Adding A Plugin

Plugin Menu

Welcome to Geeky Wednesday. Today I am going to talk about adding plugins to a wordpress blog.

Naturally this topic is only relevant to those who blog using WordPress, I am not familiar with the inner workings of Blogger so I don’t know how to do anything similar in blogger.

Plugins add verstility to your blog and different plugins perform different tasks. WordPress does of course have lots of information about using plugins here.

Currently there are over 12,000 different plugins available for WordPress.

You will often find lots of plugins that apprear to do the same thing when you do a search for a plugin to do a particlar job and it can be very difficult to figure out which plugin you want to use or indeed which plugin will perform the best.

In order to do a search go to your dashboard and click on Plugins. A new page will open showing you all the plugins that you are currently using, or perhaps none if you are just starting off.

Plugins Page

Click on “add new” to search for a new plugin. For this purpose I typed the words “fixed social buttons” into the search box  because I know that this is the name of the plugin.

As you can see in the picture below when the search results come back there is a star rating, this rating is a very good way to guage the quality of the plugin. If it is possible then I would advise that you use plugins wiht a high rating.

Searching for a plugin

And just to show that sometimes things are not as straighforward as they should be I could not find the plugin that I wanted for this post, even though I am using the plugin and know both the name of the plugin and the name of the author.

If you can find the plugin that you want then click on “Install Now” and if you are lucky enough to have a god server it will upload quickly and all you will have to do is click on Activate.

Previously to this green hosted server that my blog is hosted on now I was on a server which made uploading plugins very slow and laborious, even though I followed the instructions as told on screen. However sometimes it took  ages and I would start to wonder if everything was going according to plan. It looked as though worpress was having trouble however it was the server at fault and the pugins never uploaded. If you are having this problem then the fault may lie with your server, not with wordpress or the plugin.

Fixed Social Buttons

This is the website of the Fixed Social Buttons that I am using on my blog. You can see the buttons on the home page of the blog on the right hand side and the very cute buttons float as the page moves up and down.

If you wish to use this plugin wander down the page until you see the Download section and then click on the most recent version, in this case V2.4.4.4, which is the current version of the software.

Download the software and you will most likely be asked whether to unzip or save.

Save it to your downloads folder, do not unzip the file.

Go back to your Plugins page and click on “upload”, you should then see the page pictured below.

Click on Choose File and look for the zip file that you saved to your Downloads folder and click on it. Then click Install Now and the magic should happen by itself.

Installing a wordpress plugin

Once the file is installed go to Settings in the menu on the left, when it expands look down the list for Fixed Social Buttons and click on it. This is where you get to play with the plugin and decide how it should look on your lovely blog.

You choose which buttons to use, such as Follow me on Twitter, Digg it, StumbleUpon etc. Decide which style of button to use and how large it should be, then where on your blog page you want to see the buttons.

If you are using buttons such as twitter or facebook then enter your social media profile details and you should be set to go.

I hope this was helpful and if you decide to go ahead and try the plugin please let know. I am not connected in any way to the design team who developed Fixed Social Buttons, I just like how they look and when a twitter friend asked how set the buttons up I thought that it would be a good subject for a Geeky Wednesday post.

Remember if you have any geeky questions that you think I may be able to help with then I would love to hear from you, next Geeky Wednesday post will be at the beginning of next year!

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