WordPress: (Part 3) Plugins

WordPress: (Part 3) Plugins

In this last part, i will give a short overview of WordPress Plugins and some General tips.

Plugins

WordPress has the possibility to be extended with several Plugins to enhance the experience.

Default Plugins

Hello Dolly!

This is a Plugin to simply delete and make you comfortable installing and removing Plugins

Akismet

Is an important plugin that prevents people spamming on your posts & pages. You have to register to fully use the plugin (free)

My Recommended Plugins:

Jetpack by WordPress.com

Jetpack is a collection of tools that are installed by default on wordpress.com. It adds basic functionality like statistics, as well as social network features, latex integration, advanced galleries etc.

Plugin Site: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/jetpack/

Link Indication by Michael Wöhrer

Adds small icons at the end of links to indicate the type of file.

Plugin site: http://sw-guide.de/wordpress/plugins/link-indication-plugin/

SyntaxHighlighter Evolved by Viper007Bond

Adds the possibility to display source code in WordPress

Plugin site: http://www.viper007bond.com/wordpress-plugins/syntaxhighlighter/

wp-jquery-lightbox by Ulf Benjaminsson

Adds a neat box when displaying a single image

Plugin site: http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/wp-jquery-lightbox/

General Tips

About Page

Create and maintain your about page, it is one of the most commonly visited sites on a blog.

Updates

When logging into WordPress admin area it always notifies you if new security patches are out for WordPress. Always check first if your theme and plugins work with that new version, then make a backup and then update WordPress.

Google Stuff

Google provides many different tools for WordPress. However for everything there are also alternatives (well search google you’ll find something)

Feedburner

This allows your RSS feed to be handled by google and in essence you could change the location of your blog and all subscribers to your blog automatically get the feed from your new location. In addition it provides Statistics how many people are subscribed to your blog.

http://feedburner.google.com

Analytics

This is one of the more creepy plugins from google, in essence it keeps track how much time people spent visiting your site, what they click, where they are from, what kind of computer they use etc.

http://www.google.com/analytics/

Adsense

Well Adsense is one way to make money with your blog, in essence it is a banner controlled by google and whenever somebody clicks the ad you get some money like 5cents. Well you get a check when you should get 70bucks, so it could take some time.

https://www.google.com/adsense/

Personal reasons

It is always best to have your own personal reasons why you maintain a website or a blog. But always keep in mind that the site is there to enrich the internet in some way.

Be mindful that you always will receive negative comments on the internet, you can ignore them, however if they are constructive you should at least listen.

And as always remember to have fun.

Part 1 – Part 2

Posted by happyneal in Web Technologies, 2 comments
WordPress: (Part 2) Themes and Menus

WordPress: (Part 2) Themes and Menus

Now that the site is installed and configured you can take care of choosing a theme and configuring the menus. (See Part 1)

Themes

There are many free themes available, as well as themes that come as a price. Finally there is the possibility of hiring a professional WordPress Theme Designer to customize your site.

Themes

Search for new themes with WordPress

To find themes you can navigate to Appearances and then on the top “Install Themes” and then start searching for themes.If you download or purchase a theme from another site, you also have to go to Appearances > Install Themes, and then choose on the top “Upload

Custom Themes

Upload a custom theme

A selection of themes can be found at smashing magazine: http://wp.smashingmagazine.com/2008/01/08/100-excellent-free-high-quality-wordpress-themes/

Menus 

After you have selected and installed your theme you usually define a menu for your site. In most cases you would want the user to be able to browse categories. However you also can let the site navigate to Pages or custom URLs.

To allow the user to browse categories you first have to define categories, this is found under Posts > Categories.  Whenever you create a new Post you should set a Category, if not it will be stored in the Category “Uncategorized“.

Here you set up your Categories

Here you set up your Categories

After you have set up the categories you can add them to your Menu. Important: You can set up multiple Menus, however one menu is always set to the “Primary Navigation”.

There is a Save Menu Button and a Save Primary Navigation Button

There is a Save Menu Button and a Save Primary Navigation Button

Watch out that you always use the “Save Menu” button to save any changes.

Widgets

Depending on your theme, it supports Widgets (small feature extensions). To add Widgets to your site, drag  a widget from available Widgets and drop it where you want it (e.g. The Main Sidebar)

After you have dragged it you can configure it and how it looks.

Additional Widgets are available when installing Plugins see Part 3

Widgets, simply drag and drop widgets

Widgets, simply drag and drop widgets

Continue to Part 3

Posted by happyneal in Web Technologies, 2 comments
WordPress: (Part 1) Installation and Configuration

WordPress: (Part 1) Installation and Configuration

In this three-part series I will be showing you the basics of creating a simple website using the Content Management System (CMS) WordPress. By using a CMS  you can add and modify content to the the website directly in your browser even without any programming experience.

WordPress is easily extended to support various types of websites.

Part 1: Installation and Configuration:

  • Server Requirements
  • WordPress installation
  • WordPress configuration
  • Difference Post and Pages

Part 2 Themes and Menus:

  • Themes
  • Widgets
  • Menus

Part 3 Plugins:

  • Plugins
  • General tips

Server Requirements

A website is always hosted on a server. A server is basically a computer that is constantly running and connected to the internet. When choosing a web hosting service you have to make sure that it supports PHP and MySQL.

Free Web hosting

If you are just starting out and want to test things on a server there are several providers that offer free web hosting, however you usually only get a sub-domain. These offers are useful for experimenting with WordPress however a sub-domain suggests that you are an amateur.

One of the few exceptions is when you simply want to run a blog. www.wordpress.com has blog hosting services however you only get a sub-domain.

Paid Web hosting

Professional web hosting costs money. In most cases you have to pay for the domain and the available web space. The package includes email-addresses accompanying the site.

Amazon AWS

Finding a Domain name

At this point in time the most good names are already taken or people bought the domain and just wait to sell them off.

To check if your domain is still available try out:

http://instantdomainsearch.com/

Or if you want a random web 2.0 domain Name:

http://www.dotomator.com/web20.html

https://domains.google.com/

WordPress Installation

You got your server and are ready to go? Great.

Preparation

  1. Download and install Filezilla on your computer www.filezilla.org
  2. Open Filezilla and
  3. Create a new Site, and enter your ftp-access data.

    Filezilla - Site Manager

    Enter your FTP Access Data

  4. Test the connection.
  5. Go to the Configuration website of your server
  6. Go to the MySQL configuration site
  7. Create a new user (e.g. wordpress_sqlusr) with a strong password

Installation

  1. Download WordPress from www.wordpress.org
  2. Extract the files on your computer
  3. Open Filezilla, and open a ftp-connection to your server
  4. Transfer all files to your server
  5. In a Browser open your website
  6. WordPress will state that the config-file has not been configured. Click on next
  7. Enter the data asked by wordpress. Use a very strong Password to prevent anybody else accessing your site as administrator.

WordPress configuration

Now that WordPress is installed you can configure the site

  1. When you go to /wp-admin you can logon and start configuring your site.
  2. Simply Navigate on the sidebar and click on Settings. WordpressPart1
  3. You will find all Settings in this panel and all of it is very well described. Simply go through every different type of Settings.

Difference Post and Pages

A Page is a static website. The Webpage is always the same and never changes. (usually the About Page)

However one of the benefits of a blog is that it has an RSS Feed. Other people can subscribe to this feed with an RSS Reader and when you add new content to your blog they automatically get notified of the change. The blog is generated dynamically from all the posts available.

In most cases it is more useful to use Posts, but it depends entirely on your website. A simple website also can only use static Pages.

Continue to Part 2

Posted by happyneal in Web Technologies, 2 comments
Windows 7: Quick and optimized install (Update)

Windows 7: Quick and optimized install (Update)

Let’s speed up my original ideas and make it superfast.

1. Install

1.1 Win 7 SP1 integrated

So for WinXP you would have slipstreamed the Service Packs. But screw that we got broadband. Download an integrated Iso from:

http://www.mydigitallife.info/official-windows-7-sp1-iso-from-digital-river/

1.2 USB Install

Installing from USB, is usually faster than installing from a DVD.

  1. Copy all the contents of the Win7 ISO to an USB-Drive (3GB free space required).
  2. Right-click on “Computer” – > Manage and navigate to Disk Management
  3. Right-click on the Partition you copied the Win7 Files to and select “Mark Partition as Active”
  4. Plug the USB-Drive in the PC to be set up and boot from the USB-Drive.
  5. Install

Note: If you have a USB3-Port you may need additional drivers to install via USB.

1.3 Partitions

The sole purpose of Partitions is organization. However you want to organize you files you create any number of partitions accordingly. Best Practice is to have at least 100GB of space for the Operating Install Partition so you have plenty of space to install more Programs. Note: To gain a speed advantage one must use  multiple physical Hard drives and then configure the Swap Files. However placing the Swap-file on the same physical disk will is not give any performance boost.

2. Initial Settings via Powershell

  • Open Powershell as Administrator
  • type  Set-ExecutionPolicy Unrestricted
  • Copy (and modify)  following Code into a new Textfile

#Enable Windows Classic Theme
Write-Host "Enabling Classic Theme"
& $env:Systemroot'\Resources\Ease of Access Themes\classic.theme'

#Set Explorer Settings
Write-Host "Configuring Explorer-Settings"
$explorerKey = 'HKCU:\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced'
Set-ItemProperty $explorerKey NavPaneShowAllFolders 1
Set-ItemProperty $explorerKey NavPaneExpandToCurrentFolder 1
Set-ItemProperty $explorerKey Hidden 1
Set-ItemProperty $explorerKey HideFileExt 0

#Set Taskbar Settings
Write-Host "Taskbar Settings"
Set-ItemProperty $explorerKey TaskbarSmallIcons 1
Set-ItemProperty $explorerKey TaskbarGlomLevel 1

#Disable Customer Experience Improvement Program
Set-ItemProperty 'HKLM:\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SQMClient\Windows' CEIPEnable 0

#Desktop Items
Write-Host "Display Icons"
$desktopKey = 'HKCU:\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\HideDesktopIcons'
new-item -path $desktopKey
new-item -path $desktopKey\ClassicStartMenu
new-item -path $desktopKey\NewStartPanel
new-ItemProperty -path $desktopKey\ClassicStartMenu -name '{20D04FE0-3AEA-1069-A2D8-08002B30309D}' -value 0
new-ItemProperty -path $desktopKey\ClassicStartMenu -name '{59031a47-3f72-44a7-89c5-5595fe6b30ee}' -value 0
new-ItemProperty -path $desktopKey\ClassicStartMenu -name '{645FF040-5081-101B-9F08-00AA002F954E}' -value 0

new-ItemProperty -path $desktopKey\NewStartPanel -name '{20D04FE0-3AEA-1069-A2D8-08002B30309D}' -value 0
new-ItemProperty -path $desktopKey\NewStartPanel -name '{59031a47-3f72-44a7-89c5-5595fe6b30ee}' -value 0
new-ItemProperty -path $desktopKey\NewStartPanel -name '{645FF040-5081-101B-9F08-00AA002F954E}' -value 0

#Disable Remote Assistance
Set-ItemProperty 'HKLM:\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Remote Assistance' fAllowToGetHelp 0

#Restart Explorer
Stop-Process -processname explorer

#Disable UAC
Write-Host "Disabling User Account Control (UAC)"
Set-ItemProperty 'HKLM:\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System' EnableLUA 0
Write-Host "System needs to be rebooted"
#Disable Services
#Windows Search
(gwmi win32_service -filter "name='WSearch'").ChangeStartMode("Disabled")
#Windows Features
DISM /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:WindowsGadgetPlatformDISM /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:TabletPCOC /NoRestartDISM /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:Printing-XPSServices-Features /NoRestart
DISM /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:Xps-Foundation-Xps-Viewer /NoRestart
DISM /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:Printing-Foundation-InternetPrinting-Client /NoRestart
DISM /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:MediaCenter /NoRestart
DISM /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:OpticalMediaDisc /NoRestart
DISM /Online /Disable-Feature /FeatureName:WindowsMediaPlayer /NoRestart
  • Save as “windowsConfig.ps1” at C:\
  • In Powershell execute C:\windowsConfig.ps1 (works only with full path)

3. Applications

3.1 Internet Explorer 9

To prevent downloads of unneeded updates, install IE9 prior to running windows update.

IE9 Download

3.1 Ninite

Visit www.ninite.com you can choose from a selection of free programs and then download an automatic installer.

That’s all folks!!!

Further Links:

Speed Up Windows 7 How to

Tweaking Windows 7 for Maximum Performance

The Ultimate Guide to Speed up Windows 7

Posted by happyneal in Windows, 0 comments
Java GUI: Using AbstractTableModel

Java GUI: Using AbstractTableModel

When using the AbstractTableModel the easiest way to store the table data is to use a Vector of Vectors.You have to implement additonal functions to insert new data.

Here is a simple example:

Posted by happyneal in Programming, 7 comments
Windows 7 – Quick and Optimized Install

Windows 7 – Quick and Optimized Install

Ok, I don’t have the time to create a fully automated Win7 Install. So I will be using an original unaltered Windows7 install. Links to downloadable ISOs are freely available at:

http://www.mydigitallife.info/windows-7-iso-x86-and-x64-official-direct-download-links-ultimate-professional-and-home-premium/

I based this guide solely on my personal preference, it purely optimized for speeding up a manual install and configuration of Win7.

1. Install

1.1 USB Install

Installing from USB, is usually faster than installing from a DVD.

  1. Copy all the contents of the Win7 ISO to an USB-Drive (3GB free space required).
  2. Right-click on “Computer” – > Manage and navigate to Disk Management
  3. Right-click on the Partition you copied the Win7 Files to and select “Mark Partition as Active”
  4. Plug the USB-Drive in the PC to be set up and boot from the USB-Drive.
  5. Install

Note: If you have a USB3-Port you may need additional drivers to install via USB.

1.2 Partitions

The sole purpose of Partitions is organization. However you want to organize you files you create any number of partitions accordingly. Best Practice is to have at least 100GB of space for the Operating Install Partition so you have plenty of space to install more Programs. Note: To gain a speed advantage one must use  multiple physical Hard drives and then configure the Swap Files. However placing the Swap-file on the same physical disk will is not give any performance boost.

2. Initial Settings

2.1 GodMode

To gain Access to all Configuration Panels Create a Folder and rename it to:

Open the Folder and you have Quick Access to all Panels currently available

Item

Action
Action Center
Change Customer Experience Improvement Program settings Disable
Change User Account Control Settings Never
Administrative Tools
View local services Windows Search (Disable)Read: Useful Services Configuration Black Vipers Guide
Folder Options
Show or hide file extensions Show extensions
Personalization
Enable or disable transparent glass on windows Deactivate
Show or hide common icons on the desktop Show User Files, Show Computer
Programs and Features
Turn Windows features on or off Tablet PC Components (off)Windows Gadget Platform (off)(Restart Required)
System
Activate Windows Insert Key – Activate Windows
Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows Mostly Personal Preferences for max Performance disable all
Allow remote access to your computer Deactivate Allow Remote Assistance connections
Taskbar and Start Menu
Customize the Start menu (Personal Preference) Small Icons enables “old Windows” look and feel

2.2 Drivers

Most devices get a significant performance boost when the newest drivers are installed. The newest drivers usually can be downloaded from the hardware vendors support websites.
For tweaked graphics drivers for Nvidia and ati you can visit

Omega drivers (Not officially supported by Nvidia or amd)

Further manual tweaking can be done with RivaTuner

3. Applications

3.1 Internet Explorer 9

To prevent downloads of unneeded updates, install IE9 prior to running windows update.

IE9 Download

3.1 Ninite

Visit www.ninite.com you can choose from a selection of free programs and then download an automatic installer. The free to use section only downloads 32bit version of the programs.

In some cases e.g 7-zip it is better just to download the proper version and install it manually.

Current Favorite Selection

Web browsers Chrome
Messaging Skype
Thunderbird
Media iTunes
VLC
Winamp
Quicktime
Runtimes Flash
Flash (IE)
Java
Security Avast
Spybot
Other Dropbox
Steam
Utilities TeamViewer
ImgBurn
CCleaner
TeraCopy
Compression 7zip
Developer Tools Phyton
FileZilla
Notepad++
Eclipse
  1. Clean Up

4.1 Windows Update

Run Windows Update several times to get the newest updates

If Servicepack 1 was installed run in the Command Prompt:

to remove unneeded backup files.

 
 
That’s all folks!!!

Further Links:

Speed Up Windows 7 How to

Tweaking Windows 7 for Maximum Performance

The Ultimate Guide to Speed up Windows 7

Posted by happyneal in Windows, 1 comment