Aug 292012
 

We all know that having a backup of our website is important but that doesn’t mean we take the time to do the backup or put things in place to run the backup automatically. For some, daily life is busy and other things take priority. For others, and I suspect most, its intimidation. Common concerns from a beginner web admin might be “What do I use to run a backup?”; “Where does the backup go and how will I find it again?”; “Will I break my site?” Let’s take a look at how easy it really is to do a backup when you use a WordPress CMS.

Method 1- Use A Plugin

Doing a backup doesn’t get any easier than using a plugin and is ideal for the beginner web admin. Plugins are designed especially for everyday users which in turn makes creating and running a website much easier. No need to know any coding language, the plugin is pre-packaged code that magically jumps into place once installed.

There are many great plugins for backing up WordPress but the most versatile and highly rated BackWPUp is the one we will work with today. To begin, install it from your WP control panel in the plugins section or from the WP Plugin Directory.  Once it’s installed, activate the plugin to begin scheduling a backup.

To use the plugin, locate it in your left sidebar as BackWPUp. Click it to open your tools, settings, and options along with a log displaying any current jobs.

Add A New Job

Whether you want to backup just your database, just your website files, or both, this plugin has great flexibility. You’ll first need to configure the settings of the WP site that you want to backup. Select Add New from the left sidebar under the BackWPUp tab to open a full page description of everything you currently have installed on WP. Select or deselect anything you want to add to or leave off of the restore.

The first thing you want to do is give the job a name. You’ll usually want to leave all of the default boxes checked and really only need to configure where you want the backup to go. You have a few options where to send your backup such as email, FTP, Dropbox, SugarSync, and Amazon S3 among others. If you don’t have one of those accounts, there are links right in the settings that allow you to quickly set up a free account. I’m going to use Dropbox so I’ll need to authenticate my account by clicking on the link and then allowing the Dropbox app access to my files.

Activate Scheduling

Use the plugin to do automatic backups on your schedule and time intervals when it’s most convenient for you using the scheduling feature. In the right sidebar Job Schedule box, check the Activate Scheduling box. Next, choose if you want the backup to run hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly and what specific date, day, and time you want it to run.

Backup File

The default settings for the backup file will put everything together for you in a zip file and will show you the file prefix so you know where to find it.

Send Log

Enter or use the default email address in the send log to be notified of any errors during the backup.

Finish

When you’ve finished making your changes, save them in the Job Type box. Now, go to the left sidebar and click on the Job tab under the BackWPUp plugin. Your job should display all of your settings and you’ll want to run it now to make sure all settings are correct and the backup works as expected.

When you run a backup for the first time, you should go to the backup location to make sure the backup worked and all the settings are correct.

Method 2- Export Files To Desktop

Another way to backup your files is to use the built in Export tool in your WordPress Dashboard. This backs up your website files and stores them locally on your PC in a neat little package.

In your WordPress dashboard, click on the Tools tab then select Export. Next, you’ll want to decide if you want to backup just pages, just posts, or all site content. Once you make your selections, click the Download Export File.

When the file window opens, you’ll have the option to open it or save it to your PC.

That’s all there is to backing up your website! Take a few minutes to setup a backup or schedule one regularly so you’re always ready with a fresh copy should your site be hacked or you make some changes to the database that go very wrong! If you’re looking for a great web hosting company for your website, check out Cytanium discount hosting.

Apr 192012
 
WebPI-feature

Microsoft Web Platform Installer is free software that packages all of the essential developer tools making it easy to install any of their free web apps like WordPress, Orchard, and DotNetNuke. It comes with everything you need to run a website like IIS, SQL Express, .NET, and more to get you started right away. No more searching and downloading each individual application. Here we will walk through the steps to install WordPress on your Windows VPS.

Installation Of WebPI

1. Open your VPS by logging into your control panel and clicking on the Virtual Private Cloud icon. Click on the VM name and then click on the RDP link.

2. Connect to the server and open your web browser within the VPS. Navigate to the Microsoft WebPI site to download and install it then click on Applications in the top menu and scroll down to WordPress. Click Add from the list and click Install.

3. Once you select your application and click Install, it will tell you what’s needed to create the site. It will be automatically download right from WebPI in one neat package. Enter the admin password and agree to the terms so the WebPI can begin the download to configure everything it needs to run WordPress.

Configure The Site And Database

1. You will now need to tell the application where you want it to go. For my application of WordPress, I selected Default Web Site and removed the application name. Leave all of the default settings as they are and click Continue.

2. Now you will setup the database and user information. Choose Create New Database and enter your Database Administrator Username and Password you setup in the beginning of the install.

3. Scroll down to the Database User Name and either keep the default or set your own. Create a password you will use to access the database and leave the Database Server as localhost. Click Continue to finish the install.

Launch Your Site

You will now see a screen that tells you everything was installed properly. Click on the link to launch WordPress.

Give your site a name and fill in a username and password you’ll use to log into your dashboard. check your email address to make sure it’s correct and if you’re ready to have your site searched by Google, make sure the box is checked so the site is public. Click Install WordPress to complete this step.

You have now completed the WordPress installation and will be prompted to login. Enter the username and password you just created to open your dashboard to get started with your WordPress customization!

You are now ready to pick a theme or website design! Click on the Appearance tab to start browsing the options that are best for your needs. Now that you see how easy it is to create your own Windows Hosted VPS and install WordPress with WebPI, what are you waiting for? We would love to have you come back and leave links to the site designs you created after following this tutorial and share this article in your social media circles! Happy hosting!

Apr 112012
 

Thanks to the Microsoft Web Platform Installer (WebPI) setting up WordPress and MySQL on your Cytanium Windows VPS hosting solution is a breeze. Maintaining the MySQL database can be a challenge without a decent toolset, but thanks to phpMyAdmin, it is very easy. Best of all phpMyAdmin is free!

To install phpMyadmin on your Cytanium VPS just follow these simple steps:

  • Setup a new web site in IIS
  • Download the latest version of phpMyAdmin to your server
  • Unzip the contents to the root folder of the new site you created
  • Browse the new site and you’ll see the phpMyAdmin login
  • Enter root username and password of your MySQL instance

After logging in you’ll be able to be able to do a wide variety of admin tasks such as add new databases, export and retore databases, run queries.

phpmyadmin

Using phpMyAdmin to manage the MySQL on your Windows VPS makes life a lot easier, and saves a ton of time from having to mess with the MySQL command-line. If you don’t already have it installed, you should really consider checking it out. If you don’t have a Windows VPS solution yet, check out Cytanium’s aggressively low-priced Windows VPS hosting options.

Mar 272012
 
wordpress_icons

In my opinion, there are far more than 10 reasons to use WordPress but these 10 are the most important reasons to point out. If you’re new to WordPress, you may think it’s for bloggers only or it’s too complicated to create your own site. If you have an idea of how you want your website to look but have no idea how to create it or get it up and running, WordPress is a great place to start. It’s one of the best content management systems out there because it’s easy to use right out of the box, quick to setup any theme and customizable with little effort. The best part, it’s free with Cytanium Hosting accounts.

WordPress isn’t just for bloggers, there are thousands of website themes to choose from. Whether you’re looking to start a blog or professional business website, WordPress has something for everyone. You don’t have to be technical or know code to use and customize WordPress themes to your liking either. Let’s look at the top 10 reasons for using the hosted WordPress platform.

1. It’s Free

I usually live by the rule that you get what you pay for. However, WordPress may be the only exception to the rule. There are two free WordPress websites that have different features. WordPress.com is a free website where you can set up a blog and add content to the blog at no charge. WordPress.org is what this article is based on and features a site name that’s indexed in Google, open software, customization and plugin features. It does require hosting but for as little as $2.50 a month, you can have a full WordPress site with access to all the features below. With one click installation, your WordPress site will be up and running in minutes.

2. Anyone Can Use It

You can easily add pictures, write articles, embed video and more with little effort. If you can copy and paste or drag and drop, you can use this platform! The hub of a WordPress website and where you will spend most of your time, is the dashboard. Here, you can organize and manage content, add features and social sharing to your site and change the theme or theme options without having to hard code them using WordPress Plugins.

3. It Does The Work For You

WordPress gives you the look and feel of a code based website but offers everyday users an easier way. Plugins are essentially packaged up code ready for one click installation. They are used in place of  you having to add the code to the website in order to make the changes. There are over 30,000 plugins available in the WordPress Plugin Directory so if there’s a feature you want for your website, chances are there’s a plugin for that!

4. It’s Supported

WordPress paired with Cytanium’s Windows hosting will allow you to make the most of your dollar while being able to handle large amounts of web traffic. Ride out any traffic spike without a problem.

5. It’s Proactive

The WordPress platform has great automation features such as SEO optimization built into its core. With that functionality paired with a  plugin, you’re sure to be off to a running start! Adding a plugin can automate your site to publish articles when you’re busy or even on vacation. Set security in place, and it will email you when someone tries to breach it. Have comments emailed to you for approval before they get published so you can be proactive not reactive.

6. It’s Unrestricted

WordPress is an open source software. That means that you can change the code (providing you know how) or alter the layout however you want without violating the software agreement. Use it however you want or need to without concern.

7. It’s Easy To Navigate

Handling the administration of your WordPress site is easy because it has the look and feel of a word processor. All themes have clear tabs for changing settings, adding or customizing that are easy for the beginner to use. As you learn and grow, so can your experimenting with customization.

8. It’s Customizable

You could spend an eternity looking at all the themes and options WordPress has to choose from or pick something to start out with and change it as you become more familiar with the platform. Many web designers also build beautiful WordPress sites and have them available for purchase. With each theme, there are customizable widgets, layouts, colors and images to choose from. Some offer just a few customizing options while others allow you to build a site your way.

9. It’s Scalable

If you’re new to having an internet presence or want to create a website for a start-up business, you may not have need for more than a one or two page basic website. A hosted WordPress site gives you a cost-effective way to start out and easily expands as your business does. You can add pages or photo galleries, and even an Ecommerce page for online purchases direct from your dashboard at no extra charge.

10. It’s Growing

WordPress is one of the hottest platforms out there for easy website building with a professional appearance. That means developers are creating new plugins and themes everyday to add to the directories. That, along with the forum support and the huge community of WordPress users make it easy to ask questions and get answers in real time. Forums are a great place to learn things to try as you become more familiar with it.

You can build the website of your dreams for a business or create a simple blog for family and friends to keep up with you. The sky’s the limit but whatever you decide to create, make it a WordPress creation!

Mar 152012
 

Having email capability right from your WordPress dashboard is not only handy, it’s necessary if you want to have email alerts sent to you. It’s also necessary to enable it before trying to use the “Email This” function when assigning users to your account. Here’s a walk through to show you how easy it is to setup.

1. Enable FTP

Cytanium requires users to log in with a username and password to protect the email function from spammers so you will first need to log into your Cytanium control panel and go to the FTP Accounts tab. If you already have an FTP Account created, you can skip this step. If you don’t have one, click Create FTP Account.

This will open a window to enter a username and password. Leave the home folder the way it is and click Save.

2. Install SMTP Plugin

Go to your WordPress Plugin Directory and install the Configure SMTP Plugin. Go to your plugins tab and scroll through the list until you find your new plugin. Click on the Settings tab to begin the configuration.

3. Configure The Settings

Set the configurations to localhost with an SMTP port of 25. Leave the Secure Connection Prefix blank and enter your FTP Username and FTP Password in the SMTP Username and SMTP Password slots.  Save your settings and send a test email make sure everything is working properly.