How to Install the GD Star Ratings WordPress Plugin

Review, increase rating, performance and classification concept. Businessman draw five green stars to increase rating of his company, blank background.

GD Star Ratings is a very sophisticated plugin that allows you to assign ratings and votes to posts, comments and more. This guide will take you through installing the plugin, setting it up and using it.


Install Plugin

 In your WordPress admin panel, click on “Plugins -> Add New”.


Next, you can search for “GD Star Ratings” in the search box.


Once you find it, click “Install Now”


You will be asked if you’re sure you want to install it. Click “OK”.

Now you need to enter information about your website including your hostname, FTP username and password. Your hostname is usually your domain name. In most cases, you’ll will have an FTP connection. Click “Proceed” when you’re done.


 Activate Plugin

Once you see the message that says you successfully installed the plugin, click “Activate Plugin”.


 Manage Settings

When your plugin is activated, you’ll see a “Settings” option. Click it.


The settings are actually quite complex and you may not need to use all of them. Below, you can see what the settings menu looks like. We’ll go over each section briefly.


If you look through the features menu, you’ll see some quite technical settings. If you’re not sure what something is, you can certainly leave everything at the default settings. As you get to know the plugin, you can start tweak things.


Some settings you can control here include putting a time limit on adding ratings, moderation options, rating of comments, etc.


Security allows you to adjust settings for banning IPs, user level permissions and more.


This tab gives you access to settings for caching, trend calculations, importing and exporting data.


Some of the settings on this tab are controlling how users can rate, widgets and more.


This tab lets you control rating settings for articles. You can control the look of the ratings (there are different color and holiday themes), positioning, control who can vote (you can set it so only users can vote) and more.


This tab lets you control the same rating settings as in the Articles tab, but these settings are for comments.


Multis are multiple ratings for the same article / product. For example, you can set up ratings for price, value, performance, etc. In this tab, you can control most of the same rating settings as in the Articles and Comments tab.


This tab allows you to control the settings for voting on articles. You can determine which posts can be voted on, how the votes look and where they appear.


This tab allows you to control the settings for voting on comments. You can determine which comments can be voted, how the votes look and where they appear.


This tab controls snippets, RSS features and more.


Add New Post

To get started, go to the Posts menu on the far left side. Click “Add New”.



How to Set Up Multi Sets

The multis feature is likely to be very important to a review site, so let’s make sure we get that set up. You can find the setting for this in the menu of your WordPress admin.


Now click “Add New Multi Rating Set”.


Enter the details for your multi set.  You can give it a name, description, determine the number of stars use and decide how the multis will appear.


 Then you can add your elements and decide if some will have more weight than others for the overall game rating.


Click “Save Multi Set” when you’re done.  Now you’re ready to use your multi-set on your first review post.


Make a Post

In the left menu of WordPress Admin, find the “Posts” menu and click “Add New”.


Enter your post as you would normally. At the bottom of the page, you can see your multis options and can select your set from the drop down menu.


Now when your users or visitors see the post, they can cast their vote, depending on the settings you have chosen.


Then on the right side of your post editing menu, you can see some controls that all you to determine who can rate on the post.


As you can see, this is a very powerful review plugin, even if it seems over-complicated at first. Through continued use of the plugin, it’s wide variety of features and customizations will become more and more useful.

How to Install and Use Review Press Plugin

how to2Review Press is a very basic plugin that allows you to set up a simple reviews section for your website. It adds your reviews as a custom post type and allows you to set up review categories and tags. This plugin might be a good choice if you already have a blog, but want to add a review component to it.

There are promises of more features in a future version, including Amazon affiliate product linking, but for now, it’s a very basic plugin. If you’re looking for the basics, it might be right for you.

The developer’s website can be found here:


Install Plugin

 In your WordPress admin panel, click on “Plugins -> Add New”.


Next, you can search for “Review Press” in the search box.


Once you find it, click “Install Now”.


You will be asked if you’re sure you want to install it. Click “OK”.

Now you need to enter your hostname (usually your domain name), FTP username and password. In most cases, your connection will be FTP.


Click “Proceed” as shown above.


Activate Plugin

Next, you should see a screen that tells you have successfully installed the plugin. Now you have to activate it, so click “Activate Plugin”.


Use the Plugin

Now you can use the plugin. You will see a “Reviews” menu on the left menu of your admin panel. You can set categories and tags or you can do that as you create a new review. So, let’s just create a review by clicking “Add New”.



This feature looks much like the “Posts” or “Pages” function of WordPress. Click “Add New” again near the top of the page.


Add your post title and review post, just like you would with any other post.

On the right side, you can create a new category. Just click the link “+ Add New Category”. We have added “Video Games”. Once you have your category title, click the button below that says “Add New Category”.


How to Install WordPress to Make Your Review Website



WordPress is a great platform to build your review site. It’s easy to post, allow others to post and for commenting. There are also useful review site plugins that can make your review website very functional. The best part is WordPress is free and it’s not too complicated to install.


What You Need to Get Started: 

  • Domain
  • Web Host with MySQL database (we are using hosting equipped with cPanel in our demonstration)
  • FTP program


Download the Latest WordPress Set up Files

 Go to and download the latest version of WordPress to your computer.


Set up Your Database

Log into cPanel and find “MySQL Database Wizard”. This is where you will set up your database.


You can name your database whatever you’d like. We called ours “wp” as you can see below.


You also need to add a database user and assign a password as well. We called our user “wp”. Make sure to take note of these names. Click “Create User” when you’re done.


 Give the database all the privileges required and click “Next Step” when you’re done.


 After you click “Next Step,” you should see message that says the user was added to the database like this:


Load the Files Through FTP:

We are using CuteFTP to load our files, but most FTP programs work pretty much the same way. Open up your site and on the right side of the program, you’ll likely see something like “public_html”. Click it to get to your site’s files.


On the left side of the screen, open up the folder where you saved the WordPress files. Select them all.



Once you have selected them, you can right click and choose “Upload”. This will load all your files into the main part of your site. If you want your WordPress set up to appear in a specific folder (for example:, you will need to create that folder on your site and open it to add the files.


 Complete the Install

Once the files have finished loading, point your browser to the install page. It should be at something like or if you installed WordPress into a folder, it would be something like



Create Configuration File

In order to make the install work, we have to create a configuration file. As you can see from the message below, it’s possible to create the file via the web, but not all hosts can do it.

We are going to attempt to create one via the web by clicking, “Create a Configuration File”.


Next, we are asked to enter the database name, user name, password and database host (usually “localhost”). You can complete the last field if you plan to add more than one WordPress installation on your domain.


 After we click “Submit”, we are notified that our host isn’t set up to create the file. However, WordPress makes it very easy for you to create the file in FTP by providing the text you need in the file. This makes it much easier than finding the information you have to add in the code. All you have to is copy and paste.

So do that. Copy and paste the code.


 We’re going to go back to our FTP program now and find the file on our site that is called “wp-config-sample.php”. We are now going to right click and choose “Rename”.


 Rename the file to “wp-config.php”.


 Once you have renamed the file, right click again. This time choose “Edit”.


 The file will open and it will look a lot like the code you just copied, but don’t worry, you can delete what’s there and paste in what WordPress told you to add. The copy and paste code includes your database name, user, etc. and is required to make the WordPress install work.


Once you’ve pasted in the right code, click “Save”.



Run the Install

Now you can go back to the installation you were working on the web. We’ve complete the config file, so we can just click “Run the install”.


We’re almost done. Now enter the required information for your site. You need to make a title for your site (choose whatever you want). You also need to assign an admin user name and password. You can add other users once WordPress is installed.


Click “Install WordPress” as shown above. Then you should see the “Success” message as shown below.