How to Create a Basic Template

You've installed Joomla!, installed all of the components, modules, and mambots you need, and you've created your content and menus. Now you want to create a custom look for your Joomla! site, but you don't know how to create a template. This article will step through the creation of a very basic template in Joomla! Hopefully, by the end of this article, you will have a basic understanding of what goes into a Joomla! template. (Note: This information only applies to Joomla! 1.0.X. It does not apply to version 1.5.)

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How to Change What Displays on the Home Page

By default, Joomla! displays the FrontPage component on the home page. The FrontPage component takes a list of content items that are published to the FrontPage and displays them in a blog layout. This will work for most sites, but some webmasters want the option to display something else on the home page. If you would like to change what is displayed on your home page, follow these steps:

Joomla! Adminstrator Menu
  1. In your administrator panel, click Menu->mainmenu.
  2. Create a new menu item that links to what you want to display on the home page.
  3. Re-order your menu items such that the item you want to display on the home page is listed first.

It really is that easy. Joomla! displays the first menu item in mainmenu as the home page. You can set anyting in your site as your home page using this method.

How to change your Joomla WYSIWYG editor

With your standard Joomla! installation, you get a WYSIWYG editor called TinyMCE. A WYSIWYG (What you see is what you get) editor basically enables you to edit content items in your browser just like editing a document in a word processor without needing to know how to write HTML code.

For most people, TinyMCE will serve their needs adequately. However, you might prefer to use a different editor. If so, this article will teach you how to install a new editor and make it your default editor.

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mosLoadModules - An Explanation

At the Joomla! help site, there is a great article explaining the various functions to be used in a Joomla! template. It gives an explanation of the parameters involved in the mosLoadModules function, which often cause confusion for new template developers. You can either read that article, or if you don't feel like leaving this page, you can continue reading this article, which will explain the same concepts.

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How to Create a Joomla Horizontal Menu

When you create a menu with the Joomla! menu manager, a corresponding menu module is automatically created. In the resulting menu module, you will have 3 options for how to display your menu with the "menu style" parameter.

The 3 choices offered are vertical, horizontal, and flat list. In this list, there are 2 ways to create a horizontal menu: the right way, and the not-so-right way. In this article, I will explain both ways, and try to persuade you that the right way is the right way. I'll start with the not-so-right way.

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Organizing Your Joomla Content

Although it can do so much more than managing content, Joomla! is, at its core, a Content Management System (CMS). It is important for aspiring Joomla! site developers to have at least a basic understanding of how Joomla! is set up to organize content. A proper content organization can greatly improve the flow and usability of your website. This article is meant to provide that basic understanding and give steps to successfully organizing your content.

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CBAuthorBot Hack

If you use Community Builder (CB) and the CBAuthorBot (the one that makes the author's name linkable to their CB Profile), then you might be interested in this hack. It enables you to display the author's CB avatar at the top of an article with a link back to his or her CB profile. I originally posted it here on the CB website. You can go there for more information, and to see how other people have modified the hack.

Here's the code:

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Making module positions viewable only by unregistered visitors

Here is a trick for making your module positions viewable only by unregistered visitors.

There are some powerful programming objects in the Joomla! API that are available to template designers. One such object is the user object, which is accessible with the php variable $my.

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Must-have Free and Commercial Joomla 1.5 Components

It is little secret that Joomla! has a thriving 3rd party developer community.  Any function you can think of is probably already available in one of the many 3rd party extensions. It is sometimes difficult to wade through all of the choices that are out there to determine what you need, so I have put together a short list of components that I feel are must-have components. So, without further adieu, here is my list:

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