Blog updates 2.08: WordPress security upgrade and Openads

It’s been a long while since I posted a blog update but it’s never too late to post one every once in a while.

This blog, along with all the blogs under this domain have just been upgraded to WordPress 2.3.3 (a marathon upgrade session last night!) in order to address the security issue raised by the WP guys. Thus here is the customary repitition quote from the WP blog about this security upgrade:

WordPress 2.3.3 is an urgent security release. If you have registration enabled a flaw was found in the XML-RPC implementation such that a specially crafted request would allow a user to edit posts of other users on that blog.

If memory serves me correct, this is one of the quickest succession of WP upgrades in years. It’s not that WP 2.3 is less stable or buggier than the previous versions, it’s just that these new bugs or issues come up along the way and are found thanks to the dedicated WP community who has made it their mission and passion to continually improve WordPress. Kudos to all of them!

A treat for future sponsors

Last Monday, I installed Openads, that free, open-source and popular ad server package from Openads organization. I’ve decided to install this ad server to run the existing and future ads on this blog except for the current text link ads scattered throughout this site. (And is what’s Google punishing me for T.T)

The benefits:

  • More reliable metrics about ad performance for my advertisers – advertisers love metrics, with Openads I’ll satisfy their needs to know almost every detail of their ads’ performance on this blog.
  • A centralized method of managing ads on this blog – Instead of uploading ad banners in my uploads folder then doing some barebones html/php code for it to be displayed on my blog, Openads will do most of the dirty jobs for me and offer a lot more control over the ads.
  • Ads not dependent on the kind of WP theme I’m using or going to use – Changing themes has become a sort of habit for me, it gives a fresh reboot to my blog, readers and a lot of other good things and so I don’t want to hindered in switching themes just because the current ads will loose their optimization in the next theme reboot.

Hopefully, with this new feature, advertisers would be encouraged more to buy ad space on this blog. Besides, I’ll always throw in some bonuses just to sweeten the deal and make advertising on this blog more worth the buck. If you’re curious as to what those bonuses are, you’ll have to advertise on this blog first. It’s negotiable and you can start the ball rolling here.

Behind the scenes cleanup

The other latest updates or changes to this blog are internal. I removed the plugins I do not use or will not use in the next 6 months or so. The WP database has also been checked for errors, cleaned up and optimized via phpMyAdmin.

SEO and optimization

This is the second or third post where you’d notice that the permalink is quite different from the post’s actual title. It’s because I’ve been using the Post Slug feature to shorten my permalinks and pack them with more relevant keywords for greater SEO benefits. A simple yet powerful SEO tool built right into WordPress.

To speed the load times of this blog and its pages, I’m interested in installing PHP Speedy, a script automatically speeds up download time of your pages by compressing all the files in one go instead of pulling the individual elements separately. The result is a reduction in the number of HTTP requests. (Thanks to Yuga for the heads up) Of course, I’ll have to check with my current host to see if they’re servers will be fine with this script. Any one else who’s interested or who has already tried this script?

That’s all for now. More on how things will pan out in my next blog update post.

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