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The Dashboard is one of the most important elements of WordPress, where everything on your blog is managed and organised. One of the best things about WordPress is that it is easy to use if you’re new to site management and design, but can be powerfully tweaked if you’re an experienced user. With this in mind, we’ve made a list of 10 really useful tweaks you can make to the Dashboard, in order to improve your day to day managing of your WordPress blog.

All these tweaks need to be added to the functions.php file.

Own Logo

  function my_custom_login_logo() {

   echo ”;

  }

  add_action(‘login_head’, ‘my_custom_login_logo’);

Nothing personalises the dashboard like your own login logo. The generic WordPress logo can be replaced by utilising a plug-in which is designed to facilitate this function.

Dashboard

add_action(‘admin_head’, ‘my_custom_logo’);

  function my_custom_logo() {

     echo ”;

  }

It’s not only the login page that can be replaced with your own logo. You will also see that the dashboard itself can be replaced with a logo of your choice.

Dashboard Menu

  function remove_menus () {

  global $menu;

     $restricted = array(__(‘Dashboard’), __(‘Posts’), __(‘Media’), __(‘Links’), __(‘Pages’), __(‘Appearance’), __(‘Tools’), __(‘Users’), __(‘Settings’), __(‘Comments’), __(‘Plugins’));

     end ($menu);

     while (prev($menu)){

       $value = explode(‘ ‘,$menu[key($menu)][0]);

       if(in_array($value[0] != NULL?$value[0]:”” , $restricted)){unset($menu[key($menu)]);}

     }

    }

    add_action(‘admin_menu’, ‘remove_menus’);

By disabling the access to menus, it provides a safety net whereby the client cannot accidently delete them. The menus will be listed under a restricted format.

Highlight Author Comment

  .authcomment {

  background-color: #B3FFCC !important;

  }

In order to make your comments stand out from the others, you can use the ‘add author comment’ to make your comments appear in a different colour to everyone else.

Gravatar Support

<?php echo get_avatar( get_the_author_email(), ’80’ ); ?>

You can highlight your comments even further by adding an avatar after each author comment. This style of identification will help your audience relate to you much more, especially if it’s actually your own face that’s represented.

WordPress Menu Category

<div style=”text-align:center;”>

  <ul id=”menu” style=”padding:0; margin:0;”>

  <?php wp_list_categories(‘sort_column=name&sort_order=asc&style=list&children=true&hierarchical=true&title_li=0’); ? >

  </ul>

  </div>

You can move away from the norm by placing your menu category in a horizontal format at the top of the screen. By utilizing java script and CSS, you can create a horizontal menu bar which can be much easier to navigate.

Delete Upgrade Now Message

 if ( !current_user_can( ‘edit_users’ ) ) {

     add_action( ‘init’, create_function( ‘$a’, “remove_action( ‘init’, ‘wp_version_check’ );” ), 2 );

     add_filter( ‘pre_option_update_core’, create_function( ‘$a’, “return null;” ) );

You of course need to update the security function but it is a good idea to stop this appearing on your client’s sites. Disable the message by using the appropriate code.

Widget Delete

  function customize_meta_boxes() {

     //retrieve current user info

     global $current_user;

     get_currentuserinfo();

     //if current user level is less than 3, remove the postcustom meta box

     if ($current_user->user_level < 3)

       remove_meta_box(‘postcustom’,’post’,’normal’);

  }

  add_action(‘admin_init’,’customize_meta_boxes’);

Widgets are all well and good but sometimes they can be superfluous. A good idea would be to use the relevant code which allows you to disable a selection of the widgets that you don’t really need.

Dashboard Colours

  function custom_colors() {

     echo ”;

  }

  add_action(‘admin_head’, ‘custom_colors’);

Spruce up your dashboard with a splash of colour. The grey default background can easily be replaced. If you utilise the ‘style’ command, you can have just about any colour you wish.

Change Dashboard Footer

  function remove_footer_admin () {

    echo “Your own text”;

  }

  add_filter(‘admin_footer_text’, ‘remove_footer_admin’);

This simple hack allows you to change the footer text of the dashboard. Insert your custom text into line 2, where it says “Your own text”.

This list was compiled by the technology department at Ladbrokes.