Configuring MarsEdit 3 & ExpressionEngine 2

Configuring MarsEdit 3 & ExpressionEngine 2

MarsEdit is a desktop blog editor for Mac OS X that allows you to write, preview and publish to your website without the need for a browser window open. It supports posting to many popular blogging services such as blogger, Moveable Type, Tumblr and WordPress.

Setting it up to work with ExpressionEngine 2 is pretty straight forward but there’s a few things you need to be aware of to get everything up and running.

ExpressionEngine setup

  1. Log in to your admin and make your way to Add-OnsModules. Make sure the Metaweblog API is installed.
  2. Click on Metaweblog API to edit it’s settings.
  3. Copy the URL string you see on the main page into your clipboard or a new text document, you will need this later for MarsEdit’s settings.
  4. Click Default to edit the settings for this configuration.
  5. Change the Configuration Name to match your Channel. I called mine Blog.
  6. If your Channel has a field group assigned to it, make sure it’s selected for Channel Field Group.
  7. Make sure the Content Field is set to the correct custom field you are using for the main body of the article.
  8. Click Update to save these settings.

MarsEdit setup

When you first open MarsEdit, you are greeted with a Quick Start window. Enter your Blog’s Name and URL and click Finish. You may receive the message MarsEdit was not able to auto-detect your blog settings but that’s fine. Select Edit Settings so we can set it up properly.

MarsEdit Quick start

MarsEdit Settings

  1. Change System Name to “Other”.
  2. Change System API to “MetaWeblog API”.
  3. In the API Endpoint URL field, enter in the URL string you copied from Step 3 in the the ExpressionEngine setup above.
  4. In the Blog ID text field, enter in the ID of your desired ExpressionEngine Channel.
  5. Click OK to save your settings.
  6. Click the Refresh icon and a login box will appear. Enter your Username and Password for your ExpressionEngine admin and click OK.

MarsEdit login

That’s it! MarsEdit will now download a list of any entries within your ExpressionEngine Channel and you should be good to go.

Test your setup by clicking the New Post icon, entering a Title, writing something in the main text field and clicking Send to Blog. If you now visit your ExpressionEngine back-end, it should be a new entry.

Check that the content you have written matches up with the entry within ExpressionEngine. If not, you may need to go back and edit the Metaweblog API settings.

Nov 20, 2010 1 comment


  1. Nov 30, 2010

    Thomas Boelskifte

    Awesome! I'm a few days away from launching an all Expression Engine version of my Danish Apple news & forum site, Dansk Apple Forum, and I had not thought I could use MarsEdit with all the custom channel-names and so on, that I use on the new site.

    And then I stumble on this, and find that I actually can continue with MarsEdit! This is wonderful, thank you so much for doing this How-To :)


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