Welcome to Joomla!

John's tips to help you build a great, Joomla! powered website

Recent Good Stuff

When I find a particularly good Joomla resource, I'll let you know about it here.

These recommendations are brief, to the point, and worth taking the time to check it out.

How to use the expanded user profiles in Joomla 1.7

Joomla 1.7 adds a lot of flexibility to the User Registration part of Joomla. Here's the intro to a great article by Jen Kramer on the always helpful Compass Design's Joomla blog.

How many times have you built a site, and your client asked you for some additional information about users who register for the site? They wanted to collect their mailing address, date of birth, a favorite book, or even they just wanted them to accept the terms of service. Unfortunately, in Joomla 1.5, you would have had to install a complex extension like Community Builder to acheive this functionality. Now, however, it's built into Joomla 1.7.

Here's how to configure expanded profiles ...   Click here to read the full article on Barrie's site

A new template from JoomlaShine and an update to their slide show

Several years ago JoomlaShine released a very nice template called JSN Epic.  I really liked this free template and bought an unlimited license to the advanced version and used it on quite a number of sites.   They also had a very nice slide show component / module as well.


But, it's been several years since their last template release, and a new one, JSN Dome has been released, as has a new version of their JSN Slide Show.   The Dome template is very good (available in a free version and several commercial enhanced versions), and the new version of the slide show is simply amazing.


Take a look at this new template and slide show at JoomlaShine's website.

2 simple plug-ins for administrator approval of new users

As you may know, in a default Joomla installation, new users can register for your site and then get immediate approval as 'registered users.'   Or, you can set it so Joomla sends the new user an email with a "click on this link to confirm" in order to make sure that they have entered a valid email address.


Sometimes, you want a bit more than that, and you want an administrator to approve the registration first.  In the past, you would need to install an extension like Community Builder in order to get that ability but now it is much easier with several recently released extensions.


First of all, there is "Registration Approval by Admin."  This free plug-in adds one more step to the new user registration process.  After the new user has registered and confirmed their email address, Joomla sends the admin an email saying that a new user is requesting approval.  You are given a link to click that will confirm the registration.  If you do that, Joomla activates the account and sends the new user an email notifying them that they have been approved.   It's quick, easy, and adds a very useful layer of spam protection to your site.


Registration approval by admin:  http://extensions.joomla.org/extensions/access-a-security/site-access/10737


The second extension to consider is the "Multilingual Registration Approval."  Don't let the word "multilingual" confuse you.  The key feature here is "Registration Approval."


It works basically the same was as the extension listed above, except it adds support for JoomFish enabled multi-lingual sites.


Either of these is a good thing to consider for your site if you want admin approval added.   I've got a few sites where this is going right away.


Download http://extensions.joomla.org/extensions/access-a-security/authentication/9007

A new version of the free template JA Purity - Wow!

Most of us are familar with the template JA Purity.  It comes as one of the default Joomla templates as it was the winner of the Joomla 1.5 template contest.


Well the super people over at JoomlArt have done it again.  They've release a new template called JA-Purity-ii and it is a winner.  It's very similar to JA Purity, but has an amazing menu system (they call it the "mega-menu") and I love it!  You've seen these new menus with multiple lines in the menu, and multiple columns in the drop downs?  This one has all of that and is simply amazing.   You've got to look at the demo.  Really!


Go quick to the site and download this free template before they come to their senses!   And while you are there, take a look at the other beautiful templates available there.

A very nice, "lite" administrative template

I'm a customer of Joomla Praise and have enjoyed their templates and their extensions.  I am a big fan of their replacement adminstrative templates that add a lot of nice features when doing site admin.  I simply get more done quicker.

Recently they released their AP-Lite (Administrative Praise Lite) template for free.  This is a fast loading, "lite" template that I have found very good as well.  Because I'm on a relatively slow connection here in Africa, the extra speed is apreciated.    Download it and add it to your template collection.   You may find it quite useful.

Go over to Joomla Praise and download the AP-Lite template

A very easy way to keep your Joomla install up to date

From time to time, the Joomla team releases a new version of Joomla.  Sometimes it adds new features, other times it fixes bugs or patches security problems.   And, if you don't keep your Joomla installation up-to-date, you are inviting trouble from hackers.

Recently a new Joomla extension was released that makes it super-easy to keep your core Joomla files up-to-date.  Install the "Joomla Update Manager" as you would any Joomla extension, and now you have a "one-click to update my core Joomla files" menu item in your administrator control panel.

Very simple, and the price can't be beat!   It's free

Here the link to the Joomla Update Manager