Today I changed the RSS feed for this website from summary to full-text. Why did I switch to full text? After a few months of reading other people’s feeds I realized that I much prefer sites that offer a full feed rather than a summary and that I still visit the site in question often enough (so they aren’t necessarily losing traffic) – mostly to read comments or view the feed in its original format.

There are pros and cons of going full-feed vs. summary. I agree with John Chow that it’s usually a better way to go (see #7) – but there are some caveats – I’ll cover the pros and cons in a future post.

The process of switching was a royal pain since it was hard to see changes due to the wp-cache plugin (v2.1.0 just released) and the fact that I’m feedburning my RSS (feedburner also caches).

This was further complicated by the fact that I was using an old version of the Feedburner Redirection Plugin. Upon activation the old version modified your .htaccess file in your wordpress directory – this caused the rewrite rules to stay there even if you deactivated the plugin. By the way, the new version of this plugin has been updated is now much better since it doesn’t modify your .htaccess file anymore.

Since I’m using the <!–more–> tag on this site, I also had to install the Full Text Feed plugin to make sure the full feeds don’t get cut off at the “more” tag.

Btw, if anyone needs to clean up an old version of feeburner redirection plugin (pre 2.2) here’s how you do it: Open up your .htaccess file in your root server and delete these two blocks of code:

# Redirect FeedBurner to your own Feed
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^feedburner_379777/?$ /feed/ [R,L]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_USER_AGENT} ^FeedBurner.*$
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
# These Rules redirect all feed Traffic to FeedBurner
RewriteBase /
RewriteCond %{QUERY_STRING} ^feed=(feed|rdf|rss|rss2|atom)$
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ [R,L]
RewriteRule ^(feed|rdf|rss|rss2|atom)/?(feed|rdf|rss|rss2|atom)?/?$ [R,L]
RewriteRule ^wp-(feed|rdf|rss|rss2|atom).php [R,L]

Speaking of RSS feeds, have you subscribed to this blog yet? ;)

Update: A helpful tip from Nick of Added Traffic to avoid the wp-cache plugin issue:

When using WP-Cache and updating your site. Simply, disabling the plug-in won’t disable the caching feature. So you won’t be able to see your updates as you make them. To avoid tons of frustration, go to Options -> WP-Cache and you will see an option to disable caching. This will allow you to see the changes that are being made. Once you have your site configured to your liking just enable it again, and you’re good to go. I know it’s a little late now but hopefully this will save you some time in the future.