Joomla! provides plenty of flexibility when displaying your Web content. Whether you are using Joomla! for a blog site, news or a Web site for a company, you'll find one or more content styles to showcase your information. You can also change the style of content dynamically depending on your preferences. Joomla! calls how a page is laid out a layout. Use the guide below to understand which layouts are available and how you might use them.

Content

Joomla! makes it extremely easy to add and display content. All content is placed where your mainbody tag in your template is located. There are three main types of layouts available in Joomla! and all of them can be customised via parameters. The display and parameters are set in the Menu Item used to display the content your working on. You create these layouts by creating a Menu Item and choosing how you want the content to display.

Blog Layout

Blog layout will show a listing of all Articles of the selected blog type (Section or Category) in the mainbody position of your template. It will give you the standard title, and Intro of each Article in that particular Category and/or Section. You can customise this layout via the use of the Preferences and Parameters, (See Article Parameters) this is done from the Menu not the Section Manager!

Blog Archive Layout

A Blog Archive layout will give you a similar output of Articles as the normal Blog Display but will add, at the top, two drop down lists for month and year plus a search button to allow Users to search for all Archived Articles from a specific month and year.

List Layout

Table layout will simply give you a tabular list of all the titles in that particular Section or Category. No Intro text will be displayed just the titles. You can set how many titles will be displayed in this table by Parameters. The table layout will also provide a filter Section so that Users can reorder, filter, and set how many titles are listed on a single page (up to 50)

Wrapper

Wrappers allow you to place stand alone applications and Third Party Web sites inside your Joomla! site. The content within a Wrapper appears within the primary content area defined by the "mainbody" tag and allows you to display their content as a part of your own site. A Wrapper will place an IFRAME into the content Section of your Web site and wrap your standard template navigation around it so it appears in the same way an Article would.

Content Parameters

The parameters for each layout type can be found on the right hand side of the editor boxes in the Menu Item configuration screen. The parameters available depend largely on what kind of layout you are configuring.

As with previous releases, Joomla! provides a unified and easy-to-use framework for delivering content for Web sites of all kinds. To support the changing nature of the Internet and emerging Web technologies, Joomla! required substantial restructuring of its core functionality and we also used this effort to simplify many challenges within the current user interface. Joomla! 1.5 has many new features.

If you're new to Web publishing systems, you'll find that Joomla! delivers sophisticated solutions to your online needs. It can deliver a robust enterprise-level Web site, empowered by endless extensibility for your bespoke publishing needs. Moreover, it is often the system of choice for small business or home users who want a professional looking site that's simple to deploy and use. We do content right.

So what's the catch? How much does this system cost?

Well, there's good news ... and more good news! Joomla! 1.5 is free, it is released under an Open Source license - the GNU/General Public License v 2.0. Had you invested in a mainstream, commercial alternative, there'd be nothing but moths left in your wallet and to add new functionality would probably mean taking out a second mortgage each time you wanted something adding!

Joomla! changes all that ...
Joomla! is different from the normal models for content management software. For a start, it's not complicated. Joomla! has been developed for everybody, and anybody can develop it further. It is designed to work (primarily) with other Open Source, free, software such as PHP, MySQL, and Apache.

It is easy to install and administer, and is reliable.

Joomla! doesn't even require the user or administrator of the system to know HTML to operate it once it's up and running.

To get the perfect Web site with all the functionality that you require for your particular application may take additional time and effort, but with the Joomla! Community support that is available and the many Third Party Developers actively creating and releasing new Extensions for the 1.5 platform on an almost daily basis, there is likely to be something out there to meet your needs. Or you could develop your own Extensions and make these available to the rest of the community.

Joomla! features:

  • Completely database driven site engines
  • News, products, or services sections fully editable and manageable
  • Topics sections can be added to by contributing Authors
  • Fully customisable layouts including left, center, and right Menu boxes
  • Browser upload of images to your own library for use anywhere in the site
  • Dynamic Forum/Poll/Voting booth for on-the-spot results
  • Runs on Linux, FreeBSD, MacOSX server, Solaris, and AIX

Joomla! runs on any platform including Windows, most flavours of Linux, several Unix versions, and the Apple OS/X platform. Joomla! depends on PHP and the MySQL database to deliver dynamic content.

The minimum requirements are:

  • Apache 1.x, 2.x and higher
  • PHP 4.3 and higher
  • MySQL 3.23 and higher
It will also run on alternative server platforms such as Windows IIS - provided they support PHP and MySQL - but these require additional configuration in order for the Joomla! core package to be successful installed and operated.

Support

Support for the Joomla! CMS can be found on several places. The best place to start would be the Joomla! Official Documentation Wiki. Here you can help yourself to the information that is regularly published and updated as Joomla! develops. There is much more to come too!

Of course you should not forget the Help System of the CMS itself. On the topmenu in the Back-end Control panel you find the Help button which will provide you with lots of explanation on features.

Another great place would of course be the Forum . On the Joomla! Forum you can find help and support from Community members as well as from Joomla! Core members and Working Group members. The forum contains a lot of information, FAQ's, just about anything you are looking for in terms of support.

Two other resources for Support are the Joomla! Developer Site and the Joomla! Extensions Directory (JED). The Joomla! Developer Site provides lots of technical information for the experienced Developer as well as those new to Joomla! and development work in general. The JED whilst not a support site in the strictest sense has many of the Extensions that you will need as you develop your own Web site.

The Joomla! Developers and Bug Squad members are regularly posting their blog reports about several topics such as programming techniques and security issues.

Documentation

Joomla! Documentation can of course be found on the Joomla! Official Documentation Wiki. You can find information for beginners, installation, upgrade, Frequently Asked Questions, developer topics, and a lot more. The Documentation Team helps oversee the wiki but you are invited to contribute content, as well.

There are also books written about Joomla! You can find a listing of these books in the Joomla! Shop.

This Web site is powered by Joomla! The software and default templates on which it runs are Copyright 2005-2008 Open Source Matters. The sample content distributed with Joomla! is licensed under the Joomla! Electronic Documentation License. All data entered into this Web site and templates added after installation, are copyrighted by their respective copyright owners.

If you want to distribute, copy, or modify Joomla!, you are welcome to do so under the terms of the GNU General Public License. If you are unfamiliar with this license, you might want to read 'How To Apply These Terms To Your Program' and the 'GNU General Public License FAQ'.

The Joomla! licence has always been GPL.

A lot of different languages are available for the Back-end, but by default this language may not be installed. If you want a translated Back-end, get your language pack and install it using the Extension Installer. After this, go to the Extensions Menu, select Language Manager and make your language the default one. Your Back-end will be translated immediately.

Users who have access rights to the Back-end may choose the language they prefer in their Personal Details parameters. This is of also true for the Front-end language.

A good place to find where to download your languages and localised versions of Joomla! is Translations for Joomla! on JED.

Within the Installer you will find a wide collection of languages. The installer currently supports the following languages: Arabic, Bulgarian, Bengali, Czech, Danish, German, Greek, English, Spanish, Finnish, French, Hebrew, Devanagari(India), Croatian(Croatia), Magyar (Hungary), Italian, Malay, Norwegian bokmal, Dutch, Portuguese(Brasil), Portugues(Portugal), Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Svenska, Thai and more are being added all the time.
By default the English language is installed for the Back and Front-ends. You can download additional language files from the Joomla!Extensions Directory.
The collation option determines the way ordering in the database is done. In languages that use special characters, for instance the German umlaut, the database collation determines the sorting order. If you don't know which collation you need, select the "utf8_general_ci" as most languages use this. The other collations listed are exceptions in regards to the general collation. If your language is not listed in the list of collations it most likely means that "utf8_general_ci is suitable.
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