Picking themes for WordPress? Administering and securing WordPress?
April 3, 2010 3:54 PM   Subscribe

Managing Wordpress - Security, Anti-Spam, Themes, Plugins.

Part 1)

Please help me find a theme. The official WordPress theme finder is terrible and I'm not sure what third party sites are trustworthy.

I'm looking for something that's clean and nice looking in tones invoking wood, metal and model-making that will look good with pictures of wood, metal and also plastic models. Maybe something with a bit of an antiqued theme invoking old ships, buildings and such.

These photos are usually shot on a black or dark-colored backdrop, so I'm preferring things with light, ivory or white backgrounds. I don't want a graphical header or anything - yet.

Part 2)

What do I need to be aware of as a far as security and other admin/management issues as a total noob? How do I fight spam? What do I do if I get hacked? (This is on a "Fully Hosted" DreamHost account.)
posted by loquacious to Computers & Internet (2 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Part 2 is the easier question.

For fighting spam, activate Akismet, which is preinstalled. It requires setting up a (free) account for yourself on wordpress.com (not wordpress.org, which is the developer resource), and using the API key you're issued. Works great.

Second, the path of least resistance to a secure site is a two-step process:
# Back up regularly. This can be done with a button click from Tools -> Export.
# Update regularly. Do this whenever you're notified about a new version of WordPress dropping. If you log into your site regularly, you'll know it's time to upgrade when you see a bright yellow bar across the top of each admin page. Alternately, you can subscribe to Wordpress's twitter feed or development blog RSS feed. Updating is, again, a one-button task (Tools -> Update). Back up your site first.

Unrelated to security, but plugins that are good to have:
# Bad Behavior. It cuts down on spammer traffic to your site.
# WordPress.com Stats. A very very simplified view on traffic to your site. If you have Akismet active, it will report (relatively meaningless but vaguely interesting) spam stats, too.
# WP Super Cache. The reason why this is unnecessary for most people is that most people's blogs get a dozen or two dozen page hits per day, traffic so light that caching has no purpose. WP Super Cache aggressively caches your site to reduce server demand when you're slashdotted or metafiltered or whatever - of all these items I list, it's the hardest one to set up, but once set up you can more or less ignore it.

Regardless of your level of technical expertise, if you have questions about owning or running a Wordpress-based site, you can do yourself a favor by setting up an account on wordpress.org forums (not wordpress.com), and using the forums there for questions about the software, plugins, or even how-to tips on editing templates.
posted by ardgedee at 4:54 PM on April 3, 2010 [6 favorites]

As for part 1, I'm partial to Theme Forest, which is stuff of exceptionally high quality, very reasonably priced.
posted by jbickers at 7:33 PM on April 3, 2010 [2 favorites]

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