Posts Tagged ‘wordpress’

Did your site get hacked?

Sunday, May 13th, 2018

Before asking for help, you have to be sure that you aren’t crying wolf about a hack on your WordPress. In the past, several administrators have reportedly contacted anti-hack centres because of a suspected hack threat. However, your WordPress may either be misbehaving due to spam messages. There is a huge distinction between a hack and a malfunctioning site.

Signs that your site has been hacked

  1. When either the header or footer of your WordPress contains illicit ads. Such ads are about drugs or pornography. The penetrators of this act inject such pages without any presentation. Therefore, the ads may be invisible to the human eyes because it takes the semblance of dark text on a dark background. Fortunately, search engines can spot these.
  2. Using example.com as an instance, replace the handle with your site name. Then, paste in the Google search box. If you find malicious contents that aren’t recognizable, your site may be in trouble.
  3. When your audience send reports for spams or are redirected to a malicious website. This can be tricky because perpetrators can recognize you as the site administrator and probably hide the malicious content from you. The spam messages are only available to site crawlers, hence open your site on another account.
  4. When your hosting provider detects spamming or malicious content, they will send you a report. For instance, you may be sent a report about a spam email that is linked to your website. The mechanism lies in the ruse of the perpetrator by redirecting people to their website, using your link as a host. This is because your WordPress link, unlike theirs, can avoid spam filters.

There are many websites on the Internet that can detect such hacking problems. Therefore, research and attention are important tools to surmount the problem.

The importance of backing up your site

The first confirmed sign of a hack should urge you to back up your site without fail. By using a backup plugin or FTP, you can download a copy of your WordPress content. The reason for backup is because it helps you mitigate the risk of losing data to your hosting provider that will most likely delete content of your site when they file a report. This is a standard process that protects other systems from the infectious content on your WordPress.

Website database back up

As this is a priority, your website database must be protected. On completing this step, you can proceed to the cleanup process since you have a replica of your site in your possession.

Just before you clean your WordPress, here are some rules

You will not lose data by deleting plugins, wp-content, and directory. When you reinstall these plugin files, WordPress has an automated system which detects deleted plugins before disabling them. However, you must delete the directories in bulk and not just corrupted files.

In the themes/wp-content directory, there is always a theme directory dedicated to the site. You can spare this file when deleting other directories. A rare case is the ‘child theme’ which is a duplicate of the themes/wp-content.

Files which hardly get new files are wp-admin and wp-includes. Thus, these are the first files to detect hacking because they are mostly empty. When you find something new, it may be time to pull a hack alert.

Also, WordPress has routine backup and installation modules. Usually, most backups can be found in an easily accessible subdirectory called ‘old/’. While your main site may be secure, hackers can break down your backdoor and infect the main site.

Therefore, installations on WordPress should never be left on the site. Upon hacking, they should be discarded immediately before the malware spreads.

A tutorial on How to Create WordPress Child Theme

Sunday, April 22nd, 2018

WordPress provides numerous themes to help the users. Besides, you can customize the themes to make it more palatable according to your needs. However, being a WordPress user, you must know how frequently you get updates on your theme. As soon as you update the theme, you will notice that all the changes you have done so far in your current theme are gone. Not updating your theme is not a good option too. Keeping your site away from updates also invites bugs and even hackers. That is when child themes come to rescue. A child theme is an identical theme of the parent theme.

Therefore, even if the parent theme is updated, you can still use your customized theme without compromising the security of your site. With a child theme, you can edit the CSS Stylesheet, PHP template, functions.php files along with image and JavaScript. Whether you are a coder or a designer, you can make changes in your WordPress with ease.

Advantages of Child Theme

Speed up development

A child theme is just an identical copy of parent theme such as its style, templates, and files. Therefore, you do not have to create a new theme from the start. With a child theme, you can make substantial changes in your theme without affecting the parent theme, which saves you a lot of unnecessary re-coding, and helps you to achieve your target sooner. Also, while coding in a child theme, if you forget to code for something, then you can always resort back to the functionality of parent’s theme.

Avoid any damage to your website

Skipping an update in your parent themes is dangerous. WordPress keeps updating its themes to increase the safety of your website and to fix an annoying bug. You will never know where you may land if you avoid any updates. With a child theme, you can retain all your parent’s theme modification and changes separately and update your parent themes without having to worry about losing your modification.

Usually, any update made to the theme gets waived away once the developer makes any modification to it. So, as a user, you may feel disheartened when your customized applications will be gone. However, you can simply avoid this by going for a child theme. You can make n-number of changes to the website without interfering with the theme.

Let’s know how to set up a basic child theme

Though, it can be done directly from the server; it is recommended to set-up everything locally followed by installing it as a normal theme by using the “Theme” menu. The whole process will be a hassle-free affair.

Create a folder

As a first step, you need to create a new folder for your child theme. You can get the theme inside the WordPress at location “wp-content/themes.” Give it a name similar to your parent theme and attach “-child” at last for easy recognition. Use any name you want but make sure it does not have any space in between.

Style Sheet

The design of the entire website depends on the code that is present inside the Style Sheet. Create a new text file and name it “style.css”. Then you have to paste the “stylesheet header” code at the beginning of the file.

Some terminologies may confuse you.

  • Theme Name: This is the prima facie that will represent your theme in the WordPress.
  • Theme URI: A Theme URI or an Author URI is important to make your theme get accepted in the WordPress theme directory. It represents the demonstration theme.
  • Description: It will show up when you will click on the theme menu.
  • Author: It’s no one but you, the creator of the theme itself.
  • Author URI: This contains the name of your website. You can put it here as optional.
  • Template: It is nothing but the folder name. As it is case-sensitive, you have to be little cautious. Otherwise, you will end up getting an error message.
  • Version: If you are getting started with your child theme, it will show up as 1.0 and will increase progressively with the number of upgradation your child theme takes.
  • License: WordPress themes get released under GPL license, and you shouldn’t change that for any reason.
  • Tags: These are relevant keywords that best describe your WordPress theme and help it getting visibility during search engine.

Activation

Before activation, you need your folder and style sheet to be ready with you. Once you have them by your side, go to the “themes” present under the “Appearance” section. Then click on the “Theme details,” and you will get the stylesheet header over there. Now, one last job is to click on the “Activate” button and you are done!

Few More things to do

Now the next step is to create the “functions.php” file as it will determine the look and behaviour of your website. The task is not hard; you have to paste the text “function.php” into the following code; 

<?php

//*Code goes here

As of now, the website will look more like a text type as you are using a parent theme. It’s time to inherit the information from that parent theme. All you have to do is to copy the code “@import url (“../twentyfifteen/style.css”)” into your “style.css” section of the child theme. The old way of copying several stylesheets will only make your website run slow.

Have we inserted theme image yet? Again, adding theme image is not a hard task either. Choose a big image of size 880 × 660 pixels, although it will be shown as 387 × 290. Go for a PNG image over JPEG and GIF. Name that image as “screenshot.png” and place it into your child theme folder.

Now, one question may strike your mind. Do you need to make a child theme every time your WordPress website demands a change? Actually, it depends. If the change you require is regarding colour or font size, go for a “custom CSS plugin” but if you have big changes in mind related to templates or anything in that magnitude, go for a child theme for sure without giving any second thought.

A tutorial on how to install WordPress

Tuesday, April 17th, 2018

WordPress has emerged as one of the most highlighted and highly popular technologies being used for internet operations and application work. It is a free open-source based content management system that uses PHP and MySQL as its functional framework. In order to make your WordPress functional, it needs to be installed on a related web server that could be either a part of an Internet hosting service or a completely functional network host with its own internet rights.

Here, let’s have a look at the tutorial to learn the step-by-step installation of WordPress.

In this tutorial on how to install WordPress, I will highlight a complete step-by-step process on how to install WordPress simply and easily. The installation of WordPress on your computer can be done by just finding a “.exe file” of the application, online and installing it by running the downloaded version on your computer.

First, WordPress needs to be installed on your local device, and then the version of the locally developed website is uploaded to a live server.

Now, let’s learn the steps and the method of how to install WordPress on your hosting server.

How to Install WordPress on Web Server

After you have installed a valid version of WordPress onto your local server, i.e., in your computer, you can proceed with the installation of the same onto a live web server online.

Follow the below-mentioned tutorial where I will guide you on how to install WordPress on your live web server or the hosted server.

Let us start with the steps to follow, as mentioned below:-

  1. The first and foremost step to begin the process is to log in to your hosting account/Cpanel and create the MYSQL database as a base for your WordPress installation process. This can be done by using the scroll button to move down to reach the database section of your Cpanel account.

  2. On the second screen, now you need to enter the name of the database and click on the “Create” button. This creates an empty database that is needed for your WordPress installation process.
  3. Once the database is created, click on the “Go back” button. Don’t forget to take note of the database name which will be used later. This is an important thing to take note of, so make sure you remember it.
  4. The next step requires a user creation so that your database can interact with the WordPress. Reaching the page, now you need to enter a username and password. However, you can also click on the “Password Generator” button for allowing the Cpanel auto-create a default secure password for you. Once the entire process is complete, click on the “Create User” button to complete the final process.
  5. The further step needs you to add a user to the database that we have already created. For this, you need to select the database and the user, both. Once both are selected, click on the “Add” button to add the user.
  6. This step involves marking of the privileges or the access rights. On this screen, you need to mark the “All Privileges” box to offer an entire set of access and usage permissions to the database user. Now, click the “Make Changes” button, once things are done. With this, both the database and the user have been created. So, now it’s time to move on to the next phase of our WordPress installation tutorial.
  7. Move on to the WordPress and then download the latest version available for WordPress. Once the zip file is downloaded, extract/unzip it. The unzipped version is now ready to be uploaded to the hosting server. Now you can process the upload.

  8. You can upload your WordPress version using FTP. You can use FileZilla (FTP software) to transfer the entire set of files to your hosting server using. Or, your zip file can also be uploaded to the server with a right click on the zipped file and select the “Extract all files” option inside the hosting server, itself.
  9. In case, you wish to host all the files that are available on the root domain, i.e., performing a hosting linked with just a single domain; a different process needs to be followed. For this, you need to extract/upload all of your files to the “public_html directory” of your web hosting.
  10. Once, you have uploaded all your files; it’s time for some real touch with the WordPress. It’s time to commence the installation of WordPress on your server domain by moving to the next step.
  11. Once the files are uploaded, visit your host site in your browser for beginning the WordPress installation process. For example, if your website name is abc123.com then type abc123.com in the web browser. You will see the following screen:

  12. After reaching the related screen, enter the “database name,” “database username,” and the “password” that you had already created. Leave the rest of the fields untouched and then finally click on the “Submit” button.
  13. As the above process is completed, the “website title” and “administrative username” for WordPress admin panel will be needed. You need to enter all these details along with the password that needs to be entered twice. This step also needs your valid email id. Enter your email address and then click on the “Install WordPress” button. It will hardly take a minute for the entire installation process to complete.

  14. Once, you succeed in the complete installation process; you can see a login screen appear on the PC or laptop.
  15. Now, click on the “Log In” button to log in to the admin section of the WordPress. Once again, you will get another screen for entering the username and password. Enter the required details and once again click on the “Log in” button to enter your WordPress welcome screen.

Here you go!

You are now done with the complete installation process, and now you can start your work on the WordPress platform.