WordPress blog – initial setup

Setting up a blog using WordPress has been a relatively easy thing to do.  These are a few additional steps that I took after the installation.

Installed Theme

Although WordPress comes with some nice default themes, I wanted more control of the customization for my blog.  I researched a few recommended theme sites by John @ simpleprogrammer.com

I purchased the Metric theme along with the Genesis framework, from Studio Press.  I went with this because I worked with the Genesis framework on a previous consulting project, therefore, I was able get my site up and running quickly.

Installed Plugins

These are the plugins that I installed.

Akismet is a service that runs through the comments on your blog and determines whether it’s spam.  You have to set it up with an API key as it’s required for this service.  The API key is free for personal blogs.

Jetpack.  I installed this but I don’t have any features enabled at the moment.  I had to turn them off them due to conflicts I had with inserting media.  For some reason it was pointing to the wrong youtube video.  Once I disabled all the features, my link was pointing to the correct video.  There does seem to be a vast amount of great features with Jetpack so I’ll have to revisit all the options soon.

Other plugins:

  • I wanted to install Disqus but it currently isn’t compatible with my version of WordPress.
  • Another plugin you may want to check out is SEO.  I have this included with the Genesis framework so I didn’t need to install it.  But if you go with another theme, it may be worthwhile looking into.


This file contains the base configurations for WordPress.  It’s located in the root folder of your WordPress installation.

As of this writing, WordPress already sets you up with secret keys upon install.  However, I went ahead and changed these to different keys using the WordPress secret-key service

I also modified the number of WordPress revisions.  WordPress will store many revisions of your post by default.  So to avoid having all of these saved in the database, I added a configuration to the wp-config to not save any my revisions by setting wp_post_revisions to zero.  You can adjust it to your desired number of saved revisions.

define('WP_POST_REVISIONS', 0);

Theme Functions (functions.php)

Since I wanted to display my own personal footer and not display the default  footer containing the genesis theme information,  I modified the genesis footer as follows:

//* Customize the credits
add_filter( 'genesis_footer_creds_text', 'sp_footer_creds_text' );
function sp_footer_creds_text() {
 echo '<div class="creds"><p>';
 echo 'Copyright &copy; ';
 echo date('Y');
 echo ' &middot; <a href="http://lorifpeterson.com">Lori Peterson</a> ';
 echo '</p></div>';

Customize Appearance

To customize the appearance of my blog, I applied these settings.

  • Site Title & Tagline.  This will appear on the header portion of the page.
  • Widgets – Primary Sidebar
    • Genesis – User Profile
      • You will need to setup a Gravatar (Globally Recognized Avatar) account for your image.
      • You can select either Author Bio or Custom Text.  Author Bio will display the Biographical Info that you have in your WordPress user profile.
    • Recent Posts (you can customize the number of resent post links to be displayed)
    • Categories (when you create your blog posts, you can assign them to categories that you have created).  I also have it display the number of posts per category.

That sums up how I got my WordPress site configured.  I’m sure I will add more features and/or plugins as my blog becomes more mature.

Happy Blogging!

Speak Your Mind