Custom WordPress Installation

Teli Adlam —  July 7, 2009

I install WordPress a lot. Unfortunately, there are some things that I don’t care for with the current WordPress default installation files.

When you’re doing one or two installations every so often, it’s no big, but for me it saves more time to tweak the installation files once so that I don’t need to worry about tweaking it on the backend later.

What are these tweaks?

  • Custom admin username, admin display name, blog description, default category, and blog URL (I have a tendency of installing the WordPress files in their own directory separate from the blog’s home page)
  • I’ve never been a huge fan of the phone home feature, so I’ve removed the blog address when checking for updates
  • Although security by obscurity isn’t the greatest security defense, I still don’t feel comfortable advertising my blogging software and version, hence the WP generators have been removed from the head/RSS meta completely
  • The default links and post/page/comment have been omitted because, frankly, I get tired of manually deleting them from every new installation
  • Since the autosave/revision feature is overkill and DB bloat in most of my cases, I’ve added a line to the wp-config-sample.php file to disable it by default (of course, this only applies to installations that don’t already have an existing wp-config.php file handy)

Custom WP Installation Screen

Normally I don’t release these tweaks since they’re for my own personal use, but this time around, I figured why not?

Before downloading and using these WordPress files, please make sure you’re alright with the above—if not, don’t use them. Also, these files come with no warranties or guarantees—i.e. use at your own risk. If your server blows up or catches fire (highly unlikely), you’re on your own. 🙂

Without further ado, here you go: WordPress 2.8 Custom

Also, when you’re done with the installation it’s important that you delete or rename your install.php and upgrade.php files.

Teli Adlam

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12 responses to Custom WordPress Installation

  1. This is a really good topic, we do a lot of installs and always make a bunch of post-installation changes. Can you post a how-to on what you did to make the customizations? That would be quite interesting.

  2. At eWeb Marketing Management we are constantly installing, creating and managing blogs for clients. I am really liking what you have done with your custom install configuration and we are going to do some testing with it later today. Thanks for making this available.

  3. I’ve just installed for my site and always make a bunch of post-installation changes. Can you post the methods what you did to make the customizations?

  4. noahfischer7971 August 4, 2009 at 6:55 pm

    This is an excellent topic. You gathered lots of informations and tips. I believe they will help for the users. But the details procedure of making customizations would be great. thanks

  5. Scaffold Towers August 15, 2009 at 8:32 am

    That’s fantastic, thankyou!

    I love wordpress but do wonder sometimes why they don’t take some of the annoying idiosynchrosies & make them easier & more convenient – just like you’ve done!

    Have you offered this to wordpress?

  6. Didn’t know that this was possible. At the moment, I don’t do enough WordPress installs to need this. But, this is great to know in case I get to that level. Thanks!

  7. I completely agree with the above. There’s so much to wordpress that needs to be changed after a fresh install. I still find it amazing that the permalinks are defaulted as they are, everyone who knows anything about SEO changes them right off. Thanks for sharing the files as well, I don’t need them, but it’s a nice gesture for you to share it with others, kudos.

  8. WP 2.8.4 has the privacy set to invisible to search engine. Have to manually reset it to visible. Not sure if the latest version has the same problem. FYI.

  9. Nice work. But agreed with Matt, please more closely write about every tweak.

  10. Thanks Teli. I never cared of these stuffs about WP. I like to ask you one thing. I created a blog last week. I like to make it dofollow. I don’t know its dofollow or no follow by default. If it is no follow, I like to make it do follow to promote other websites. How to do that?

  11. This a nice post however i do disagree with some of it, default pages are there to show a template working correctly and allow relative newbies (which lets face it is who mainly uses WP without doing install edits) to see how a template will work completely without needing to spend time adding content.

    the revision thing i don’t find as overkill especially if your allowing clients to edit the content, ok hide it from them in the backend so they can’t play with it but it is needed, and as for your theory on does it bloat the DB well it may increase its size but it doesn’t slow it down and if you have your own server or a relatively nice host the space doesnt matter, further than that unless your site is unduly large with lots of edits this point is irrelevant my seo blog site is 2 years old with over 100 posts each of which has multiple edits as do all the pages … the db is still only 3mb … im not sure if you fill your db with rubbish or what but this point is irrelevant.

  12. I was actually wondering the same thing… this is WAY useful stuff. And I wouldn’t mind being able to create my own custom installs… Very cool though!