I lost a lot due to a theme update so no have questions about using a child theme.
I need to establish child themes for sites and must use a free framework. Tentatively looking at Pagelines DMS and Whiteboard. What about Gantry, and Carrington? Would like other suggestions and pros/cons please. Not doing e-commerce sites.
1. When making a child theme is it okay to just copy the existing style.css and functions.php files from the parent to the child theme folder or is it necessary to create fresh files? And, since most of my design to date is done in the parent "main options" where you can specify and modify the header and other areas, if I use a child theme will I still be able to use and preserve "main options" styling or will I have to do that only in the style.css in the child theme to preserve the styling? This is the most important issue because setting the styling this way is so easy and it takes me forever to try to figure out another way, mostly because I am never sure where the code should be put. It is not so difficult to find the code samples by using Google.
2. I have always used the theme > settings > general, reading, writing to specify things; and I use the theme advanced options to drop in CSS code quickly since I don't have to look for where to place it. When using a child theme will I still be able to use these parent theme features or will it all have to be done in the child theme?
3.What about plugins and widgets, how are those saved from updates wiping them out?
Thank you! My level of experience is beginner working towards intermediate.