Archive for the 'wordpress' Category

Adventures with MU (WordPress MU that is)

February 16, 2009

I haven’t posted for a while but I wanted to discuss the WordPressMU set up at my place of work.

I have been trawling the forum for a while now looking for a couple of answers but I think our set up and therefore our needs are a bit unusual. At the moment I haven’t upgraded so we are still running version 1.5.

We have multiple blogs and multiple authors (nothing unusual so far) but we want everyone registered to be able to post to any of the blogs. The blogs are for news (current awareness in Librarian jargon) from the library service to our clients. So the clients don’t need to see a whole mass of irrelevant posts we have divided up the posts into seven main subject areas (each blog) then into further categories so each “minor” subject area has a feed. The main blog that is built into an MU installation is used for posts relevant to the whole organisation.

The blogs are fire walled so I can’t show them to you, unfortunately, so you can get a better picture. They are designed to look like they are part of the intranet. There are about thirty of us all contributing and most are contributing to more than one blog. So far we have four site admins. Myself and three others.

Here come the issues:

1. It is fairly laborious to add each new user to each blog. We would like each new user to be able to be added to all the desired blogs at the same time (and while we are at it – add them as an editor please).

2. It would be great for a site admin to be able to see in one place somewhere in the admin pages the numbers of posts each user has contributed and not have to visit each blog in turn.

3. Our contributors would like to be able to make the same post to multiple blogs without cutting and pasting. (I thought about trying this using a feed but not every post in a category or tag would go to another blog and if we set feeds up there would be far too many possible combinations).

4. I haven’t yet been able to get a LDAP plugin to work and I have tried two. I think its our PHP or LDAP set up. But this would save so much work and confusion (I have already reset passwords multiple times.) It’s a time issue as much as anything- I just haven’t had enough to pursue it. Thanks to Techxplorer who has given me a few clues.

5. I need to get an email subscription option working soon. I want my clients to be able to select to get a digest of posts for a selected category. (Reminder- these blogs are firewalled – Feedburner and any other web based email service will not work). The Subscribe2 plugin is a contender if I can get LDAP working. I don’t want to demand that a client remember yet another password. The other contender is PHP list.

6. It would be nice to have a page where all the contributing author’s photo and bio are displayed automatically. I have seen a plugin that does this for single author blogs but doesn’t work with multi authors.

It’s been an interesting time watching my colleagues come to grips with using blogs in this way, most have never used blog software before. We are semi-live in that the link has been sent out to a selected number of users for their feedback. It was great the other day to logon and see 30 new posts in my feed reader from just one day’s posting efforts.