Author Archives: Sanjeev Mishra

About Sanjeev Mishra

I spend most of my time around WordPress and related plugins. It is almost impossible to resist myself from sharing good tips, tutorials and updates related to the platform. After all, I am a blogger by passion.

How to Create Product Documentation with Documentor

To understand a newly released product and its usage, we mostly depend on the documentation or tutorials released by the developer. It helps in understanding the features and how to use the same. Without a proper documentation, most of the features of a well-developed product may remain unused by its users. Most of the developers find it boring or waste of time to build a good documentation but here is a WordPress plugin named ‘Documentor‘ to make their life easier. In this article, I will talk about Documentor for WordPress with which you can create online documentation of a product very easily.

What is Documentor?

Documentor is a WordPress plugin to create, maintain and release a product documentation in Ajax or One-page In-line format. It also comes with Print, Email features. Print feature allows you to take a print-friendly copy of complete documentation for offline reading. Documentor also adds User Feedback option at the end of the documentation. It allows users to post their feedback about the documentation and finally it helps the developer in understanding the user’s requirements.

Ajax and One-Page Layout

There are two options to show the documentation – Ajax and In-line Layout. In case of Ajax, each tutorial will load on the same page on-click. On the other hand, in case of in-line layout, all tutorials will remain open on the page and will be highlighted when clicked in the left menu. Single page layout is very helpful for tutorials as the user will keep reading the documentation without leaving the page. Documentor handles that part very effectively.

Installation and Usage

Well, I installed Documentor on one of our product site and it was a piece of cake to create a documentation page like the one below.

Documentations created with Documentor

You need to upload and activate the plugin. Once activated, there is a dedicated panel to create documentation. Under that panel, you can either add regular posts, pages inside the documentation or add fresh content via in-line editor.

Once added some tutorials inside the documentation, you can reorder the tutorials using Drag and Drop method.

To embed the documentation, you can use shortcode or template tag. It allows you to have documentation embedded inside any post or page. Just create a new blank page and enter the Documentor shortcode over there. It comes with QuickTag button as well which allows you to paste the shortcode of the Documentation using a button on the editor panel.

With Documentor, you can create unlimited documentation, each with the same or different skin and layout.

Documentor dashboard gallery

Mobile Friendly

Documentor is responsive and it works great on al devices sizes. So once you create and embed the documentation or tutorial with Documentor, it will be mobile friendly out of box.

Expectations from future updates

Documentor is a perfect choice for creating online product documentation and is very helpful for the solo developers or an application development company. There are few things which I would like to see in this plugin.

  • Rewrite rule to have pretty URLs for the tutorials
  • Documentor’s own WordPress Theme especially designed for Documentation purpose
  • Inbuilt social sharing buttons


Documentor seems to be a perfect choice for product documentation purpose. It reduces time and effort to create and maintain product documentation. WordPress CMS as back-end allows us to put the site live in just few minutes and then have helpful documentation with Documentor plugin.

If you are looking to create documentation or knowledge base or tutorial page for any newly developed or existing products, your search may end on Documentor WordPress plugin.

WordPress Plugin to Help You Write Long Articles

Goal set for 150 words and color auto changed

Goal set for 150 words and color auto changed

It is recommended to write long and details articles with in-depth research and dense keywords. Of course quality matters but quantity does also play an important role. It is highlighted at so many places that Google and other search engines also like detailed articles rather than just short piece of content. Search Engine Land created a video explainig SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and here he also highlights the important of the length of content.

So how many words are enough for a good SEO? Well it depends on the topic that you are writing about but I would say any article or post should have minimum 300 words (its like under that you are in critical zone, don’t press the publish button) but you can write more than 500 words if you have that much details.

To achive this minimum level target, you should keep any eye on the number of words written in the article. WordPress editor shows the number of words at bottom-left corner of the editor but that is not very encouraging as you need to keep checking that number. We at WPOptimus developed a plugin named ‘Editor Color on Word Count which is available for free on WordPress repository, helps you in achieving the set goal of word count.

It is a simple plugin which changes the background color of the editor based on the number set on settings panel. For example, you can set value as,

Set Goals on Settings Page

0 – 100 words –  Red

101 – 200 words – Yellow

201 – 500 words – Green

501+ – Blue and so on

once you reach 200 words on editor, it automatically changes the color to Yellow and you keep writing. Now you know that you have crossed 200 word counts and once you reach 300, it changes to green. (Well, I just crossed 300 words and the editor changed to green)  Isn’t it cool that you are always notified about your achievements in terms of number of words? Yes, it is.

I am using this plugin since last couple of weeks and with my 5+ years of blogging experience, I can tell you that you will love this plugin for sure.

Settings Panel


The number of words can be changed from settings page of the plugin. YOu can set any number as your goals and the plugin will work accordingly.

You can customize the background color and choose to have colors of your own choice. There is a color picker present for all goals and you can easily set color of your choice. Apart from that, you can define as many goals as you want and have a colorful editor.

If you have any suggestions or feedback related to this plugin, please feel free to post comment below or send us a tweet.  Keep blogging.

WordPress 4.0 Multisite Enhancements Like Shared SSL, Networks Inside Network

WordPress developers have started working on 4.0 release which is scheduled for August 2014. Expected features like Front-end editor, Media grid library are really awesome but this time, the focus is on Multisite (MU) as well. With WordPress 3.0, the MU and Single Site WordPress are merged together and you can enable network by making changes in wp-config.php file. It allows you to create a network of sites using the same wp-admin and wp-content folders.

There are certain issues or limitation related to SSL certificates and sub-domain/sub-directory network options and that’s why the 4.0 focus is to minimize those issues. Here are few prominent issues with the current version of WordPress MU.

Important Issues with WordPress Mullisite

1. Shared SSL Certificates doesn’t work on network sites

2. Setup Wildcard DNS for sub-domain network

3. Sub-directory or sub-domain options are confusing for people as well as for the performance of the site

4. Duplicate work or data for each site setup, no selected activation for plugins or themes

5. No Multiple Network (Network Inside a Network) option

6. Create Open network inside a closed network

WordPress 4.0 is expected to introduce shared SSL certificate option to access network sites as well as admin pages with secured access. There are more SSL improvements on its way for accessing network sites using domain mapping.

Networks inside a network is a very important features expected to come in WordPress 4.0. It will enable you to have sub-domain network (just like we do in current version) and then enable network inside that network as well. For example, the main site will have network like and And then will have its own network like and and so on.

Sub and Sub1 network can have their own super admins and network administrator can activate or deactivate selected plugins or themes on each network. This is how single WordPress installation can become a vast network platform. Using Domain mapping, one can point different domains to different network and use or manage that accordingly.

Right now there are plugins available to solve few issues out of the ones listed above,

More updates on Multisite enhancements are expected in next few days. I will update this post accordingly.

Escape Shortcode and Display as Syntax on Page or Post

WordPress comes with so many shortcodes to execute defined functions inside a page or post content area. but while writing a tutorial or documenting a WordPress product, we need to show the syntax of a shortcode and at that time, we do not want to execute that shortcode over there. Using image to show the shortcode is not a good idea as the visitor can not copy the text from an image. In this tutorial, I will show the way to escape the shortcode show that as a syntax.

[gallery link="file" columns="2" ids="813,814,815,816"]

1. Double wrap – Shortcode syntax starts with large open bracket and ends with closing bracket. If you use double brackets while opening and closing, that shortcode will appear as text and will not execute. For example, I have created a gallery with few images and now I like to show the syntax of that gallery, here is what I need to write on the editor,

[gallery link="file" columns="2" ids="813,814,815,816"]

and here is how it looks if used with single brackets,
Gallery visible in the site,

For opening and closing shortcodes, you just need to use double brackets once. For example,


2. Use HTML Entity – Rather than using the [ and ] brackets, you can use HTML entity counterpart for these brackets. For example,


It will be visible as below,


But the main problem with this technique is that if you change the layout from text to visual the formatting of HTML entity will be reset to normal brackets and will execute the shortode rather than showing that.

It is recommended to use the double brackets method to show the shortcode syntax.

Solved – Yoast and Google XML Sitemap Blank Page Error in WordPress

We all know the importance of a sitemap in SEO field as it is one of the ways to tell Google and other search engines about the content of your site. Google indexes site links faster if a proper sitemap is submitted through Google Webmaster Tool. Yoast WordPress SEO and Google XML Sitemap plugins are the most popular sitemap generators for a WordPress site. But sometimes you may see a blank page appearing after you try to open the generated sitemap XML link. On Firefox browser, it shows the error as “Error loading stylesheet: An unknown error has occurred”. The XML Sitemap blank page error is very frustrating and that’s why we need to fix the same in priority.


Here are the possible solutions for this error,

1. Using CDN – If you are using any CDN service to load the static content on your site, that may cause this problem. You need to exclude the string .xsl from being rewritten. For example, if you are using WP Super Cache to include the CDN URL, mention .xsl in the field “Exclude if substring” beside the .php value (comma separated) and save the changes. Clear the browser as well as server’s cache and see if it helps.

2. Change the folder permission to 777 for the folder ‘google-sitemap-generator’ available under wp-content/plugins folder.

Share your thoughts if the above suggested tip helped you in getting the sitemap XML generated properly.

How to replace WordPress Search with Google Custom Search

WordPress Search functionality needs many improvements but we can’t blame that as its developers are not search engine experts. For complete search results based on everything indexed and served as per the typed keyword, it is recommended to use Google Custom Search. It is a product of search giant so there is no question of its capability and if I say you can monetize your search results, that will be like cherry on top of the cake.

With Google Custom Search implementation and Adsense† sign-up, you can monetize the results as it runs few advertisements from Google Adwords program.


To replace WordPress default search with Google Custom Search, go to the Custom Search page. Sign in with your Google Account and click on “Add” search engine. Provide the details about your website where you need to embed Google Custom Search.


After that you need to provide an XML file or sitemap to let Google index the pages from your site. It helps Google index pages quickly. You can generate sitemap file using the plugin Google XML Sitemap.

To make money from Custom Search, you need to connect the search engine to Google Adsense account. Click on the “Make Money” tab and connect to your Google Adsense account.

Change the Style and Get the Code


To change the layout and style of Google Custom Search, click on the “Look and Feel” option on left sidebar panel. You can choose between different layouts depending on your requirement and then click on the button “Save and Get Code”. The next page will show you the embed code for this site.


Implement Google Custom Search

To use Google Custom Search instead of default WordPress search, you need to make some changes in the theme’s file.

Create or edit searchform.php file in theme folder – Check if the active theme’s folder is having a file named searchform.php. If yes, edit the file from Appearance ==> Editor window and remove everything from that file. Paste the embed code that you copied from Google Custom Search page. Update the file.

If there is no such file in your theme, create a new file with the same as searchform.php and paste the custom search code in that file. Upload the same to theme’s folder.

Now all the search functionalities will show result in Google Custom Search. To add a new search box in sidebar, drag and drop the “Search” widget in widget ready area from Appearance ==> Widgets window and see how the Google Custom Search works.

WordPress is also having a free plugin named Google Custom Search (link) for those who do not want to edit or create a PHP file.

†Adsense is a CPC (Cost Per Click) based monetization platform. When someone clicks on the advertisements shown along with your site’s search results, you earn money out of that.

Did you find this articles helpful. Share your thoughts through comments below.

Download Twenty Thirteen WordPress Theme before official release

We have posted the first look of Twenty Thirteen WordPress theme which is very colourful and refreshing. Apart from being responsive and a designer theme, it is really fast. The theme is not officially released yet on but you can checkout the demo on this page. If you want to download and use Twenty Thirteen theme on your local site or any of your live site running on self hosted WordPress, then here is the way to download the theme from WordPress.

Twenty Thirteen is not yet released on but it is available on the SVN of You can download the theme from there by using any SVN client. We have already written an article on how to download the theme and use that on self hosted site. Using a SVN client like SVN Tortoise, you can download Twenty Thirteen and test on your site. You need to use the ‘URL of Repository’ as “” and download the files on local system.

Enter the details in SVN Client

SVN Client downloading Twenty Thirteen Theme WordPress

Download process started on SVN


Now you can upload the folder on your site’s hosting server inside the ‘wp-content/themes’ folder and activate the theme. After the official release, you may need to re-upload the theme on your server if it releases with few fixes or improvements.

Update – You can also download the Twenty Thirteen WordPress theme using this direct link.

Post your thoughts about this new theme of WordPress.

First Look of Twenty Thirteen WordPress Theme – Bold and Beautiful

WordPress team releases a bundled theme every year. After Twenty Ten, Twenty Eleven and Twenty Twelve, now they have introducedTwenty Thirteen‘ WordPress theme. In every bundled theme, WordPress team tried to improve the layout and features but till now all three theme were having a common thing and that was minimal layout with more-n-more white area. But this time, they have played with lot many colours. Twenty Thirteen is a colourful theme with bold colours used widely in all parts of the theme.

First look of Twenty Thirteen WordPress Theme

Twenty Thirteen WordPress Theme - First Look

Checkout the demo of Twenty Thirteen WordPress theme.

Mark Jaquith writes about the boldly used colours in this theme as ,

What you’ll notice first is the colors. Way more use of color than a bundled WordPress theme has had before. Each post format has its own color, so each is distinct, yet they are all complimentary. The bold colors encourage authors to try out all the different formats. This color extends the full width of the window, which breaks your blog up into a lush, segmented timeline. This effect is even more pronounced on mobile browsers, where the screen can be dominated by one or two posts at a time, in all of their chromatic fullness.

What if I want the old white-minimal layout

With the first look of Twenty Thirteen, it appears that some people may find the theme very refreshing at the same time some may find it over bold for their site/blog and still want the same old minimal layout for their site. WordPress team has decided to provide the Twenty Twelve theme bundled with the default WordPress set-up so that one can choose between the minimal canvas of Twenty Twelve and a designer look of Twenty Thirteen.

404 page of Twenty Thirteen


Post your comments and thoughts about the first look of newly released Twenty Thirteen Theme of WordPress.

10 Super Plugins to Take Scheduled Backups of WordPress Posts, Images and Database

Scheduled backup for WordPress Sites

Whether you use WordPress CMS for personal or professional blogging, eCommerce portal, news or magazine columns, it is very important to take backups. To avoid any accidental damage or data wipe-out because of some unwanted operations on hosting server, you should take backups of all data including the complete database, images and other files. Either you may choose to host the backup on your home PC or you can upload them directly to the cloud storage like Dropbox, Amazon, Google Drive or to any other you prefer. You may also choose to store the backups on other server, for example, if you own two different websites and hosting them on totally different servers (or may be different hosting providers), you may choose to host the backup of one site on the other server.

The charm of WordPress lies in plugins and in case of taking scheduled backups, plugins play an important role. There are so many plugins available to take backup of a WordPress site on different locations. Here are few free plugins which still works without much effort.

Free and working plugins for scheduled backups

1. WordPress Backup to Dropbox – You get 2GB of free storage on Dropbox account and can purchase more storage by paying a premium. Dropbox is easy to access and one can perform too many awesome things on the files stored over there. Using this plugin, you can schedule a backup of your WordPress Database (SQL dump) and all the files and folder (wp-content, wp-include etc.). That means, all your instaled plugins and themes will also be stored on Dropbox account. You can restore your site anytime using the SQL dump and the files.

2. XCloner Backup and Restore – It can take backup of any sites running on PHP/MySQL and for WordPress there is a dedicated plugin available for free. It takes backup in the format of TAR which takes less space. YOu can retore the backup suing the same plugin with XCloner.php script anytime.

3. BackWPup – Really good one. This plugin can take scheduled backup and store them on Amazon S3, Dropbox, Google Drive, Microsoft Azure or SugarSync wherever you prefer. YOu can also chose the format that you want for the backup file (tar, tar.gz, zip etc. are available)

4. wp Time Machine – Schedule the backup with the help of this plugin and apart from Amazon S3, Dropbox, you can also save the backup file using the FTP of other hosting server that you own.

5. BackUpWordPress – Get your backup in email. I know, in case of a bigger site with so much data, it is not a good idea to have backup emailed to you but you can choose to have only the SQL dump emailed.

6. Simple Backup – Before taking the backup, this plugin actually optimizes the database of your site and then it takes the backup of the complete site including the files.

7. VM Backups – Another plugin to send you the backup as an attachment to your email ID. The attachment will have a zipped version of site’s files and SQL dump.

Premium Services to take Backup of WordPress

8. VaultPress – It is a premium site backup and security service provided by the same company which is behind the WordPress development i.e. Automattic. Once you purchase the service, you need to install a plugin on your WordPress dashboard and then it starts taking backup of your site real-time. On the VaultPress dashboard, you can see the backups and may restore them any time. Here is the pricing and plans of VaultPress as of now,


9. BackupBuddy – It is a premium plugin available to take backup of your sites on different locations like Amazon S3, Dropbox like clouds or email the backup to your inbox. YOu can also use FTP to store the backup on any other hosting server that you own. Here is the pricing for this plugin.


10. BlogVault – It is also a premium backup service for WordPress sites. This service is cheaper than VaultPress but here you do not get the extra security scanning feature that you are getting in case of VaultPress. Here is the pricing for BlogVault.


Final Words

Free plugins work perfect if you know what is SQL dump and how to upload the WordPress files again  in case of recovery. On clouds like Amazon S3, Dropbox and Google Drive, you can have all your backup data without any problem. The pricing for Amazon S3 is very low so you can use that service for unlimited hosting. My final words are, if your life is not dependent (not making money or doing self branding) on your WordPress site, use any of the free plugins as per your preference, but if your site is what all you have, go for VaultPress.

Download and Install Any Theme on Self Hosted WordPress of .org is the free blogging platform where you do not need to worry about the hosting and server maintenance, and it is free. But at the same time, you do not have permission to install plugins which is there in self hosted WordPress (read full comparison). You can install free or premium themes on self hosted WordPress as well as, but what if you want a theme for your self hosted WordPress (downloaded from which is available only on Sometimes, team releases a free theme for .com users and may be some delay in releasing the same for .org users. For example, a theme named “Ideation and Intent” which is a photography theme with really good options and it is free to use on but the team has not released the same theme for .org users yet. Once downloaded, you can customize the theme as per your requirement and make any changes as per your design.

Here is how you can download and install the same theme on your self hosted WordPress CMS.

  1. Install a SVN software on your computer. I am using ‘Tortoise SVN‘ in this example.
  2. Create a new folder on local disk (on desktop or anywhere else) and name it as ‘ideation-and-intent’
  3. Right-Click on that folder and select ‘SVN Checkout’
  4. Enter the URL of repository as ‘’ and click on ‘OK’

SVN download WordPress Theme

Now the download process will initiate and the complete theme will get downloaded in next few minutes.


  • Upload the folder ‘ideation-and-intent’ to wp-content/themes/ folder on hosting server
  • Activate the theme from Appearance/Themes menu on Dashboard

This is how you can download and use any free theme available on but still not released on themes showcase repository.