26 Feb 2018

Configure WordPress to use your SSL Certificate

It is recommended that every website uses an SSL certificate. An SSL certificate encrypts data transmitted between the users computer and the website that has the certificate installed. Google will penalise you in search results for not having an SSL certificate, and popular browsers are now presenting users with increasingly stark security warnings when visiting a website that doesn’t use SSL.

Do I already have an SSL certificate?

Have a look in your browser address bar. If the web address begins with https:// rather than http://, you already have a certificare installed. You may additionally see a message from the browser showing the site is secure:

 

 

How do I get an SSL Certificate?

Speak to your webhost who will provide and install the SSL certificate for you. The price will vary, depending on the host and the certificate but for an average site expect to pay between £0 – £100 per annum.

Configure WordPress to use your SSL certificate

Once your webhost has confirmed that the SSL certificate has been instaled, you will need to configure your WordPress website to do this:

1. Update the Site URL and Home URL

Navigate to General > Settings and change your website web address from http:// to https://

This will automatically configure WordPress to use the SSL certificate.

2. Update internal site references

If you use images on pages or posts (rather than featured images), you will need to update the links within the image tags to use https:// too. Doing this manually can be a laborious process so we recommend the Better Search Replace WordPress plugin for this.

  • Backup your database! If you make a mistake, you WILL break your website and recovery may be difficult without a backup.
  • Install better Sarch Replace from the WordPress Repository
  • Navigate to Tootles > Better Seach Replace
  • Search for your existing web address and replace with the new https:// version. We recommend you search in the tables wp_options, wp_posts and wp_postmeta.
  • Turn off the ‘Dry Run’ option
  • Run Search / Replace

In most cases, your website will now show the secure padlock next to your web address. If it is still missing, you may need to search in additional tables. Contact us if you need help with this, and we will configure your webite to use SSL for a small fee.

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16 Nov 2017

Change your eXtend Email Password

1. Login to your cPanel Account and select “mailboxes”

For instructions on how to login to your hosting account Click here

2. Locate the email account you wish to modify and change password

When you have changed your password, be sure to click the ‘Modify’ button.

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15 Nov 2017
02 Aug 2017

Change the URL of your WordPress Website

Sometimes you may need to change the URL of your WordPress website. If you attended one of our WordPress training courses for example and used a temporary URL.

This process is quite straightforward but you can break your site so proceed with caution and Backup your WordPress website first!

Your domain needs to be up and running and pointing to your existing website.

Step 1 – Backup your database!

There’s a separate guide on how to do this here

Step 2 – Install Better Search Replace Plugin

You can do this from your Plugins menu. The plugin is also available in the WordPress repository here.

Step 3 – Tell WordPress about the new URL

You can do this under Settings > General. You will need to set the Home URL and the Site URL which will usually be the same thing.

This will automatically update any internal links within menus, locations of featured images etc, but you will still need to replace the url where it is used within inline images or other content areas

Step 4 – Search and Replace your database

This bit is destructive – proceed with caution!

  • Open the Search and Replace plugin page from the Tools menu
  • Search for your old URL and replace with your new URL
  • Select the tables to search. Start with wp_options, wp_posts and wp_postmeta
  • You may wish to test with a dry run initially, if so leave the Dry run box ticked

If you need assistance changing the URL of your WordPress website, you can submit a WordPress support request here

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01 Aug 2017

Transfer your .uk Domain Away from Namesco

We sell domain names but they aren’t a part of our core business and we don’t make any meaningful money from them, we provide them as a courtesy to our clients as many of them prefer to have their web services all managed by someone they trust. We are essentially domain provider agnostic. Occasionally people will ask us to transfer their existing domains to us and often they need a bit of help doing this which is fine.

We’re doing that today for a client who is using names.co.uk. Not only are they nearly twice as expensive as pretty much everybody else (£13.99 for a .uk. compared to our £8.99, and we don’t claim to be the cheapest), they also charge £10 + VAT if you wish to change your IPS tag. Changing the IPS tag is the first step in transferring your.uk domain to another registrar, and everybody else* [*that we know of] provides that service free of charge. This should be a simple automated process you can manage yourself. In the case of Namesco, although you still have to do the same work – finding out the tag, entering it into a box and clicking go – they then apparently have to manually change the tag themselves and you then have to pay them £12 for the service. Plus they claim it can take 2 days (it’s usually virtually instant). Namesco are one of the biggest domain registrars in the UK and frankly there’s no excuse for these rip-off charges or substandard service.

If you plan on having your domain name for more than a year you’ll get your money back by transferring away from Namesco to a cheaper provider on the domain cost alone but you’ll have to take the initial hit. (Of course we recommend not going with them in the first place. Choose anyone else!)

If you do decide to transfer away, here’s how you change your IPS tag that you new registrar will provide.

Step 1 – Log into Names.co.uk

  • Once there, navigate to https://admin.names.co.uk/domains.php?ref=domains_header
  • Select your domain that you wish to transfer our

Step 2 – Select Domain Transfers

Step 3 – Select “Click here to change the Nominet tag

See where it says “You can also transfer your domains to us”? You don’t want to do that.

Step 4 – Enter your new Tag

Your new registrar will provide you with a Tag. You can’t transfer your domain without changing this.
Namesco also insist you justify yourself. They will not let you complete the form until you’ve told them why you are going.

Step 5 – Grit your teeth and checkout

Yes, that £10 + VAT is really annoying. But grit your teeth and Proceed to Checkout.

Once you have had a confirmation that your tag has changed, you can now start the transfer to another registrar. If you need assistance moving your domain names, feel free to contact our support team who will be happy to help.

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01 Aug 2017

Upgrade your Free Trial Web Hosting Account

If you have attended one of our WordPress training courses, you will have been given a free hosting account to use for the duration of the course. If you want to preserve your work after the course you will need to either move your website or upgrade your hosting account to one of our paid plans. This guide shows you how to upgrade

Step 1 – Login to your Watch the Dot Control Panel

For instruction on how to do that, see this guide

Step 2 – Navigate to your services

There are a number of places where youc an do this

Step 3 – Navigate to the service you wish to upgrade

You will need to click on the Service name rather than the website URL.

Step 3 – Select Upgrade

There are a number of places where you can do this

Step 4 – Choose your product

You will have a number of product choices

Step 5 – Checkout with Paypal

Check the details, and Click to Continue. You will be directed to the paypal screen to make payment. paypal will accept cards even if you don’t have a paypal account but if you wish to pay by an alternative method, please contact our support team who will assist.

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31 Jul 2017

Setup Subdomains in eXtend Control Panel

If you are using our standard eXtend hosting packages, you can easily setup a subdomain on your webhosting using the eXtend Control Panel. This will allow you to set up different website or webapps on teh same hosting account

For example:

  • www.wtddemo.co.uk – Your main website and accessible using the www.
  • intranet.wtddemo.co.uk – A custom web application accessible with a different subdomain.

Step 1 – Sign into your Watch the Dot Hosting Account

For instruction on how to do that, see this guide

Step 2 – Navigate to Web Tools

You can expand or collapse sections within your control panel using the +/- signs at the top of each section

Step 3 – Configure your subdomain

  1. Type in your subdomain
  2. Enter the directory where you want the additional website to reside. This will be beneath the public_html directory

You can sample our eXtend based web hosting on our hosting demo site at www.wtddemo.co.uk

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30 Jul 2017

Switch PHP version in eXtend Control Panel

If you are using our standard eXtend hosting packages, you can easily password protect a directory using the eXtend Control Panel to protect an area of your website from unauthorised access

Step 1 – Sign into your Watch the Dot Hosting Account

For instruction on how to do that, see this guide

Step 2 – Navigate to Web Tools

You can expand or collapse sections withinb your control panel using the +/- signs at the top of each section

Step 3 – Select your preferred PHP version

We recommend version 7, but if your website is incompatible with PHP 7 (older WordPress themes for example occasionally utilise functions that were removed in PHP version 7), you can step back to an earlier version.

You can sample our eXtend based web hosting on our hosting demo site at www.wtddemo.co.uk

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26 Jul 2017

Password Protect a Directory on your website

If you are using our standard eXtend hosting packages, you can easily password protect a directory using the eXtend Control Panel to protect an area of your website from unauthorised access

Step 1 – Sign into your Watch the Dot Hosting Account

For instruction on how to do that, see this guide

Step 2 – Navigate to Web Tools

You can expand or collapse sections withinb your control panel using the +/- signs at the top of each section

Step 3 – Configure Password Protection

  • Select the Password protection icon
  • Enter the directory name
  • Enter a new username
  • Enter a new password
  • Select Add protection

You can sample our eXtend based web hosting on our hosting demo site at www.wtddemo.co.uk

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21 Jul 2017

Adding a new user in WordPress

Adding a new user in WordPress is very simple. You will need to be able to login to your WordPress dashboard and you will need to have create_user permissions. These are usually reserved for users with the Administrator role.

Step 1 – Login

Login to Your WordPress Dashboard.

Step 2 – Select the User Menu

Select ‘Users’ from the left hand menu, followed by Add New. There are a number of places where you can select Add New, two of them are shown in the screen shot below

Step 3 – Fill in user details

As a minimum you need to provide a username and an email address.

You may optionally add first name, last name and website. WordPress will choose a strong password automatically, but you can change this by clicking on the Show Password button.

Tick the box to send a notification to the user.

Finally, select the user’s role. If you are adding someone to assist with your website management (eg a member of Watch the Dot support) you should select Administrator. If you are adding someone to assist with content posting, then Editor would probably be sufficient.

Step 4 – Click Add User

Once you have filled in all the information, you can select Add New User button.

You will be returned to the All Users page and you should see a notification that the user has been added. The new user should shortly receive an email advising of their new password.

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