Understanding WordPress plugins
Video: Understanding WordPress pluginsAlthough WordPress is very powerful right out of the box, there is a rich landscape of plug-ins that extends its capabilities tremendously. A WordPress plug-in is very similar to a Dreamweaver extension except you don't use the Extension Manager as you do in Dreamweaver, we use the Dashboard. So let's switch over to WordPress and go to the category on the left called Plugins. Let's open that up so we can see all the Plugins that are currently installed. WordPress comes with two extensions or Plugins preinstalled: Hello Dolly, which is just kind of a fun thing that you can implement on your own WordPress site if you like, and Akismet.
- Working with web fonts
- Styling a header
- Adding header functions
- Setting up content columns
- Changing the main content
- Managing the content code
- Customizing the sidebar
- Styling search
- Working with search text
- Integrating the footer
- Next steps
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In this course, author Joseph Lowery shows how to combine the utility of WordPress and the power of Adobe Dreamweaver to transition existing websites to the WordPress platform. The course demonstrates how to create new blog posts and pages, customize WordPress themes, and extend WordPress editable pages from within Dreamweaver. It also covers how to add Spry elements, add and customize plugins, and enhance WordPress-stored content with Dreamweaver's dynamic pages. Plus, a chapter on responsive design shows how you can adapt your layouts for tablets and mobile devices.
- Using the Dynamically-Related Files feature in Dreamweaver to design WordPress pages
- Applying WordPress themes
- Customizing themes
- Adding Spry widgets
- Adding WordPress dynamic data
- Populating the WordPress database
- Publishing a WordPress site
Understanding WordPress plugins
Although WordPress is very powerful right out of the box, there is a rich landscape of plug-ins that extends its capabilities tremendously. A WordPress plug-in is very similar to a Dreamweaver extension except you don't use the Extension Manager as you do in Dreamweaver, we use the Dashboard. So let's switch over to WordPress and go to the category on the left called Plugins. Let's open that up so we can see all the Plugins that are currently installed. WordPress comes with two extensions or Plugins preinstalled: Hello Dolly, which is just kind of a fun thing that you can implement on your own WordPress site if you like, and Akismet.
Now Akismet is a very powerful plug-in that performs a totally necessary service. A lot of times with blogs, you'll get comments that include a ton of spam. Akismet can greatly reduce that spam for you. So let's activate Akismet. I'll click Activate here, and I want to point out that once you activate any plug-in the options change below its name, now it says Deactivate & Edit Settings instead of Activate. You'll notice up here we have two messages, one saying Plugin is activated, but we have to enter here Akismet API key for it to work.
So let's click that link, and that will take you to a new screen, that's just installed with the Akismet activation, and that allows us to enter an API key. The Akismet API key is available for anywhere from free to relatively low-cost. Visit akismet.com/wordpress to get yours. Now I already have an API key, so I'm going to paste it in here, and I'm going to go ahead and click my options here to Auto-delete spam that is submitted on post more than a month old, that's good.
Showing the number of comments, I'm not so keen on having that there, so I'm not going to choose that option, and then I'll click the Update options button. I get a message indicating that the key has been verified, and I want to point out as we go, scroll down a little bit, that there's some more information here about the Akismet servers. There are four available, and they're constantly updating these. So let me point out also under the Plugins section, there is now an Akismet Configuration, which will take you to this page here. Other plug-ins will put their own panels under Settings or list them separately.
Now that's a nice free plug-in that I can recommend you implement very, very quickly on your own site or on your own client-site, but there are also other plug-ins that you can add, and the way that you get to them is by going to the Add New option under Plugins. As with the themes there are numerous ways that you can search for it. We're going to look for an Event Calendar. So I'm just going to go ahead and enter a Search for those two terms, event calendar. Now I click Search Plugins. As you can see, there's a good number of event calendars available.
Let's scroll down a little bit, and I'll show you the one that I have used successfully before. It's this one that just lists as Events Calendar and the author is Luke Howell. So let's go ahead and click Install Now. I'll get a request for a confirmation, I'll click OK. WordPress quickly unpacks it and installs it, and all you need to do is to activate it. Now that the events calendar has been activated, you see a listing for right here, as well as some coding information, including how to put it on your page very simply. So if you want to put a large calendar on the page, you put in this bit of code, that's in square brackets, right here.
This is called a short code in WordPress Jargon. So now that I have that selected, I'm going to go ahead and copy it, and let's go over, and we'll create a new page, and we'll call this Events Calendar, and here in the body I'm just going to paste in that bit of short code I copied. So in square brackets, it's events-calendar-large. Let's use the Events Template and then click Publish. Once it's published, let's take a look at the page, and here you can see the large calendar that's been added.
The calendar is showing the current month when I'm recording this lesson, and the current day has this light blue background here. Now you can see it's very functional. If I click on the month, it switches to the next month, then I can go back and forth to future and previous months. And if there were any events, you would see them listed right on the calendar. So how do you add an event? Well, in this case, let's go back to the Dashboard, and I'll scroll down, and as you see, as I mentioned before, some plug-ins add their own listing and here's one for Events Calendar.
So we'll click on Events Calendar, and then below the calendar itself is the Add Event screen. Let's go ahead and put in an event, I'm going to call this one Art Conference, and the Location will be Roux Academy. We'll leave the Link out blank for now, and let's put in a short Description, call this An excellent conference for emerging and thriving artists. Now let's set the Start Date, notice the year format that you'd have to follow. I'll put in a Date in upcoming October, and we'll do a Start Time, let's start it at 9 in the morning, and we'll put in an End Date the four days later.
And an End Time, now I want to enter in 6:30, but because this is using the 24-hour clock, we'll need to put in 18:30 instead, and everything else we can leave as it is. As you can see, we could, if we wanted to create a separate Post for the Event, but we don't have to do that. And let's click Add Event. And now you can see on the calendar within the Dashboard, my conference is already listed. Let's go ahead and take a look at that on the page. So I'll go to All Pages, and here's my Events Calendar. Let's take a look at it.
So I'll scroll down, and let's go to October, and there is the Art Conference. If I hover over it, I get more of my description, all the fields that I have entered, including the Starting Date, Starting Time, End Date, and End Time. Obviously, you could put a lot more information in here, and your clients can use this to update their events very, very easily. It's really a very powerful thing. Without a doubt, the popularity and usefulness of WordPress is greatly broadened by its extensibility via plug-ins.
Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Dreamweaver and WordPress: Core Concepts .
Here are the FAQs that matched your search "" :
- Q: While trying to set up a Dreamweaver site, an error occurs that says Dreamweaver cannot resolve the dynamic files because the site definition is incorrect. What is causing this? This is using WAMP on a Windows 7 computer.
- A: When setting up the site in Dreamweaver and creating a local testing server, make sure to point it to the folder in c:/wamp/www/ that is being used for the site. If using the same naming convention as shown in the videos, the server folder should be pointing to C:\wamp\www\explore_ca\ and the Web URL field should read http://localhost/explore_ca/, like the picture here:
- Q: How do I set the password for WAMP Server 2?
- A: The WAMP server does not include a password for MySQL when first installed. You’ll need to add a password by modifying a configuration text file and set up a password in the MySQL server.
Setting a password on the MySQL server:
- From the Start menu, enter CMD to open the command line interface.
- Switch to the bin directory of your MySQL folder, installed by WAMP. For version 5.1.36 of MySQL, for example, enter cd c:\wamp\bin\mysql\mysql5.1.36\bin
Navigate within the WAMP folder installed on your system to find the proper path.
- Enter the following: mysql -u root
- The command line for MySQL will open with a mysql prompt like this: mysql>
- Enter the following:
SET PASSWORD for 'root'@'localhost' = PASSWORD('yourPassword');
- replace 'yourPassword' with the password you want to use.
- Close the CMD window.
After you change the MySQL password you will have to edit the config.inc.php file. Here's how:
- In Windows Explorer, navigate to C:\wamp\apps\phpmyadmin18.104.22.168 (version number may vary).
- Open the file config.inc.php in Dreamweaver or another text editor.
- Locate the following line:
$cfg['Servers'][$i]['password'] = '';
- Enter your password between the quotes; make sure the password is the same as the one you set in the MySQL server.
- Save the file.
- From the system tray icon for WAMP, choose Restart All Services.
- To test, choose phpMyAdmin from the WAMP system tray icon.
- Q: After creating a template following the instructions in the Chapter 5 video “Creating a page template in Dreamweaver,” I am unable to select the template. In the video, the instructor’s page shows a heading of Template, with a dropdown menu, but my version shows only a dropdown labeled “Attributes,” and the newly created template does not appear. What is causing this issue?
- A: This seems to be a bug in WordPress that occurs occasionally. Although a cause has yet to be determined, a possible workaround to get the Template option to appear is switch themes. Switching to the default theme and then back again to Explore_California should reveal the Template option.
- Q: While following along with the instructions in the "Setting up a MySQL password for Windows," I encountered this error: MySQL said: "#1045 – Access denied for user ‘root’@’localhost’ (using password: NO)" What is causing this error?
- A: This error occurs when trying to enter the MySQL monitor with a password for a user who has not set a password yet. In that case, removing the “-u root” part should resolve the problem.
- Q: While following along to the chapter 2 movie "Using dynamically related files," I get an error message that reads: "Dynamically-related files could not be resolved because the site definition is not correct for this server." What is causing this error?
- A: This is a known issue with Dreamweaver, and relates to the permalink settings in the WordPress installation. If the permalink setting is set to something other than the default, like “Month & Name,” for example, Dreamweaver is unable to resolve the dynamic files, and the described error will occur. Changing the permalink setting back to Default will clear the error.
- Q: I am bit confused as to my need to use MAMP with a WordPress site in Dreamweaver. If I am going to use a separate commercial hosting site as my server, do I still need to use MAMP in my WordPress site?
- A: MAMP is installed to provide an easy-to-use development server capable of handling MySQL and PHP on your local computer. It's also possible to set up MySQL and PHP servers separately, but it requires many more steps and is not as "user-friendly" as the described process. Your hosting server will have MySQL/PHP enabled on their servers for the remote live setup, but that doesn't have anything to do with developing and testing pages on your own computer.
- Q: I can't find the file named commevents.php in the exercise files. I need it to set up an online database in the last chapter.
- A: This is a file you create yourself when you first connect to a database. Refer to the "Adding WordPress dynamic data to pages" video in Chapter 7. commevents.php should appear in the Connections folder once you establish a connection.
- Q: In "Setting up a MySQL password for Windows", I'm getting the error "#1045 - Access denied for user 'root'@'localhost'" when testing the phpMyAdmin.
If I try and re-do the steps, I get the following error "ERROR 1044 (42000): Access denied for user ''@'localhost' to database mysql'" when I try to change the password.
- A: This seems to be happening because of the combination of Windows 7 and a
new version of WampServer 2.1. Here's another approach that should work
for the new combination.
Follow these steps instead of the ones using the CMD prompt. (As a bonus, they're much easier!)
- Left-click on the WampServer icon tray.
- Choose phpMyAdmin.
- When the phpMyAdmin page opens in your browser, click the Privileges tab found after the Engines tab.
- Locate the line in the User table with "root - localhost - No..." (probably the last one).
- Click the Edit icon (the final item in the row).
- Scroll down to the Change Password section.
- Select Password and enter your password twice. (If you're following the exercises, enter root).
- Click Go in the lower-right corner.
- Q: I want to setup the practice files and site on my localhost, as described; however, I already have my current WordPress site (under development) running on my localhost. How do I run two WordPress sites on my localhost?
- A: You can easily do it by setting up another site in Dreamweaver. Just copy the WordPress files to that folder as described and establish a new database via phpMyAdmin. You can set up as many WordPress sites as you need to. The author has upwards of 80 on his system, all for different clients.
- Q: This course was updated on 10/23/2012. What changed?
- A: The course was thoroughly revised and uses the most current versions of both programs. We added chapters on responsive design and creating a custom administration panel in WordPress, new movies about concepts and taxonomies, and extended the Spry chapter to include jQuery, among other changes. New movies are indicated by the NEW tag next to the movie name.
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