Installing LetsEncrypt’s free SSL on Amazon Linux

Getting a free SSL certificate for your site is now easier than ever. On AWS, certificates are free and easy for any load-balanced environment you create. But what if you aren’t running a load-balanced site? If you followed my earlier guide The Ultimate Guide to WordPress on AWS EC2 then this tutorial is for you.

In this article, I’m assuming you’re running Apache on an Amazon Linux EC2 instance. We’ll install a free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt and configure it to automatically renew.


Huge Framework Update!

The best rapid-development WordPress Theme Framework just got a massive update… this is a HUGE release that brings the NOUVEAU Starter Theme Framework very close to 1.0.

In addition to sporting the brand-spanking-new Foundation for Sites 6.2, the NOUVEAU Starter Theme has received a substantial overhaul that will dramatically speed up your workflow…

  1. Foundation for Sites has been updated to the just-released version 6.2!
  2. NOUVEAU now supports PSR-4 compliant class autoloading! You’ll never have to manually include a class file again… unless you want to, for some reason.
  3. Global constants are gone. Now, all your themes paths and urls are stored as properties of the main NV class!
  4. The main NV class is now accessed via a singleton function to strictly limit the number of instances to exactly one: NV::i()
  5. PhpDocumentor docs are now included by default in a _docs folder.
  6. Although the tests folder is little more than a placeholder for now, the NOUVEAU Starter Theme Framework is getting WordPress unit tests!
  7. The entire library has gotten a thorough refactoring to standardize on a common sense WordPress coding style that still adheres to PSR-4: CamelCase classes and underscored, lower-case methods.

Of course this means the getting started guide is a bit out of date, but those changes will come shortly.

VHosts: Running Multiple Sites on a Single AWS EC2 Instance

If you want to run multiple websites on a single AWS host (or really, any other Apache 2+ web server that requires manual configuration), this guide is for you!

I’ll walk you through the process of setting up your AWS server to support multiple site, domains, or subdomains using Apache’s Virtual Host (vhost) features. It’s this feature that allows Apache to detect the host/domain name being requested so that it can serve up the appropriate site from a list of options.

Don’t worry, it’s actually not as complicated as it sounds… and I’ll leave out all the wherefores and other technical mumbo jumbo, since that’s available elsewhere. You’re here for clarity. (more…)

The Ultimate Guide to WordPress on AWS EC2

A Primer for Complete Beginners!

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is an incredible option for hosting WordPress sites; it’s almost exclusively what I use these days when setting up hosting for my own clients. For new users, however, getting started with AWS can be insurmountably daunting, especially if they don’t have a experience with command-line Linux administration!

If that’s you, I have good news: This comprehensive guide will introduce you to AWS and guide you, step-by-step, through setting up your own server and installing WordPress.

Before we get started, be aware that AWS really isn’t for everybody. The question is: is AWS right for you? Well, that depends. (more…)

Foundation 5.5 Update

The NOUVEAU WordPress Theme Framework has been updated to 0.9.19, and includes Zurb Foundation 5.5.0.

If you are using earlier versions of NOUVEAU it is strongly recommended that you update to the latest release as this version of Foundation includes fixes for most, if not all, outstanding compilation problems (including a bug that caused extensive duplicate CSS to be generated).

Foundation 5.4.7 Update

The NOUVEAU WordPress Theme Framework has been updated to 0.9.18

This update includes the latest Zurb Foundation release (5.4.7) in the Theme Framework, which now includes full libsass 3.0 support!.

Updating NOUVEAU Projects

If you want to update your existing NOUVEAU WordPress project from 0.9.17 → 0.9.18, there is only one easy step:

  1. Update /_foundation/bower_components/ to the newest version.
    • You can update automatically with a Bower update OR…
    • You can manually download the latest SASS version of Foundation and replace the contents of the bower_components folder.
  2. Optional: Update /_foundation/scss/_settings.scss.
    • The _settings.scss file has not materially changed between Foundation 5.4.6 → 5.4.7, so updating is optional this time. If you are updating from an earlier version of NOUVEAU or Foundation and have customized your previous settings file, you may need to merge your changes into the new _settings.scss version.

You should also be sure to re-run your compiler on app.scss once these changes are complete.

Foundation 5.4.6 Update

The NOUVEAU WordPress Theme Framework has been updated to 0.9.17

This update includes the latest Zurb Foundation release (5.4.6) in the Theme Framework.

Foundation & Sass Compatibility Alert

The official Sass compiler has recently received an huge update that introduces some serious compatibility issues for developers relying on Compass builds of Zurb Foundation. This has implications for developers using NOUVEAU.

The short story is that a recent update in the official Ruby-based Sass compiler (v3.4+) has introduced changes that are NOT backwards-compatible with earlier versions of Sass – therefore Foundation – therefore NOUVEAU.