Wordpress

Lifestream not updating – fixed.

My lifestream plugin in WordPress that keeps track of most of my social networking sites suddenly stopped working a few days ago and I was not sure how to kick start it back into action again. It turns out that disabling the plugin and then re-enabling the plugin adds the relevant jobs back into the wpcron system. My Lifestream (that appears on Absoblogginlutely! – IRL is now being updated correctly (and also shows my geocaching finds now too).

Google Love followup.

Ok, so creating my google sitemap didn’t help due to a setting I had already setup in WordPress. When I was testing the migration I had set the privacy options under Settings/ Privacy to block search engines but allow other visitors. This had the unfortunate result of adding the disallow * in the robots.txt file – thus blocking google. Setting it back to make my blog visible has (hopefully) done the trick. Note that the robots.txt is automatically generated by wordpress so you not find one if you go looking with shell access – just access the file through a browser.
Hopefully this setting has not harmed by Google Page rank too much.
Update – just checked and my posts are now appearing in Google again – phew!

Why I moved from MovableType to WordPress

I was asked in the comments why I migrated from MovableType to WordPress.  There were several reason why I decided to make the switch.  The primary reason was the incredibly long time it would take to publish a post in MT.  I could actually hit Post in MT, fire up a new web page, connect to my testing WP site, create a new post, enter the title, paste the content in, hit publish and then view the website. In the meantime MT would still be thinking about saving the original post.

The time taken to republish the site after a change such as a design change was so great that some of my older posts still had old styles as the republishing system would time out before it could complete the task.

One of the other things I really like about WordPress is the ease of upgrading the software to the latest version. Yes, WordPress has had more releases, but when it takes about 2 minutes to upgrade the system its really not a problem (especially now that there is an automatic upgrade function).  MovableType has also just released a new security release which is one of the reasons why I made the switch *now*.

I was also hoping that the spam filtering would be better on WordPress than MovableType. I’ve had several idiots spamming the blog with russian comments in MovableType – they wouldn’t get through but I would have to go and delete them. In the one day that I’ve had WordPress up I think I’ve had more spam comments get through to the spam queue, but again it was easy to delete them all – a “select all” option and then delete, followed by an “all done” about 3 seconds later.

Themes in WordPress seem to be a lot cleaner and there are a lot more themes out there to pick from – MT’s selection was pretty small. This wasn’t that much of an issue to me as I was pretty pleased with my existing theme in MT (and have had it copied by a few people so it couldn’t have been that bad!)
The big concern about switching from MT to WP is typically due to the fact that WP is database driven and therefore doesn’t have any of the pages (by default) saved on the machine so if the database is down, then so is the website.   This site doesn’t have that many visitors so I don’t see this as being that much of a problem and normally if the sql database is down, then its probably likely that the web server is going to be down too.

I’ve not looked at the various caching plugins as I doubt I’m going to need it, but it is nice to know this option is available.  I may switch it on later once I’ve got the site up and running and I’m not making many design changes to it.

For those of you interested, I will also be posting my experience about the upgrade and some hints and tips – the existing WordPress migration documentation is in dire need of being updated!

Now using WordPress!

I was hoping to get the switch from MovableType to WordPress up  and running for the 1st of January but I didn’t want to go live until I was ready and near a keyboard in case there was problem.  I’ve spent several hours this weekend getting the layout and stuff ok to go live. For those of you using feed readers to see this, you probably won’t see much difference although I have added a few options to the feedburner feeds and also include my delicious saves now. Do stop by the main website and let me know what you think though.  Any issues then let me know, most of the work and testing was done with firefox as that is what most of you use. There are a few cosmetic issues with internet explorer that I’ll work on over the next week or so.

I’ll also be posting some hints and tips on the migration steps too.

comment tracking.

I signed up for a beta invite to cocomment this morning and got an invite code a couple of hours later. Unfortunately it doesn’t work in MovableType (yet) but it does work in WordPress and blogger. I’ll start using this to track most of my blog posts on the web when possible. I did find that the default installation of redirectremover extension screwed up the bookmarklet (and also screwed up my url123.com bookmarklet too) so disabling that made it all work properly.