In the last article we began looking at Joomla and, more specifically, the handy "Beginner's Guide to Joomla" that the makers of this content management system provides at their web site. Hopefully by this time you have taken the time to sit down and really ask yourself what you want out of your own web site, as this is always the first step. Without this foundation, your web site may become a scattered assortment of pages that have no rhyme or reason.
Per the "Beginners Guide to Joomla" recommendations, an extremely helpful thing to do after you have figured out what you want out of your web site is to check out the Joomla v1.5 Quick Start Guide. Much time was spent in creating this helpful 49 page guide, and it is full of guidance, screenshots, and everything you need to get started. Once you install the program, the guide then teaches you how to configure extensions and work with components, modules, and plugins. The guide is an asset to beginning your web site, especially if you have never used Joomla's system before.
For each component that you wish to configure, there will be both an administrator side of it and a site element. As the Joomla site states, "Components are the major portion of your page because a component is driven by a menu item and every menu item runs a component." Next, you have your modules. The login component of your web site is a module, as well as the footer. Modules can be integrated into the components of your site, or they can stand alone. Plugins handle the events on your site. "When an event is triggered, plugins that are registered with the application to handle that event execute."
Site administration is a crucial component to understand, as you will need it when you find it necessary to backup and restore your database. You just never know when these instances will arise, so it is best to know how to handle them prior to even getting your web site going.
One tip that Joomla cautions against is adding anything and everything to your site at the onset of starting out just because it "looks cool." Here is what Joomla specifically says about this: "It's best to maximize the use of the core code before you add extensions to your site. With each extension that you install, you complicate your site administration requirements and slow your site down. Upgrades are also more complicated. Extensions are great but make certain you really need them, first. "
This is an important tip because you really do not want to complicate your web site from the beginning. This undue frustration can be eliminated simply by taking some precautions and determining what it is you really need. The extensions are there for you to utilize. However, just like every web site is different, what you will actually need for yours will be different, too. Keep this in mind as you move ahead.
These tips, and many others, can be found at Joomla's web site. Countless guides are available so you do not have to go through setting up your web site blindly. Simply taking some extra time to learn a bit about this content management program will save you time in the end.