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This is the home of the UW WordPress Network Documentation space. This is a work in progress in preparation for a public release of the service that is anticipated late in 2011. Suggestions are welcome.

On This Page

  • UW WordPress Blog Network Overview
  • Quick start - Setting up your Blog
  • Administering your blog - Some Basics
  • Getting Help
  • Answers to Common Questions

Overview - About the service

The University of Washington WordPress Blog Network is a communication tool for UW faculty and staff. It is distinct from setting up WordPress blogs on individual accounts in that installation and administration is much easier and your blog will automatically have a UW 'look.' Blogs in the WordPress Network are not as customizable as one you set up individually, but we expect that they will meet many needs. One attractive feature is that your WordPress Network blog will have the easy-to-remember address 'http://blogs.uw.edu/<your_blog_name>

The service is available to UW faculty and staff for use to support UW activities and is subject to state laws and UW policy.

Quick start - Setting up your Blog

Those eligible for a blog will find the service listed on the Manage UW NetID Services page. (Note: As of September 2011 until further notice the activation must be done via a special development version of the Manage UW NetID Services page.) To activate a blog, select the WordPress Network Blog service and click on Subscribe. Your activation will be confirmed and you will get email with information about how to access and administer your new blog.

Administering your blog - Some Basics

Until we have University of Washington content here, you may use the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater Easystart pages.

And their Advanced Features page

Getting Help

Links to Vendor documentation

The WordPress online manual is the primary source of documentation.

is this best?

May not be the best idea to point our network blog owners to the documentation for the full product?

You may also address questions to UW IT Customer Services by sending email to help@uw.edu

Answers to Common Questions

When should I choose a WordPress Network blog vs. setting up my own?

Setting up a WordPress blog on the UW Web Publishing site is difficult for many people. It involves downloading, installing and configuring both database and WordPress software applications. If you need full control and customization, then you probably want to install things yourself.

Many people are happy with a basic WordPress blog and just want to get started with out a lot of technical work. That is the need the UW WordPress Network blog service meets. You can have a blog ready to use in just minutes. You have some options for themes and plugins and administrator control of posting and comments. UW WordPress Network blogs do not allow customization beyond a common set of features.

Are there limitations on how I use my blog?

Yes, the UW Web Publishing service and UW WordPress Network blogs are provided for use in support of academic, research and administrative activities. Your blog should be set up and operated in accordance with state laws and UW policy.

Will my blog be backed up and can it be restored if data is lost?

Yes, .... (details coming soon)

  • Because your UW WordPress Network blog is using UW IT servers, it is protected against server failures. The application and data are regularly backed up and the service, with your blog data, will be restored by UW IT staff if the server fails. Backups are made daily so blog activities within the last 24 hours prior to loss are likely to be lost.
  • Blog owners can install the "WordPress Database Backup" plugin which will give you the option of on-demand backups. (question) ... if we make this available...
Do UW data ownership and retention policies affect my blog?

Yes, .... (details coming soon)

Can I have a custom URL for my WordPress Network blog?

Not at this time.  All UW WordPress Network blogs will be accessed via links like:

blogs.uw.edu/blogname

What are the controls and limits for comments to my blog?

Blogs are created with a default set of controls on comments. The blog owner can change the settings.... (details coming soon)

Blog owners can view and change settings via the blog's Dashboard.  Choose the Settings control, then "Discussion"

By default:

  • Comments may be posted on new articles (blog posts)
  • To comment the author must enter a name and email address
  • Only the first comment by an author will be held for moderation
  • Blog owners will be emailed whenever there is any comment posted, and when there is a comment held for moderation

More restrictive policies can be established by the blog owner.

Can I be alerted if there is spam posted to my blog and what can I do about it?
Can I get a custom theme or plugin for my blog?

The UW WordPress Network blogs come with a set of standard themes and plugins. Blog owners can see those and implement the choices via the blog Dashboard under the "Appearance" and "Plugins" controls. No custom themes or plugins can be installed for UW WordPress Network blogs. However if you have one you'd like to have considered to be made available, please let us know by sending an email request to "help@uw.edu"

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