyPress is social networking in a box. You can build a social network for your company, school, sports team or niche community all based on the power and flexibility of WordPress.

BuddyPress is completely free and open source. Unlike hosted services, BuddyPress allows you to stay in control of your site and create a totally customized, unique experience.

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| WordPress

This plugin imports posts from CSV (Comma Separated Value) files into your WordPress blog. It can prove extremely useful when you want to import a bunch of posts from an Excel document or the like - simply export your document into a CSV file and the plugin will take care of the rest.

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| WordPress

Contus Vblog is a WordPress plugin which allows you to record videos as you post blogs.

It has a built-in recorder that connects to your webcam. When you post, you can see the button “Add Video Post” at top right of you editor. Just point the camera at yourself and start talking. That's all there is to it.

You don't even need to wait for the video to go live to view the video. You can view the preview of the recorded video as soon as you want, and decide to post the video or rerecord. You can also allow your blog readers/visitors to post video comments for your post.

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| WordPress

It's hard not to make a play on words or a pun when talking about 1 Flash Gallery, because it is what it says, and adds what it is, and really makes your site flashy. (Sorry, I couldn't resist.) The most popular gallery for WordPress is the NextGen gallery, which is excellent, but this is something quite different.

If you've been looking for a way to put up eye-catching galleries, Flash is one way to go. 1 Flash Gallery is a plugin that will provide Flash galleries for your WordPress site.

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| WordPress

Earlier this year we wrote tutorial about custom post formats, in which we explained that they are different from custom post types.

That led some people to scratch their heads ... "what's the difference between post formats and post types?".

Many people confuse the two. In this tutorial we're going to explain custom post types, and give you some ideas on how to use them.

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| WordPress

Taxonomy is a common word in biology (and also Drupal!). In science it's a hierarchy of terms used to classify almost everything. Wikipedia has a full explanation here.

Recently WordPress has adopted the word "taxonomy" as an additional way to organize information. It's an uncommon word for a common concept.

When you were in school, you picked up a book and opened to the table of contents, and you were looking at the book's taxonomy. It's just a way to classify and label things. In a web site, it makes it easier to find thing or show them when you need them. Here's how it applies to WordPress:

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| WordPress

WordPress continues to improve on its ability to mange content. Custom post types and taxonomies are a big step in making WordPress a fully featured CMS.

If you're not sure what custom post types are, go ahead and read this tutorial first.

Custom post types are powerful tools for creating an information architecture. However, by default you are required to write code if you want to use them.

Fortunately, there are a number of plugins that allow you to create post types and taxonomies to go with them. This tutorial explains the use of Custom Post Type UI.

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| WordPress

By default, WordPress comes with a pretty great way to run and manage a multi-site network. You can click here to read tutorials on how to set up a network. However, those networks are designed to be run on one server and for the sites to be deeply inter-connected.

What happens if you have lots of different WordPress sites spread out over lots of different servers? What happens if you're managing sites for lots of different clients? ManageWP.com has an intriguing solution: one dashboard for all your WordPress sites. Here's how it works:

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| WordPress

Something not often understood in WordPress is the difference between Post Formats and Post Types.

There are 5 page types built into WordPress: Post, Page, Attachment, Revision and Nav Menu. Since the release of 3.1 you can now add custom types, but we'll go over that in another tutorial. This tutorial is going to show you how post formats work:

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| WordPress

connections pluginDo you need to create a company directory with employee profiles? Maybe multiple departments in a larger company? Or a family directory for your next reunion?

The Connections plugin can make this a fairly easy task, allowing you to load headshots, full contact information and details on every member or employee, then display them on custom pages. In this tutorial we'll show you the basic features. The developers at http://connections-pro.com also sell extra features.

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| WordPress

s2member-proWordPress is great for multi-users and for creating blog sites. But what if you want to monetize it so you can charge for subscriptions? There are some plugins available, this one we found to be not only free, but fully featured.

Of all the ones tested, this was the most complete out-of-the-box, and had the most documentation, with over 50 help videos. The documentation is excellent, but I found the first few steps to be time consuming with trial and error. Here is a quick-start guide to s2Member:

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| WordPress

 

Add Google AJAX Translation to your blog. This plugin allows your readers to translate your blog posts, pages, or comments into 52 languages.

The Google AJAX Translation WordPress plugin provides a quick, simple, and light way to add translation to your blog.

A "Translate" button can be added to the bottom or top of posts, pages, and/or comments. When the button is clicked a popup window opens showing a list of available languages.

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| WordPress

elfinderOne of our students was having difficulty getting access to his CSS files, so we created this tutorial for him.

This tutorial will show you how you can access and manage your server's files (php, css, etc) directly from your Wordpress admin area using a file manager called elFinder.

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| WordPress

This has become fairly simple since most hosting companies supply a version of an automatic installer that puts WordPress where you want it with a couple button clicks. But there are still occasions when you want to install it manually. Here's the quick install method, that is relatively simple.

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| WordPress

WordPress 3.2 in with the new - out with the old. The focus for this release was making WordPress faster and lighter.Moving forward has enabled some impressive improvements. The streamlining enabled retiring support for PHP4, and older versions of MySQL, and legacy browsers like IE6, which allows WordPress to take advantage of more features enabled by new technologies.

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| WordPress

WordPress 3.2 has some significant upgrades. 

  • Refreshed admin area
  • New default theme "Twenty Eleven"
  • Full Screen Editor - Distraction free writing experience
  • Extended Admin Bar - More useful links to control the site

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| WordPress

TinyMCE in WordPressWordPress is easy to use, but making something easy to use usually means you have to leave out features or reduce control. Editing text can be very frustrating with the native text editing built into WordPress.

Adding TinyMCE advanced editor, and two additional plugins, one for tables and one for shortcodes, will make editing easier.

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| WordPress

The NextGen Gallery is probably the most used gallery for WordPress sites.

There's a great sidebar widget for showing thumbnails from galleries on the pages. It comes with a very basic styling, but there are templates easily accessible for creating the look you want.

The default style jams the thumbnails together, and to make a pleasing look, you need to add some spacing.

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| WordPress

One of our students noticed that his Add a New Post area looked different that our tutorial. For example, he had no excerpt or custom fields on the page and asked why his layout was different. The answer is that as of WordPress 3.1, some screen options on the Post and Page areas are hidden by default and need to be enabled.

This tutorial will show you step-by-step how to enabled them using Screen Options.

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| WordPress

One of our students asked us how to remove a link from a left menu. In his case the link was coming from the Pages Widget, so we created this tutorial for him.

This tutorial will walk you through step by step how to exclude a page from the Pages Widget in Wordpress

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| WordPress

Speed is everything these days. People are browsing faster and have a shorter attention span. Time is literally money:

  • Microsoft showed that when pages slowed by 1 second, ad clicks per user decreased by 1.5%.
  • Amazon showed that when pages slowed by 1 tenth of a secon, sales decreased by 1%.

One great solution to make your WordPress sites run more quickly is the W3 Total Cache plugin. Here's how to use it:

Test Your Site

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Before we speed up our site, let's test how fast it's running now. You can do that by visiting http://gtmetrix.com. In the image above I'm testing a plain WordPress install and it scored 87% and 93% on the two tests. Don't be surprised if your site is substantially slower after adding themes, plug-ins and widgets.

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| WordPress

This tutorial will walk you through step by step how to create a slideshow for the frontpage of your Wordpress site. We're going to use a plugin called (very logically) Frontpage Slideshow. Here's how to set it up correctly:

Install

First, go to the admin area of your WordPress site, click Plugins, then Add New and search for Frontpage Slideshow. Once you've found it, click Install now:

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| WordPress

Things are not quite right with your site. You have tried troubleshooting the issue for the last four hours and you are getting frustrated. Then you remember that you have been making daily backups of your site. The question is, "How do I restore my site from the backup?" This tutorial will take your through the steps!

This tutorial assumes you are using Automatic Wordpress Backup Plugin and that you have a backup ready to go. For instructions on how to create a back up please see the How to Automatically Backup Wordpress tutorial.

 

Access Automatic Wordpress Backup

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In your administrator section, go to Plugins >> Automatic Wordpress Backup >> Settings.

 

Restore

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Scroll down and go to the Restore from a backup tab.

Select the backup you wish to use and configure appropriately.

Restore from backup when finished.

 

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Select OK if you are sure you want to run the restore. A manual backup will be created prior to running the restore in case you wanted to revert back.

Once you click ok, it will run the restore and then refresh once completed. Give it time to complete the restore; the larger the backup file the more time it will take.

That's it! You have just restored your site!

| WordPress

Backup! Backup! Backup! There are few things more frustrating than having to redo an entire site from scratch after a major issue occurs with the site, whether that be an unidentifiable error, a hacked site, etc. If you have a backup in place, you will greatly reduce your work and keep your sanity.

This tutorial will walk you through how to automatically backup your wordpress site on a daily, weekly, or monthly schedule by using the Automatic Wordpress Backup Plugin and Amazon S3. Let's get started!

 

Install Automatic Wordpress Backup Plugin

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In your administrator section go to Plugins >> Add New.

In the search field type in Automatic Wordpress Backup.

Click Search.

 

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Find Automatic Wordpress Backup. Make sure it is the right plugin by checking in the Description that the author is Dan Coulter.

Install Now.

 

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Select OK.

 

Activate the Automatic Wordpress Backup Plugin

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Select Activate Plugin.

 

Configure Access Keys

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Click on Settings.

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We need to get this information from our Amazon Web Services (AWS) Account.

If you do not have an account, you can register here (Please read all the terms and conditions):
http://aws.amazon.com/s3/

Or you can sign up for their free version here (Please read all the terms and conditions):
http://aws.amazon.com/free/

**Be sure to register and confirm your S3 account. If you get any errors in Wordpress that you do not have any account, it means that you have not completed all the steps for registration, which includes confirmation.

 

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Log into your AWS account (http://aws.amazon.com/s3/). Scroll down to the Access Credentials section. Copy the Access Key.

 

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Go back to your Wordpress site and paste the Access Key in the AWS Access Key field.

 

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Go back to your AWS account. Click on Show under the Secret Access Key area then copy the Secret Access Key.

 

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Go back to your Wordpress site and paste the Secret Access Key in the AWS Access Key field.

 

Choose Your Level of Gratitude and Save

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Choose how you wish to support the developer(s).

Select Save Changes.

 

Create Bucket and Configure

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Every object stored in Amazon S3 is contained within a bucket. A bucket must be unique, thus to ensure that it is unique you can name it yoursite.com-backup. Enter Bucket.

Configure appropriately.

Save Changes and Backup Now.

 

Check Your Backup

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Click Refresh Now.

 

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Your Manual Backup is completed and everything is setup for automatic backups as per your configuration!

That is all there is to it! Easy as 1-2-3!

| WordPress
Post by Email to Your WordPress Blog

By default WordPress allows you to write posts on your WordPress blog simply by sending an email.

However, as the video below makes clear, that default feature is fairly limited.

In this tutorial we'll show you how to set up your blog so that creating your posts by email is both fun and easy. The solution is the Postie plugin.

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| WordPress

This tutorial will show you how to move a WordPress site from one folder to another.

In our example we're going to move the WP site from a folder called /blog/ and place it in the root of our site. That means that instead of accessing the site from http://example.com/blog/ we can now go directly to http://example.com.

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