The first few days of using Hugo for my Website


Introducing Hugo

I’m late to the game, given Hugo has been around since 2016 ior so

Theme: anake. This was the “default”, or the theme used in the getting started documentation. I may keep using it for a while, I havent’ really had time to look at other themes. It’s a simple, clean theme. So no real complaints, yet.

Hugo configuration

I made some basic configuration to the hugo configuration file hugo.yaml, I took a lot from the ananke theme’s example file, but made the following changes:

baseURL = ''
Paginate = 9
enableRobotsTXT = true
enableGitInfo = true

  // various social profiles...

  name = 'About'
  pageRef = '/about'
  weight = 20

  name = 'Now'
  pageRef = '/now'
  weight = 20

The enableGitInfo para is meant to get the lastmod working, but it’s not. So something for me to investigate further.

Places to host - Render

The reqirement was for free hosting with custom domain as I wanted to point to the site. Prior to this I was on a free wordpress instance, and they only provided a subdomain. Plus, it’s wordpress. Yuck.

Prior to wordpress, I used blogger (again not on my own domain), and various VPS providers (Rackspace, AWS, to name a few). But since I don’t want to be paying a monthly fee, I didn’t want to fire up a VPS on AWS or someplace.

Enter Render.

Thankfully, Render offers free static site hosting xwith custom domains. And it connects to my github repo for automatic deployments once I commit (and push) updates.

(There are a few other providers, but I chose Render on essentially a coin toss). Really, I think what I really liked was they provided CDN distribution, fully managed SSL and auto deplouments from Github. Ease is the primary requirement here.


I am using FrontMatter, a headless CMS extension for Visual Studio Code that brings a bunch of the CMS functionality one would expect from a more traditional system like Wordpress.

Frontmatter configuration

Some simple initial configuration in the `.vscode/settings.json:

   "frontMatter.content.pageFolders": [
            "title": "posts",
            "path": "[[workspace]]/content/posts", 
            "filePrefix": "yyyyMMDD",
            "previewPath": "{{year}}/{{month}}/{{day}}"

I’m a bit anal when it comes to file naming as I like the date in the filename. Easy to sort, etc.


That’s it for now. I have more work to do. But I’m opn vacation.