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New forum online : General Advice?

edited May 2006 in Vanilla 1.0 Help
Hello! I have been messing around with the wonders of vanilla the past few days and just thought I'd come show you my results. My forum is here with a new design based on soulscape (I have changed most of the layout)

Let me know what you think (as you can see my forum is so new I have no members).

Also, is it possible to add a chunk of html to my forum code such as a hitcounter? I use to track my main website's hits and would dearly love to just paste the code over.

Any comments much appreciated


  • looks nice. how did you get the category images? i never noticed that setting anywhere (is it just under category management?) In regards to adding the code, mess around with some of the .php files like common.controls.php and you'll probably find a place to stick it. Just make sure not to mess up any of the php formatting (/ before ", etc.).
  • I'd suggest the best way to add this would be using the google analytics extension and just change the html (assuming that the hitcounter is just a script, not a visible counter). If it's a visible counter the easiest thing to do (and neatest) is probably to add it into the panel using an extension (explanation on the documentation website, i believe)
  • MarkMark Vanilla Staff
    Nice work!
  • I'm damn impressed!
  • Very nicely done. As for the catagory images, I have no idea how that is done. There is no setting in Vanilla Core that I can see.
  • I belive it's in the styling. The class Category_x is assigned to each category/discussion in the list, which you can use to specify a background image.
  • edited March 2006
    Thanks... The hitcounter does have a little image to go along with the code. I have absolutely no knowledge of how to set up an extension, but I'll give it a go. The category images was all does through global.css. Here's the code I used: .Category_1 { background: transparent url('cat-1.gif') 6px 50% no-repeat ; } The cat-1.gif is the image I made. This can then be repeated for all the categories and then all I did was pop 50px of padding before the appropriate classes, pretty easy. My knowledge of css /html is completley clumped together from literally days of experimenting. I have no doubt that the code for my main site is an awful mess.
  • Wow, talk about getting lost... If anyone could help me here I'd be grateful. I'd also like to change the 'link rel' in the header to point to a new feed I have set up (i fed the atom feed of the forum through feedburner for easy access) I found this in the init_internal.php file: $Head->AddString("<link rel=\"alternate\" type=\"application/rss+xml\" href=\"".PrependString("http://", AppendFolder(agDOMAIN, "feeds/?Type=rss"))."\" title=\"".$Context->GetDefinition("Atom")." ".$Context->GetDefinition("Feed")."\" />"); But I have no clue what to change here
  • I really like the look of your forums. I think this shows what can be done graphically with Vanilla given some amount of creativity. :)
  • Check out the extension for Mint perhaps you would just need to add your sitemeter code instead?
  • edited March 2006
    Figured it out! Solved... Just hacked it into the common.controls file with the footers.
  • Do many people out there use visit counters? Do you find them very useful? Has anybody any experience with StatCounter or ActiveMeter? Both of these employ inserting a piece of code that sends info back to the central site, which does all the stats. I have found a few comments around the web that this may be an opportunity for hackers or other nasties. Anyone got any experience about this please? I think a counter could be useful on a general site (though less useful on a forumlike Vanilla, where some of the information is already available) but I want to be sure it's worthwhile and safe. Thanks.
  • I've used (in passing - no real need for it at the moment though i aught to get it reconfigured) google analytics which is one of the ones which sends info to the central server. I'd assume since it's been developed by google (naive of me i know) that it's fairly secure and i havent heard of any reports of weaknesses. That said anything in such major useage will be hacked eventually if it can be done atall - and then you'll know about it. Actual visit counters are covered by the setup of my webserver, though. Google analytics is just useful to show peoples viewing habits and stuff like conversions on larger more commerce based sites.
  • slimstat or mint for the win.
  • I use Shortstat, ie: Mint's free older brother. It's quite useful for finding which pages are more popular, and where all the visitors are refered from.
  • ercatliercatli
    edited May 2006
    Thanks dudes. This forum ALWAYS :) gives me good answers! I had searched the web for quite a while, yet hadn't come across SlimStat & ShortStat (mustn't have used the right words), and Mint was just a word to me. I am going to try SlimStat, since it's an updare of ShortStat. All 3 of these have the big advantage (to me) of keeping things happening on my server, not getting visitors' unknowingly connecting to some 3rd party site. Another question please. SlimStat requires use of a DB on my server. Is there any problem using the Vanilla DB, or would I be better setting up a new one for this (if I can manage it)? Thanks again.
  • Assuming you dont get a table conflict (which you wont), using the same DB will be fine. Ofcourse if theres no reason not to use a different db (host limits or something) you might like to anyway from a security point of view or even just for the sake of it.
  • i agree with minisweeper - it will work fine on the same db... and personally, i would probably use the same db, because then all of your db tables for that site are in one db, and easy/quick to backup... Vanilla's backup function in settings allows you to get a dump of the whole db in one click (very handy!)
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    Vanilla only dumps it's own database tables, and doesn't touch any others to my knowledge. Unless there's an option now which I haven't noticed that dumps the entire thing soley on DB name. Either way, I typically try to plug different datasets into their own DB unless they're tightly related, it saves me from remembering what belongs with what and where instead of having the weird assortment of oddly named prefixes all showing in the same DB. Also cleaning/dumping/rebuilding a certain apps DB goes a bit more smoothly as well.
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