Overview and Setup

Summary
Overview and Setup
OverviewLnBlog is a web-based blogging system and “mini-CMS”.
RequirementsLnBlog requires PHP 5.3 and the ability to write files to the web server.
InstallationThe setup process for LnBlog is entirely web-based and mostly painless.
UpgradingUpgrading LnBlog is normally pretty simple.
LicenseLnBlog: A simple file-based weblog focused on design elegance.

Overview

LnBlog is a web-based blogging system and “mini-CMS”.  It is written in PHP and requires no database or other server software - data is stored in text and XML files.

In terms of functionality, LnBlog includes support for all the basic features you would expect from a blogging system: comments, TrackBacks, Pingbacks, RSS feeds, file uploads, etc.  A single LnBlog installation allows you to create multiple independent weblogs with multiple user accounts.  This feature is ideal for managing multiple sub-sites on the same web site.

One the main design goals of LnBlog is flexibility.  To this end, it includes a theme system and a plugin system to allow user extensions.  The theme system is powerful, allowing you to change virtually every element on a page, yet flexible enough that you can override one file for one blog without having to change or copy anything else.  Various page elements, such as the sidebar, are provided by plugins and can be removed or re-arranged from the plugin management page.

Requirements

LnBlog requires PHP 5.3 and the ability to write files to the web server.  LnBlog does support running with safe_mode enabled by using an FTP connection to the local host.  However, it is preferable to simply use a server configuration that allows access to the filesystem.

You can use any web server or operating system.  LnBlog is tested on Windows with IIS and Linux with Apache, but it should run on anything that rung PHP 5.3 or greater.  No database or special extensions are required.

If you want to use LnBlog in a language other than English, then the PHP gettext and iconv extensions are highly recommended, but not strictly required.  The CURL extension is also recommended for Pingback and TrackBacks, but this is not strictly required either.

Installation

The setup process for LnBlog is entirely web-based and mostly painless.  Just download the distribution ZIP file and follow these steps.

1)Unzip the LnBlog archive into a directory on your hard drive.  You should remove the version number from the directory name to make upgrades easier in the future.
2)Upload the LnBlog directory to your web server.
3)Point your web browser to the LnBlog directory on your web server.  This will start the setup process.
4)Pick the type of file writing you want.  See the fsconfig.php documentation for details.  These days, “native” will probably be the right choice for most people.
5)Create a user account.  This initial user will be a system administrator.
6)Log in with the account you just created.
7)Start creating new users and weblogs.

For users who wish to install LnBlog from source, the procedure is similar, except that instead of using the distribution ZIP archive, you would do the following.

1)Clone the LnBlog Mercurial repository using “hg clone https://hg.skepticats.com/lnblog /path/to/www/LnBLog”, where “/path/to/www” is the path to a web-accessible portion of your web server.
2)Change to the LnBlog clone directory and run “composer install --no-dev”.  If you want to build the documentation or distribution archives, you will need to run simply “composer install” to get the development dpeendencies.
3)Continue with the instructions above starting at step 3.

Upgrading

Upgrading LnBlog is normally pretty simple.  Assuming your LnBlog installation is in a folder named “LnBlog”, then you would do the following to perform a clean upgrade.

1)Rename your old LnBlog directory on the server to LnBlog-old.
2)Upload the new version into a folder named LnBlog.
3)Copy the contents of your LnBlog-old/userdata folder into LnBlog/userdata, overwriting any existing files.

If you keep all your non-standard plugins and themes in your userdata folder (which is recommended), then this will result in a clean installation of the new version with all your settings carried over.  If for some reason the new version does not work as expected, this method will allow you to revert to the old version by simply deleting the new LnBlog folder and renaming LnBlog-old to LnBlog.

Alternatively, you can perform a “quick and dirty” upgrade by simply uploading everything except the userdata folder from the new version to your existing LnBlog folder.  This method is useful if you have added any custom files outside the userdata folder, e.g. to the themes or plugins directories.

In some cases, a new version of LnBlog will incorporate changes to the directory structure used for blog storage.  In these cases, it is necessary to upgrade existing blogs to use the new structure.  Note that this is normally not required, so you do not need to perform an upgrade unless the release notice specifically directs you to do so.  The upgrade steps are as follows.

1)Go to the LnBlog administration page and log in as an administrator.
2)In the “Upgrade Functions” section of the page, select your blog’s path in the “upgrade to current version” drop-down box.
3)Click the “Upgrade” button and wait until the page has finished loading.  When it completes, you should see a status message.
4)Repeat for each blog you created using LnBlog.

Note that upgrading your blog is not required for every version upgrade of LnBlog, although doing it anyway won’t hurt anything.

License

LnBlog: A simple file-based weblog focused on design elegance.  Copyright © 2005 Peter A.  Geer pag.nosp@m.eer@skeptic.nosp@m.ats.com

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.  See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc., 675 Mass Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA.

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