How to Choose a WordPress Software Platform - dummies

How to Choose a WordPress Software Platform

By Lisa Sabin-Wilson

One of the realities of running a blog today is choosing among the veritable feast of software platforms to find the WordPress platform that performs the way you need. You want to be sure that the platform you choose has all the options you’re looking for. WordPress is unique in that it offers two versions of its software, each designed to meet various needs:

Every WordPress blog setup has certain features available, whether you’re using the self-hosted software from or the hosted version at These features include (but aren’t limited to)

  • Quick and easy installation and setup

  • Full-featured blogging capability, letting you publish content to the web through an easy-to-use web-based interface

  • Topical archiving of your posts, using categories

  • Monthly archiving of your posts, with the ability to provide a listing of those archives for easy navigation through your site

  • Comment and trackback tools

  • Automatic spam protection through Akismet

  • Built-in gallery integration for photos and images

  • Media Manager for video and audio files

  • Great community support

  • Unlimited number of static pages, letting you step out of the blog box and into the sphere of running a fully functional website

  • RSS (Really Simple Syndication) capability with RSS 2.0, RSS 1.0, and Atom support

  • Tools for importing content from different blogging systems (such as Blogger, Movable Type, and LiveJournal)

    Cost Free Free
    Software download Yes No
    Software installation Yes No
    Web hosting required Yes No
    Custom CSS control Yes $15/year
    Template access Yes No
    Sidebar widgets Yes Yes
    RSS syndication Yes Yes
    Access to core code Yes No
    Ability to install plugins Yes No
    Theme installation Yes Yes
    Multiauthor support Yes Yes
    Unlimited number of blog setups with one account Yes Yes
    Community-based support forums Yes Yes