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Puppet Kaos - where Kelvin Kao plays with puppets and tell random stories

Upgraded the website

I’ve just made a few changes to the website recently. Besides the Commentluv plug-in that I installed in January which displays a link to the commenter’s latest post, I’ve also installed the Social Bookmarks plug-in that allows you to share your social bookmarks more easily. And then earlier tonight I installed Subscribe to Comments plug-in so you have the option of getting replies to your comments via email. All these installs were simple and worked smoothly.

And then I decided to upgrade my WordPress from 2.1 to 2.6. The reason that I wanted to upgrade is that my site had been attacked before. There are robots on the internet that look for WordPress blog that has weaknesses and try to insert code into them. When this happens, I’d need to go through the compromised post and remove the unwanted inserted code. The robots were able to do that because older versions of WordPress isn’t as secure in this aspect. That’s why I decided to upgrade to the latest version.

It turned out to be a lot of work. Putting in the new version is not hard. Just download the new version and then upload the files. The problem is that the new version isn’t entirely compatible with the old stuff. Most of my site looked okay after the upgrade, but the categories were missing! On the sidebar, there are categories and character appearances, but each one would just say a number, like “(23)” instead of “My Videos (23)”. And in the posts, instead of something like “Posted in Sesame Street”, it just showed “Posted in”. All the category labels were gone for some reason. Also, although my blogroll was there, the word “blogroll” was missing.

So I started doing some reading about this, and eventually I managed to add all the categories back one by one. It was somewhat tedious and repetitive, but at least I didn’t lose any major information other than the category labels. And it’s a good thing that I’m a programmer and have a good understanding of how WordPress (which is written in PHP) and the back-end MySQL database works.

Will share more technical details later, in case someone runs into the same problem and somehow lands on my site.

Comments

  1. July 31st, 2008 | 5:02 am

    I think that the site looks terrific! One thing that I particularly like is that you don’t have 40 “bookmarks,” as on bloggrrl – which I inherited with the site. This is much cleaner and makes more sense…I have bookmarks even I don’t understand!

    Another plus is the ability for follow-up comments for e-mail. I hope that that works for everybody’s follow-up comments, and not just your own! I love to see what other commenters are writing.

    Great job!

    Rita

    Rita’s last blog post..My Estate Attorney Gets a Pet

  2. Na
    July 31st, 2008 | 8:44 am

    Looking good! I too need to add social bookmarks, but unfortunately, I can’t get it to work with my design just yet. Funny, every day since I upgraded my blog, I’m loving it. I’m using b2evolution, and have never had a hack, and have only occasionally had bugs (usually cause I’ve fiddled with the code :) ). Even spamming doesn’t occur! Sometimes a good upgrade is everything.

  3. July 31st, 2008 | 2:56 pm

    Hm, I actually feel like the site is running slower than usual. I’m not sure if that’s the thing with my hosting, or just more things to run on this version. We’ll see.

    @Rita: Actually, the original Bloggrrl had a blogroll on the side bar, but later moved it to a seperate page so it’s not as cluttered (which I think was a good idea). I clean up my blogroll every now and then, and I might change the way I do things here, since the new version seems to give you better organization of links. Don’t know. Need to look into it some more.

    @Na: You got an awesome new design and logo. I don’t blame you for loving it. 😉 I think b2evolution would have its own set of plug-ins, right? And there should be lots of different social bookmarking plug-ins so it shouldn’t be too hard to find one. Fiddling with code is interesting exercise for me (and some other programmer bloggers). I don’t know about other people, though. I am sort of wishing that the new version is running faster than it is right now…

  4. August 1st, 2008 | 6:13 pm

    I hope the robots don’t find me! I seriously don’t want to jack with this stuff, especially since I have a bunch of sites running WordPress. Your site is looking good, though!

    I have an issue with Subscribe to Comments, though. Whenever I do it, six months later, I am getting emails when there are spammy comments posted on those entries.

    Michelle’s last blog post..Sellout?

  5. August 1st, 2008 | 6:14 pm

    Oops. The autofill thing put the wrong address in there.

  6. August 2nd, 2008 | 4:14 am

    Now corrected… Yep, I’ve put wrong addresses before as well. Blame auto-complete…

    Hm, I never thought about that spam comments problem. I’ve subscribed to email updates for comments in several blogs that I regularly comment on but I’ve never had the problem. I guess they all have good comment moderation or spam filter.

  7. August 2nd, 2008 | 7:09 am

    Kelvin,

    As someone who is UNEXPECTEDLY going through a similar thing is now finding out, I feel for you. It’s a LOT more than how the site looks!

    Come on over soon (very soon, if possible) for free pizza and drinks…I think you might be surprised!

    Rita

    Kelvin’s last blog post..Bloggrrl’s Moment of Silence

  8. August 2nd, 2008 | 7:29 am

    Wait! I’m NOT Kelvin, am I? Has there been THAT MUCH change in my life? Oh dear, things ARE getting goofy around here!

    Rita

    Rita’s last blog post..Bloggrrl’s Moment of Silence

  9. August 2nd, 2008 | 11:28 am

    Yeah, you already left your first comment as Kelvin (the one at the top) but I just went change it without mentioning it. Oh well. Why is everyone typing in wrong things commenting on this post? Heh.