Meet CKEditor (previously known as FCKEditor), the web-based WYSIWYG text editor which promises to bring common editing features found on desktop editing applications like Microsoft Word and OpenOffice to the web. And for WordPress users, the power of CKEditor is brought to the WP editor in the form of plugin.
Activating The Advanced CKEditor WordPress Plugin
Just like any other WordPress plugins, you can easily install the FCKEditor via the WordPress Plugins menu. All you have to do is click the “Add New” button, enter ‘FCKEditor’ into the search field, and click the “Install Now” link from the search result.
After the installation process is done, activate the plugin by clicking the “Activate Plugin” link.
And what exactly will happen by activating the plugin? To give you a better picture, let’s compare the look of WordPress editor with and without FCKEditor. This is the default editor:
And below, the CKEditor WordPress editor plugin is integrated into the blogging platform. The WordPress editor is transformed into a full-featured word processor with advanced editing features that you won’t find in the original editor.
But the transformation is not limited to the blogging editor but also in the comment section of the blog posts. Armed with this ability, visitors can leave more than just simple plain text comments.
Getting Familiar With The Editor
For those who might feel a little bit overwhelmed by all of the colorful buttons and want a distraction-free writing environment, you can hide those buttons by clicking the small arrow button at the right corner of the writing area.
And for those hardcore web coders who can’t sleep well before a little dose of “a href”s or “div style”s (you know who you are), you can still access the HTML editor by clicking on the “Source” button – the first button on the top left corner of the editor.
There’s also the “Smileys” button that will give you a bunch of smileys that you can insert into your writing.
Surely, there are tons of other features that you get from FCKEditor such as the ability to change the font color on the fly, create subscripts and superscripts, insert flash elements, change font type, size, style, and more. If you want to know which button is related to which feature, just hover your mouse pointer above one of the buttons and FCKEditor will gladly tell you.
Messing With The Settings
If you want to dig a little bit deeper into FCKEditor, you can go to “Settings – FCKEditor” menu from the WordPress sidebar.
Inside, you will find several options that you can ‘tweak’, such as the skin and built-in spell checker from the “Common Options“.
Or the height of the editor and the ability to choose which buttons should appear on the editor’s toolbar from “Post/Page Editor options“. If you use several buttons regularly and never touch the others, you can delete the unused buttons simply by deleting their names from the “Set the toolbar buttons” field.
The similar thing goes for “Comment Editor Options“. You can activate/deactivate FCKEditor for the blog comment section, set the editor’s height, and decide which buttons should appear in the comment editor.
The last option is “Upload Options” where you can define what kind of files are allowed to be uploaded to the blog. The ability to define accepted file extensions opens up some other possibilities, such as using the blog server’s storage as an “emergency” file storage.
Please remember to click the “Update Options” button after your modification to save all the changes.
Desktop Word Processor On Your Blog
Using FCKEditor plugin for WordPress is like doing blogging via a desktop word processor that you use everyday. Having the familiar look and functionalities can surely help you boost your productivity while blogging (not to mention having an alternative online word processor that you can use anytime and anywhere as long as you have access to internet).
Have you tried? What’s your opinion about it? Do you know other alternatives? Please share using the comment below.