I’ve only gone and converted my website’s theme from Jekyll to Hugo!

Well, that’s the headline out of the way - I think you can probably guess where this post is going from there. So, if you want the tl;dr you can find the new version of my site’s theme on GitLab: Ghostish for Hugo.

I have to confess that I’d been more than a little vexed by Jekyll for a while now. It was fine in the beginning and I had a lot of fun setting up the site with Jekyll. However, once the page count grew it took so long to build that it became a lot of hassle just updating the site. Add to that a myriad of issues with plugins and compatibility and it didn’t seem worth maintaining the site in Jekyll anymore. To give you some idea of my frustrations: I hadn’t posted an update here since June 2020, and even that was a post about a Jekyll issue.

So, I shopped around and decided to give Hugo a crack. Between the promised short build times and Hugo having pretty much all I needed for the site provided without any plug-ins it proved too attractive to resist. The conversion process wasn’t too bad, certainly it was a lot smoother that the initial transition from Ghost to Jekyll. I find Hugo quite logical on the whole, the few hiccups I did have were mainly due to still thinking in Jekyll terms.

So far Hugo is living up to the promises, in particular the builds are lightning fast. Hugo is a real beast! A full build (not incremental, from scratch) now takes 365 ms. It took several, painful, minutes for even incremental builds under Jekyll.

The theme itself is pretty much as you find this site, it also supports site search with the help of Lunr. Due to the way Hugo templating works, the theme even builds the lunr search index for you. You don’t have to lift a finger.

I did a bunch of other stuff to, like moving this site to GitLab pages, but that’s a story for another day.

Take a look at the screenshot below and if you like what you see, then you can download it for your own hugo site.


You can find Ghostish for Hugo on GitLab