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6.10 Weblinks

Previously we had a brief look at the Weblinks component, but we didn’t get the chance to create an actual Weblink. This lesson will cover all aspects of the Weblinks component, such as how to create Weblinks and render them on the front-end, and finally we’ll cover the global configurations.

6.10 Weblinks

Hi, guys. Welcome back to A Beginner's Guide to Using Joomla! And in this lesson we want to carry on learning about the Weblinks component. So the first thing I'd like to do, is take a look at creating a new category within the Weblinks component. I'm gonna give it the title of Tutsplus. Give it a quick description. Set the parent to Blog Roll, so now this category is inside of the Blog Roll category. And we have the standard options such as Tags, the Status, the Access level, Language, and you can also attach a Note so it displays in the back-end. Then we have the standard Publishing options, such as informational fields and also SEO fields as well. Next we have the Permissions for this particular category item. Then we have some additional options, including the ability to change the default layout that's set under the Global Configurations. But there is only one layout unfortunately. And on top of that, we can associate an image with this category. Once I've done that, I'm gonna save and close. And we're gonna create a new Web Link. So I'm gonna provide a title for this Web Link. We need to provide a URL where the link will go to, a description of this weblink and, also, I can assign a category which will be the newly created Tutsplus weblink category. And again, you have all of the standard options that come with most items. Then we can take a look at associating some images with this weblink. And now I'm gonna associate a first and second image with this web link, and both of those images we can tell it to float a specific way, we can provide alt text for each individual image and a caption. Then we have the standard publishing options. This includes setting the time and date for the start and finishing publishing dates. The created data, who created the weblink. An alias for that individual who created the weblink. And you have lots and lots of informational fields and also SEO fields as well. Then on top that we have the options tab. Then we can define how this link will open. So I can say open in a parent window or I could say let's open it up in a pop up window. Now when we say open up in a pop up window I can define the width and the height of that pop up window. Also we have the option of choosing to count the clicks. Again, for the target and counter clicks, we could go with the global default settings. So I'm gonna say Save and Close. There is my new web link. And we're gonna come back, and I will generate some more web links. So now I've just gone ahead and created some more web links. So we have Tutsplus Tuts, Envato, and Web Design Courses. Those three web links are now associated with the Tutsplus Web link category. So now let's take a look at the test menu. And I want to delete out all of the current menu items. And then we want to start adding in new menu items for the web links component. So the first menu item we're going to create will list out multiple web links categories. And so what we can do is select the menu item type. Underneath the Web links section we can go to List All Web Link Categories. Then it will say where do you want to start rendering from, and I'm gonna start rendering from the Root level. So, I can Save & Close, and now we can create another Menu item. This menu item type will produce a list of all web links for a chosen category. So underneath the Menu Item Type, we're gonna select List Web Links in a Category. Once we do this, it's gonna ask us to select which category we'd like to list out all of the web links that are associated with that specific category. So I'm gonna go with Tuts Plus and say save and close. This menu item will produce a page that has a form on it that allows users to submit web links. So underneath the menu item type we're going to say submit a web link. Now there's not much options for this one, so we can just say save and close. Now let's take a look at what these menu items produce on the front end. And please do note, with the menu item Submit a Web Link, it has public access. Now there's a good reason why I'm pointing this out, because I'm gonna scooch on over to the Front-end and we can take a look at the first Menu Item List Web Link Categories, which it is doing. Then we have the Web Link Category, Tuts Plus. This will show us all of the Web Links that are associated with this particular Web Links Category. Then on top of that we have Submit a Web Link. But when we click on it, it gives us a 404 not found. Well, that shouldn't be, because Joomla's supposed to render content. But, what it's actual doing is saying, look you're not allowed access to this page. So, if we go to the Author Login, and then login as let's say as an administrator or a registered user and then click Submit a Web Link. It will produce the page that we're looking for. So this menu item type requires special permissions in order for the content to be rendered. So we do have to be a little bit careful there. And we shouldn't really have this menu item type with the viewing access level set to public. Now finally what I'd like to do is generate a module that will produce some web links. So I need to drop down the Extensions menu and go to the Module Manager. Add in a new Module and from here we can scroll all the way down and add in a Web Links module. So firstly, I'm going to give my module a title. And assign it a position. So the module knows where to render the HTML. Then we need to select which Web Links category we'd like to render the web links for. Then we can choose a count that means that we can limit the amount of web links that are rendered from that category. Then we can choose the ordering. So I'm gonna stick with the title. And with the ordering direction I'm gonna leave it as Ascending, then we can choose a target window so how are those links are gonna open up in that specific module. Are they gonna open up in a pop up window, in a parent window and so on and so forth. Then we have the ability to tell the search engines to follow or not follow those links. Typically, you'd actually wanna say not follow, cuz it's going to an external website. Then on top of that, we can optionally show or hide the description and the amount of hits or clicks that that link has had. On top of that, we can also say, count the clicks for those links on that specific module. So now that we've done this let's go ahead and save and close this module. And we can preview it on the front end. And if we scroll down we can see the module being generated, the links, the link description and also, in brackets, the hits as well. So now I'm going to jump back over to the back end, drop down the components menu and go back to the web links component and from here we can take a look at the global configurations for the web links component. So these options are setting the defaults for web links. And we can change these default options on either the web link itself or a menu item. So let's take a look on the front end. And show the page that lists out all of the web links associated with a category. Now from here we can set the defaults of how we want these web links to open. Do we want them to open in a pop-up window? Do we want them to open in the parent window? And so on and so forth. Then we have Save History and Maximum Versions. So this affects the back end of our Joomla installation when it comes to the Web Links component. If we set Save History to no, it will disable version control of any item within that component, such as a Web Link or a web link category. If we do allow it, then we can set a maximum amount of versions for each individual item that's found within the web links component. Then we can track the clicks on each one of those web links by default. Then also we can either the display the icon, so that's the default icon that comes with the template, we could display text, or we could just display the web link on its own. I'm gonna leave it on icon and then I have the choice to override the default icon that comes with the template by selecting an icon from the Media Manager. And then also we have the float of the first image associated with a Web Link, and then set the float for the secondary image. Again, we're just setting the defaults. We can override the floats within the Web Links themselves. Then on top of that we can say whether we want to Show or Hide any tags associated with the web links by default. Now what I'm gonna go ahead and do is take a look at the Category tab. So these options define the look and feel of a Weblink's Category page. Now you can modify these options and override them via a menu item that links to a web link's category page. Now I'm going to go to the page that lists out all of the web links categories. And then I'm gonna click on Blog Roll which is on the root level and Tuts Plus being the subcategory. So the first thing we have is choosing the default layout, which there's only one that comes with the component. So unfortunately, we have to stick with just the default. Then on top of that, we also can show the category title, description, and category image. On top of that we can say how many sub-category levels we'd like to render. So currently we've got that set to all. So it's gonna render every single sub-category that is inside of the current category page that we're on. Then, if you'd like, you can render Empty categories. Then, on top of that, we can also show the subcategory descriptions, the number of web links associated with a subcategory, and also optionally show any tags associated with a subcategory. So now we can take a look at the Categories tab. And these options allow us to modify the look and feel of the List or Web links categories page. Now the problem is the Proto Star theme does seem to have a little bit of an error with it when it comes to this page, where it's not rendering sub-category levels. So what I'm going to do is modify that menu item and then I'm gonna change the template that that menu item is rendering. So instead of the Proto-Star theme I'm going change to bees 3. So for this page the template is a little bit different so that we get all the information we need and then we can delve into these options here. So the first thing we can do is show or hide the top level category description. And if we have the top level category set to Root via the menu item. We can provide a top level category description through the menu item and have that top level category description being rendered on the page. Then we can choose how many subcategory levels we'd like to render so I can set that to two or I could say also render all subcategory levels. Then on top of that, we also have Show Empty Categories. So if no Web Links are associated with a category, that is, an empty category. But can still show that category. Then also, you can say whether you want to show subcategory descriptions. And also whether you'd like to show the number of Web Links associated with a category. Next up we'd like to take a look at the options for the List Layouts. So these are typically associated with web link category pages that have been rendered and it lists out all of the web links associated with a category. And from here we can Show and Hide the filter field. The display select drop-down that determines the amount of web links rendered on a single page. Then also you have the ability to show the table headings, links descriptions, the amount of hits on a link, and you can set the pagination to be automatic, so it only shows when there are multiple pages. And also pagination results, such as one page out of four. So now we've discovered these options. We also have the integration, so would we like to integrate a feed link if possible. And that will allow us a simple RSS feed. And then on top of that we also have the ability to set the permissions for the web links component itself. So who gets to access this component in the administrative interface. Who gets to edit items within this component. And so on and so forth. The standard permissions. So thank you for watching me in this lesson. And please join me in the next lesson where we'll take a look at the Extensions Manager and the different types of extensions.

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