This post will go over the functions that I tend to use quite often when designing WordPress themes. As I find out and use more I will update this page as needed.
As you know WordPress is my favorite Dynamic website software because of it’s ease of use, it’s flexibility, support and plug-ins. For someone starting out with WordPress you might feel a little over whelmed. I will show you how to update themes the easy way and the “longer” way. *NOTE * Keep in mind if you did any sort of customization to a theme you will most likely have to re-apply it if you want the upgraded version.
This post will help you figure out how to resolve the WordPress “White Screen” of death and countless hours of frustration. The two main reasons I have found that is happens is when the default theme has a “-“ in it. I have also found that the “Wordpress White Screen of death” can also happen when there is a bad plug-in installed. This post covers how to resolve the “Wordpress White Screen” issues.
When I first started out with WordPress I didn’t understand how templates were made. The learning curve is quite steep till you play around with the software by breaking and fixing it. I really recommend that you do this as it is probably the best was of learning the program. That being said it also helps to have someone around that can give you the basics right up front. When people are starting out I tell them to copy the wordpress theme file located in ./wp-content/themes/Default and copy them to something like ./wp-content/themes/TEST-THEME. This allows you to edit the files and if you mess up then you can easily copy the contents back in the structure and restart things. For the most part page.php, single.php etc… will normally all look very similar because most people want a consistent theme accross their site. Back and Forth arrows would most likely be on “post pages” to navigate between the blog posts but doesn’t make sense to have on content managment pages.
This file as you would assume is the theme file for any post that is labeled a page. It does not include posts, search page etc.
This file is called when ever you are wanting to see a single post. This differs from say when you open the blog where you might have several posts on the screen.
About WordPress Dreamweaver Dropdown menus.
I love Dreamweaver’s Drop down menu. The menu is great for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). I am a beginner programmer and anything that can help me along I absolutely love. This “How-to” revolves around your “pages” in WordPress. Once you follow my step-by-step instructions you will realize how slick these menus are as you don’t need to keep editing the menu file independantly of the content. You will need to make sure that you use your own SpryAssest or these ones that I have zipped up for you enjoyment: spryassets.zip
How does dreamweaver’s menu work anyhow?
My assumptions & post legend:
All code will look like:
<h1>This is a title</h1>
If I have to wrap code the indication will be on the next line using: my Line wrap symbol
When ever you see ” ./” that means the root of the site.
I assume that you installed wordpress to the root of the site and not in a directory like WordPress or “Blog”
How do I install your WordPress Dreamweaver Dropdown Menu?
I recommend that if you are just starting out to use my directory structure. The reason why I suggest this setup is that it will make the drop down menu available to multiple themes if you so choose.
Where do I put the SpryAssests?
You will be putting the SpryAssests in th root .\ directory.
Where Does menu.php go?
menu.php goes in the theme directory you are working on. For example you are working on the Default Theme, you would copy it to .\wp-contents\themes\Default\
How does you theme know how to use menu.php?
Well there are 2 things that you need to do.
1.) Include the menu.php in the theme design.
Go to where you want you want the menu to show up in the code:
<?php include menu.php ?>
** NOTE ** Make sure not to include the spaces between the ?’s.
Go to the header.php file and add:
Go to the footer.php file and add this just above the </body> tag:
How to get sub-menus.
Because I did say that this is a drop down menu we have to make sure that we use WordPress in such a way that the software will automatically create the drop down menus for you. In wordpress when you are creating pages you have the option of making the page a “main page” or a page that is a “member” of a main page. As one would guess any Page that is posted as a main page will be displayed as Top most part of the menu. If you make a page a sub-catagory of a page that page would be part of the actual drop down menu. For example look at my menu. You will notice that the first item in the menu is “About Us”. It then has Jared’s Resume, Delila’s Resume, etc…
About us is a “main catagory” item. I told the other items to use “About Us” as thier parent in the Edit a Page screen in wordpress.