Posting to WordPress using a mobile app

Posted by & filed under Plugns & Extensions, WordPress.

Automatic’s WordPress app allows you to add content to your self-hosted WordPress-powered website. It’s a powerful app that allows you to get your inspirations on to your WordPress site using your mobile phone.


WordPress app on the Google play store

iTunes App

At first glance the app looks easy to configure and I’m sure most people will get it up and running in no time. However, if you’re a frequent reader of this blog you’ve probably already enabled 2-step authentication which means you’ll need to jump through a few more hoops before you’re posting your latest blog from the beach. First though, you’ll need to head off to the app store or play store and get the app. A couple of handy links when you click on the image.

 

***Geek bit*** The app works using the XML-RPC protocol, written in PHP (also known as PHPXMLRPC). Installations running WordPress version 3.4* or lower will need to enable the XML-RPC protocol within the wp-admin section (go to Settings > Writing > Remote Publishing and check the checkbox).

xmlrpc checkXML-RPC protocol means certain requirements are needed from your web host to allow the app to work. Fortunately there is a handy website which can check if your WordPress installation has the required configuration.

again, just click on the image.

Obviously websites hosted with 3cohosting will work because we keep our kit up-to-date! No need to check 😉

So, by now you’ve either established you won’t have a problem using the app or you’re figuring how to migrate your WordPress site to 3cohosting (we’ll have a blog post for migrating soon).

If you haven’t enabled 2-step authentication then you are just about ready to go. Fire up the app and you’ll be presented with this screen. Screen1

The app works with sites that are using WordPress.com as the host so you’ll have to click on ‘Add self-hosted site’ first. Then it’s time to enter your WordPress username and password along with your URL. Note the URL needs to be pointed towards the XML-RPC.php so in the example I’m using the URL is http://emmlow.com/solo/xmlrpc.php

Screen2

 

If you are using 2-step authentication (hopefully you will be) then, as I hinted at earlier, you’ll need to jump a couple of extra hurdles to get things working. I’d strongly recommend 2-step authentication…there’s nothing worse than getting your website hacked!

Get yourself logged in to the wp-admin section of your WordPress site and click on ‘Users’ from the left hand menu. You’ll see the section ‘Google Authenticator Settings’ you’ll probably remember this as it’s where you configured your 2-step authentication app. What you need to do next is enable the app password….

App Password

 

You’ll notice the check box and maybe a little worried about the comment “Enabling an App password will decrease your overall login security”. If security of your website is non-negotiable then publishing from a mobile app isn’t for you. It’s a trade off between security and functionality. Remember WordPress allows you to create users who do not have admin access and therefore have limited functionality, you can force 2-step authentication on admin user accounts (disallowing mobile publishing) whilst still allowing author/editor user accounts mobile access.

App passwords are inherently long and strong so they are the ‘next best thing’ to 2-step authentication.

Now you’ve updated your chosen WordPress user with an App password (hopefully you made a note of the password!) you can enter the details in to your WordPress app. If everything goes to plan then you’ll be logged in and looking at the following screen.

Screen3

If you get log on errors then it’s most likely you’ve made an error inputting the long App password (I did!). Double check that and check the URL too.

There are loads of features within the app but the author has already written extensively on these. If you’re like me you’ll probably want to just log in and have a play around anyway, after all this is WordPress….it’s intuitive already!

PS – If you do want to migrate your WordPress website to 3cohosting then get in touch and we’ll help you through the process.

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