Customizing your WordPress site settings

General Wordpress settings make it easy to customize your site or add capabilities. See below for some of the many options.

Adjusting general settings

General settings allow you to make the following changes:

  • Site title
  • Site tagline
  • Site email address
  • The way in which the date and time are formatted
  • The day of the week the calendar starts

To make these changes:

  1. Click the Settings item on the left.
  2. Adjust the settings to your liking.
  3. Click the [Save Changes] button.

Creating a static home page

Your site's home page defaults to display entries from your site's blog, however, some sites may be better served using a static home page. (You can still have a blog - see the next item below.) You can set any one of your site pages to display as the home page.

  1. Click the Settings section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click Reading.
  3. Beside "Front page displays" select "A static page (select below)."
  4. Beside "Front page" drop-down menu select the page you wish to use as the site home page.
  5. Click the [Save Changes] button.

Designating a blog page when you have a static home page

You can still offer a blog when you have a static home page. Simply create an empty page and tell WordPress to use this as your "Posts page".

  1. Click the Pages section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click Add New.
  3. Name the page something that describes your blog.
  4. Click the [Publish] button.
  5. Click the Settings section title to expand the available options.
  6. Click Reading.
  7. In the "Front page displays" section, select your newly-created page from the "Posts page" dropdown.
  8. Click the [Save Changes] button.

Enabling plugins with an explanation of each

Plugins allow you to do more with your WordPress site. The following are installed plugins that can be enabled by site administrators.

  • Authors Widget: Displays a list of the site's authors, number of posts, and links to their RSS feeds.
  • Blubrry PowerPress: Adds podcasting support to your site. It includes a media player, third party statistics, and iTunes integration.
  • Category Posts Widget: This widget plugin allows you to display in the sidebar of your site posts from a specific category name.
  • Collapse-O-Matic: Allows for the addition of shortcode that will wrap any text into a collapsing and expanding div.
  • Contact Form 7: Allows you to create a quick online form. It includes safeguards to avoid misuse. For more robust online data gathering use Opinio.
  • Google Analytics for Wordpress: Tracks visits to your pages and outbound navigation to other sites. You will need to have a Google Analytics account ID that you will paste into the Google Analytics settings available from Plugins then Google Analytics.
  • Page Links To: Allows you to link WordPress pages or posts to external URLs; or set up navigational links to non-WordPress sections of your site or to off-site resources.
  • Sidebar Login: Puts a login form on the sidebar. It will then appear on the Appearance/Widget list, where you will be able to insert it into your sidebar. To change its settings go to Tools then Sidebar Login.
  • TinyMCE Advanced: Extend the available editing functions the Web editing toolbar provides in a page or post. You can customize which buttons display by going to Settings then TinyMCE Advanced.
  • WordPress Admin Bar: Displays your Site Admin links at the top of your pages, but only when you're logged in. You can customize what displays on this toolbar by going to Tools then Admin Bar.

Enabling a plugin

  1. Click the Plugins item on the left.
  2. Click the Activate link below the title of the plugin.

Adding and editing widgets

Widgets allow you to add content to your sidebars. The following widgets are available:

  • Akismet: This is the spam filtering service used on our installation of WordPress MU. You will not need to add this as a widget because spam filtering is on by default and requires no more configuration by site owners.
  • Archives: Provides a month by month list of links to your posts.
  • Authors: Displays a list of post authors that links to an archive of the author's posts. Available when the Author's Widget plugin is activated.
  • Calendar: Displays a calendar of posts. Clicking on a date displays the posts made on that date.
  • Categories: Displays your designated post categories as a list or drop-down menu and may include the number of items per category as well as a hierarchical relationship of the categories.
  • Custom Menu: Displays the contents of a custom menu. Not all themes support the display of Custom Menus.
  • Meta: Displays links to meta functions such as Site Admin, Login/out, Entries RSS, Comments RSS, and WordPress.org. This block displays whether you're logged in or logged out.
  • Pages: Displays links to your site's pages.
  • RSS: Displays a selected number of items from an RSS feed.
  • Recent Comments: Displays recent comments made on any of your posts or pages.
  • Recent Posts: Displays a list of up to 15 recent posts. You can specify a title for the grouping and set the number of posts you wish to show.
  • Search: Displays a Search box to allow visitors to enter text to search your blog.
  • Sidebar Login: Displays a login box and other attributes the Sidebar Login plugin makes available.
  • Tag Cloud: Reflects the relative number of your site's 45 most frequently used tags. Visitors can click a tag to see the associated posts.
  • Text: Allows you to enter plain text, HTML, or Javascript into a titled text box.

Adding a widget

  1. Click the Appearance section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click Widgets.
  3. Drag and drop into the Sidebar area the widget you wish to use.
    • If you're using a theme that supports more than one sidebar, click the [Arrow] to the right of the appropriate sidebar to expand its contents.
  4. Customize any of the settings and click the [Save] button.

Removing a widget

  1. Click the Appearance section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click Widgets.
  3. If you're using a theme that supports more than one sidebar, click the [Arrow] to the right of the appropriate sidebar to expand its contents.
  4. Drag the widget you wish to remove to either the "Available Widgets" or "Inactive Widgets" sections.
    • Placing widgets into the "Inactive Widgets" section will remove the widget from the sidebar, but retain your custom settings for that widget.

Editing your profile

By editing your profile you can:

  • Change your first name, last name, nickname
  • Select which of your names (e.g., your nickname) you wish to display when posting a blog entry or leaving a comment
  • Disable the formatting toolbar when adding content
  • Choose either a blue or gray color theme for the Site Admin screen

To make these changes:

  1. Click your name in the upper-right corner in the Site Admin screen. It should display as "Howdy, [Your name]."
  2. Click the "Your Profile" link from the drop-down menu.
  3. Adjust the settings to your liking.
  4. Click the [Save Changes] button.

Adding users and assigning roles

With WordPress you can allow other Lafayette users to add content to your site. The available roles are:

  • Administrator: has access to all the administration features
  • Editor: can publish posts, manage posts, manage other people's posts, etc.
  • Author: can publish and manage their own posts
  • Contributor: can write and manage their posts but not publish posts
  • Subscriber: can make comments on posts when commenting is limited to registered users of a site

Adding users

  1. Click the User section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click Add User.
  3. Beside the "Username" field Enter the person's Lafayette Lafayette NetID (e.g., shakespw and NOT shakepw@lafayette.edu).
  4. Select the appropriate role from the "Role" drop-down menu.
  5. Click the [Add User] button.

Removing users and reassigning content

There are times when you need to remove a user from your website and re-assign their content to someone else. WordPress allows you to do both of these actions.

Removing Users

  1. Click the User section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click "All Users".
  3. A list of users appears. Click the checkboxes next to the users you want to remove.
  4. Choose "Remove" from the [Bulk Actions] dropdown menu. Click the [Apply] button.
  5. A screen will load stating "You have specified these users for removal:" and a list of the user(s) you want to remove. Click the [Confirm Removal] button.

Reassigning Content For Posts

  1. Click the Posts section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click "All Posts".
  3. Find a post by the author whose content you wish to reassign and click the link for the author's username.
  4. A new view loads showing just that author's posts.

  5. If you are re-assigning a single post, click the check box next to that post. If you are reassigning all of the posts, click the check box next to the "Title" header directly beneath the "Bulk Actions" dropdown menu. This selects all of the posts listed on the page.
  6. Choose "Edit" from the [Bulk Actions] dropdown menu and click the [Apply] button.
  7. The "Bulk Edit" screen loads. Look for the "Author" dropdown menu and change it from the current author to the one you'd like to own the posts. Click the [Apply] button to make the change.

Reassigning Content For Pages

  1. Click the Pages section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click "All Pages".
  3. Find a page by the author whose content you wish to reassign and click the link for the author's username.
  4. A new view loads showing just that author's posts.

  5. If you are re-assigning a single page, click the check box next to that page. If you are reassigning all of the pages, click the check box next to the "Title" header directly beneath the "Bulk Actions" dropdown menu. This selects all of the posts listed in the page index.
  6. Choose "Edit" from the [Bulk Actions] dropdown menu and click the [Apply] button.
  7. The "Bulk Edit" screen loads. Look for the "Author" dropdown menu and change it from the current author to the one you'd like to own the posts. Click the [Apply] button to make the change.

Enabling privacy settings

WordPress allows you to set different privacy or access levels to your site. These different privacy levels include making your site available to anyone including search engines, to anyone excluding search engines, to other Lafayette WordPress users, to site subscribers, or to site administrators.

  1. Click the Settings section title to expand the available options.
  2. Click Reading.
  3. Select the level of privacy you wish to use. The site settings are fairly self explanatory, but the "I would like my blog to be visible only to administrators" settings is the most restrictive privacy level available. This will limit access to only those listed as administrators of your site.
  4. Click the [Save Changes] button