I’ve been using self-hosted WordPress installs more and more recently, for work projects and personal use. The more I’ve learned about it, the more powerful, flexible and useful I find it is, so I was wondering if I should try to distill that experience into something that other people might benefit from in the form of a Netskills workshop?

I’m aware that there are lots of great resources out there already – which really helped me learn this stuff – so I don’t want to reinvent the wheel. Rather, I see this event being a day of supported practicals,  where participants can install WordPress (locally), play with plugins and themes and start to explore how WordPress is put together and can be customised.

My provisional workshop description is below, so I’d love to hear your thoughts on whether you think this would be worthwhile and if so, what you’d want from a WordPress workshop? Note we already have an event dealing with the art of blogging, so this would focus  more on the practicalities.

Hosting your own WordPress Blog

(…suggestions for a better title than this would be appreciated!)

WordPress is the blogging platform of choice for millions of users. While wordpress.com offers a simple way to create a basic blog, there are restrictions that may frustrate those who would like more control over the style and functionality of their site. A self-hosted installation of WordPress offers complete control over your theme, plugins and more, but is more challenging to run.

This workshop will help you learn the practical skills needed to install, maintain and customise WordPress. Participants will build their own fully functional installation of WordPress on a USB drive, which can later be published or used for ongoing development.


  • Installing WordPress
  • Securing & maintaining your install
  • Themes and plugins
  • Hacking the source – customising your themes and plugins
  • Not just blogs – alternative ways to use WordPress (e.g. multiple sites, BuddyPress, CMS…)
  • Promotion, syndication and social media
  • Analytics, metrics, monitoring and impact

Who is it for?

This workshop is for anyone considering hosting their own WordPress for a blog or website. It provides an opportunity to install and customise a working WordPress site and explore what would be involved in running it in practice. While it is not a technical workshop on server administration or developing WordPress, some knowledge of HTML, CSS and perhaps a little PHP would be useful.


Photo credit: katietower via flickr (CC BY)

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