Modifying your NUsites settings
Managing your privacy and visibility settings
Privacy and Visibility settings allow you to manage and control access to your site. These settings can be updated from the Dashboard > Settings > Reading section of each site dashboard under the section header Site Visibility.
It is important to note that these privacy settings control front-end (viewing) access to sites, and do not restrict administrative or editing access for those who have access to your site. There are several options for how the site privacy is configured, each of which is explained in detail below:
- Allow search engines to index this site: This makes the site completely open to the public. Search engines can index the site, and anyone that finds the site can view it.
- Discourage search engines from indexing this site: This adds a flag in the site code that instructs search engines NOT to crawl or index the site. All major search engines respect this (Google, Bing, Yahoo), but being un-indexed does not mean that nobody can access the site. Anyone that knows the URL of the site can still access the site directly, even though the site will not appear in search engines.
- Visitors must have a login: Upon visiting the site URL, users are redirected to a login page, and cannot access the site without first logging in via NetID. Any member of the Northwestern community that has an active NetID can login to the site and see its content.
- Only registered users of this site can have access: Visitors will be redirected to a login page upon trying to view the site and required to login via NetID. With this option, however, not just any NetID user can view the site by logging in – only users that you’ve explicitly added to the site (see Managing Users) will be able to view the site upon logging in.
- Only administrators can visit: Visitors will be redirected to a login page upon trying to view the site and required to login via NetID. With this option, however, not just any NetID user can view the site by logging in – only users that you’ve explicitly added to the site with the “Administrator” role (see Managing Users) will be able to view the site upon logging in.
- Anyone that visits must first provide this password: This option allows you to define a generic shared password that will be used to protect the site. Users will be redirected to a password entry page when visiting the site, and will be required to enter the password that you defined here. This password is the same for all users, and users are not required to have a NetID or be a user of the site in order to access the site.
Managing your general Wordpress settings
There are a number of settings pages within the Dashboard, which are listed as sub-pages of Dashboard > Settings. These pages allow for customization of how various components of the site will function, and should all be reviewed and set when setting up a new site (or updating an old one).
- Site Title: The title of the site will be used in the site’s header to identify the site, and also by search engines when displaying results for the site. The title should be unique, brief (< 60 characters), and identify the site easily for visitors.
- Tagline: The tagline should briefly (< 140 characters) summarize the purpose of the site and inform visitors as to what to expect from it.
- Email Address: The email address is used exclusively for administrative purposes, and should be set to the email of the site owner.
- Timezone: The timezone controls how dates and times are interpreted and displayed throughout the site. This should be set to the timezone of the owner / administrator of the site.
- Date & Time Formats: The format options here control what format dates and times are displayed in on the site.
- Default Post Category: This determines what category new posts should be assigned to by default. This can be overridden on a per-post basis.
- Default Post Format: This determines the default format / layout that new posts should use. Typically, this should be left as the default setting, but can be updated based on site needs and theme offerings.
- Default Link Category: This determines what category new links should be assigned to by default. This can be overridden on a per-link basis.
- Update Services: This is used to notify a third-party service whenever new posts are added to the site. It can be helpful for increasing traffic.
- Front Page Displays: This determines how the site homepage is populated. By default, this is set to “Your latest posts”, which will populate the site homepage with a blogroll, displaying the latest posts on. You can alternatively set this to “A static page”, taking a more traditional website approach, and select a static page to be displayed on the homepage, and a new static page on which the blogroll will appear.
- Blog Pages & Syndication Feeds Show: These settings are used for managing pagination, and control how many posts are displayed per page in the blogroll and RSS feeds.
- For each article in a feed, show: This determines how post previews are presented. If set to “Full text”, feeds will show entire articles. If set to “Summary”, feeds will show an excerpt for each post taken from the beginning of the post body content.
- Site Visibility: This controls site access and privacy. For an in-depth review of how this works, please visit the Privacy & Visibility page in the documentation.
- Default Article Settings: The first 2 options are for configuring pingbacks and external blog notifications, and should not be updated unless you are a developer and understand how these technologies work. The final option enables you to globally control whether comments are enabled by default on new articles.
- Other Comment Settings: This allows further control over comment configuration, summarized by the following:
- Require name & email when commenting.
- Require that commenters must be registered and logged users of the site in order to comment.
- Enable comments on posts to be automatically closed to new entries after X amount of days.
- Enable nested comments so that commenters can reply to other comments in a tree structure.
- Configure comment pagination to display X amount of comments per page.
- Control how comments are sorted.
- Email Me Whenever: Controls which comment actions will trigger an email notification to the site administrator.
- Before a Comment Appears: Controls whether comments require moderation before appearing on the page. If you are allowing non-logged in users to submit comments, it is highly recommended that you configure this to require manual approval for comments in order to prevent malicious or spam comments.
- Comment Moderation: Enables setting rules for forcing comments into moderation based on the number of links contained or the originating IP address.
- Comment Blacklist: Enables you to create a blacklist of words that, if found in a comment, will automatically cause the comment to be rejected. Common use cases for this are blacklisting vulgar words or hate speech.
It is generally recommended that this settings section be left with the default settings, unless you are an experienced site builder or themer.
- Image Sizes: This enables you to specify the image size settings used when embedding images within pages or posts.
It is generally recommended that this settings section be left with the default settings, unless you are an experienced site builder or developer.
- Common Settings: This allows you to define the patterns used for generating page and post URL slugs.
- Category Base: This enables setting a custom slug base pattern for the generation of category slug URLs.
- Tag Base: This enables setting a custom slug base pattern for the generation of tag slug URLs.
Some plugins that you’ve activated may define additional settings pages. Some of these plugins are documented in the documentation, whereas others are self-serve plugins and should be customized at your own risk.