Ghost which is the newest blogging platform, and also one of the hyped blogging platform is finally out for public. Ghost was created with an aim to simplifying blogging, as WordPress is evolving more than just a blogging platform. We have mentioned ghost before in our free blogging platform list, and finally it’s out for grab. Like WordPress, Ghost has two variant:
- Self-hosted Ghost (You need to download and install it on your node.js enabled server)
- Hosted platform on Ghost (This is getting rolled out to Kickstarter backers, and soon will be available for public )
When I heard about Ghost launched for the public, my first intention was to download and host the Ghost on my shared hosting server. To my surprise, Ghost can’t be installed on a shared hosting for now, as it requires node.js to run, and there is a good node.js hosting out there, or you can install it on your VPS or dedicated server on any hosting. Anyways, I will come down to Ghost platform hosting and other technical details later, for now let me help you with Ghost installation on your local server. For now, I would not recommend to install Ghost on your live server, as it’s at very infant stage, and it’s better for us to use on live site, when Ghost is matured a little, and enough documentation and support are available.
Install Ghost platform on Local desktop using BitNami Ghost Stack
If you have used InstantWP before to install WordPress on your local system, you will not find Bitnami Ghost installer to be any different. Using Bitnami Ghost installer, you can quickly install Ghost blogging platform on your local system or even deploy it to live server. Even if you are not planning to use Ghost for now, I suggest you to at least try Ghost on your local system and get a feel of upcoming blogging platform.
Follow the below mentioned steps, and within 5 minute you will have your Ghost blog up and running.
- Download the Ghost stack from here.
- After downloading is finished, install the Ghost stack and follow the onscreen instruction.
- There are few simple steps which you need to follow like assigning I.P. (use 127.0.0.1), create an admin account, and few more. All the steps are easy to follow, and if you are stuck in between, feel free to ask me via comments.
- Below are few screenshot of the installation process for your reference.
That’s it and within 5 minutes, your local Ghost blog will be up and running with all default settings. Now, let me share my first impression about Gho.st and how it feels as a blogging platform.
My First Impression & review of Ghost platform:
Ghost blogging platform is created to simplify the blogging. And if you are coming from WordPress or BlogSpot platform, you might find Ghost to be too simple for yourself. But, the good thing is it has everything which will appeal to the masses. The business aspect of Ghost will ensure that this will grow, as it’s an open source platform (This will attract many developers and will create a new industry for freelancers and developers), and also offers both managed and self-hosted solution. To access your Ghost admin panel, simply append /ghost infront of your URL. For example, 127.0.0.1/ghost and you will be on your dashboard. Here is a screenshot of admin dashboard, and you can notice how simple the dashboard is.
The best part about Ghost is; it make sit easier to write and publish a blog post. In the simplest way you can think. There are limited option right now, in form of writing post (Saving it as a draft, publish, schedule). You can also edit the permalink before making your post live to the world. Here is a guide for new Ghost users on understanding the dashboard:
The good thing is you can do a lot of formatting work with the help of Keyboard strokes, and it might take a while for you to remember all Keyboard shortcuts for formatting, but later on it will help you to write faster and better. Ghost editor uses markdown (Text to HTML)to help writers to write content quickly. Ghost has already started creating marketplace for themes, and soon you will be seeing lots of themes and plugins out there.
I’m still exploring this new blogging platform, and will be sharing my learning and experience over the time. For now, if you wish to learn more about Ghost, you should check out their official site or also participate in community over here. Here is a video overview of Ghost admin dashboard:
If you have also tried Ghost, I would love to know your views and opinion. Don’t forget to share about this new born blogging platform with your friends on Facebook and Google plus.