Two months ago, we announced together with our friends at Windows Live that bloggers on the Windows Live Spaces service were being offered the opportunity to move their existing blogs over here to WordPress.com to join the best blogging community on the planet.
Since then, we’ve seen an explosion in the number of sites joining WordPress.com every day. With the addition of Windows Live Spaces sites moving to WordPress.com, Windows Live users who are new to blogging coming here, and word-of-mouth from our current and very passionate users, the number of people joining WordPress.com has doubled to over 900,000 per month (up from around 400,000 per month before the migration). We’re thrilled to see this explosion and to be introducing so many people to publishing with WordPress. With the recent releases of many new features and several new themes, and more of each on the way, it’s a great time to be on WordPress.com.
Throughout the transition, we Happiness Engineers have had the privilege of helping many new users adjust to a new platform and learn to take advantage of the amazing features and capabilities unique to WordPress.com. If you’ve moved from Windows Live Spaces and feel that you’re still having trouble getting up to speed, or are about to join us on WordPress.com, we’d like to take a moment to talk about a few of the speed bumps you might run into as part of that transfer process.
The number one question we receive after a move to WordPress.com is “where are my photos?” Because uploaded photos are part of a different service–Windows Live SkyDrive–they aren’t always brought over with your blog posts to WordPress.com.
If you had inserted some of those images into your blog posts, we’ll bring those over for you automatically as part of the upgrade process. However, if you were using the Photos module to display your albums, you won’t find your images when you get to your new site. That’s the bad news.
The good news is that you can move your images over to WordPress.com galleries very easily. In fact, a user who moved here from Windows Live Spaces has written an excellent step-by-step tutorial and posted it on her site to help other Windows Live Spaces users make the move with their photos.
Drafts, Modules, and Lists
After your move to WordPress.com, you’ll notice that some parts of your Windows Live Spaces site won’t have moved with you. The upgrade to WordPress.com automatically moves your published posts and your comments to your new site.
Draft posts are just one such item, so you’ll need to make sure that you either copy them into a separate document or publish them prior to starting the migration process. Any posts left in draft will no longer be accessible once you’ve completed the migration process.
Information you had in modules won’t make the move to WordPress.com, either. Not to worry, though! You just need to make a note of the information you wish to transfer prior to migrating. Here at WordPress.com things are a bit different. Instead of modules, we use widgets to place content into your site’s sidebar. We have many available widgets which can display text, an image, your Gravatar, a tag cloud, or any one of a number of additions to help your readers find content and learn about you.
There’s one notable exception: if you’re looking for your Lists from Windows Live Spaces, we’ve worked out with the Windows Live Spaces team to find a way to retrieve that content once you’ve migrated. It won’t be moved to your new site, but you can get the info and then copy it into a new widget whenever you like. You can learn how to do this in our frequently asked questions about the move.
Where to Get Help
Change isn’t always easy. Although we think WordPress.com is the best publishing service in the world, if you’ve just come from using another platform for the last few years, it can be difficult to learn new tricks and wrap your brain around new concepts. Thankfully, we have lots of great support resources here to help you get rocking and back up to speed creating great content.
If you’re brand-new, you should of course start with the excellent Learn WordPress.com, which will introduce you to the basics.
For more specific questions, move on to our Support documentation. Click around and learn more details on how to use WordPress.com, or search for your question and find an answer in one of the hundreds of pages in our knowledgebase.
Do you have a more specific question? Or would you rather talk about it with your fellow WordPress.com users and get to know others? The WordPress.com Forums are a great place to ask. Our Happiness Engineers patrol the forums, and there are a lot of very knowledgeable volunteers around who will be happy to answer your question or point you in the right place.
There are support forums available in multiple languages, also filled with great volunteers and users from the WordPress.com community. We have support forums available in Arabic, Dutch, Farsi, Finnish,French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Portuguese (Brazilian),Spanish, Swedish, Thai, and Turkish.
If you have a question about your user account on WordPress.com, or have a problem that can’t be solved using the documentation or asking a volunteer, you can of course contact our resident team of Happiness Engineers for assistance. We’re online and answering your questions twenty-four hours a day, and nothing makes us happier than helping you to make the most of your WordPress.com experience. Don’t forget: we’re here to help.