Backing up your WordPress site

Ensuring that you take regular backups of your WordPress site is so important. If your site is hacked, you need to know that you can get your site up and running as quickly as possible. If you inadvertently delete some valuable template files or content, you need to be able to restore those components. If your hosting company takes backups for you, you need to understand exactly what they’re backing up and whether their backups are sufficient for your needs. Continue reading “Backing up your WordPress site”

WordPress version 4.4 (Clifford) is now available

WordPress version 4.4 was released two days ago and is available for download.
Responsive images out of the box is one useful new feature. WordPress will automatically serve the right image size for the browser and screen size – so the user won’t waste bandwidth on loading images too large for their device.
WordPress 4.4 comes with a new default theme – Twenty Sixteen – which looks great and Continue reading “WordPress version 4.4 (Clifford) is now available”

Inkscape graphic design software

Have you come across Inkscape, the free open-source vector graphics editor?
Illustrator is the industry standard for graphic design software but, like all of Adobe’s products, is expensive. Inkscape is the open-source community’s alternative. Free to download, it provides most of the functionality of Illustrator.
Download it here.

Company information that must appear on your website

It’s easily forgotten, but it is a legal requirement for a company to display the following information on its website: company name; place of registration; registered number; registered office address; VAT number; and that it is being wound up, if applicable.

The footer is often a good place for this info.

Font Awesome – an easy way to add icons to your site

Many websites use icons to improve their look and readability. Traditionally, you would create an image file for each icon, but there is an easier way….
Icon fonts are exactly what they sound like – fonts made up of icons, rather than characters. The advantages of using icon fonts are that: they can be styled using CSS, in the same way that you would style your text (size, colour, etc); being vector graphics, they are fully scalable without loss of clarity; and you just need to load one font set to have access to many different icons. Continue reading “Font Awesome – an easy way to add icons to your site”

WordPress version 4.3 (Billie) is now available

WordPress version 4.3 was released yesterday and is available for download.
It includes a few nice new security features. Strong passwords are now generated as default. Users are notified by email of changes to their password or email.
Another useful new feature is the ability to create site icons (favicons), the icons that are displayed in browser tabs. In the past, you would have had to manually upload your favicon.ico file. Continue reading “WordPress version 4.3 (Billie) is now available”

Make your WordPress site more secure – part 3

This is the final in a set of three posts detailing steps that you can take to tighten security on your WordPress site. (Read part 1 and part 2 first.)
11. Use .htaccess to tighten your security
The .htaccess file is a configuration file accessed by the Apache web server. You will almost definitely have an .htaccess file in your base WordPress directory; by default, it stores your permalink structure. Optionally, .htaccess files might also be present in other directories. The settings listed below can be added Continue reading “Make your WordPress site more secure – part 3”

Make your WordPress site more secure – part 2

When you’ve carried out (or at least considered) the security measures discussed in part 1, there are further (more techy!) steps that you can take to tighten security on your WordPress site:

7. Change the database prefix to prevent SQL injection attacks
These are attacks whereby hackers embed database commands in a URL. Such attacks might be thwarted by changing the database tables’ prefix from the default wp_. If you are setting up your website from scratch, simply change this line in your wp-config.php file before creating the database: Continue reading “Make your WordPress site more secure – part 2”

Make your WordPress site more secure – part 1

Is WordPress a secure platform for your website? In the past, a number of high-profile security vulnerabilities have led many people to conclude that is isn’t. However, these vulnerabilities have always been fixed quickly, the product has matured and security updates are released every few months. I would say that WordPress is now an extremely secure web-development platform.
Of course, hacking still affects many WordPress sites, simply because of the sheer number of WordPress sites out there (it’s the most popular CMS in the world). Continue reading “Make your WordPress site more secure – part 1”

Images for your website

If you run a website, you might well need to find a good source of images for it. Here are a few suggestions:
shutterstock has a huge collection of images of just about anything you could want. They’re not free, but they’re not terribly expensive either. has some stunning, high-resolution photos and they’re free to use commercially. is the largest photo-sharing site on the web. Not everyone allows their photos to be used commercially though, so make sure you check what you’re allowed to do with it before you use a photo on your website. Continue reading “Images for your website”