I received an email a few weeks ago giving me the heads up on a cool concept called WordPress Starter kits by Max Foundry. Max Foundry is in the business of of making themes, plugins, and starter kits for WordPress. While they currently don’t have any themes available for purchase or download, they do have three starter kits.
Each starter kit is free but requires you to give Max Foundry your email address before you can get access to the starter kit download links. You can choose whether or not to receive information from them in the future which is a good thing if all you really want is access to the starter kits. I decided to give the kit using the default WordPress commenting system a try. While there are three kits available with the same bundled plugins and themes, the main difference between them all is the commenting system which can be the default one in WordPress, Disqus, or IntenseDebate. On the Max Foundry website, I found the following text:
There’s no need to worry about using an old version. We’re always keeping our blog starter kits up-to-date with the latest versions of the included themes and plugins.
This was my biggest concern as in the past when plugins have been bundled with WordPress or a theme, they have been out of date. I’m happy to report that after installing the default commenting system starter kit, all of the plugins were up to date. One of the caveats however to using any of the kits available is that they install WordPress into a sub-directory called WordPress. You may be able to get around this with some finagling but I didn’t go to that extreme. I have a feeling that the sub-directory requirement may put a lot of people off since in most cases, WordPress is installed in the root directory.
While the starter kits are a nice idea, it still doesn’t get us to the holy grail of specific installation profiles. However, the starter kits are a nice way of getting a user up and running with WordPress with a selection of decent plugins to play around with as long as they don’t mind giving up their email address.