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Editing conference settings

You use the Conference Manager to change all conference settings; everything from the conference name to enabling file uploading and specifying security options. In this exercise we will:

The six Edit Settings buttons grouped at the bottom of the Conference Manager page link to individual manager pages you can get to sequentially by clicking the All button:

To add a forum without starting the Forum Manager:

  1. From the Conference Manager, click the All button.
  2. In the basic conference information page, you can change a number of conference details. We want to add a new forum to our conference without going back to the Forum Manager.
  3. Enter the name of the forum you want to add in the text entry box next to the Add New Forum button. Once you have done so, click the Add New Forum button.

Note: Use the conference URL to create links to the conference from your web pages

To change the conference interface:

  1. From the Conference Manager, click the Layout button.
  2. In the Layout page, select a Background Color and a Font Color for the conference.
  3. Click the Announcement button. An edit window appears in which you can place HTML code that will be interpreted in your conference pages. For example, add the following HTML code to the Announcement edit window:
    <A HREF="http://forums.allaire.com">Visit the Allaire Developer’s Forum</A>
  4. Click OK to close the Additional Footer edit window
  5. Click the Finish button to close the Layout page.
  6. Click the Go to button in the Conference Manager page to see how your interface changes look in Forums.

To change the font used in a conference:

  1. From the Conference Manager, click the Go to button to enter your forum. Click the Options button to open the Options page.
  2. Under Global Settings, change the font size and select a different font name from the drop down list boxes and click OK.
  3. Forums pages are now displayed according to your font name and size choices.

Try experimenting with the other options available in the Options page. For more information on additional changes you can make to your conference interface, see the Allaire Forums End User Guide.

To enable and activate frames:

By default, frames are enabled in conferences, but not employed until a user selects the frames option.

  1. From the Conference Manager, select the conference you want to modify and click the Options button. The Options page appears where you can set a number of conference options.
  2. Click the Frames enabled checkbox.
  3. Click Finish to return to the Conference Manager. Now click Go to to open the conference you have modified.
  4. Click the Options button at the top of the window.
  5. Click to enable the Use Frames checkbox and the Split Thread Frame checkbox.

The conference interface is divided into three frames: the conference forums and threads shown in the left frame, thread title and message subjects in the top frame, and individual messages in the bottom frame.

Adding users and groups

Forums allows you to define user login names and passwords to help maintain conference security. You can also define user groups and give each group distinct access permissions to specific conferences and forums. Each group can have access to different functionality as well, such as file uploading, forum moderation, or conference management.

Forums allows you to force new visitors to your conferences to register a user name and password, and if you choose, to login each time they enter a conference. You can also require that all new users are approved before they can enter a conference.

To require user registration:

  1. Open the Conference Manager.
  2. In the Conference Manager, click the Security button. Three check box options are presented in the Security page: Registration Required; User Approval Required; and Forced Session Login
  3. To force login and require user registration, click to enable Registration Required and Forced Session Login. Click Finish.
  4. When you return to the Conference Manager page, click the Go to button to return to the conference.

To create a user group:

  1. Open the Conference Manager. You may have to log out and back in as the conference Administrator.
  2. Click the Groups button to open the Group page.
  3. Enter Moderators for the name for your new group in the box next to the Add New Group button.
  4. Click Add New Group.
  5. When your group name appears in the Assigned Groups list box, select it and click the Rights button. The page expands to include a number of permission options for your new group.
  6. Select the options you want to enable for your new group, including Moderate all forums.When you’re done, click Finish.

To add a user to a group:

  1. Open the Forums Administrator and click the User Manager button.
  2. Select All Users from the User’s Initial list box and click the Next button. You can use this list box to filter the display of user names in the following panel. This can be especially useful if you are managing a large number of users.
  3. In the Users page, select a user you want to add to a group and click the Group Info button.
  4. Select a group name from the list box of Available Groups and click the right arrow button to add the currently selected user name to the group and click OK.

To view or edit a user’s group association at any time, you can select the user’s name from the Users page, and click Group Info.

Testing your conference settings

To test your conference settings, you may need to log in to your conference as a new user, or some other user than the administrator. You may want to make sure your conference settings are controlling access and permissions they way you want. Since Forums uses browser cookies to store information about your last session, using multiple instances of the same browser won’t yield the results you might expect.

The way to manage this testing task is to simply use a different browser. This method allows you to leave one Forums session running, logged in as Administrator while in another browser, you log in as a different user. Using this approach, you can very easily test user registration approval and message approval, as well as whatever user interface elements you may have defined. For example, you could log in as Administrator using Netscape 3.0 and then log in as a new user using some other version of Netscape or Internet Explorer 3.0.

 

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