Jump to content

Invision Community Blog


Managing successful online communities

Charles
Sign in to follow this  
 

CCS: Pages Overview

The core of the CCS application centers around allowing you to create pages for your website. The way you create pages and the types of pages you create will be specific to your site, however the process is the same. One administrator may want to build the full front of their website using CCS, while another administrator may want to add some pages within the forums that are not there by default. Both scenarios can be covered by CCS.

The page manager interface looks similar to a computer folder view: you are presented with folders and files in a directory-style listing. You can create folders and subfolders, rename them, delete them, empty them, and move them around as needed. You can edit, rename, delete and move files within these folders as well. There is no built in limit to the number of folders or the directory tree depth imposed by CCS.

There are three page types that you can create: HTML, Javascript, and CSS. Javascript and CSS files are pretty straightforward - the main difference from HTML pages being that when you call to one of these files through a script, link, or import tag in an HTML document, CCS will output the correct HTTP header for the content type being served.

Actual pages can be edited as raw HTML, bbcode, or PHP; allowing you to do practically anything with your pages. You could make your page entirely dynamic, making use of IP.Board's database abstraction layer to retrieve data from the database, using the PHP page type. Or you could make a quick Terms of Service page to display to users using only the bbcode WYSIWYG editor. You can enter the actual filename, and a friendly name to describe the page. The folder and filename are combined to create the URL to reach the page, described later in this blog entry. You can also define the meta keywords and description tags when editing the page.

You can utilize page templates to make creating and editing pages simpler. We will be discussing page templates in a future blog entry, but in essence you would create a page template that defines the basic HTML structure, and then when adding a page you select the template you wish to use, select whether you want to import the template or just edit the page content itself, and the CCS will then be able to utilize pre-designed page templates to make page deployment much easier, faster, and more consistent.

Pages can be cached, helping to reduce overhead for pages that should be relatively static for all viewers. If your pages are very dynamic (for instance, they use a lot of feed or plugin blocks where content will differ from user to user) you should be careful regarding page caching. You wouldn't want an administrator to trigger some piece of the page to be recached with elevated permissions, for instance, showing topics a guest user wouldn't normally be able to view. If your pages are mostly static, however, pages can be built once, cached, and then served from cache on subsequent views. Remember that blocks can also be independently cached, so you can have relatively static blocks cached while leaving the page itself uncached (it will still used the cached HTML for blocks that specify to do so, and use dynamic HTML for blocks that have disabled caching). When you enable page caching, the entire page output is cached.

You can also define the permission masks needed to access a page, or allow all users to access the page. Using this, you can create moderator guidelines for your moderating team, or a contact information page for administrators, for example.

Actually accessing the page is an important matter, and many users will want to utilize friendly urls for this. There are many options built into CCS to handle this for you, which we will likely go over in more detail in a future blog entry. If you are accessing CCS through IP.Board, then CCS uses the built in friendly url functionality in IP.Board to generate friendly URLs (if enabled). Most people, however, will likely take our included index.php file, edit the path to their forums within it, and place this index.php somewhere else on the server. Using this method, you could place the website pages in a root directory of your domain, and have the forums contained within a /forums folder. You would then be able to manage your entire website, create virtual directories and pages, and more right in your IP.Board admin control panel easily. If your server supports mod_rewrite, you can create a .htaccess file and place it in the same directory as the index.php file provided with CCS, eliminating the /index.php/ from the URL entirely. Ultimately, you can define the urls entirely through the admin control panel by creating folders, defining the page names, and placing the pages within folders as you see fit.

As a traditional web server would do, if you visit a virtual folder but do not specify the file, an index.html will be looked for in that folder (you can change the file you wish to load by default in the settings). If the user requests a file that does not exist, a 404.html file will be looked for instead (again, the file is configurable in the settings). Nothing in the system requires you to use extensions, or requires extensions, when used, to be of a certain type. You could give your pages any extension you wish, or none at all (making pages appear to be "folders"). The system is extremely configurable to allow you to create pages for your site the way you want, and to appear in any way that you want. We've done our best to limit any restrictions in place so that you can define the website any way that you choose. Once you start creating pages, you'll be amazed at how simple and versatile the system really is to use.


Sign in to follow this  

Comments

Recommended Comments

[quote name='Nervosa' date='18 June 2009 - 05:33 PM']
I didn't see an option, but is there an option for page comments and ratings?
Also can users watch / bookmark pages they like?


Yes and no.

Remember that we support full PHP blocks so you can create such things yourself. However, they're not built into the system.

That said, we have several ideas on how to handle things like this, but didn't want to jump the gun and implement something that won't work "the best". Ratings/bookmarks wouldn't be too big a deal really. Though, I'm not entirely sure why a user would need to bookmark a page within IPB itself, rather than their browser. Think of this more like your actual website - a user would more likely use their browser to bookmark a page than some internal system.

As for comments, there's some different ideas, and we're working out what would be best. As I said before, it's not really an "articles"-based system, more a page-based system. However, you could quickly turn it into an articles system by feeding topics from a specific forum/forums into the front end (we'd like to demo that at some point, we'll see). In doing so, it would make the most sense using topic replies as the comments, which would be pretty easy.

Like I said, something that's possible but we're working on the best way of making it easy.

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote name='bfarber' date='19 June 2009 - 03:19 PM']
....Ratings/bookmarks wouldn't be too big a deal really. Though, I'm not entirely sure why a user would need to bookmark a page within IPB itself, rather than their browser. Think of this more like your actual website - a user would more likely use their browser to bookmark a page than some internal system.


[quote name='bfarber' date='19 June 2009 - 03:19 PM']
As for comments, there's some different ideas, and we're working out what would be best. As I said before, it's not really an "articles"-based system, more a page-based system. However, you could quickly turn it into an articles system by feeding topics from a specific forum/forums into the front end (we'd like to demo that at some point, we'll see). In doing so, it would make the most sense using topic replies as the comments, which would be pretty easy.

Using topic replies as comments would mesh the pages with the forums and not really make them there own. Personally I would like them separate from the forums.
Couldn't you just do the comments like you have here in blog.


It looks like only users with access to the ACP can make new pages.
Id really like to use the pages as a submission system for writings, tutorials and such. Is there a way so users can submit pages them, maybe they have flagged to be approved by an admin before published?

I was looking at doing this with mediawiki before with ccs was announced, but if I can keep it all under one house that would be better.

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites

[quote name='Nervosa' date='19 June 2009 - 02:58 PM']
Using topic replies as comments would mesh the pages with the forums and not really make them there own. Personally I would like them separate from the forums.
Couldn't you just do the comments like you have here in blog.

Of course it *could* be done. That's what I meant about trying to find the best way to handle it. For instance, you may want them separate, while others may not (after all, one of the best things about buying multiple different pieces of software from one developer is the integration aspect, usually). It could even be done so that, while the comments are actually replies to the topic, you'd never know that on the front end (just display them as comments and don't link to the actual topic, etc).


[quote name='Nervosa' date='19 June 2009 - 02:58 PM']
It looks like only users with access to the ACP can make new pages.
Id really like to use the pages as a submission system for writings, tutorials and such. Is there a way so users can submit pages them, maybe they have flagged to be approved by an admin before published?

I was looking at doing this with mediawiki before with ccs was announced, but if I can keep it all under one house that would be better.


At present it's ACP only, yes. For the next version we have a lot of ideas for more user-based interaction (wiki-style editing, general front-end submitting, etc.). We specifically set our sights on a specific focus for a 1.0 release, however.

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Will it be possible to have submenus of any sort?

So, for example.. A sports page, and then a bunch of different individual sport pages which are visible under the "Sports" main page.

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is actually looking pretty good, but I remember way back playing with IP.Nexus and thinking to myself "That is JUST what I need!"

This, kind of fills the void nicely... the fact that CCS is designed to be integrated seamlessly with the rest of IPB's product range makes it worth the purchase, and makes me feel a lot happier!

I am sat here credit card at the ready for this product :P anything to make my life easier is worth the money :P

but if you guys at IPS ever decide to revive the IP.Nexus product, let me know, as I am sure I am not the only person willing to pay money for it :)

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites

So, would someone use this in place of trying to hack together a Joomla-IPS bridge? Or is it more for static pages...or building out a basic CMS? One of my sites is a SMF board (for which I just purchased a 3.0 license and plan to migrate soon). This site is largely forums, but has a "Front room" of news (the home page) items which gets updated every few days. This is currently done with Joomla (which is way-overkill for what I need, but seemed to be a good idea at the time).

If not, does anyone have any word on a bridge between Joomla/Drupal and 3.0 (either released already, or forthcoming)?

Thanks!!

M

Share this comment


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Add a comment...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...