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Plugins extend and rapand thp fiinctionality nf WordPress. You may aiitomatirally install plugins frnm the WordPrese Plugin Directory or upload a plugin in .zip format via this page.

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Search for pluglne by keyword, author, or tag. Tfsrni I t I ^«rtit:h

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You moy also browse booed on the most popular taas in the Pluoin Directory: admin administration 3d5 adsense AJAX ardiive atom

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Figure 13.1

Find your plug-ins using the Add New page from the Administration page.

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Description Installation Faq screen shots Other Notes Stats Authors: skdloaL, rnilawalTe

There are hundreds of plugins and services which can provide statistics about your visitors. Ilnwever T tound that even though snmethmg like Gnogte Analytics provides an incredible depth of information, it can be overwhelming and doesn't really highlight what's mnst interesting to me as a writer. Thafs why Automattic created its own stats system, to focus on just the most popular metrics a hloggier wants to trark and provide them in a clear and concise intcrfacc.

installing this stats plugin is much like installing Akismct, all you need is to put in your API Key and Uw rest is auLomdlic.

Once it's lunniny it'll byyin collectiny infbiindtiuri about you pdyyvtyvvs, which posts and pages are the most popular, where your traffic is coming from, and what pyuple click on when liiey leave. It'll dlsu ddd d link to youi ddbhbudrd

Version 1.5.4 Other Vprqlnnc r Last Updated; 2005 10 i Rm|tilrK WnrdPrm Vi»r or higher Compatible up to; ^.U.4 Plugin homepage ■

Compatibility Your Setup

WordPress 285

Figure 13.2

Check the compatibility rating of the plug-in you're interested in with the version of WordPress you have.

To view more information about a plug-in, click the name link in the directory. This brings you to the plug-in page, either on the developer's site or on the directory itself, as shown in Figure 13.2, with additional descriptions, user comments, and such. Click items on the link bar (Installation, FAQ, Screenshots, Other Notes, and Stats) to check out even more information.

Return to the Administration page and click Install for any plug-in you want on your site. Another Description pop-up page opens. Look this over, and click Install Now. WordPress downloads the plug-in archive and unzips it to the /wordpress/wp-content/plugins directory. Click Activate Plug-in to turn on the plug-in to complete the process.

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When you browse the Plugin Directory by keyword or tag, results are displayed by most recent update. Keep an eye on the number of downloads a plug-in has before you install on the basis of an average five-star rating—unless you don't mind being the experimental guinea pig for a plug-in.

Plug-in Compatibility

One piece of information you will want to check before installing any plug-in — inside or outside of the directory—is the Requires WordPress version number (the first version of WordPress your plugin supports) and the Compatible Up To version number (the most recent version a plug-in has been tested with; ideally this would be the current stable version, or even the beta of the next version). New versions of WordPress, which appear quite frequently, can suddenly break any plug-in. With thousands of existing plug-ins, the WordPress team can't check every one to see which plugins are headed for doomsday. That testing falls to the plug-in developers. Most plug-ins work fine moving forward, but new WordPress version releases are indeed a nightmare time for plug-in developers.

Plug-ins that haven't been tested in awhile might have been abandoned as well. If the last compatible version listed is WordPress 2.0, you might want to look elsewhere.

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