Speed Up WordPress 2.6 with Google Gears

Yesterday I spend lots of time playing with new WordPress 2.6 and one feature I liked most is support for Google Gears which really speeds up admin panel tasks.

I feel everyone must use this feature which once enabled transparently speed up your wordpress dashboard, so here are step-by-step instructions…

1. Log into wordpress admin panel. Click on Turbo link in top right corner.

Wordpress Dashboard Turbo Link

2. If you have no Google Gears preinstalled on your machine, you will be asked to install it first. Just go through simple and quick Google gear download & install process. At the end you need to restart your browser and again repeat step 1, which will bring this time “Enable Gears” option.

Wordpress and Google Gears - 2

3. Clicking on Enable will show a confirmation pop-up box. Just mark the checkbox and select Allow option.

Wordpress and Google Gears - 3

4. Now wordpress will start downloading some files. It may take few minutes if you have slow Internet connection but this is one-time process only.

Wordpress and Google Gears - 4

5. Once please wait message disappears, click on close button. Thats it!

If you have fast internet connection you may not feel much difference but users will slow internet option will immediately notice speed improvement while performing admin panel tasks. Please note that this will not at all improve your blogs performance at front-end.

As of now this works only with Firefox 2 & 3 and Internet Explorer 6 & 7. Support for Safari 3 is not yet available.

Google Gears works with browsers so if you use Firefox and Internet Explorer on same machine, you have to Enable Gears separately for both browsers. Also if you use two or more machines for daily blogging tasks you have to Enable Gears separately on them.

Link: Download Google Gears

Related: Take Google Reader offline with Google Gears

WordPress 2.6 final is released

A month ahead of its schedule, WordPress 2.6 is released now. You can download it from wordpress.org.

Below are key-features which I will be exploring today…

  • Post Revisions: Wiki-like tracking of edits. Good for multi-author blogs.
  • Press This bookmarklet for quick posting from anywhere on the web
  • Shift Gears: Faster Admin panel
  • Theme Previews: Good for theme developers
  • Word count display below Save and Publish buttons
  • Ability to change the location of the wp-config.php file for better security.
  • Multiple plugin activate/deactivate at once
  • Improved galleries with drag-and-drop sorting

Coincidentally Theme Preview feature is arriving at the time when I am in the middle of developing a new theme for this blog.

Anyway will post more about it once I use this new version. In meantime, enjoy video tour…

Link: WordPress 2.6

Force Firefox To Display Your Full Feeds [WordPress Hack]

There is a problem (or feature) in Firefox. For wordpress blogs and few other feeds it always show partial content making it hard to judge for a wannabe subscriber whether your are displaying full feed or partial feed.

Many subscribers just hate partial feeds and most of them are unaware of this default firefox behavior which I guess can’t be changed via some about:config hack.

As a blogger if you care about your subscriber count, you can use following hack to force firefox to display your original full feed.

RSS 2.0 Feeds (default wordpress format)

1. Open file.

<wordpress-root>/wp-includes/feed-rss2.php

2. Find following lines

<?php if (get_option('rss_use_excerpt')) : ?>
<description><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss() ?>]]></description>
<?php else : ?>
<description><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss() ?>]]></description>

3. Now comment out last line. We can remove it too but commenting is safe option. So it will look like…

<?php if (get_option('rss_use_excerpt')) : ?>
          <description><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss() ?>]]></description>
<?php else : ?>
          <!- -
            <description><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss() ?>]]></description>
          - ->

4. Save file. That’s it.

ATOM Feeds

1. Open file.

<wordpress-root>/wp-includes/feed-atom.php

2. Find following line

<summary type="<?php html_type_rss(); ?>"><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss(); ?>]]></summary>

3. Now comment out last line. We can remove it too but commenting is safe option. So it will look like…

<!- -
<summary type="<?php html_type_rss(); ?>"><![CDATA[<?php the_excerpt_rss(); ?>]]></summary>
- ->

4. Save file. That’s it.

RSS 0.92 Feeds

Fix is not needed.

RDF Format

1. Open file.

<wordpress-root>/wp-includes/feed-rdf.php

2. Find following lines

<?php if (get_option('rss_use_excerpt')) : ?>
<description><?php the_excerpt_rss() ?></description>
<?php else : ?>
<description><?php the_content_rss('', 0, '', get_option('rss_excerpt_length'), 2) ?></description>

3. Now comment out last line. We can remove it too but commenting is safe option. So it will look like…

<?php if (get_option('rss_use_excerpt')) : ?>
<description><?php the_excerpt_rss() ?></description>
<?php else : ?>
<!- -
<description><?php the_content_rss('', 0, '', get_option('rss_excerpt_length'), 2) ?></description>
- ->

4. Save file. That’s it.

What is the problem? (Technical Details)

RSS 2.0 &  ATOM  have exclusive support for summaries. In RSS 2.0, actual content is placed in content element while summaries can be optionally put in description element. Similarly in ATOM, actual content is placed in content element while summaries can be optionally put in summary element.

Now other browsers displays data from content but Firefox uses data in description (for RSS 2.0) or summary (for Atom). These element are optional so by commenting them we force firefox to use data in content field. As both description & summary are optional element in their formats at item/post levels, feeds are still valid. In fact, blogger.com by default don’t use these elements so this problem does not arise there.

Actually this can be seen as a feature too as you can see entire feed without much scrolling. But firefox should somehow tell a user that full feeds area also available whenever applicable.

As a firefox user I am still looking for a way to solve this in firefox as I prefer full feeds all the times.

For FeedBurner users…

Above modifications are reflected instantly at wordpress end but if you are using FeedBurner to burn your feeds, you can ping FeedBurner here and ask them to clear their cache.

Show AdSense Ads After First or Every Post in WordPress Blogs [How-To]

Long time back, I wrote about showing Google AdSense ads after each post in blogger.com blogs. Now I am doing exactly opposite by limiting ads to only first post on home, archives, categories pages. Johnson wants to know how I am doing it!

To do this, You need to edit famous wordpress loop. Such a loop can be found in your current wordpress theme’s index.php. There may be other files present in your theme directory which uses loop like archives.php. They may need to be updated as well.

Listed below are steps to edit loop in index.php file. Similar steps can be performed for other files too, if required.

1. Go to WordPress Dashboard >>Design >> Theme Editor.

2. Click on index.php or Main Index Template file. It will open in Theme Editor on left.

3. Find a line:

<?php while (have_posts()) : the_post(); ?>

4. Add before it:

 <?php $adcount = 1; ?>

5. So final code will look:

<?php $adcount = 1; ?>

<?php while (have_posts()) : the_post(); ?>

6. Now find:

<?php endwhile; ?>

7. Add before it:

<?php $adcount++; ?>

8. So final code will look:

<?php $adcount++; ?>

<?php endwhile; ?>

9. Now inside loop, i.e. after “while” line but before “endwhile” line put your AdSense codes. Exact location depend on your choice between ads before post, ads after post, etc. Important thing is you have to put your AdSense code in a if-block. below is an example…

<?php if ($adcount == 1) : ?>

<!-- Put Your AdSense Code here --> 

<?php endif; $adcount++; ?>

That’s it. Save changes and check if it works.

Variations…

1. If you want to put ads after first two post…

In step 9 code, Change $adcount == 1 to $adcount == 2

2. If you want to put ads after first three post…

In step 9 code, Change $adcount == 1 to $adcount == 3

3. If you want to put ads after each post…

In step 9 code, Change $adcount == 1 to $adcount == 3. Yes this is same like above. Because AdSense only allows maximum three ad-units on a a single page. This way you avoid blank space created after each post when you directly put AdSense code after each post.

If you need any help, or stuck at some point, feel free to contact via comment.

(Credit: Based on Joe Hayes post.)

Join Kontera in July to Get 100% Revenue Share

Kontera Sign UpKontera ad-network announced an exciting deal for new publishers, bloggers. If you join Kontera in this July month, you will get 100% revenue share for rest of the month. Its double of 50% revenue share that Kontera gives normally.

Important Note…

In order to get 100% revenue share, you must sign-up for Kontera using this promotional page. If you sign-up from main page you will loose 50% extra revenue.

In case you are hearing about Kontera for the first time, it is a type of ad-network which can be used with Google Adsense and many other advertising network.

They have many plugins which nicely integrates with existing platforms like blogger, wordpress, drupal, etc. Details about them are here. Thanks Vered for tip! :-)

Link: Signup for Kontera

Windows Live Writer – Best Desktop Blogging Client For Offline Blogging

A desktop blogging client is a software which help you write blog posts from your desktop without logging into your blogs admin section. They normally have better WYSIWYG editors than those online post editors among  and support blogging to multiple blogs. Also most desktop blogging client works offline so that you can write posts anytime from anywhere and you will need Internet connection only at the time of posting. Sounds great piece of software, isn’t it?

Like other useful software categories, you have many desktop blogging client to choose from. But on Windows, Microsoft’s Windows Live Writer dominates by its largest list of features and attractive price tag of $FREE.

image

Windows Live Writer is by any standard the best desktop blogging client ever made, and its much better than most paid alternatives. I paid $20 for ecto on Mac but its not even close to Windows Live Writer.

Anyway for Windows user, below is list of attractive features Windows Live Writer offers…

  • Supports Most Blog Providers: WordPress, Blogger, LiveJournal, Windows Live Spaces, TypePad, Movable Type, and many others. Automatic blog configuration makes setting-up blog easy.
  • Post to multiple blogs: Themes are automatically detected for each blog. Switching between blogs requires just two clicks.
  • WYSIWYG Editor: While copy-pasting something from web, formatting is preserved. Also the editor generates valid markups by auto-removing inline CSS most web-pages add unnecessarily.
  • Spell checker: Inline spell checker helps you polish your text. Remove common spelling mistakes and remember your spelling suggestions.
  • Easy Hyperlinking: You can hyperlink to old posts easily. Also set link to open in new window or mark it NOFOLLOW.
  • Category & Tags: if your blog supports category and/or tags like WordPress, they will be integrated automatically. Support for add/edit is there, also preserve hierarchy if any.
  • Photo Publishing: Add photos to your blog post without uploading them first. Supports advance features like image resizing, transitional effects, shadowing, bordering, etc. Also provide field for ALT attribute value, good for SEO.
  • Web Preview Feature: One step ahead, it shows how your blog post will look on final website.
  • Drafts & Scheduling: You can store unlimited drafts locally or post them to server. You can also set a blog post to publish later or post old draft with current timestamp.
  • Maps & Direction: Built-in integration with Live Maps. Adding Google maps is also easy.
  • Plugins: Using plug-ins you can add more rich content to your blog like flickr photos, emoticons and quotes of the day. I heavily use Code Snippet plugin to publish source code with formatting.

So if you are seriously into blogging, enjoy Windows Live Writer!

Links: Windows Live Writer (Requires .NET Framework)

(Author’s note: This week I am planning to write more on making blogging task easier. If you have any question about anything related to blogging, please ask via comments below. I will try to answer them all.)

New Kontera Plugins for Making More Money

Kontera recently launched a bunch of plugins to help bloggers from different blogging platforms easily integrate kontera ads and thus make more money alongwith Google Adsense. Yes, Kontera is among very few well-performing ad networks which can be used alongwith Google Adsense. :-)

The new Kontera solutions include:

  • A One-Click Blogger.com widget – All you have to do to get ads on your blog is login to your account and hit the “Kontera it” button.
  • A WordPress plugin enabling quick implementation and customization of the ads on WordPress blogs.
  • The Joomla and Drupal plug-ins providing the users of these open source content management solutions with faster and easier Kontera integration.

I personally prefer adding kontera codes manually to keep my plugin list short but bloggers who are not-so-techie can use suitable plugin from above list.

Thanks Vered for tip… :-)

Links: Join Kontera

Related: How Kontera can be used with Google Adsense?

Devils Workshop Completes 2 Years! Join The Celebration!

Update: Entracard round is closed now. You can still enter for free domain registration & hosting round. All results will be declared on 25th June. Sorry for delay…


skitched-20080612-162620.jpg

Today we are celebrating second anniversary of Devils Workshop. Started as a hobby, over the time this workshop has become my source of living.

Devils workshop owes its success to all of you but there are some people without whom things would have been harder. Below are the names and roles of some special devils.

Payback…

  • Tanmay and Mayank (blog link), moderators and co-owners of Devils Workshop orkut community. They blogged here apart from me. These guys will be receiving 1 year rapidshare premium account sponsored by Tejas Dave, a security expert from India. If you are also interested in joining Devils Workshop as writer check this article.
  • Guarav, Pavan and Praveen will get a link to their blog in blogroll (at the bottom). Please do not confuse this with link-exchange. Guys you do not need to link back to this blog from your blog. These three are chosen for their valuable comments on posts at Devils Workshop. Coincidently these three are also among top 5 commentators here. Rest two are Adi Gosavi who doesn’t own a blog and Johnson who is already there in blogroll.

Now its party time…

  • Entracard 250 Credits: 1 random reader will get 250 entrecard credits. If you use entrecard just post a comment with “I want entrecard credit” in it and you will be counted in for entrecard draw. Draw will be held on 16 June, 12PM, IST. A user will be picked randomly by Anil Wadghule, a ruby gem himself!
  • Free domain and wordpress hosting for two: Self-hosted wordpress is the best way to blog (seriously) but it requires some $$$ for domain and good web-hosting service like dreamhost. So two of our readers will get free domain registration and hosting space from us. Also, if they want they will be provided all the technical support for their wordpress maintenance. I, personally feel this is most exciting offer from us so rather going for random draw, post via comments the very purpose of your blog. Two persons will be selected by Darnell Clayton and Thilak. Submission is open till 16th June. Result will be declared till 20th June as per the convenience of our judges. I am yet to get their approvals and time-slots.
  • Advertise for $1 on 100,000 pages: We run six 125×125 image ad slots in sidebar where each one is priced at $10/month. Now as part of our celebration, two slots will be given for $1 and $2 price for a month (~100,000 page views). Slots are given on first-come-first-serve basis. So rush to advertise on 100,000 pages for just $1. Of course, your site must not include porn, drugs or any sort of illegal content.

If anything is unclear, please ask via comments only. In case, you like to sponsor a gift for our readers, please contact us.

Thank you all once again… :-)

(image credit: eHow)

Clipmarks – Share Content, Not Just Links!

Clipmarks is available as extension for Firefox and Internet Explorer, which lets you capture the specific content on a web page, instead of linking to entire web pages. This is good way of sharing as very often we want to share a small part of a large web page.

There are lots of things you can do with your clips:

  • Save them on Clipmarks.com: Your clips can be saved publicly to share with others, or you can make them private. Either way you’ve got a fully searchable collection of great things you find on the web.
  • Post them directly to your blog: Clipmarks offers direct integration with wordpress, blogger, typepad, live journal and other blogging platforms, enabling you to post anything you clip from a web page directly to your blog. (View Demo)
  • Email them to friends: Straight from any web page you can clip and email something you want friends, family or co-workers to see. (View Demo)
  • Print them: Don’t waste paper or get annoyed trying to copy and paste to a Word document. Use clipmarks to easily print only the parts of the page you want.

How-To Clip:

Check out this short video tutorial on using clipmarks…

If you just can’t get it from above video, here is official tutorial page.

Link: Clipmarks.com | Install

Domain Hacks Tool To Find Del.icio.us Like Domain Names by Xona.com

image One of the most tedious part while starting a website is finding a right & unique domain name. Everybody loves domain name which ends in .com, but for the same reason finding a short and simple domain name becomes a painful task.

Thanks to del.icio.us, a new trend in domain name started! If you haven’t noticed it, .us is country level domain for United States. Similar creative domain name are owned by wordpress founder ma.tt and IndiBlogger team member anw.in. Here .tt is country level domain for Trinidad and Tobago, similarly .in is for India.

Now trying your favorite keywords against 100’s of country level and other top-level domain name can be tedious task. Also most country-level domain can not be registered with famous domain registrars like GoDaddy!

So to take care of all this problems at one place, visit Domain Hacks tool provided by xona.com.

Xona’s Domain hack tool allows you to search your favorite keyword in all top-level domain names, also tries all valid subdomain combinations, gives link to wiki entry of domain name as well as corresponding domain registrar.

Also a list of suggested domain name available, sorted in three categories – Alphabetized, Word Length & Top-Level Domain.

Links: Domain Hacks by Xona.com

Related: Best Free and Paid Web Hosting Service on Internet