WordPress Multisite Administration Twitter Giveaway

I’ve got 3 e-book copies of WordPress Multisite Administration to give away. To enter, you must retweet the tweet at the end of this post, AND leave a comment on this blog post. It’s not first come first serve this time, instead, 3 random entrants will be chosen by my 4 year old daughter.

Deadline for entries is October 30, 2013 at 11:59PM, so get to it. 🙂

People running WordPress Multisite will be especially interested in this book, but it’s also a great learning source for people using standard WordPress installations too. There’s a lot of good practices and other security related material that applies to both multisite installations and single site installations.

If you’d like to buy this fine book, which I would REALLY appreciate, you can do so from the Packt Publishing website, located at http://www.packtpub.com/wordpress-multisite-administration/book.

I hope to get the opportunity to write another book soon about Anchor CMS, which I am absolutely in LOVE with. You can see Anchor CMS in action at the VPSstat.us blog.


Mint 2.0 Bird Feeder and WordPress

Shaun Inman has released version 2.0 of Mint, my favorite website analytics software. Go over to the Mint website and have a look at what’s new in version 2.0.

If you’re a Mint 1.x user, you’ll have to pay another $19 to make the upgrade to 2.0. I purchased the upgrade for version 2.0 earlier this week and finally got around to actually upgrading earlier today. The $19 is well worth the upgrade, Mint 2.0 brings many nice new features, like the Bird Feeder pepper for example:

Your RSS and Atom feeds attract all kinds of colorful wildlife, Bird Feeder is a window onto that activity. It highlights subscription trends across multiple Feeds and clicks on individual Seeds. What’s a seed? That’s bird-ese for an article or link within a feed.

Upgrading from Mint 1 was pretty painless, the only thing I’ve had issues with is the Bird Feeder pepper. There seems to be quite a bit of confusion about installing the Bird Feeder pepper. I haven’t really finished installing the Bird Feeder pepper, I don’t want to risk breaking my feeds. I’ve been watching this thread over at the Mint forums for tips. Recently, a forum user linked to a post by Kristin Pishdadi, who has posted a how-to for getting Bird Feeder working with WordPress 2. She spells out step by step what needs to be done to get Bird Feeder working with your WordPress feeds. Looks pretty straight forward, I wonder if it works the same if the WordPress Feedburner plugin is being used. I need to read up some on how exactly that Feedburner plugin works first I guess.

The wp-mint plugin for WordPress should still work fine with Mint 2.0. All the javascript in Mint 2.0 is included in exactly the same fashion it was in Mint 1.x, so that plugin should still work 100%.

So, if you’re having trouble getting the Bird Feeder pepper working with WordPress, go check out Kristin’s post, it’ll probably take care of your problems. It’s a lot more clear about installation than the readme that’s included with the Bird Feeder pepper. The Mint forums are an excellent resource for support issues of all types, check them out if you have problems outside the scope of Kristin’s post.


PhishTank Is Here

PhishTank launched today. PhishTank is a site designed to make keeping tabs on phishing sites easier. If you come across a phishing site while browsing the web, you’re encouraged to submit the URL to PhishTank.

PhishTank is a collaborative clearing house for data and information about phishing on the Internet. Also, PhishTank provides an open API for developers and researchers to integrate anti-phishing data into their applications at no charge.

PhishTank is operated by OpenDNS. OpenDNS opened their services to the public earlier this year to much fanfare. David Ulevitch and crew have done an amazing job with OpenDNS, I expect the same from PhishTank.

PhishTank does not provide protection against phishing sites, they simple store phishing related data. OpenDNS does protect against phishing though. OpenDNS and PhishTank go hand in hand. OpenDNS blocks access to phishing sites that are in the PhishTank database. Here’s a little piece from the OpenDNS FAQ about reporting phishing sites:

The fight against phishing isn’t just for the banks and big companies to tackle; you can help. Right now, we encourage submission of possible phishing sites via our contact form. Nothing will be blocked unless it’s verified.

Later this summer, we will introduce PhishTank.com, a free community site, with API, which will serve as a collaborative clearing house for data and information about phishing and malware on the Internet.

PhishTank will no doubt prove to be a valuable resource for the internet security community. Now, users of OpenDNS can basically control what sites are deemed “phishing” sites by making use of PhishTank. This was one of the main gripes people had with OpenDNS initially. There was no method to show what sites were flagged as phishing sites. Let there be transparency!


Permalink Structure Update

I’ve updated the permalink structure on this blog. What’s this mean for you? Nothing really, unless you had some pages bookmarked. If you did have some pages at this blog bookmarked, they’ll no longer load to the right page. My permalinks used to look like this: http://longren.org/archives/2182

Now, they look something like this:

There’s no real benefit gained from this change, I just like the look of the new permalink structure better. Now, the only problem with making this change is search engines still see the old permalink structure, as expected. So, when someone searches google for Slackware 11, they will see a link to http://www.longren.org/archives/2156.

Well, the /archives/2156 page no longer exists here. However, there is an /archives/ page. I’ve added a slight bit of intelligence to the /archives/ page. If a user ends up at www.longren.org/archives/2156/, the archives page will try to find the post they’re really looking for.

Now, this works very well for people coming in from search engines or other blogs that have linked here. Any time the archives page sees a number at the end, /archives/2156, for example, it assumes the number is a postid, which is usually is. So, after that, the PHP code fetches the new URL for the post id and then grabs the post title and provides a link to the new URL.

Here’s the PHP I used to make this happen:

	print "


"; } ?>

Not very pretty, I know, but it gets the job done. Oh, and I really like this Code Autoescape plugin.


Windows Live Writer Review

Microsoft released a fresh and shiny WYSIWYG blogging tool today. It’s called Windows Live Writer. Microsoft needs to hire some new people to choose names for these new products. The name alone makes me not want to use it.

Now, the stupid name aside, the tool actually looks like it could be very useful. Paul Stamatiou has a very lengthy review, from installation to actually publishing a blog post.

Windows Live Writer is still in beta, so expect some issues if you’re going to be using it. Apparently it’ll play nicely with pretty much any blogging platform. Rather than me writing more, just go read Paul’s review.

Want more reviews? Head over to to Elliot Back’s blog or Pro Blogger.