Start your free trial now, and begin learning software, business and creative skills—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.

Start Your Free Trial Now

Working with WordPress functions


Dreamweaver and WordPress: Core Concepts

with Joseph Lowery

Video: Working with WordPress functions

The initial lesson in this chapter demonstrated how you could customize the dashboard. In this lesson we'll extend the administrative customization by adding an additional sidebar widget area which will be used for inserting an advertisement, one that the client can manage without designer intervention. Customizations like these empower the client, while simultaneously freeing up the designer. Now because we are going to be modifying the sidebar code, we'll need to copy sidebar.php from the parent theme folder into the child theme folder.
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 4m 7s
    1. Welcome
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 54s
    3. A word about updates
      1m 15s
  2. 15m 28s
    1. Overview
      1m 51s
    2. Creating the database and the initial site
      3m 45s
    3. Configuring WordPress
      5m 54s
    4. Establishing a Dreamweaver site
      3m 58s
  3. 20m 18s
    1. Accessing dynamically related files
      4m 12s
    2. Filtering files
      4m 20s
    3. Following links
      4m 15s
    4. Employing Live Code
      2m 54s
    5. Enabling site-specific code hinting
      4m 37s
  4. 21m 8s
    1. Adding blog posts
      4m 55s
    2. Editing blog posts
      3m 20s
    3. Adding new pages
      2m 59s
    4. Including images
      6m 59s
    5. Adding videos to posts
      2m 55s
  5. 18m 12s
    1. Understanding WordPress structure
      3m 52s
    2. Activating a theme
      7m 21s
    3. Setting up a child theme
      6m 59s
  6. 1h 29m
    1. Updating the page structure and the background
      12m 53s
    2. Working with web fonts
      4m 3s
    3. Styling a header
      11m 48s
    4. Adding header functions
      7m 40s
    5. Setting up content columns
      10m 9s
    6. Changing the main content
      5m 17s
    7. Managing the content code
      4m 48s
    8. Customizing the sidebar
      10m 32s
    9. Styling search
      7m 8s
    10. Working with search text
      5m 49s
    11. Integrating the footer
      9m 40s
  7. 27m 18s
    1. Setting up media queries
      6m 12s
    2. Customizing for tablets
      12m 19s
    3. Building smartphone layouts
      8m 47s
  8. 23m 28s
    1. Working with categories and posts
      5m 31s
    2. Developing category-driven pages
      11m 22s
    3. Changing headers by category
      6m 35s
  9. 36m 32s
    1. Adding Spry accordion panels
      17m 44s
    2. Working with Spry form validation
      11m 56s
    3. Integrating jQuery functionality
      6m 52s
  10. 11m 7s
    1. Understanding WordPress plugins
      6m 20s
    2. Styling plugin output
      4m 47s
  11. 25m 44s
    1. Customizing the Dashboard
      6m 52s
    2. Working with WordPress functions
      8m 7s
    3. Including administration interactivity
      10m 45s
  12. 13m 10s
    1. Setting up the data in WordPress
      2m 17s
    2. Adding dynamic data from WordPress to your web pages
      10m 53s
  13. 11m 38s
    1. Modifying general settings
      4m 12s
    2. Setting up users
      3m 11s
    3. Restricting access to specific WordPress pages
      4m 15s
  14. 26m 38s
    1. Exporting and importing WordPress files
      7m 9s
    2. Backing up and restoring the database
      8m 10s
    3. Transferring files
      6m 3s
    4. Testing and fine-tuning
      5m 16s
  15. 18s
    1. Next steps

please wait ...
Watch the Online Video Course Dreamweaver and WordPress: Core Concepts
5h 44m Intermediate May 27, 2010 Updated Oct 23, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

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.

Topics include:
  • 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
Dreamweaver WordPress
Joseph Lowery

Working with WordPress functions

The initial lesson in this chapter demonstrated how you could customize the dashboard. In this lesson we'll extend the administrative customization by adding an additional sidebar widget area which will be used for inserting an advertisement, one that the client can manage without designer intervention. Customizations like these empower the client, while simultaneously freeing up the designer. Now because we are going to be modifying the sidebar code, we'll need to copy sidebar.php from the parent theme folder into the child theme folder.

So I am going to expand my Files panel and then scroll up just a little bit expand custom, select sidebar.php and copy it, close up custom, select roux, and paste that in. I'll Collapse my file. Now I am going to need to close down index.php and reopen it in order for it to recognize the new sidebar.php file. So I'll locate that in my blog site here, here is index.php, and let's discover the dynamic files, and then set it into Live view and use the Custom Filter to hone in on just the files we want work with, which in this case are style.css, sidebar.php, and functions.php, click OK.

And the next up is to transfer some assets from the exercise file into the images folder for our child theme. So I am going to finder, so I'm already pointing to folder 10_02 which is within the Chapter 10 exercise files, and I want to pick up ad_box.gif, which as you can see, is just kind of a placeholder and then also sharp_ad.png, which is an ad that we are actually going to use. So I'll select both of those and copy the files, and now let's head over to htdocs/roux_academy, and as we've done before drill down into blog/wp_content/themes/roux and then _images.

And once we're there, Command+V will paste in those images. Now we are ready to bring the code for the new sidebar widget into the sidebar.php file. To save time, I have stored both the HTML/PHP code as well as the associated CSS in the exercise files. So from Dreamweaver, let's go to File > Open and then navigate to our Desktop/Exercise Files folder, open up Chapter 10/10_02, and we want to get the advert_widget_code.php file.

So let's go into Code view, and this first group of code that you see up here starting with the div acts as a placeholder for our widget functionality. The initial div tag as an in-line style which sets the background to transparent and uses a specific image that ad_box.gif as a placeholder. Now within that div wrapper is a PHP if function that checks to see if the dynamic_sidebar function exists, and if there is also a dynamic_sidebar named home_ad_1; otherwise, it puts in another bit of code.

So let's grab that code block, and we'll head over to sidebar.php, let's go into Code view here, and I want to put my new sidebar_widget below the existing sidebar widget area, and I want to put my new sidebar widget below the existing one, so I'm going to put it right before the closing div here, and that should make the advertisement fall right below all of the other widgets, no matter how many are defined. Our advertisement is going to needs some styling, so let's go grab that bit of CSS that I have in the advert code widget, and as you can see, this just targets the class advert and sets up a specific width and height as well as some padding and margin.

So I am going to copy that and go over to our roux stylesheet, which is the first one listed here. We'll go down right in front of the phone declarations that we've been working on and paste that in. Okay, two of the constituent parts are in place. Time to bring in the real engine, the function code. Again, I've put the necessary code in an exercise file. So I'll go to File > Open, and we'll head on over to our Exercise Files/Chapter 10/10_02 and choose the widget_function_code.php file.

Now this is the code for registering a new sidebar, and it specifies the Home Ad Space 1, so let me go ahead and copy this and back to index.php, and we'll go to our roux functions file, and I am going to put it pretty much right at the top but within my PHP code block. So I'll make a little room and paste it right in. As you can see, working with functions is more than just adding a code snippet to the functions.php page. Now let's save all the related files by going to File > Save All Related Files and then we go into Design view, and I'll Refresh the page.

And once that's down, let me scroll down, and there below the last widget, which is Categories, you see a placeholder for an advertisement. Now if you squint really hard, you can see the word Advertisement written in very small type at the top there. Okay, time to move to the WordPress side of the workflow where we'll see our new widget area and put it to use. So now I am going to go to Appearance > Widgets, and where there was just Sidebar Widgets before-- and let me expand that so you see the ones that we have in place--there is now a new Home Ad Space 1 widget.

I could drag any of the existing widgets into my ad area, but none of them do exactly what I want, which is to insert an image. Luckily there's one that does, and it's very easy to set up and use. Let's go get it by going to Plugins > Add New and search for image widget. The one at the very top of the list is what we are looking for. So let's click Install Now, click OK to confirm, and after WordPress has installed it, activate the plug-in.

Now when we head back to Appearance Widgets, I have an image widget here, and I can go on drag it and drop it right into my Home Ad Space. The parameters will open up here, and we want to leave the Title blank, add a new image, and I am going to select the files from my computer, and we can get this from either place. I am going to ahead and just get it from my htdocs/_images folder where I copied in the sharp_ad.png file, click Open, and there it is.

Now we'll scroll down, leave everything else as is, and click Insert Into Widget. Now one little gotcha, this widget tends to add the file name as the default Title. You want to remove that because we don't need to have a Title for an advertisement. There is lots of other features here, we could put in a Caption, again probably not necessary. You could link to the advertiser, an excellent idea, and you probably want to open that into a new window when you do. You can see the specific Width and Height that's given and the Alignment should be at center.

Let's sharpen up the Alternate Text, no pun intended, just happens sometimes, so I'll make this Sharp Art Supplies. All right, now let's click Save, and let's see how that new ad is looking. So I'll go back and visit the site, click Refresh and scroll down, and there is our advertisement. Now that we have our single ad system in place which gives total control to the client, we are ready to take it to the next level and allow the client to interactively add multiple advertisements.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Dreamweaver and WordPress: Core Concepts .

Expand all | Collapse all
please wait ...
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:

  1. From the Start menu, enter CMD to open the command line interface.
  2. 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.
  3.  Enter the following: mysql -u root
  4. The command line for MySQL will open with a mysql prompt like this: mysql>
  5. Enter the following:
    SET PASSWORD for 'root'@'localhost' = PASSWORD('yourPassword');
    - replace 'yourPassword' with the password you want to use. 
  6. Close the CMD window.
Setting the password in the phpMyAdmin config file:
After you change the MySQL password you will have to edit the file. Here's how:
  1. In Windows Explorer, navigate to C:\wamp\apps\phpmyadmin3.2.0.1 (version number may vary). 
  2. Open the file in Dreamweaver or another text editor.
  3. Locate the following line:
    $cfg['Servers'][$i]['password'] = '';
  4. Enter your password between the quotes; make sure the password is the same as the one you set in the MySQL server.
  5. Save the file.
  6. From the system tray icon for WAMP, choose Restart All Services.
  7. 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!)
  1. Left-click on the WampServer icon tray.
  2. Choose phpMyAdmin.
  3. When the phpMyAdmin page opens in your browser, click the Privileges tab found after the Engines tab.
  4. Locate the line in the User table with "root - localhost - No..." (probably the last one).
  5. Click the Edit icon (the final item in the row).
  6. Scroll down to the Change Password section.
  7. Select Password and enter your password twice. (If you're following the exercises, enter root).
  8. Click Go in the lower-right corner.
Now follow the rest of the steps in "Setting up a MySQL password for Windows" video, starting at the 4:13 mark. This is where you use a text editor to make a change in the PHP file and restart all WampServer services when you're done.
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.
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.

Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now Already a member? Log in

* Estimated file size

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.

Mark all as unwatched Cancel


You have completed Dreamweaver and WordPress: Core Concepts.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


Upgrade to View Courses Offline


With our new Desktop App, Annual Premium Members can download courses for Internet-free viewing.

Upgrade Now

After upgrading, download Desktop App Here.

Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Start your FREE 10-day trial

Begin learning software, business, and creative skills—anytime,
anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts. provides
Unlimited access to over 4,000 courses—more than 100,000 video tutorials
Expert-led instruction
On-the-go learning. Watch from your computer, tablet, or mobile device. Switch back and forth as you choose.
Start Your FREE Trial Now

A trusted source for knowledge.


We provide training to more than 4 million people, and our members tell us that helps them stay ahead of software updates, pick up brand-new skills, switch careers, land promotions, and explore new hobbies. What can we help you do?

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.