I've been using InstantUpgrade for over a year now to keep my blog on the latest version of WordPress without fail. Every upgrade has been smooth and successful and has gone off without a hitch. This evening I got really brave and used my iPhone to upgrade to WordPress 2.7, again everything went smooth. The latest version, 1.0-beta2, lets you control whether the files are fetched via FTP or HTTP. I happen to still be on version 0.2, but things have been working so smoothly from version to version of WordPress, I have no plans to upgrade.
As can be determined from my other posts, I'm a Java Developer by trade and Eclipse is my editor of choice. Now I have gone to the darkside now and then for some good out of the box software, such as WordPress, which as you may know is written in PHP. The main reason I chose WordPress was because of it's great community, it's focus on best practices, and the huge number of plug-ins enabling any blog functionality you could imagine, this mix just doesn't seem to be present in an Open source Java-based blog software package. So to the point, I want to be able to develop my WordPress themes, and any other PHP projects for that matter, in the same manner I develop Java applications - In my favorite IDE, which is loaded with features we won't discuss here, with the ability to test the changes locally before I promote them to production. Using the Presentation tab in the WordPress admin console is not an optimal solution or a good development practice. Now these instructions aren't for the faint of heart and I will assume that you most likely have some sort of programming background, or general cognitive skills and that you can get by without a bunch of pretty pictures and click this, click that, click ok, hopefully you've installed shit before. These instructions are geared towards Windows, nobody's perfect, but all the software used here is available for Linux, you may just have to do a little work to make that jump.
List of installs, you can stop here if you don't need me
Suffering from an internal struggle, I love to be on the latest and greatest WordPress, but I'm also extremely lazy and don't enjoy the pain of upgrading. The WordPress upgrade process is annoying at best. If you follow all the rules and, back up your database, backup your old files, disable all your plug-ins, delete all your old files, upload the latest distribution, pray that it works and re-enable all your plug-ins, it's something that you might want to put off indefinitely.
Today "digging" around the web I found a review of the plug-in to answer my upgrade or not dilemma. The review was on GeekyGirlyGirl (I think I'm in love, don't tell my wife ) for the InstantUpgrade plugin created by Zirona. This plugin is awesome, with a little bit of chmodding, after installing I was able to instantly upgrade to WordPress 2.2.1 with the touch of a button and fully expect all future upgrades to be as simple. I concur with the GeekyGirlyGirl's recommendation and I'm thrilled to enter the realm of hassle free WordPress upgrades.
These may work or not for your setup, a couple of things to note when writing rewrite rules:
- Start your rule set with areas you know need to be excluded, not rewritten, and write rules that result in => "$0"
- Work your way from specific rules to more generic and all encompassing rules
- Attempt to break the rules down into as few rules as possible, realize rule interpretation causes load on the http server
- Use rewrite-once so that Lighty will stop processing rules when it's found a match
url.rewrite-once = ( "^/(wp-.+).*/?" => "$0", "^/(sitemap.xml)" => "$0", "^/(xmlrpc.php)" => "$0", "^/keyword/([A-Za-z_0-9\-]+)/?$" => "/index.php?keyword=$1", "^/.*?(\?.*)?$" => "/index.php$1" )
Amazon has a tool for Amazon Associates that allows you to build and customize your own Store with any selection of products from Amazon.com. We currently use Amazon for their context relative Omakase Ads contextual text links, we were curious about the aStore so we built one. You can create up to 100 stores with a custom selection of Amazon products for each store, you can choose entire Categories, Subcategories, ListMania Lists, or pick individual products one by one to include in your store under your own named Categories and Subcategories with individual customized descriptions of the products you choose. Each Category page you create also allows you to provide a description of the Category to be displayed on that page. After you choose your products you can specify the colors to be used on the site and a header logo, if your lazy you can choose a predefined color scheme. Once your store is built you have a choice of linking to it directly, including it in an iframe or a frameset, the code to do this is generated based on the option you choose. Amazon pays you the Associate rate on all sales. Amazon's associate program is very accessible to new publishers and doesn't put stringent requirements to sign up and get started. We've turned the store into a product recommendation area of the site, WebGuy Recommends, which allows us to showcase the products we recommend. There's a great article on My Digital Life on techniques for integrating your aStore into your blog.