From my years of experience dealing with software applications, plugins, addons and so on. I have developed a habit which I think a lot of programmer and developer use also. I felt that this topic might be of interest to the blogging community also. Which I believe a lot of blogger is doing also.
For beginner bloggers, the very main concern is getting your site up, once you got it up and running, you would feel happy and start loading in plugins and writing your post, but then one fine day, you find that your site cannot load, what happen ? what did you do ? got attack by hacker ?
There will be so many questions marks on your head and you might be lost, you won’t know where to start from. This is why a developing site is very important.
With more and more plugins available and the more code you put on your script, you might make some mistake and screw up your blog, or there is a clash of plugins making your blog in accessible to your readers. You definitely won’t want your readers or potential clients to click on your site and your site is down. I myself have encountered a couple of times when I click on an ads and it shows me a site that is down. You will waste money, be it advertisements money or lost of a potential client.
As for me, I always have a spare system for testing of new applications, Scripts, and so on, just to ensure that it won’t screw up my System and I won’t lost precious time getting my Operating System back and retrieving back my backups and mails. It can take hours.
As for my Blogs, I also have another site for testing of plugins, playing with scripts and so on. In this way, I make my main blog safe and sound and test all new plugins and script on the developing server. Once that plugins or scripts is running safe on the developing site, I then port it over to my main site. I know that this might be a bit troublesome to some bloggers, but then personally I find that this is a must for me, I’m not sure about the vast community, but I feel that whether in blogging or a company site, we must minimize the downtime to it’s minimum. Because you never know that those users who went to your site during the downtime might turn out to be your clients.
There are many ways to create a developing site, I will list out some and do mail me or send me a message if you need help.
The first way is to install the blog in another folder. On your webserver, html folder create another folder and install your blog there. for example >html>developing
Installing WordPress on that folder.
Accessing your developing site will be www.yoursitename/developing/wp-admin
If you want a more professional approach, you can go to your cPanel and create a sub domain.
For example you create a sub domain by the name of developing, do take note of where you create the folder in. Install WordPress on that folder
Access your developing site will be http://developing.yoursitename.com/wp-admin
If you have the budget, you can even get yourself another domain name and get your developing site on another partition on the server. This method will ensure that you won’t ftp files to the wrong folders.
When creating folder inside your html folders, there is a few things to highlight, don’t use common folder name, use something unique. Don’t name folders that will conflict with other applications or WordPress. if not you might have problems later on.
Another point to highlight is that you might want to restrict access to the developing site by requiring visitors to login, in this way only your approved user can login and view your contents.
I use “registered user only” version 1.03, In this way, no matter how ugly your developing site looks only you will be able to access it.