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XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial

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xtom

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XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« on: September 14, 2011, 03:22:32 PM »
I've created a short pdf tutorial on how to use Xara with the CMS.

Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2011, 11:27:09 PM »
I have downloaded the trial version and installed the CMS fine.
Still a little unclear how to use it, i have followed the tutorial.
Can i ask when you add the placeholder {page_content} for some dynamic text to a xara page, how does this get referenced in the CMS, do i need to add a new category or does some item need to be called page_content ?

Also as well as publishing from xara to the new mythemes folder do you still need to publish to the public_html folder ?

Thanks,
Alan

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xtom

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Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2011, 09:17:39 AM »
With the cms you only publish into the the directory for your theme and not into public_html.

Think of each page you design in Xara as a page template and not the actual page, the actual pages are created and controlled by the cms.

So if you want to create an about page for example. You add a new category called "about" in the cms and where it says Page Template you select one of your page templates that you uploaded from Xara. You might just have one page template for all your pages or you might have created a few for use on different pages.

If your page template includes {page_content} the cms will automatically replace this with dynamic content generated from the cms. You don't need to use or name anything {page_content} when in the cms. This is only used when creating your pages in Xara.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2011, 09:24:04 AM by xtom »

Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2011, 10:49:48 AM »
So if the xara page is the template and the CMS has the actual page does that mean you need a category in the CMS for every page you want on your website ?

I think this could be a very useful product but i think even just seeing how you would take an existing xara site and just putting some dynamic content on one of the pages would be really useful as the tutorials don't seem to cover an example like this from start to finish and this would be how most users would like to start.

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xtom

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Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2011, 11:44:08 AM »
Quote
So if the xara page is the template and the CMS has the actual page does that mean you need a category in the CMS for every page you want on your website ?

Yes, and you might also add news items or a products etc. which would also be pages.

Quote
I think this could be a very useful product but i think even just seeing how you would take an existing xara site and just putting some dynamic content on one of the pages would be really useful as the tutorials don't seem to cover an example like this from start to finish and this would be how most users would like to start.

The cms is intended to be used as a complete website content management system, you can use it to add dynamic content to just one page on an existing website but it might be overkill to use the cms for this purpose.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2011, 11:46:48 AM by xtom »

Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2011, 12:06:32 PM »
Ok so just to clarify.
If i have a 5 page xara site just with text content, i create a new mythemes folder and publish my existing site to the mythemes folder.
Then within the CMS i need to create 5 categories, one for each page and add the text that was in each xara page to the the text area on each category in the CMS.
Then also create a placeholder on each of the xara pages with the {page_content} tag.
Is all of this correct ?

How then does all the new content get picked up when i would enter www.mywebsite.com into the browser, whats to stop the old html files that are still in the public_html folder from displaying ?

I'm just a little unclear how it all ties together at the end and i appreciate your patience in answering my questions

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xtom

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Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2011, 12:45:39 PM »
Quote
If i have a 5 page xara site just with text content, i create a new mythemes folder and publish my existing site to the mythemes folder.
Then within the CMS i need to create 5 categories, one for each page and add the text that was in each xara page to the the text area on each category in the CMS.
Then also create a placeholder on each of the xara pages with the {page_content} tag.
Is all of this correct ?

Yes, you can do it this way, if you want each page to be editable in the cms. But with this approach you might only need one page template in Xara with a {page_content} placeholder instead of 5. It depends if you want the pages to use the same page template or not. Generally speaking the less page templates you use the better. Eg. you could run an entire 100+ page website on just one page template.

Also some pages you might not want to update or add content to in the cms, in this case if you want to you can leave all the text and content on your Xara page. Without a placeholder on the page the cms will just show the page as it was in Xara without dynamic content. It's flexible and there are a few different approaches you can take.


Quote
How then does all the new content get picked up when i would enter www.mywebsite.com into the browser, whats to stop the old html files that are still in the public_html folder from displaying ?

The index.php file in public_html needs to have just the code below so it can run and display the pages outputted by the cms. Replace path_to_cms with the location of the cms directory. Also make sure there are no other index.htm or index.html files in public_html and rename or backup your existing files so you can restore it if need be.

Code: [Select]
<?php require_once("path_to_cms/scripts/cms_front.php"?>
Bear in mind any navigation links on your page templates in Xara will need to point to the new page urls generated by the cms. Again make a copy of your websites .xar file so you can easily revert back if needed.

Quote
I'm just a little unclear how it all ties together at the end and i appreciate your patience in answering my questions

No worries, ask as many questions as you like, I aprreciate it takes a while to understand the different approaches and workflow.

« Last Edit: September 15, 2011, 12:49:28 PM by xtom »

Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2011, 08:42:59 AM »
I got the CMS working last night and i can definitely see the advantage to using it from the start of developing a website, makes it a little easier than having to integrate it later on.
Can i just ask about the navigation bars, i just changed the link in xara for each button to go to the exact url for each page.
Is that the way it should be done ?
Also from your demo, how do you get it to use a proper looking url, so for your gallery page the url is http://www.xt-cms.com/xara-demo/gallery/ yet when i link to one of my pages it uses the Category Id from the CMS so its something like www.mysite.com/324324324_Page1, how do i get it to look like www.mysite.com/contact ?

Thanks,
Alan.

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xtom

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Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2011, 12:27:26 PM »
Thanks for trying it out, I'm glad you got it working.

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Can i just ask about the navigation bars, i just changed the link in xara for each button to go to the exact url for each page.
Is that the way it should be done ?

Yes, that's it. If you have a lot of categories like a product catalog there are also ways to ouput a dynamic nav menu that updates automatically.

Quote
Also from your demo, how do you get it to use a proper looking url, so for your gallery page the url is http://www.xt-cms.com/xara-demo/gallery/ yet when i link to one of my pages it uses the Category Id from the CMS so its something like www.mysite.com/324324324_Page1, how do i get it to look like www.mysite.com/contact ?

To enable friendly urls copy or move the freindlyurl.htaccess file to your public_html dierctory and rename it .htaccess (rename or backup any existing file)

Open scripts/config.php and ensure that friendly urls are enabled. It should be set to 1 not 0 ...

Code: [Select]
define("friendly_urls",1);
Once this is done the cms will use the slug entry on categories etc. for the page url.

eg.

Code: [Select]
Slug = contact
URL = http://www.mywebsite.com/contact/

Slug = contact/test
URL = http://www.mywebsite.com/contact/test/

Slug = /
URL = http://www.mywebsite.com/

A blank slug will just revert back to using the query in the url
URL = http://www.mywebsite.com/?cat=123456789

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xtom

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Re: XT-CMS with Xara Tutorial
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2011, 03:00:54 PM »
Actually you may need to modify the htaccess file aswell, it should be as follows...

Code: [Select]
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
</IfModule>

Also if a file or folder exists under the same name it will take precedence, so if for example you had a folder called contact you would need to rename it.

« Last Edit: September 16, 2011, 03:05:14 PM by xtom »