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Advice for all those just starting out with Vanilla

kirkpa31kirkpa31 ✭✭
edited August 2013 in Tutorials

Just two months ago I started this web development craze that has consumed me since. I had no prior experience in hosting a website, designing a forum, securing a domain name, etc. Coming to this community saved me. I was close to giving up and throwing in the towel a couple of times, but the members within this community made that impossible for me to do. Had I seen a message like this right off the bat - I would have saved countless hours and a few hairs along the way.

Now that my forum is basically complete - looking back I've realized that everything I've done could have been completed in two days by an experienced Vanilla user, rather than two months. However, having no prior experience in coding - the two months have been some of the most fulfilling in recent years as I was able to figure things out I never knew possible. This little excerpt by me is intended to guide newbs like me in their initial attempts in this community.

Be Grateful

Referring to @vrijvlinder's comment about being grateful, something that is of the utmost importance in this community. Try to be as little of a burden as possible right off the bat, something I was a little too much of looking back.

Solve Your Own Problems The Best You Can

This question is an example of my thought process in tackling an issue a plugin was having on my forum. I posted a question - didn't receive any replies, but didn't stop working it out. A day later I solved the issue by adding a simple line within the code already in place. You should also refer to this page for advice on how to properly ask a question.

This question was started and finished by me - but having it on this community now will allow a future user to use what I've learned to save some time in their attempt should they encounter the same problem.

Trust The Members Of This Community, Trust The Addons

When I didn't know how to alter an addon developed by one of the members in this community, such as @peregrine, @x00, @kasperisager, I immediately thought that the solution would be to add massive bits of code. Instead, what proved true 99% of the time is that just one tiny bit of code is all that needed to be altered. This post also shows how big solutions are not always correct.

This question in particular shows the dedication of the members of this community. @vrijvlinder and @peregrine took a lot of time to drop everything and help me out with one little issue I was having. The addons are excellent in this community, their developers are incredibly knowledgable and useful and will be helpful as well if they feel as if their work is truly appreciated.

Become More Of An Asset The More Experience You Get

Two months ago I would have never thought I could provide coding advice or feedback to another human being. This idea came from me tinkering around with the plugins to try and make them a little bit more suiting for my forum. This feedback and this feedback were both something small yet worth reporting.

I do not know how long I would have lasted in this desire to build a website had I not come to this community. Thank you everyone for your help through this process and hopefully someone like me, just starting out, will see this post and be helped by it.


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    Great job guy!

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    Well written. Thanks to everyone for what they do

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    lovely post :)

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    @johnnyzen said:
    lovely post :)


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    Thanks so much!

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    Thanks so much for the effort!

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    Trying it out for my small member database

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    yeah me too!

    @jimmylow99 said:
    Trying it out for my small member database

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    Oh and thanks too!

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    test post.

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    Nice tips thanks for sharing

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    peregrineperegrine MVP
    edited December 2013

    @peregrine said:
    not in a discussion :).
    advice for new forum users - if you are testing posts - posts

    post them here


    wsince there is no longer a testing category. it would be done in off-topic

    Tip # 100020101

    when asking a question about a specific plugin, go to the plugin in add-ons section, click on the plugin and click ask question.

    Tip # 100020102

    when asking a question, please mention your version number of vanilla in your opening post.

    in case you still don't know how to find your version number.


    I may not provide the completed solution you might desire, but I do try to provide honest suggestions to help you solve your issue.

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    Awesome post and very encouraging for those who are just starting and getting into shape :) I am just started as well and sometimes I just feel to give up when you face small problem or can't find the workaround you are wanting.


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