Taking shape with help from one of the builders

So far, I’ve found the WordPress support forums (and Google) to be helpful in getting me up and running past a default WP installation. After my previous post, I discovered that the default URLs were not to my liking; so, I decided to email Ryan Boren directly with my questions. How a software’s major contributors respond to questions–newbie or advanced–tell me a great deal about the software itself (e.g. is there a pride and a passion underneath the bits and bytes). Ryan did not disappoint and even hung in there with a few follow-up replies. (Thanks, Ryan!) His timely and helpful replies cement my decision to join the WP family of users.

It turns out that I simply needed to turn on permalink support and define how I want my permalinks to behave.

Of course, I ran into a few gotchas, but Ryan pointed me in the right direction. I ended up having to create my own .htaccess file, copy and paste the permalink code from the WP admin console into this file and upload it to my site. Windows Explorer on Windows XP wouldn’t allow me to create a file with this name–complaining that my file must have a file name. So, I simpy created a new .txt file then used a Command Prompt window and the RENAME command to arrive at .htaccess.

Once the permalinks were working I ran into self-defeating index.htm files in my previous archives folder structure. So, to allow WP to process my permalinks effectively, I moved all my pre-WP content into my b4wp folder. Also, I still noticed a few odd “feed:” prefixes in my feed links so I modified the sidebar.php and footer.php theme pages to correct that.

Eventually I plan to create my own WP theme and post it for others to consider for their own use–give a bit back to the community. But I really appreciate how easy the transition to WP has been for me because it allows to return to the most important activity to me her: new posts and comments.