Tag Archives: Plugin

The Best Free WordPress Backup Plugin

Screenshot of the plugin page on WordPress.org for BackWPup

I was recently reviewing WordPress backup plugins for a Treehouse project and came across BackWPup (from the folks at MarketPress.com).  From the research I have done, this is the best featured most solid free backup option for WordPress.

It has all of the following important features

  • Backup files and/or database
  • Schedule backups
  • Create multiple backup Jobs
  • Backup to server
  • Send backups to S3, Dropbox or FTP server
  • Advanced saving, compressing and optimizing options

On most small sites (and in past Treehouse courses) I have often recommended BackUpWordPress.  However, BackUpWordPress does not allow for off site backups.

For this reason I think I’ll be switching to BackWPup as my new favorite free WordPress backup plugin.

If you have some money to spend on backups (which you should considering how important it is), I would also recommend BackupBuddy, which comes with 1GB of free off site storage as well as a lot of powerful features, like the ability to easily restore full and partial backups.

In addition to BackupBuddy, if you want to go all out, you should check out VaultPress, a subscription based super powerful automated, off site backup service from the folks at Automatic.  I choose this option for my more mission critical WordPress projects.

Google Releases It’s Own Official WordPress Plugin

Google Publisher Plugin

So many plugins have existed that integrate with Google features, especially analytics related. So, it’s interesting to see one come out from Google themselves.  Introducing the Google Publisher Plugin (beta).

Unlike some of the other plugins, at this point in it’s beta release the plugin only does two things:

  1. Let’s you easily add AdSense ads to your site
  2. Let you easily verify with your webmaster account

I’m curious to see what future features the plugin may ship with. I’m a little surprised that they didn’t ship with adding analytic code to your site, although I’m guessing since so many themes and plugins already do this they figured it wasn’t necessary.

Add ZURB Foundation Shortcodes in the WordPress Editor

Foundation Shortcode Plugin

I  recently did a workshop on building a WordPress theme with the Foundation framework. If you build your WP site with Foundation, you may find it helpful to use this plugin, Easy Foundation Shortcode, since it will give you more flexibility over the Foundation based styling you do from the content editor.

Hardcode a Ninja Form in Your WordPress Theme


I have been a big Gravity Forms supporter for a long time, however, I’m beginning to get more interested in Ninja Forms, which is a free WordPress form builder and also quite powerful.

If you decide to build your WP forms with Ninja Forms, you may find the ninja_forms_display_form() function helpful since it let’s you hardcode a form directly into a template.

Most of the time I add my forms as shortcodes, but on occassion it’s necessary to hardcode in the form to the theme files itself. Here’s the full documentation for the ninja_forms_display_form hook.

Cool Front-end WordPress Editor from Raptor Editor

Raptor Editor Banner

I wrote recently about the front-end editor, Barley, for WordPress. Today I’m posting about another 3rd party service offering a front-end editor for WordPress, WP Raptor.

This plugin has a slightly different interface, but same basic principle: give users the ability to edit their site without going to the control panel.  Here is a screenshot below of what it looks like in action on the demo on their main site.  I am editing the block highlighted in pink marked “Themes”:

WP Raptor Editor in Use

The trend of front-end editors in WP is growing and I think I’m going to give this one a whirl on my next simple client project.


BuddyPress Plugin for Sharing Documents in a Group

The BP Group Documents plugin does something very simple and helpful: let’s group members share documents with each other.

When building social networks for people who are planning events or doing group assignments and projects, having the ability to share documents is essential.

This plugin gives you a page in each group where users can upload files. Since it ties in with the BuddyPress activity stream you automatically get notices and notifications when comments are made or new documents are added to your groups.

An Object Oriented Template for WordPress Plugins

A while back, while working at the WordPress plugin course at Treehouse, I came across this awesome plugin from Daniel Convissor. The Object Oriented Plugin Template Solution plugin basically gives you an OO template for building your own WordPress plugin.

I didn’t end up using the template in the project, however, it was very helpful to look over and learn from. I encourage new plugin developers to check it out when you start your next plugin!