I got really sick of keeping up with Wordpress security, and given that I wasn’t writing at all, there wasn’t much value in a full-fledged CMS. So this weekend I’ve bit the bullet and migrated the posts I care at all about from Wordpress over to Jekyll which is a static site generator written in Ruby. What I really wanted was something that would be simple for me to use and update, but that if I were to ignore for a couple of years, would not become a hive of Viagra ads. A static site would provide that level of security, but updating one leads to something that looks like straight-up Angelfire unless you’re willing to spend lots of time building artisinal, hand-written HTML.

F that.

A beautiful compromise, then, is a static site generator. There are lots. I happen to like using [Markdown] syntax for writing documentation, so a tool that would take Markdown and generate a static site was ideal for me. Hence Jekyll.

I’m maintaining my source in Git and use a simple post-receive hook on the server side to trigger a site rebuild, which only takes a couple of seconds. I may write a post on that setup soon’ish, but for now there are others out there who’ve managed the setup.

From a high-level, though, in order to get this working on DreamHost, I had to do:

  1. Ensure my ssh keys were set up for passwordless login on my DH account.
  2. Install rvm in my user account on DH. I found this post to be really helpful.
  3. Now, install Jekyll.
  4. Set up a bare git repository, and optionally a post-receive hook for automatic updates.
  5. I used Jekyll’s WordPress importer to grab my old posts. Careful, it doesn’t grab images.


23 January 2016


jekyll update