Sunday, October 15, 2006

Advice to Blogger blogger regarding the coming mandatory switch to Blogger Beta

Blogger Employee has indicated that it will only be a matter of months when all blogs will have to be migrated to Blogger Beta irrespective of whether they want to or not. From the posts in Blogger Help, it looks like there are quite a number of bugs that need to be ironed out. Even those bugs reported to be solved seem to be still a problem. For example, beta blogger being unable to commenting on blogger classic blogs, and vice versa have been reported to have been solved. I have tested that and have found positive results: Testing non-Beta bloggers commenting on Blogger beta blogs and vice versa. (close new window to get back to this page). However, a reader of my blog complained that he (blogger beta) failed to comment on blogger classic blogs and he is FEDUP. I have read posts complaining of the same thing, and I am forced to do an update to my post.

I am used to working on the classic template, but have found the beta template so different that I am having difficulties (I am not a programmer, but have learn a little bit of Fortran programming and have some familiarity with HTML, CSS and Blogger tags) and I am afraid that what I can do now I may not be able to do later, unless I really take time to learn how the new template works. For those want to see how a beta template looks like, surf to this post: How a Blogger Beta template looks like. (close new window to get back to this page)

My solution is to do the following and it is also my advice to others. Backup the template each time I do any customization. Back up the template even if no customization is done. Many readers of this blogs are relatively new to Blogger and may not know how to backup a template. If you are one of them, see post Backing up Blogger template, changing template, etc.. (click "back" button to get back to this page)

Blogger beta says you will be able to revert to your last saved classic template if you don't want the beta template. Near the bottom of this post is described how to do that: Switching from Blogger Beta to Blogger classic. (Close new window to get back to this page). However, don't depend too much on that. If you are the cautious type, save the templates in your computer. You can also save it online as there are online file hosts, etc., in addition to saving it on your computer. When the forced migration come and I find too much problems, I will most likely revert to the classic template for my blogs. I can live without the labels (categories) features as I already have workarounds for that, and others have plenty of hacks for that yet. See the following posts (click "back" button to get back to this page):
Blogger categories step-by-step (a summary of the following two methods)
Blogger categories: Simple Method
Blogger Categories: Easy Method

Blogger beta have "Newer Post", "Home", "Older Post" at the bottom of their individual post page (permalink) at the bottom of the page. However, I have a work-around to add that to my Blogger classic blog too. See post How to have "Previous" and "Next" links at the bottom of your Blogger blog. (click "back" button to get back to this page). That post uses table, and actually uses "Newer Post" and "Older Post" and also does not have "Home", and someone commented that he doesnt like table. If I have the time, I will redo that post or do a new post and redo all the "Newer Post" "Older Post" without using table, and also include "Home" for this blog if I have the time.

I think I can live without their Layout too. I believe reverting back to classic template will enable me to continue doing the things I am used to if I find that what I want to do can't be done in the beta template.

UPDATE: Read a post where someone who have 2 classic blogs (completely different) with different identities got the 2 blogs merged into one when migrated. So if you have 2 blogs you want to keep them separate (I have some environmental blogs and some blogs about blogging, and I have separate profile for them), do make sure they have different gmail or Google accounts, or make sure that any email addresses associated with them are not similar gmail addresses.



  1. I for one don't want to switch and I'm not convinced of the advantages other than categories and labels..very worrying :(
    Do you think you might get around to explaining how to do the Amazon in the sidebar?

  2. I did switch initially and my blog went bananas. Nothing worked as it should. Eventually I just created a new one (Not Beta) and deleted my other one after a week or so of leaving a forwarding address to visitors. I dread the switch - I really really don't want to do it! This experience was so distastefull that it's almost put me off participating in any Beta testing for good.

  3. Anonymous10/16/2006

    I would like to have a collapsible/expandable control for the Labels area, by letters of the alphabet, where all labels beginning with the letter "A," for example, would collapse under that letter, but could be toggled back open by clicking on a triangle toggle.

    Oh, and if you're on Beta, my primary blog has a link to a fix to install Haloscan for Beta.

  4. I think there are hacks for it but I don't know about it. There is a post about a drop-down menu here Testing drop-down menu for Blogger Beta

  5. thanks for addressing this problem. personally, when google forces us to switch, i think i will use one of those ready made hacked templates from hackosphere. if that doesn't work then maybe i'll move to a different platform.

  6. Anonymous10/19/2006

    how can I get rid of the dotted white lines that seperate the info on the sidebar as well as the ones that seperate each post?

  7. Anonymous12/12/2006

    heloo there,

    recently, just for fun i tried "revert to classic" template in my beta-blogger.

    to my horror i found out that all my previous settings were gone.

    to make things even confusing , when i click "preview" i still see my latest edition blog.

    but when i type in the URL, my webpage is totally outdated!

    the preview and the actual web is not the same!

    please help!!!

    i regret clicking on the "revert-to classical-template" so much!!


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