Author Topic: Wish Me Luck -- I'm Venturing Into New Territory....  (Read 4639 times)

Offline GraphicBass

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Re: Wish Me Luck -- I'm Venturing Into New Territory....
« Reply #30 on: February 22, 2010, 03:22:51 PM »
LATEST UPDATE: MONDAY 2/22

I ran into some problems with theme options on the Flexsqueeze theme late last night when I took another look at the site.

The Flexsqueeze theme allows you to change nearly every aspect of the theme, from colors to sidebar inclusion to widths, etc. It does this by taking the selected/specified options and writing a new CSS file. As you might imagine, the CSS file for the theme is a monster, and best left unseen by human eyes. Most of the time it works well.

But for this install, I want to use the same theme throughout -- Flexsqueeze -- and just swap out the header graphic and change individual site colors for the sub-blogs. I thought that would be easy...

However, it seems that because I've got two copies of the theme uploaded, albeit to two separate directories with different theme names in the style files, WP thinks it is the same theme. So any changes I make to the sub-blog theme are made in the theme for the main blog. And vice versa. Which means I'm not getting my unique header image and color for the sub-theme.

Despair reigns in the Land of Graphic Bass.

I'm on hold while I wait for some responses from the theme developer and the WPMU forum, while my brain cells regenerate, and while I do some work that will buy groceries this week.

Hopefully, I'll fiddle with it a little this evening and discover the solution, or some kind soul takes pity on me and gives me a clue, or I bag the whole WPMU thing and do separate installs of standalone WP.

Later...

gary

P.S. As much as I would hate to do this, I may need to take a look at the Thesis theme. It actually offers more typographic controls, about which I am rather, er, controlling, being a graphic designer, but I had purchased Flexsqueeze before learning about Thesis. I'll have to check it out with the developer to see if WPMU would have the same issues with Thesis as it does with Flex.

UPDATE 8:24 p.m.


I got a valuable clue from the theme developer to take a peek in the "functions.php" file of the theme, and look for hard-coded paths to the "image" folder, and guess what I found? A hard-coded path to the image folder!

Even when installing a duplicate of the theme in another location, and tweaking the options in the sub-blog, the theme will write to the specified directory hard-coded into functions.php. For folks wanting to do a similar install, here's what I did:

1. Change the name of the theme in style.php and style.css to "flexaqueeze-subblogname"
2. Change the name of the theme folder to "flexsqueeze-subblogname"
3. Upload both themes (original flexsqueeze and duplicated flexsqueeze to the themes directory
4. In WPMU, in Site Admin, deactivate the theme (this keeps it from being viewed by all sub-blogs and the main blog -- kind of non-intuitive).
5. In WPMU, in Site Admin, activate the theme in the Appearance/Themes panel. This makes it available only to the main blog.
6. In WPMU, in the subblog admin, click the link at the top of the page for Site Admin Activation. Oddly enough, this activates that them so the subblog admin panel can see it. You should now be able to see the screenshot of the theme.
7. In WPMU, in the subblog admin, activate the theme in Appeance/Themes panel.

Now the original theme shows properly in the main blog, and the duplicated/altered theme shows properly in the subblog.

To get to this point, I had to go into the database using myPHPAdmin and clean out all references to the subblog theme, and replace them with the name of the original theme. This "reset" WPMU so it didn't think I had two of the same, unchanged, themes uploaded. Not recommended for the faint-of-heart.

I'm sure there is an easier way to do this, perhaps with "child" themes, but this was faster than learning all that. It seems a shame to have to dupllcate the entire theme just to swap out a header image and change some interior colors, but now that I know what to change, I can set up a macro to do it in seconds. Now I can proceed with making lots of sub-blogs in sub-domains and control them (mostly) from a single WP Admin Panel. I'm getting anxious to load some content, including PLR materials, and start generating some leads and sales!

Time for pizza!

P.S. Of course, you just know what going to happen -- I'm going to find a WordPress management program that can do it all from a single interface, like Firepowr is supposed to do, and switch everything over....  But at least this way is free!

LAST UPDATE: 9:52 p.m.


Got some content loaded on the main blog and a sub-blog. The header images fairly well done, and the colors tweaked. Added a keyword-linking plugin that adds links to products throughout the text of posts and pages.

But before I sleep, I thought I ought to put a link here so those who are interested can track my progress. Plus, it's an excellent motivational tool to help keep me working on the system! <a href="http://www.yourknowledgelibrary.com">Your Knowledge Library</a>. Savvy RRW folks will recognize base of the content for the sub-blog -- just heavily re-written and a new header graphic.

A good evening's work. Off to bed.
Gary Smith,  Wells-Smith Partners, Publisher
<a href="http://www.YourEmployeeHandbook.com/become-an-affiliate/">Your Employee Handbook Affiliate Program 60% commission, average sale $57</a>

Offline GraphicBass

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Re: Wish Me Luck -- I'm Venturing Into New Territory....
« Reply #31 on: February 26, 2010, 07:56:56 PM »
Well, I've been away for a few days - busy with client work, mainly -- and haven't worked on the new WPMU site. I've mostly been concentrating on my handbook site: moving it from Postnuke to WordPress, setting up and testing new e-commerce and download processes, setting up an affiliate program and all the little things that are involved.

With the exception of refining the look and feel of the site, it's almost ready for prime-time. In fact, I've already made two sales from the site, which isn't the primary page on the domain (yet) through the new system, at the new higher price of $97 a pop. All the more reason to finish it up, which I should be able to do this weekend. Then I'll do the big "reveal" for all the folks here. You can break the site and tell me what's wrong with it!

Then, I'll be back on the WPMU project. The stats on that site, which has been live (at least partially) for only two weeks, is 8 unique visitors. Pitiful, except when you consider those 8 visitors made 33 visits among them, viewing 865 pages, which I think speaks to the "stickiness" of the site. This is after factoring out spiders and my own I.P. So I've got incentive to finish the build out on this one, too.

Later...

gary
Gary Smith,  Wells-Smith Partners, Publisher
<a href="http://www.YourEmployeeHandbook.com/become-an-affiliate/">Your Employee Handbook Affiliate Program 60% commission, average sale $57</a>

valpubs

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Re: Wish Me Luck -- I'm Venturing Into New Territory....
« Reply #32 on: February 27, 2010, 05:46:52 AM »
Gary

Am I right in assuming that each 'library' is/will be a sub blog?

Offline GraphicBass

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Re: Wish Me Luck -- I'm Venturing Into New Territory....
« Reply #33 on: February 27, 2010, 10:26:00 AM »
Yes. Each "library" is a sub-blog focusing on a specific niche. It will function as a separate site, but be tied to the rest by the main domain name, similar graphic appearance, and functionality.


It's an experiment to see of subdomains can attract as much traffic as separate domains in a niche (all my research seems to say "yes"), and create a destination with a common brand, similar to about.com.

I want to get about 10-12 subs running and debugged, the I'll announce it to the world!

gary
Gary Smith,  Wells-Smith Partners, Publisher
<a href="http://www.YourEmployeeHandbook.com/become-an-affiliate/">Your Employee Handbook Affiliate Program 60% commission, average sale $57</a>