A Compendium of Possibly Helpful Stuffs for Erecting Mircea Popescu's WordPress with Nearly Free Speech Hosting

I'm not a fan of acronyms that don't spell out something naughty, but alas, they're a necessary evil, and you'll likely encounter1 the items titled above as MP-WP and NFS.

The former's something to use because it hails from an era2 when WordPress may not have been completely and utterly retarded, but merely something of a doofus, which inadequacies and bad habits were seen to by a sane man who then put it through the wringer for a decade. There's not going to be any "feature" that outweighs the boss' usage and say-so, and you're probably not in a position to identify what features are good or bad, or which methods are reasonable or batshit anyway. As for NFS, it's worth checking out as much as for asciilifeform's lack of problems with them year in and year out as for their lack of the usual Disneyland backend. They also accept Bitcoin, which is nice, though via BitPay, which is monstrously retarded.

So then, let's compendiate.

*NFS lives here. You can start futzing with stuff right away with a trial account and pay once you're satisfied all your desired pegs have holes (or the other way around, no judgment). The trial's good for a week, after which your account will be disabled and you'll have to make a deposit to get your reins back.

*MP-WP via shinohai lives here.

*NFS doesn't use CPanel or the like, but you'll find database setup under the mysql tab (start a "process" first, then you can create a db).

*To install MP-WP via SSH, open a bash terminal, and enter ssh your-username@ssh-hostname (both of these are given under the sites tab at NFS). Grab the tar.gz above with wget, tar -zxvf it, and get everything out of the "blog" directory and into the root3 with mv blog/* ./ and rmdir ./blog/, unless you've got other plans for your site. Get all yer db information correctly assembled in wp-config.php using nano.

*Your new digs will likely be decked with php "errors" in the form of warnings about deprecation and various other superficial complaints. If, like me, you give no shits about these, stick the following into wp-config.php:


ini_set('display_errors', 'Off');
ini_set('error_reporting', E_ALL );
define('WP_DEBUG', false);
define('WP_DEBUG_DISPLAY', false);

*MP-WP is themeless. If you want a theme other than the two that come standard with a new WP installation, you'll have to find one that's about as old as MP-WP itself unless you feel like some Seriously Escalated Futzing. If you see a theme you like, go to its page, scroll down to "Browse the Code", click on the Development Log, and see if there's a suitably wrinkled version there. The vast majority'll only go back a few months to a year, whereas you want nine years or more. For what it's worth, I did try activating theme versions in the 6 - 8 year old range, all of which failed immediately (typically via 'theme is broken, reverting to default').

*At some point you'll probably want to upload something like a style sheet or who knows what. I'd never uploaded via SSH before but found it's a lot less annoying than using the typical graphical interface drag-and-drop. Open a new bash terminal, cd to the directory where the file(s) you want to upload are located, and use scp to get it done:


scp local/dir/with/item/to/upload your-username@ssh-hostname:path/to/directory/where/stuff/should/go

You'll need to specify the full path, /home/public and all.

*I attempted to import a full mysql dump of my previous site, which fundamentally broke shit to the degree of wiping the contents of all pages. Importing individual tables of interest however proved unproblematic; if you're like me and pretty much just want your posts and comments, extracting these from a dump is as easy as


sed -n -e '/DROP TABLE.*`name_of_table_you_want`/,/UNLOCK TABLES/p' existing-mysql-dump.sql > solitary-table.sql

and then you can compress these and import them into the corresponding tables in your new database.

*Trilema's spiffy footnotes don't ship with MP-WP, for some reason. The plugin's called WP-Footnotes by Simon Elvery, and you can grab it here --a cursory search of WordPress' plugin directory didn't turn it up, I imagine for sins against modernity merde. Grab it, rename it to footnotes.php, copy it into your wp-content/plugins directory and activate it in the "plugins" section of WordPress' admin.

That's about it, enjoy your downgrade. If you run into any problems not covered here, please pop into #trilema and moan.

Edit October 25th: Comments ended up needing a little tweak; all comments other than admin resulted in a complaint about the author and email fields being required despite having been filled out. This was likely due to my messing around with themes, but should you run into this, make sure the $suffix line in your wp-comments-post.php matches that of the line starting with php? $suffix = in the comments.php file within your theme directory (mind that only the line in comments.php gets wrapped in the php tags).

  1. For instance, in the logs, where asciilifeform's most recent accolade of the host in question caught me in a moment of hostlessness. []
  2. 2007, nearly pleistocene! []
  3. /home/public/ by default, ftr []

2 Responses to “A Compendium of Possibly Helpful Stuffs for Erecting Mircea Popescu's WordPress with Nearly Free Speech Hosting”

  1. | *MP-WP is themeless.

    Actually after some discussion on further development, I did fish out the basic themes. I expect it's quite feasible to modify either of these to suit, if digging through the garbage pile of modernity turns out too burdensome.

  2. hanbot says:

    Yeah, the "two that come standard with a new WP installation" could've been better put as being part of MP-WP. Oh what great luxuries pass not noticed by those who build atop gifted foundations etc! I ended up dicking around with "default", not wanting to perpetuate my previous site instance's reliance on a js-heavy wtfathontheme.

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