Yesterday I spent most the day configuring WordPress MultiSite. This is a feature that the WordPress team introduced in version 3.0 and expanded upon in version 3.1. This allows me to basically run my own blogging service – similar to WordPress.com or Blogger.
So, I now can run my own blogging service – what is the benefit of doing this? I have no current plans to offer keithmcd.com blogs, however the benefit I have in doing this is that I can now manage all the sites my family has under one global umbrella.
However, last night, I found that after I had already migrated three other sites to the new platform, my main site (KeithMcD.com), was exhibiting some oddities in the blog posts. A “Â” was showing up at somewhat-random places in all posts regardless of how far back I went, but was not showing up in the database itself. However, new posts I created to test had no such characters shown. It turns out this was a remnant of my early WordPress days.
Back in the days before WordPress 2.1.3, the database used latin1_swedish_ci collation for whatever reason. As such, my blog was using that for all tables created at that time onward. Any new blogs I created were created with later versions and as such, were created with utf8_general_ci, so did not have this issue. So, now that I knew what was going wrong, how to fix this?
First, you have to take a complete backup of all the affected tables. After I had a dump of those tables, I simply edited the CHARSET which is used by those tables and re-imported the tables. My dump included drop statements so the tables were dropped then recreated immediately which would minimize any issues from random WordPress tables in a production environment just suddenly going missing. However, this didn’t quite fix it. It made the “Â” visible in the database table. Next, I had to run the following SQL statement which replaced the “Â” with nothing and cleared up this issue.
UPDATE wp_posts SET post_content = REPLACE(post_content, ‘Â’, ”);
I haven’t checked other tables to see if they are effected as well, but this resolves the user-visible items at the very least.
So, with those issues fixed I can now shift my attention to migrating two remaining sites and fixing any issues which may crop up from those as well.
This brings me to a minor topic which is this: the KeithMcD logo is in dire need of a refresh. Have any ideas or design suggestions? Currently there isn’t much of a logo – it is really just the favicon which is pretty bad and lacks any design at all.