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Author Topic: What is a portal and how can I use it for my forum?  (Read 1306 times)

Offline Bloc

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What is a portal and how can I use it for my forum?
« on: January 09, 2010, 12:07:23 PM »
What is TinyPortal?

TinyPortal is a mod for Simple Machines Forum (SMF) that adds a powerful and mature Portal to your SMF Forum in minutes, with native integration, without having to worry about bridging, database, and appearance. Your SMF and TP will be a homogeneous ensemble from installation. It's up to you and your creativity to use TP's features to customize your site and organize its content.

Features included in TinyPortal:

Article System:
The article system gives you a CMS system tightly integrated with your forum. No need for bridges, double registering or other kludgey interface schemes with complex CMS software. Write articles in PHP, HTML or BBcode, also External articles and Cat List(category) and choose what membergroups can access them, who can contribute, and how they are approved. Whether you choose the built-in menu options for these pages or write your own, the flexibility to accommodate your choices is built-in.

Blocks:
Blocks is a term for the rectangles of information you can use throughout the portal. These blocks can contain regular HTML, PHP code or special written functions that collect specific types of information. You can show them according to which permissions the visitor has and even show them just in certain forum sections. You will come to love playing with them.

Some block types that are currently available:
  • ShoutBox - Its a box in which you can leave messages for others to see and thus maintain a simple "chat" on the site. Combined with permissions you will have much freedom in who can participate as well. And as your visitors will discover, its actually quite fun to leave a smiley or two in it.
  • Recent Posts - Showing the recent posts in a small sidebar, and letting members know what is new and unread, encourages participation and will boost member satisfaction.
  • Theme switcher - Let members and visitors choose their favorite theme.
  • Search - Allows members to search your site for content.
  • Other blocks include: Calendar, Poll, RSS feeds, Menu (Managed in the menu manager), User Profile block, and News. And since you can use PHP, HTML and BBC, the only limit is your imagination.
Panels:
Panels are several sections or containers that hold all of your blocks. For the sake of simplicity, the page has been divided into the "panels", which when combined can mimic many common page layouts. These panels help control the layout of your TP & SMF driven forum.
There is the top panel, upper panel, frontpanel, lower panel, bottom panel, left panel, and right panel.

Menu Manager:

A built-in Menu Manager allows you to create multiple menu's. These menu's are displayed in a block. You get all the features of blocks to display these menu's in different places along with choosing who gets to see the blocks based on permissions. You can create different types of links: links to articles, categories, or even just a custom link. You can choose to have the link open in the current window or a new window.
When you view the Home page of this TinyPortal Docs site you are seeing the Menu Manager in action, all of the content in the blocks of information there was built using the Menu Manager system.

Downloads Manager:
A built-in module for TP that lets you offer files for your members to browse and download. Its works by having the downloadable files placed in categories. These categories have permissions on them, letting you restrict member groups access level per each category. You may also allow members to upload files, controlling which membergroups are allowed and what types of files they may upload.

Doc Written 01/09/2010 By: Bloc

Doc Updated 10/14/2015 By: Illori

Additional Updates 10/31/2015 By: Ken.