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There. I beat my deadline. The main site is live again! Yay!

But that is not to say that I got this without glitches. Let’s see…

After feeling good with the WordPress site I developed locally, I pushed it live by uploading all my local files (and changing password-related configs) to my server. However, I noticed that all my links start with “localhost”—they are pointing to the local version I developed. The only page I can view from my remote site was the home page.

The fix is easy enough. I just had to change all option values in the wp_options table of my WP site so that they don’t refer to localhost. To that end I ran the following query in my database:

UPDATE wp_options
SET option_value = REPLACE(option_value, 'localhost/', '');

Note: be careful when running queries like this. The pattern matching went fine for me but some future version might use the term ‘localhost’ for something else. Always back-up before running! Also, you could’ve set this option up in your WP Admin. Just go to Settings -> General and change the URL-related settings. I wasn’t able to do it in this case because even the WP Admin was getting redirected to localhost!

So, after running that, I got my links good. However, clicking on the links returned a status 500 error (Internal Server Error)!

Googling around, it seems that this has something to do with my .htaccess . The .htaccess is a config file for web servers famous for allowing URL rewriting. It’s the magic behind instead of You can also do cool (or sick, depending on your tastes) things with it like having pages with a .exe extensions (or pointing unsuspecting users to a normal .html page but is actually a sketchy .exe download). Here’s one tutorial I’m quite fond of.

Anyway, my .htaccess looked like, this:

<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . / [L]

Now, I had no idea what to do with my .htaccess to prevent the status 500 from happening. Thank goodness that kodeplay itself is WordPress-powered. So, I just patterned it from kodeplay’s .htaccess:

<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]

Aaaaannnd voila! Main site up and running! (Though, I won’t be surprised if there are still bugs with my launch.)

It seems that WordPress has a tutorial for migrating WP set-ups. Guess I should’ve read that first no?

Now, a TODO: Write a new entry on my main blog. The most recent one is now more than a year old!

Still working on my revisions for my personal site. It was on full throttle last December but had to take a backseat due to work and something I’m preparing for. Oh well…I’m trying to meet a personal deadline of end-of-this month to mid-February (Feb 16! Mark the concrete date!).

It’s not exactly a tough project but, being the OC guy I am, I’m making sure all ends are ironed well and that’s what’s taking my time. To meet my deadline, I had to cut certain pages (not posts) for which I only have a vague idea as to the content they’ll hold. It feels so long since I did some creative writing.

Now, I ran into a problem removing them from my nav bar (since I don’t want users to see not-even-baked pages, right?). I thought that marking them as “draft” would do the trick. However, they remained on my nav bar.

I’ve been looking into the database and how WP queries for the navbar’s contents, to no avail. There are forum posts regarding this, both I’ve found to be two years old, not to mention not-at-all helpful. That’s when I realized that, last December, I was able to customize my nav bar from the CMS itself, as opposed to hacking the code.


After some clicking-around the CMS I found what I’m looking for in “Menu” under the “Appearance” tab. You should see some click-and-drag interface for managing what appears on your navbar.

It seems that publishing a page automatically adds it to your navbar but marking it as “draft” does not trigger anything. To make things worse, users not logged-in as an author will hit a 404 if they click a “draft” link. If you are a registered author on the WP site concerned, you’ll still see the actual content. Tsk. First timers might miss the fact that their users will hit a 404.

That’s all for now. Keep coding ~Chad.

If you’ve been anywhere near my main blog recently the front page has been looking like this for quite some time now


Yeah. I’m currently redesigning the website. I don’t know why. Guess it’s just that the look and feel I designed when I was just in my sophomore year in college is not me anymore. Tsk.

Anyway, this is the fourth time I’d be redesigning my main blog ever since I got my mind around blogging. I started blogging when I was in third year high school. Four versions in five/six years? Not bad, I say.

This time, I’m relinquishing controls over to WordPress. The first two “versions” of my blog were all static HTML plus some JavaScript. And it was hosted at GeoCities. The third one had some CMS/parser I wrote using Java, the result of which I’d upload using FileZilla to my own bought webspace. It was in PHP and XML—no databases. The CMS/parser was one hell of spaghetti code; it’d break at corner cases every now and then and I never got around to fix those bugs since, hey, I can live with it. Come to think of it, as I switched machines over the last few years, I’m not sure if I still have the original source codes. I only have the jar file.

But I’ve been woolgathering. My whole point here is to note what I learned with tweaking WordPress.

Where do I start?

Depends on where you want to go. Don’t want your blog posts on the front page but, instead, have some dedicated page for it, featured on your nav bar? WordPress got you covered easily. Just go to “Settings” -> “Reading”, and you should see something like this:

reading_settingsPretty self-explanatory eh?

But what if you have already have a theme which displays your latest posts on the front page but you just want to customize it somehow? Enter, WordPress’ The Loop.

Put simply, The Loop1 is what is responsible for displaying the posts in your blog. You can invoke The Loop in many ways. What I’m using for my main site is as follows:

     $temp = $wp_query;
     $wp_query= null;
     $wp_query = new WP_Query();
            while ($wp_query->have_posts()) :

Again, pretty self-explanatory. Note that this uses PHP’s templating syntax: you can write HTML in the position of those elipsis and they’d be written at every iteration of the loop, if they apply. Also note that I could have used the more-common “curly brace” syntax when writing loops and conditionals but, for templating, it makes more sense to ditch this tradition and go ending blocks with the end syntax as this makes it cleaner to distinguish which block you are ending.

So, what can go inside the loop?

This is where you’d typically print out your blog posts. WordPress provides a host of the_* functions for you to access the parts of your post. All their names are very self-explanatory. Of note are:

Putting it all together

If you want your theme to display your posts on the front page, you’d have to put The Loop in some file like “home.php” or “index.php” found at the wp-content/themes/themename of your WordPress installation. So, say you want a basic list of recent posts that show the title (which links to the posts “solo” or “permanent” page), author name, and the contents, you’d end up with something like this inside The Loop:

<h1><a href=<?php echo '"'; the_permalink(); echo '"'; ?>>
    <?php the_title(); ?>
<?php the_author(); ?> <br />
<?php the_contents(); ?>

But wait! I’ve too many posts!
This is the time you handle pagination in your blog. To display the “pagination links” (as I call them), you have plenty of options (which are, again, very self-explanatory):

Note that WordPress is smart enough not to display a pagination link if it does not apply (i.e., if no posts are newer/older).

404 Trouble

When you click on your pagination links, it may happen that you get a 404 (Not found) message. This is easily fixed.

At line 5 of my The Loop code listing above, I indicated the number of posts I want per page. This value should be equal to what is set in your WordPress settings. At Settings -> Reading, see the value “Blog pages show at most”.

Is that all?

By now, this should be good to deviate a bit from the themes you get. You can do more by tweaking the CSS of your theme though if you had to use someone else’s theme I wouldn’t advice intensive CSS tweaking (you’re probably no designer). But well, whatever floats your boat.

  1. Can’t help it but WordPress’ terminology reminds me of another “The Loop” in my geek life: The Game Loop. But that is for another time entirely. []