Knowledge Base

Authoring/Development - Tools of the Trade: Blosxom


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What is Blosxom?

Blosxom [pronounced "blossom" or "blogsome"] is a lightweight yet feature-packed blog application. A "blog" (also known as a "Weblog") is an online journal with the newest entries appearing at the top of the Web page.

Preparing to Install

You will need to have an active SSH session to the pair Networks Web server where your account is hosted as well as an active Account Control Center session.

Setting up your Blog

First, you will need to create a data directory where you will store all of your blog entries. First, issue the following command in your SSH session:

mkdir /usr/home/USERNAME/blosxom

Please note that anywhere you see "USERNAME", replace it with your your Web hosting account username.

You will then need to place the blosxom.cgi script in your Web directory. Issue the following commands to do so:

cp /usr/www/cgi-bin/blosxom.cgi .

Please replace "USERNAME" in the commands above with your your Web hosting account username.

You must also supply the space and period at the end of the above command. The period indicates that you are copying the script into the current directory.

Anywhere you see "MAPPEDDIRECTORY", replace it with the name of the directory to which your domain is mapped in your account. You can find this directory by following these steps:

  1. Log into the Account Control Center (
  2. Select "Domain Hosting Management"
  3. Select "Manage"
  4. Select the domain name you wish to use with Blosxom
  5. Select "Change Domain Mapping"
This Account Control Center (ACC) page will list where your current domain name is mapped.

The last step in setting up your blog is to customize the blosxom.cgi script for your Web site. To customize this script, you should use your favorite text editor (such as pico or vi) to modify the script. You will need to set these variables:

  • $blog_title - This text will appear at the top of your blog
  • $datadir - The directory where you'll store your blog entries
  • $num_entries - This setting controls how many entries to display on your blog's home page

How do I Blog?

You can now view your blog's home page. Use the following URL to access it, replacing "EXAMPLE.COM" with your own domain name:


If you wish to use your domain name only to point to your Blosxom blog, you can easily do so in the Account Control Center (ACC) by adding your domain name first in the list of index pages. Follow the instructions below to do so:

  1. Log into the Account Control Center (
  2. Click "Domain Hosting Management"
  3. Click "Manage"
  4. Click on the domain name you wish to use with your blog
  5. Click "Manage Web Settings" (in the middle of the page)
  6. Click "Index Page"
  7. Enter your domain name ( first in the Index Filenames list
  8. Click "Update"

To add an entry to your blog, simply create a text file in your data directory. It doesn't matter what it's called as long as it ends with ".txt." Once it's saved, it will show up on your blog immediately. Create a new file for each entry. If you don't want an entry in progress to appear in your blog, save it with an extension other than .txt and then rename it to .txt when you're ready to publish. The UNIX command to rename a file is "mv" (example: "mv file.tmp file.txt").

You can add style to your blog by replacing the default header and footer with your own. To do this, create "head.html" and "foot.html" files in your data directory.

Eventually, you may want to link to archived blog entries. Specific days, months, or years can be referenced like this:

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