How can I include all my posts in the index?

Easy, just leave the ‘Included/excluded tags’ and ‘Included/excluded categories’ fields empty.

How do I add my index to another page or post?
  1. Make a note of the ID of the index from the table on the Manage >> AZIndexes administration page.
  2. Edit the page/post in which you want to display the index.
  3. Insert the following “short-code” into your page/post: [az-index id="x"] (where x is the ID of the index).
Can I index pages as well as posts?

Yes! Just check the appropriate option in the settings for your index. If you only want to index pages, remember to check the option to exclude posts from the index.

But I only want to add some of my pages to the index. How do I do that?

With posts it’s easy, you can tag or categorize the ones you want to put in an index and you’re done, but there is no way in standard WordPress to categorize or tag pages. However, don’t worry, there are plugins like Simple Tags to help you tag your pages. Once you have tagged the pages you want in the index simply specify that tag in the index settings.

What if I want an index that includes all my posts except a few that I don’t want in there?

You can tag posts you don’t want in your index or put them into a category, and then exclude that category or tag from the index by adding its name to the “Include/exclude category (or tag)” fields with a ‘~’ character in front of it. For example, if you want to exclude all your announcements from your index, tag all those posts with an ‘announcements’ tag and then add “~announcements” to the “Include/exclude tags” field in the index settings.

When I have more than one column on a page, why are the columns sometimes different lengths?

That is because the index items are split evenly between the columns, but some items can take up more column space than others. If there are several large items in one of the columns, it may end up being much longer than the others.

Help! The headings in my index have no links. What gives?

You probably have the ‘Group items…” option selected for your index. If you don’t have any subheadings, then make sure you deselect this option.

Why does the layout of my index look strange with some WordPress themes?

Well, just like anything else appearing in a page or post on your blog, your blog’s current theme will affect the appearance of the index.

Most of the time that’s a good thing, because you don’t want your indexes to look out of place in your blog. But occasionally a WordPress theme’s stylesheet just may not work well with your index.

If that happens there are two ways to resolve the problem:

  1. Modify the theme’s stylesheet so that it doesn’t interfere with the appearance of the index.
  2. Turn on the “Use customized stylesheets” option for your index then modify the index’s stylesheet to fix any unsightly styling.

Note: One common problem with some themes is that you’ll see bullets appearing next to items in the index.  This happens when there is a CSS style in the theme’s stylesheet that defines the style tag ‘list-style-type’ or ‘list-style’. The easiest way to fix this is to comment out or delete this line from your theme’s stylesheet, but you should check to see if this causes other formatting issues in your blog. If you feel you can’t remove that line, the next easiest way to solve the problem is to make a copy of that style (it will begin something like “#content .page ul ol {“), turn on custom CSS styling for the index and paste the style into the stylesheet for the index. Then all you have to do is modify the “list-style” (or “list-style-type”) element and replace “disc” (or whatever the type is) with “none”.

Once I have some time, I will write a longer article about modifying stylesheets since this is an important topic in getting your index to look just the way you want it.

How do I get AZIndex to work with the WP Super Cache plugin?

Easy. Just follow the instructions provided with WP Super Cache to install and configure that plugin. Once you see that blog pages are being cached (check the “cached pages” counters on the WP Super Cache settings page if you’re not sure if they are) then you should see you index pages being cached too. If you make a change to your blog that affects the contents of your index, AZIndex will tell WP Super Cache to flush the cache so that a new index page can be generated.

Help! I am having problems getting WP Super Cache to work.

I’m afraid I cannot offer any assistance unless the problem is directly related to AZIndex. WP Super Cache is a very popular plugin and there is plenty of advice and help available on the web both at the WordPress site and the plugin owner’s home page. If you are having trouble with index pages being updated because of WP Super Cache, you can add the index page URL(s) to the list of “Rejected URIs” in the WP Super Cache settings page.

How do I get non-English characters in my index links and headings to display correctly?

Select the “Turn on additional support for national languages” option in the index settings. Note, in the vast majority of cases, you should not have to use the other NLS options (locale or collation table).

I have turned on the national language support, but the items in the index are not being sorted in the correct order for my language.

It is possible that you are running on a server that is not using the correct locale for your language. You can set a different locale by selecting the “Set locale to be used while sorting index” option, but you can only use locale names that are supported by the server. Please ask your system administrator for that information.

My index is being sorted in the correct order, but items are grouped wrongly and the alphabetical links are incorrect.

Some languages, like Swedish, have different rules for collating (sorting) accented characters from other languages. When you turn on the alphabetical headings and links, AZIndex uses a default collation table to determine how those accented characters should be grouped, but this table does not work for all languages. For those languages where the collation rules are different, you can select the “Set locale to be used while sorting index” option and chose another table from the supplied list.

You say that this is a BETA release, what exact does that mean?

It means that this is an early release of the plugin. While I have tested many of the features as thoroughly as possible, I am not able to test all the features of the plugin with all the browsers on all versions of WordPress, PHP and MySQL. So it is possible you will come across a combination where there is still a one or two bugs.

It also means that there are one or two features left to be finished, like internationalization.

Finally, you may have to delete and recreate your indexes when you decide to move up to a new version. Please read the release notes before upgrading.

However, the vast majority of users should be able to use this version of the plugin without any trouble.
Just make sure to test it out before you publish your index page.

Any feedback you can provide me is most welcome.

I still have more questions/problems/requests, where do I go for answers?

Simple, either leave a comment at the AZIndex Plugin Home Page, or email me at azindex@englishmike.net if you want to keep your comments private.

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