Using BuddyPress for Social Networks

Plugin Review – WP Custom Sidebars

Plugin Review – WP Custom Sidebars

https://wordpress.org/plugins/wp-custom-sidebars/

Version Tested: V 1.0

WP Custom Sidebars is as WordPress plugin that allows you to replace any default sidebar with one specific for that page or post etc.

Installation is a case of installing and activating the plugin, this gives a new option in Dashboard>>Appearance>>Sidebars. In this page you need to first click on the General Settings tab in order to configure which post types are supported (pages, posts etc.) and also which sidebars can be replaced by WP Custom Sidebars.

Once you have configured WP Custom Sidebars you can go to the Sidebar Generator tab in order to create your sidebars, in this screen all you have to do is choose a unique name for your new sidebar and click on Add. Once you have created your sidebar you can go to Dashboard>>Appearance>>Widgets in order to add your desired widgets to the sidebar.

The final step is to go to Dashboard>>Pages (or Posts etc.) in order to edit the desired page. You will find that there is a new option WP Custom Sidebars Settings where you can choose which sidebar will replace the default sidebar from that page. Once you have made your selection and saved the page then that page will show the new sidebar when viewed.

Testing this from a BuddyPress perspective was a bit of a disappointment. Whilst I was able to create new sidebars and display them for standard WordPress Pages and Posts I was unable to do the same for any BuddyPress Pages. On the static pages such as Groups I was able to edit the page and select the new sidebar, however viewing the page showed the default sidebar. Also, although you could enable the plugin for forums pages, since these are dynamically generated there is no forum page which to edit and select the sidebar. Because of this I give this plugin 5 out of 10, it works great for a standard WordPress platform but does not support any aspects of BuddyPress and seems unlikely to do that in future because of the way the plugin works.

 

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