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Thread: Moving WordPress from a Proprietary CMS. Possible?

  1. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by vangogh View Post
    One thing to note is that "other stuff" could cause some issues. There will be a place to store it in WordPress, though it might take some programming to be able to use the data on the site.

    For example say the custom CMS allows you to build a recipe and has fields to enter an image and ingredients, etc. WordPress doesn't do that by default. It could be set up to handle a recipe, but you would need some custom programming in your theme. That kind of stuff could affect where Jeff puts the data initially so you may want to think through some things in advance.
    The way I handle that Steve is extra tables and a separate admin for those functions. I suspect that's the way most plugin's work except they also integrate into the admin panel. I suspect that a lot of plugin's do alter wordpress db tables. If they do that, you are asking for trouble on the frequent updates that wordpress seems to have.

    IMO there is a good web development niche for people that want functions that aren't native to Wordpress.

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    Adding functions to WordPress isn't incredibly difficult. Trying to make functions from some other software integrate and work on WordPress after the fact, is difficult.
    It's like taking a Toyota and trying to make it Chevy compatible. Is it easier to replace and retool everything, or to just buy a Chevy?

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    Quote Originally Posted by vangogh View Post
    One thing to note is that "other stuff" could cause some issues. There will be a place to store it in WordPress, though it might take some programming to be able to use the data on the site.

    For example say the custom CMS allows you to build a recipe and has fields to enter an image and ingredients, etc. WordPress doesn't do that by default. It could be set up to handle a recipe, but you would need some custom programming in your theme. That kind of stuff could affect where Jeff puts the data initially so you may want to think through some things in advance.
    Agreed...that's why I wanted to look at the database and compare it to the live site to see where data is being pulled from and where it could be placed and how difficult the process would be.

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    The way I handle that Steve is extra tables and a separate admin for those functions.
    That's not necessarily a good way to do it. It depends on what and how much data you're adding of course, but in my recipe example WordPress isn't set up by default to take that data exactly as you want, but it can be easily made to. The WordPress database is set up so you can add data to it. It won't cause problems to then upgrade WordPress. The question is where in the database you want to store your data and I think it makes sense to first understand the data and how it will be used to best understand where it should go. Maybe the best solution is a custom table in the database, but there's a good chance there's probably a better location for the data.

    that's why I wanted to look at the database and compare it to the live site to see where data is being pulled from and where it could be placed and how difficult the process would be.
    I think that makes sense. Naturally none of us knows the specifics of what that "other stuff" is. I'll point again to my recipe example. WordPress lets you create what's custom_post_types. So you could create a recipe post type that accepts data specific to recipes. It's pretty simple to set up and would let admins or whoever add more recipes. Something like that might suggest placing the data in one location. A different use of the dat might suggest a different location.

    Here's a page from the codex that talks about the default database setup. There's an image showing you all the tables and how each is related. Click the image a couple of times to get the large version. You'll notice there's a wp-options table that's not connected to anything. I think most plugins and themes will add data in that table. More full featured plugins like shopping carts will often create their own tables.

    There are only 11 tables by default. A few are obvious what they're for given the name. The page I linked to goes into more detail about each table. The wp-options table is basically a place to add an option_name (varchar) and then an option_value (longtext). It's pretty generic which is why I think a lot gets added there.
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  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by vangogh View Post
    That's not necessarily a good way to do it. It depends on what and how much data you're adding of course, but in my recipe example WordPress isn't set up by default to take that data exactly as you want, but it can be easily made to. The WordPress database is set up so you can add data to it. It won't cause problems to then upgrade WordPress. The question is where in the database you want to store your data and I think it makes sense to first understand the data and how it will be used to best understand where it should go. Maybe the best solution is a custom table in the database, but there's a good chance there's probably a better location for the data.
    Certainly if you can use the table structure of WordPress that is the best way to do it. I was just referring to the case where a WP table is altered by adding another field to it. I had that happen with oscommerce in the past and it created a lot of problems.

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    Yeah, you wouldn't add new fields to the existing WordPress tables. If you need to do something like that you would be better off creating your own custom table. More than likely though the data that's going to be added can be placed into one of the existing tables. WP has the wp-options table just for that reason I think. It's often a catchall for data that doesn't have any place else to go, but doesn't need a custom table. If everyone added new tables, the database would quickly be overrun with a lot of inefficiency I suspect.
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