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Things You'll See All the Time in Joomla

It's confusing when things change. The good news is that Joomla is good at keeping things consistent. There are many things you'll see all the time in Joomla. The following sections discuss some examples.


Joomla uses similar language on each page. For example, you see the phrase "... Manager" ten times in just those seven drop-down links. This makes it easy for you to navigate your way around. If you want to manage anything on your Joomla site, you know where to go:

  • If you want to manage your articles, go to the Article Manager.
  • If you want to manage your users, go to the User Manager.
  • If you want to manage your menus, go to the Menu Manager.
  • If you want to manage your languages, go the Language Manager

I could go on, but you get the picture.

Page Layouts

Joomla also uses similar layouts for every page you visit from the drop-down menu. For example, take a look at Joomla's Article Manager by clicking on Content and then on Article Manager as in Figure 3.6.

Figure 3.6

Figure 3.6 Joomla's Article Manager

You see the following:

  • 1: Page title. This tells you where you are in your administrator area.
  • 2: Action buttons. These buttons allow you to modify any of the items you see.
  • 3: Submenu. These links give you access to important, related parts of your administrator area.
  • 4: Search box. This searches for the title of something and allows you to quickly find what you're looking for.
  • 5: Filters. These are preset searches. They filter out the content, allowing you to focus your search.
  • 6: Column titles. These are clickable titles you can use to sort the items you are looking at. For example, click on Title to search alphabetically or Date to search chronologically.
  • 7: Items. These vary throughout the site and can be many different things, depending on what part of the site you are currently using. For example, if you are in the User Manager, the items show the users. If you are in the Menu Manager, this shows the menus, and if you are in the Article Manager, this shows the articles as in Figure 3.6.

Next, visit Joomla's Template Manager by clicking on Extensions and then Template Manager. You see a screen like the one in Figure 3.7.

Figure 3.7

Figure 3.7 Joomla's Template Manager

Let's take a look at one more example. Go to Joomla's User Manager by clicking on Users and then User Manager. The screen you see looks like Figure 3.8 and should be increasingly familiar.

Figure 3.8

Figure 3.8 Joomla's User Manager

Go ahead and click on some other links, especially those under Components and Extensions. You see the same layout almost everywhere you go. Hopefully this makes your life easier in several ways:

  • Not sure where you are? Look at the title and submenu.
  • Can't find an item? Just use the search box or the filters.
  • Need to modify or create an item? Look for all the action buttons in the top-left corner.

Individual Page Layouts

It's not only the pages from the drop-down menu that nearly always look the same. When you click through to an individual page, the layout is also consistent.

Let's go back to Joomla's Article Manager by clicking on Content, then Article Manager, and finally Administrator Components. When you open it, the page looks like Figure 3.9.

Figure 3.9

Figure 3.9 Joomla's Article layout

You see the following:

  • 1: Page title. This tells you where you are in your administrator area.
  • 2: Action buttons. These buttons allow you to modify any of the items you see.
  • 3: Most important content. This is why you're visiting this part of the site. For example, if you're in an article, this will be the main article text. If you're in a user's profile, this will be the user's name, e-mail, and password. If you're in a menu link, this will be the text people click on and the URL the link will send them to.
  • 4: Extra options. These are extra settings, but they're not as important as those on the left-hand side. For example, one option in an article may allow you to turn voting on or off. Another example is an option in a contact form to show or hide the e-mail address that the e-mail will be sent to.

Let's also go back to Joomla's Template Manager by clicking on Extensions, then Template Manager, and finally Beez2 – Default. You see a screen like the one in Figure 3.10.

Figure 3.10

Figure 3.10 Joomla's Template layout

Let's take a look at a final example. Go back Joomla's User Manager by clicking on Users, then User Manager, and finally Super User. The screen you see looks like Figure 3.11.

Figure 3.11

Figure 3.11 Joomla's User layout

Joomla is easy to use because it's consistent:

  • Not sure where you are? Look at the title.
  • Need to modify this page? Look for all the action buttons in the top-right corner.
  • Need to edit the important parts of the page? Look to the left-hand side.
  • Need to make a small tweak to the page? Look to the right-hand side.

Now that we've seen the administrator area in more detail, let's look at the visitor area.

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