Extent of WordPress Hosting at Russell Labs
No software package can do everything, and there are some limits to what you can easily create with WordPress in our Russell Labs WordPress environment. Understanding some of these limits will help you judge whether your website goals fit with our environment before you invest time in building the site and adding content. That is why we require a consulting meeting before we setup a site.
Features We Limit Access to or Turn Off
We setup the sites to maximize sustainability, both for IT and for the users. In order for your site to happily coexist with the other sites we currently host, some features are turned off. For example, if you have a site with us, you will not be able to edit the page templates, change the fonts sitewide, edit the stylesheet, or install plugins yourself. You will also not be able to change the text in the footer where the copyright statement is located. These limits are for your protection as well as ours – experiments that go badly could break your entire site. We currently provide the WordPress theme Twenty Eleven. The themes control the page layout, fonts, and colors on your site. We do a minimal amount of tweaking to customize the site headers and footers based on your department. We do not provide design services to extensively customize the “look and feel” of the site. Commercial custom site design can run hundreds to thousands of dollars due to the skill level and time required. We turn off the comments feature on our sites. Due to comment spam, turning that feature on can quickly turn a low-maintenance site into a high-maintenance one. The sites come with 150MB of storage space for your text, photos, and files (PDFs, Word docs and Excel spreadsheets).
When WordPress as We Run It May Not Meet Your Needs
So far we have created and shipped over 4 dozen WordPress sites. Over time, we have learned that these situations do not mix with WordPress in our environment:
- you have hundreds of files you want to upload to the site (e.g. PDFs, Word docs, Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint slideshows, sound recordings)
- you want to upload PowerPoint slides and have the slides appear as webpages
- you want to add video directly to the site rather than link to it on YouTube
- you have created a webpage design in Word, Dreamweaver, PowerPoint or Photoshop and want your site to look exactly like it
- you want to use a custom theme you found or purchased that doesn’t work with our setup
- you want custom programming done
- you want to create a complex menu with more than 50 entries (that includes child menu entries)
- you want an interactive forum where users can create their own accounts without your intervention and answer each other’s questions