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Wordpress

Well, here we are.

That was a struggle.

them apples is now hosted on a shiny new ultra-slick and totally tricked out WordPress platform.

Blogger was OK, but it wasn’t flexible or powerful enough, and I seemed to be spending too much time trying to disguise it as a WordPress blog, anyway.

I’ve spent the last week trying to figure out how to migrate over to WordPress as seamlessly as possible, and I think everything is more or less intact.  The main thing is that the main domain and all the posts are the same, so nobody should get lost.

I’ve learned a lot in the last couple of days if you’re on Blogger and want out, here are some things to take heed of:

  • The WordPress import function doesn’t work properly. I managed to use it to drag across all my posts, but it only grabbed 63 of over a thousand comments.  More on that later.
  • Sorting out your permalinks is vital. I was publishing on a custom domain at blogger (www.them-apples.co.uk instead of the ‘real’ address of like-them-apples.blogsot.com), so each of my posts had a www.them-apples.co.uk/whatever url.  When it came to moving somewhere else, I was able to redirect my domain and do some backend jiggery pokery in WordPress to make the WordPress naming conventions match Blogger’s.  The result is that, say you linked to a post months ago, if you click on it today, you’ll end up at the shiny new version. Phew.  Google juice pretty much intact.
  • Feedburner is king. I’m thanking my lucky stars that I jumped into Feedburner before anybody was actually subscribing.  All feed should be fine. I hope
  • Understand DNS before you go messing with it. I am *such* an idiot.  Everything nearly went down the pan at the last minute.

I mentioned before that old comments hadn’t been migrated properly.  I’ve got a work around for that, but it’ll take me some time to execute it.  It’s very low-tech and cut and pastey, but it works OK.  The times and dates will be shot to pieces though, but the gist of what everybody’s said is still there.

My main piece of advice is to do any migration EARLY, before you’re getting a lot of traffic and have a load of people hooked into your site.  It makes things an awful lot simpler.

Also, don’t believe all of those WordPress evangelists who’ll tell you that migration is a snip.  It isn’t.  It’s a bloody nightmare in parts, but it is possible if you read everything carefully and triple check it with Google.

If you have any problems with anything at all, please drop me a line at [email protected] or shout out on Twitter to @them_apples.

Afterword:  OK, I was misinformed about the Feedburner part.  Feedburner has been giving me all kinds of problems, so I’ve deleted the original, messed-up-to-high-heaven-and-back-down-again feed and re-created it using exactly the same address.  It now seems to be working, and I’m hoping that everybody who’s subscribed in the past should still be on board.  If not, please click on the link below and resubscribe.

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