ECS installation instructions

set up your own site for collaboration


This page will guide you to create a WordPress site, which is your starting point for building an ECS site for collaborative teaching. The instructions for Installing WordPress in an Athena Locker are for MIT users. Non-MIT users are welcome to use our tools, too, but will need to install WordPress on a server outside MIT; we provide some suggestions how to do that in the instructions for Installing WordPress on Other Servers.  Once you set up WordPress, building an ECS site will be the same for MIT and non-MIT users; your next stop will be the MIT ECS theme.

Installing WordPress in an Athena locker

MIT users can host their websites on the servers of the MIT computing environment Athena. You need an MIT Kerberos ID to install a WordPress site on Athena. If you do not have a Kerberos ID, skip this section and read Installing WordPress on Other Servers below.

Your starting point for creating an ECS site for collaborative teaching on Athena is to install the core WordPress web publishing platform in a space that you control, such as your own personal account or a “locker” for which you have administrative access. Follow these steps. (Click on the maroon “STEP” headings below to reveal and hide additional content, as needed.)

STEP 1 – Connect to Athena via secure shell

From a Mac or PC, open your browser and connect to Athena via MindTerm SSH. Once the Java applet loads, login with your Athena kerberos ID and password in the terminal window. (If you are using an Athena Linux machine, simply open a terminal shell; you are already logged in.)

STEP 2 – Run scripts to install WordPress

Once logged in Athena, run the following commands in the terminal window:

add scripts

This script (provided by the Student Information Processing Board) will guide you to install WordPress and set up your site. Follow the prompts …

(i) First, choose option … 1 Begin a Quick-Start autoinstall (wikis, blogs, etc.).
(ii) Next, select option … 2 WordPress.
(iii) Choose the appropriate option for your personal account (1) or a locker you control (2).
(iv) An address for your new site, which will look something like this:

In the window that opens, enter the following information:

(a) the title for your site (you can change it later!)
(b) the administrator’s username (admin is a good option here – you can add other users later)
(c) the administrator’s password (which you will need to re-enter to confirm)

Voila! You now have a WordPress website on Athena. 🙂 Your site’s URL looks like this:

Enter that URL in your browser to find your new site online!

STEP 3 – Start editing your new WordPress site

You are done with the WordPress installation, so you can close the MindTerm SSH window, which will terminate the secure shell connection to Athena. From now on, you can edit your new site in your browser. To do so, you need to login at a URL that looks something like this:

The part before “wp-admin” is the URL of your site (which you entered in STEP 2). The part “wp-admin” directs you to a login page where you can access the administrative interface of your new site. Login with the username and password you specified in STEP 2. Once logged in, you will access the so called “Dashboard” where you can edit your new site.

Look at the sidebar to the right of this page. Under a heading Related File Groups you will see a link to WordPress Platform Files. Follow the link to find images that show additional information about your new site. (Similarly, files are linked to other pages on this site.)

To continue building your site, next, go to the Theme instructions.

Installing WordPress on other servers

If you are planning to install WordPress on a non-MIT server you will find all the necessary documentation explaining the basic requirements and the step-by-step installation process at Users with access to department servers should ask technical support staff to set up the WordPress web publishing platform for them. Many web hosts also offer quick set up guides and access to customer support. After completing the installation your next step should be to log in and set up the MIT ECS Theme.

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