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Extension Manager & Updates

edited August 2005 in Vanilla 1.0 Help


I just read that Mark wants to strip down the core as much as possible and leave any extra functions to plugins. Excellent!

BUT ... ;-)

I like to suggest an extension to the extension settings on the admin pages:


Please show all available (or as many as possible) plugins directly in this section - so people at least find the most important directly IN THE ADMIN section instead of another (official) repository.

Download & Install

Even better: a one click download, install and activation prodcedure - instead going to some other site, download it, ftp upload, admin interface and activation.

Update checker

A routine that shows if updates for plugins or the board are available. Many phpBB boards got hacked because admins didn't know anything about new versions or patches. IPB has an version detector and direct download link.



  • It would be nice to have an 'extension browser' i guess.
  • @minisweeper: Yeah. Some programms call it extension manager - extension browser is fine with me as well ... as long as I get it! ;-)

  • Yeah, i'd say this 1.0. Mark did release Vanilla, but it's still at .9 I think that there are other things to do before we get to this.

    But it is a great idea. :)
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    Ummm... isn't this already what the "manage extensions" bit already is? as soon as you drop in a new extension into your extensions folder, it appears in the list of extensions to enable/disable.
  • Yeah, but what we're saying is it should grab a list of extensions from the repository. See the stuff i said on the wiki.
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    Ehhh, I'd like to control things on my own I guess, but that's just me.
  • MarkMark Vanilla Staff
    I think what he's getting at is that the extensions are held on a central server, but they are polled from outside forums and added on demand. it's a neat idea and I'll probably do it at some point. I especially think it will be important to do this so that when admins sign in they get an alert if there is a new version of Vanilla available.
  • yeah. that.
  • @lech: It's actually like mark described it. Sorry if my English is confusing.

    I think a central server - at least for an update notification if nothing more is very important. If have seen way too many web applications die a miserable death because they were never updated or the admins didn't know there was a patch.

    There are way too many spammers and script kiddies out there - so speed and security is certainly very important.

    The luxery of a central repository for extensions is certainly a nice to have for later versions. (says he who doesn't write any code)

  • lechlech Chicagoland
    edited July 2005
    polled as in per use, or at one time though? If an extension is getting polled per use and say the server on the other end dies then where that extension is coming from has the capability of killing everything.
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    also, in many cases, I'd like to physically look at what I'm polling before actually putting it on my server from an actual code view. Not to knock the idea entirely, but just because it says it's safe, doesn't always mean that. A script kiddie can throw his "extension" into the fold at any given time, and as people poll it to their servers, it has the capability of throwing a monkey wrench into the works for everyone.
  • I think he means a one time download
  • @lech: Nope.

    The central repository only offers a list of all available plugins and a chance for every external vanilla installation to compare it's installed plugins versions with the current versions on the central repository.

    If the external admin decides to install or upgrade a plugin it gets downloaded to his/her own server.

    I hope that makes it clear?

  • @lech: Sure there are always ways to beat a system - and unless you do stuff like 'certified' extensions with digital signatures ... ;-)

    My intention behind the idea is to support the very idea of a 'naked' core and the plugins. I think most admins and webmasters would appreciate a tool that offers a list of available plugins and a simple installation - instead of being unaware what great things you can do with vanilla!!!

  • The polling of the central server could easily be made a once per session call. I.e. if I log into my forum today and I'm an admin, it will perform a check. Then if I come back 5 days later, it would check then. But then only once each time I log in or once every week. Whichever is longer. I say longer for the purpose of simply lowering load on the central server, and it still ensures that the admin sees the update within at most a week of the update being posted.

    as far as extensions go, this could be done the same way, except only when I hit the extensions listing page the first time during a session, rather than on login - that way, if I'm happy with my set up, I don't have to look at the extensions listing. I can manage just my own.

    Does this make sense?
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    I still like the convienience of doing things myself though :D I don't see why people would want this, I guess I'm just not a fan of getting babied, but that's me. In many cases I don't have some of these luxuries on my server to pull things left and right without some kind of complex hacking and taking it down to the command line. I like getting dirty and working out why it works and not having to second guess myself. I think even if this system was in place I'd be doing it the old way :)
  • lol lech. I take it you're not a fan of apt/yum/etc then? I think it'd be a great tool. Obviously though its still an option so each to their own. Thats why we love vanilla :D
  • @lech: That central repository won't stop you from still doing stuff manually. But not everyone is so into administration/coding like you. Many people will use Vanilla because it's simple and don't need to know more - so let's help these people a bit to keep it easy and give them more time on running their site / community / forum.

  • lechlech Chicagoland
    Yeah, I guess I'd just like it to be left as an option, not as a requirement
  • edited July 2005
    lech. true enough. I myself am the same way. But not all webmins are like you and me. Most of them install, and only update when they're forced to, or someone tells them they should. This, I think is a nice easy way of doing things that allows people to do it an easy way, if they don't want to do it our way.

    It'd be really nice to see a "Your Vanilla XP installation is out of date. The current version is Vanilla Vista! - Please visit and update your installation" on the top of the page. Just to let me know that I have to go and download it, and update it.

    I don't suggest making it an "autoupdate", but more of a notification system. Hell, if mark wanted to he could make it so that he could said vanilla admins messages :)..bwahahahah. That would be great!
This discussion has been closed.