The New Avatar (or Moving From WordPress.com)

Welcome! The new home is still not completely set, I am working on it but the basics are setup. I will continue to work on the interiors whenever I get time in the coming weeks. Please bear with me till it gets stable.

This is where I have landed from my very first blog. WordPress.com is an excellent service, it was just that I wanted to try more. However, the fact is that I have been spoiled by my earlier blog which was auto-managed (atleast for me). Now I have to look at a host of things, right from SEO to statistics to plugins. It is still very satisfying to create my own theme which targets my requirements. Being able to customize WordPress completely gives a lot of conviction.

Moving content from WordPress.com

I think this will be useful to others who are trying to move their blog. I exported the content from my WordPress.com blog by using the Administration menu Manage -> Export. This will export all your content, which includes posts, pages, comments and categories, in a WordPress eXtended RSS (WXR) format – a XML derivative. If you already don’t know what XML is, you don’t need to know it at all.

Once my self-hosted blog was setup, I tried to use Administration Menu Import but realised that it did not include an option to import from a WordPress blog (for WordPress 2.0.3 and 2.0.4). I tried the RSS option and it failed miserably. The posts were imported, but without comments. All the pages were imported as posts, and there was a post entry for every file uploaded in the older blog. Not importing comments would have been a partial import and manually moving over 200 comments would have been a nightmare. So, I dug around and found that the development branch of WordPress already included the code the importing from WordPress blogs. It should have been obvious since WordPress.com already supports it.

Getting the import-from-Wordpress code

Unfortunately, for getting this code you will have to be familiar with some technical aspects. The WordPress development branch code is accessible through Subversion. You will need the subversion client which you can download from the website. Once installed follow the instructions given in Subversion access, especially the command to checkout the latest WP codebase. Once downloaded, find the file wp-admin/import/wordpress.php. This is the WordPress importer.

Wordpress importerThe above mentioned method is preferable, as you will always get the latest code. If you feel it is too much of a hassle, I can email the file to you. Upload this file to your host in [wordpress root folder]/wp-admin/import/ directory. And bingo, you will see an entry for importing from WordPress in the Import menu. Use that and you will be through to importing posts with comments and creating categories.

As I am writing this, I came across a plugin by Aaron. I haven’t tried this but from the comments it seems that it works great.

Not Yet!

There were a couple of bugs in the WordPress import that I used. It imported pages as posts. If you are not very keen on retaining the pages, you can just delete them. I wanted to keep them, so I used the database access provided by my hosting company to set those specific posts as pages in the database. Find out IDs of the posts that are supposed to be pages and for each do:

UPDATE wp_posts
SET post_status=’static’
WHERE ID=’<supposed-to-be-page ID>’

(wp in wp_posts is a configurable prefix for tables. It will change if you are importing into WordPress Multi User (WPMU) platform or if it has been specifically modified.)

As I mentioned earlier, the WordPress.com exporter add post entries for every file that I had uploaded. You can choose to delete it from the original XML file or delete the posts once they are imported in your blog.

That’s it and you are done!

The Theme

The independence of being able to use any theme makes you try many themes. I tried K2 and Squible themes. They are amazing, but unnecessarily bloated as they have to be inclusive. Also, I don’t think blog themes have to be AJAXified. So I have created this theme with following points in mind:

  • The theme should have a mullet style design – only the first post will be displayed in full, all others will be displayed with excerpts.
  • I am using asides or quick posts or segmental posts, but I don’t want them to be shown on the home page. The theme excludes them. Instead of requesting posts and then flitering them, the theme requests posts from all categories except the one for asides.
  • I wanted to three types of content – main, sidebar and a bottom bar.
  • It should be widgetized, this theme supports drag and drop of widgets in either the sidebar, left bottom bar or the right bottom bar.
  • Last but not the least – the theme should be valid XHTML and CSS. You can use the correponding links in the footer.

Besides these, I had my own qwirks and some things that I cannot express in words. Currently the theme is still in beta and I am testing it. I will work on it and make it stable soon. Please bear with during this time, but feel free to give suggestions or even point fingers at me if you find any mistakes.

Discussion [Participate or Link]

  1. Abhijit Nadgouda @ iface » Moved said:

    [...] I have put down my experience of moving from WordPress.com to my new home. Overall it was not very difficult, at most irritating sometimes. The WordPress exporters and importers do most of the work, you have to follow it up with some cleaning. [...]

  2. iface thoughts » Blog Archive » From Fear To Satisfaction said:

    [...] I posted a couple of articles on a site, but the downside of realising the power of blogging was that I got fearful. It was difficult to convince myself that I can commit to something so powerful without knowing anything about it. I still started my first ever blog – Abhijit Nadgouda @ iface, which is the old avatar of this blog. In spite of the fact that I wanted to talk on so many things I kept on facing the problem of What should I write about?. The typical answer to this was usually blur and it was difficult to break it into topics that might deserve their own posts. Either I ended up writing posts that were too confusing or too atomic. [...]

  3. Blogs said:

    Hi. I am started a blog which pretty much has every subject. We generally post on coins or various subjects.

  4. learn spanish said:

    Great blog. I will keep checking it for updates, however try checking my blog for ideas on learning spanish

  5. Nadgouda’s Iface Thoughts Moving to Full Version WordPress « Lorelle on WordPress said:

    [...] Abhijit Nadgouda of iface thoughts has moved from WordPress.com to a full version WordPress blog and shares his experiences. The new home is still not completely set, I am working on it but the basics are setup. I will continue to work on the interiors whenever I get time in the coming weeks. Please bear with me till it gets stable. [...]

  6. iface thoughts » Blog Archive » An Update On Moving, From Beta To Gamma said:

    [...] Since I have moved I have been gathering all the nuts and bolts to construct this blog. It was fun earlier to try out all the plugins and develop my own theme, but it started eating up my time in which I could have actually written. I will not fiddle with the blog setup any more. Here is an update. [...]

  7. Jon Moss said:

    Hey many thanks for the info! You posted on my Blog ages ago and I have only just seen the comment! Doh!

    PS I am still using wordpress.com – need to have time to play around with my own hosted Blog and I am rather short of time at present!

  8. 2006 Was A Blogging Year For Me on iface thoughts said:

    [...] These experiments were not possible on the excellent yet restricted WordPress.com platform, which had already given much more than I had imagined. So I moved to a self-hosted blog, which has taken the current form. Whatever I have learned has found its way into the design and content on this blog. Not to say that it is event that is over, I think it is going to be a continuous process. And that is the reason, my design will keep evolving, call it perennial beta if you want. [...]

  9. Worpress.com Stats Plugin | iface thoughts said:

    [...] had sorely missed this when I started to self-host this blog. I have started to use the plugin and will test it for some time. I can then get rid of one of the [...]

  10. incimitox said:

    Wow – just find this in google

    thanks alot for all the info here


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Abhijit Nadgouda
iface Consulting
+91 9819820312
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This is the weblog of Abhijit Nadgouda where he writes down his thoughts on software development and related topics. You are invited to subscribe to the feed to stay updated or check out more subscription options. Or you can choose to browse by one of the topics.