Category: HOWTOs

Exclude Single Post in WordPress

If you would like to exclude one post from your blog, archive, search results or wherever you need to on your blog, you can do so by putting in a small piece of code within the particular WordPress loop:

The following example will show all posts except for the post with the ID of 179:

<?php if ( $post->ID == '179' ) continue;?>

This is something that I get a lot of requests for and is very useful in a number of situations.

Exclude Single Category in WordPress

If you ever need to exclude a single category from a WordPress page (archives, index, category page, etc) you can easily do so by using a little conditional tag code within the WordPress loop.

The example below will skip over any post that is in the category with the ID of 35:

This can be helpful if you want to not show a particular category in your blog (if you have a category based site setup) – or if you want to hide some categories from your search results.

Search Specific Category in WordPress

There are some times when you want to limit your search to a particular category, or perhaps multiple categories. This is relatively simple to do in WordPress by adding a hidden field to your search code. (See example below)

<form method="get" id="search form" action="/">
<input type="text" value="" name="s" id="s" />
<input type="hidden" value="22" name="cat" id="scat" />
<input type="submit" id="search_submit" name="Search" value="Search"/>

You can see I added my hidden input field on the third line. When I add this in, it then adds onto the query used to search. Your search will go from something like to and will only return posts in the category ID you choose.

Updating From WordPress 2.2 to 2.3

I have been using WordPress for almost 4 years and have collected a number of database tables, plugin specific directories, and miscellaneous junk along the way on a number of my sites. I wanted to take some time and really do some spring cleaning. After a few hours – I was very pleased with the results and I wanted to share what worked for me.

Here are the steps I recommend to really clean out a WordPress installation:

  1. Make a backup of everything. You never know what you are going to get into – and a backup is very important incase things go bad.
  2. Make a test installation. I always use a test server when I know I am going to make several changes. This way, was not down while I was testing and cleaning up. With your backup files, import your database on the test server, and grab the latest version of WordPress (hopefully using subversion)
  3. Remove old or unused plugin database tables. I then went into the WordPress database and removed (dropped) any tables that were created by any of my old or unused plugins that were still hanging around.
  4. Weed out old, unused plugins. I went through my plugins and deleted any old or unused plugins. I had a few “I should really use this” plugins that were never used – and to tidy up – I deleted them before uploading them to the test server environment. Make sure to also remove any files/folders that old plugins might have used in the root folder and or wp-content.
  5. Move your theme over. Upload the theme file over to the test server.
  6. Move your uploads over/miscellaneous files. Upload the uploads folder (wp-content) so you will have all your old uploads.
  7. Update WordPress. Run through the upgrade process (/wp-admin/upgrade.php).
  8. Debug your plugins. Log in, create a test post to make sure you can write to the database without any errors. I ran into a few problems with this, so I deactivated my plugins and activated them one by one. I found I had a few plugins that were not compatible with WordPress 2.3, but there were updates available, so I updated my plugins and moved on.
  9. Import Tags (if you have them). I used Ultimate Tag Warrior and WordPress has an import option for that (Manage > Import) for that.
  10. Display your WordPress tags in your WordPress theme. Now that tagging is available within WordPress without any plugins, you can easily display tags by using: You can also use a tag cloud (see Codex documentation)
  11. Make another backup. I always make another backup of my sites when I am happy with the end result – just incase something happened – I would not lose all my hard work.
  12. Enjoy your updated installation. Hey – you did it! A clean, lean, updated web site. Nice work. Now go and enjoy it!

Highlighted Navigation with WordPress

Ever wonder how to automatically highlight your tabs or navigation depending on the category, page, or post you are on? Wonder no more! To make this work, there are three bits of code you will need:

  • The header code to control the body ID (and to tell us what page we are on)
  • The navigation code
  • The CSS to control the highlight

For this example, I will use this web site as an example.

The header code

$parent = 1;
while($parent) {
$page_query = $wpdb-&gt;get_row("SELECT post_name, post_parent FROM $wpdb-&gt;posts WHERE ID = '$current_page'");
$parent = $current_page = $page_query-&gt;post_parent;
$parent_name = $page_query-&gt;post_name;

&lt;body id=&quot;"&gt;

The XHTML code (navigation)

<li><a href="/index.php">Home</a></li>
<li><a href="/blog/">SDAC Blog</a></li>
<li><a href="/web_solutions/">Web Solutions</a></li>
<li><a href="/network_solutions/">Network Solutions</a></li><li><a href="/user_interface_solutions/">User Interface Solutions</a></li>
<li><a href="/custom_solutions/">Custom Solutions</a></li>
<li><a href="/search/">Search</a></li>

The CSS code

#home #nav-home, #about_us #nav-home, #contactus #nav-home, #faqs #nav-home, 
#disclaimer #nav-home, #search #nav-search, 
#blog #nav-blog, #web_solutions #nav-websolutions, #network_solutions #nav-networksolutions, 
#user_interface_solutions #nav-userinterfacesolutions, 
#custom_solutions #nav-customsolutions, #tos #nav-home, #sitemap #nav-home {
	  background:url("images/tabs/active_tab_bg.gif") repeat-x;
      border-right:1px solid #676e78;
#tabs li:hover, #tabs li:hover a {
	background: url("images/tabs/active_tab_bg.gif") repeat-x;

General information
When you view the code for a page, you will notice that the header code will find out if the page viewed is infact a page. If it is a page, it gets the page parent (I use parent and child pages in my web site organization). The tabs are created with unique li IDs. So that a combination of #home (the body ID) and the #nav-home (li ID) will show as a highlighted tab. With this example, this case will only occur when we are on the home page because #home is a page (the home page) so the home tab will be highlighted. When we click on “SDAC Blog”, the body ID will then be #blog, so now the #blog #nav-blog combination will force the “SDAC Blog” tab to be highlighted. Take a look at the CSS to see where to define the “cases”.

Hopefully this took some of the mystery out of working with WordPress, navigation, and how to put everything together.

Common WordPress Problems and Their Solutions

Ever since we have been listed on the WordPress Consultants list, I have received a number of phone calls from panicked blog/web site owners regarding WordPress errors. Since I have seen a trend in the past month, I thought I would document some of the problems and their solutions.

Error establishing a database connection

Solution: The most common solution is to look and make sure you have typed in the correct user name/password/database name in your wp-config.php file. How can you check? Log into cPanel or Plesk, or directly to mysqladmin. Make sure that the user has the correct privileges to the database and that the password is correct. If you are unsure about the password, you can always delete the user and re-add them (remember to give the newly created user the correct privileges). If you are still having an issue, and you have a high traffic blog/web site, call your web host and see if you are maxing out the server connections – you/they might need to adjust their Apache/MySQL settings or you might need to start using WP-Cache to help control the connection issues. More than likely – you just entered in your user name/password/database incorrectly. This is by far the most common issue I have seen so far.

The default theme appears instead of your chosen custom theme when making CSS changes.

Solution: This is a known issue and hopefully will be addressed soon. If this happens, log into the WordPress Admin and choose your custom theme under “Presentation”.

You are not able to edit your widgets’ content using Safari

Solution: Grab the widget content that you want and drop it below or above another widget content box in the Widgets area in the WordPress Admin. Once you move it, the edit option will appear. Edit the content, and drag it back to it’s original location.

My Page Order WordPress Plugin Modifcation

I have been working with a client recently that was using the My Page Order plugin for the WordPress CMS I set up. They had several “draft” pages they used for templates and did not want them to show up in the My Page Order Admin interface. After looking at the SQL code, I added in a piece that would only show published (live) pages.
To make the same change in your code, open up the plugin file (mypageorder.php), go to line 47 and change the following line:

$results=$wpdb-&gt;get_results("SELECT * FROM $wpdb-&gt;posts WHERE post_parent = $parentID and post_type = 'page' ORDER BY menu_order ASC");


$results=$wpdb-&gt;get_results("SELECT * FROM $wpdb-&gt;posts WHERE post_parent = $parentID and post_type = 'page' and post_status='publish' ORDER BY menu_order ASC");

Now, only the pages you really want to order will appear in the menu.

bbPress and WordPress Integration

Here is a quick guide if you are looking to integrate WordPress and bbPress so that your WordPress users can log into bbPress and your bbPress users can log into WordPress.

  1. Download/install/configure WordPress. You will need to upload the WordPress files to your web site directory and create a WordPress database. The installation process for WordPress is painless.
  2. Download/install/configure bbPress. For the easiest and painless experience, upload the bbPress files into the same directory your WordPress files are in (most likely your web root folder).
  3. Do not create a bbPress database, rather define use your WordPress database settings in the bbPress config.php file. At the bottom of the config.php file for bbPress there are preferences that you will need to set so that bbPress knows to share cookies and authentication. This is documented in the config.php file so just follow directions.

That is it. Once you have both bbPress and WordPress set up and configured, your users can then enjoy having accounts to log into both systems using the same user name and password.