Tutorial

Beach Blogging 101 – Session 1: Relax, Unwind, and Upgrade

If you didn’t figure it out from my tweets or last post, I am currently relaxing in Destin, FL (and at this moment, horribly sun-burnt – this is why geeks don’t get in the sun!).  I told myself I would do a blog post a day because I wanted to get into a daily routine of posting again, but then I asked myself… Why would I want to “work” on stuff like that while I’m on vacation?  It’s fun for me, and one of the problems during my day job is that I don’t get a lot of time otherwise to do it.

So, to me, this is a vacation: sitting at a Starbucks, relaxing, and working on a blog post.

And that’s when it hit me: I wonder how many other people have the same problem I have?  How many people have neglected their blog because they don’t have time to maintain it?  How many people have old WordPress installations that need upgrading, or are still running plugins from last year because they don’t have time to look up new ones?

Well, this week I’m going to take 6 days (today + this week, until Saturday, when we leave the beach) to share a little of my vacation with you, and help you get your blog into the shape it needs to be in.

And it starts with an upgrade.

If you aren’t running WordPress 2.7, we’ll start with you (you poor souls – you don’t know what you’re missing). You want to FTP the following plugins into your installation:

WP-DB-Backup

WP Automatic Upgrade

If you’re running WordPress 2.7 or later, then install WP-DB-Backup from the plugin installation menu on the left sidebar (plugins > add new).

Once it’s installed, head to Tools > Backup.

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You’ll see a list of all of your tables.  For time sake, check the two on the left, and the important ones to you on the right.  Usually it tells you want the plugin is before it tells you the data (lifestream_event), so pick the important ones.

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In the backup options, download the backup to your computer and hit Save once the dialog box comes up.  While you’re at it, head back in and schedule a weekly backup to be sent to your email account.  That way, if something happens, you’re covered.

Once that’s done, WP 2.6 users need to activate the automatic upgrade plugin and follow the instructions on screen.  It’ll walk you through the entire process, and will tell you exactly what to do.  I don’t have a blog running WordPress 2.6, or I would show you screenshots, but rest assured that backup you made can help if things go haywire.

For you 2.7 people, just hit the upgrade button at the top, and choose to upgrade now.  Everything will run in the background.  You really have no excuse not to upgrade if you’re running anything above 2.7

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Those are actual upgrade screens from when I wrote this post.  I did it, while I was writing a post.  Was that really so hard?

Tune in tomorrow when I go over a few new plugins that have been release that will change the way people look at your blog.  Wednesday is SEO day as I talk about All-in-one SEO.  Thursday and Friday… well, why don’t you tell me?

I want to know what things on your blog go neglected because you don’t have time to fix it (or you don’t have time to learn how to use it/fix it).  The top comments on here and on Twitter will be covered Thursday and Friday.

Good luck with your upgrade, and have a happy fun time at the beach.  I leave you with… the Sand-Gator!

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No, it’s not night – the sun was SO bright my iPhone took a bad picture.  We made this gator this afternoon out of Sand – that’s why my legs are so sunburnt (kneeling down in the sand to sculpt it).