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Joomla! 1.5: Creating and Editing Custom Templates
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Creating and installing the package file


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Joomla! 1.5: Creating and Editing Custom Templates

with Jen Kramer

Video: Creating and installing the package file

We finally have all of our files and folders ready to create our Joomla! template. Our last step is to zip these into a single file and that becomes our installation file in the template area in Joomla!. To do this, you are going to need a program that will create a ZIP file. If you are running Windows Vista as I am here, there is a program that comes with this called Compress. If you are on a Macintosh, if you highlight all of your files and go to File > Compress, however many items there are, in this case, they will be five. That will also create a ZIP file for you. And any other type of software that makes the ZIP file should be sufficient for this task. So I am going to show you how this works in Windows Vista.

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Joomla! 1.5: Creating and Editing Custom Templates
2h 11m Intermediate Dec 02, 2008

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Custom templates are the key to making a Joomla!-driven website stand out. In Joomla! 1.5 Creating and Editing Custom Templates, Jen Kramer McKibben offers instruction and insight to help Joomla! users create eye-popping websites. Jen starts with the basics, like how to add the Joomla! template codes to a static HTML layout, install the template package, and clean up styling after installation. She also shows how to make multiple layouts within the same Joomla! template, configure menus and submenus, and more. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Converting HTML comps to Joomla! templates
  • Troubleshooting installation problems
  • Creating XML and index files
  • Placing random images
  • Configuring menus and submenus
  • Changing the favicon
Subjects:
Web CMS Web Development
Software:
Joomla!
Author:
Jen Kramer

Creating and installing the package file

We finally have all of our files and folders ready to create our Joomla! template. Our last step is to zip these into a single file and that becomes our installation file in the template area in Joomla!. To do this, you are going to need a program that will create a ZIP file. If you are running Windows Vista as I am here, there is a program that comes with this called Compress. If you are on a Macintosh, if you highlight all of your files and go to File > Compress, however many items there are, in this case, they will be five. That will also create a ZIP file for you. And any other type of software that makes the ZIP file should be sufficient for this task. So I am going to show you how this works in Windows Vista.

We are going to select all of our files and then we are going to right click on them. We are going to Send To, a compressed or zipped folder. And it's going to ask us for a name. Now you can call is whatever you like. But I usually like to call it the same name as with template so that I don't get confused. Remember that we defined the name of the template in the XML file in an earlier movie. So we are going to call this interior.zip. That's all to the making the ZIP file. Now we need to upload it to the web server.

So I am going to go back to my backand of my Joomla! website. Make sure that you have logged in. And under Extensions, we are going to Install/Uninstall. And we are going to upload a package file, which is our ZIP file. We are going to hit the Browse button. We are going to get to the Chapter 3 folder in 03_01, and here is my interior file. You may have this zipped to the Desktop; wherever you have saved your ZIP file is where you are going to need to go. Select this file and go to Open. Now hit the Upload File & Install button and cross your fingers. If you have done everything right, you will get this message "Install Template Success". If you are working with your own files and you installed your template but you got an error message instead of "Install Template Success", you probably have a problem with your XML file. I am going to go through some of those common problems and solutions in the next video.

For now, let's take look at where the files went when we installed them. I am going to go back down to my File Manager and I'm inside of wamp, inside of the templates folder. And here you will see folders for all of the templates on this website. You are familiar with beez, the purity template, and the milkyway template. Inside is the template we have just installed. System is one that you may not be aware of, but system is the template that controls the backend of the Joomla! website. Open up the inside folder and this should look very familiar to you. Here is the css folder, the images folder, and all of the other files that you are familiar with. And of course if you will open each of these folders, you will see that we have four images as we had before and our one style sheet as we had before.

Your next question may be why don't we just FTP a folder directly to the templates folder that contains these files? Why do we zip them up and put them through the Joomla! interface? Well, if you zip up your files and put them in directly through the Joomla! interface, you will have your templates show up in the Template Manager. However, if you FTP your files directly to the server, Joomla! may not necessarily recognize that they are there and they won't show up in the Template Manager. It is a few extra steps but it's worth your time.

So I am going to go back to the backend of Joomla!. So just as a quick review, we have zipped up our files and we have installed them here. And we saw where those files ultimately go on the server. Once again, if you wound up with some errors when you install your template, make sure you watch the next videos as I cover what those errors are and how to fix them.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Joomla! 1.5: Creating and Editing Custom Templates.


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Q: When creating and uploading custom templates as described in Joomla! Creating and Editing Custom Templates , the following error occurs:

XML Parsing Error at 1:1. Error 4: Empty document
JInstaller::install: File '/tmp/install_4bd887e090339/css/default.css' does not exist.


What is causing this error?
A: Check through the errors described in the “Fixing typical installation problems” video (e.g. files included in the install package that are not listed in the XML file; the XML file lists files that are not in the install package; XML is badly formed). Also check for permissions issues with your server.
In all likelihood, if this message appears, there is an error with the XML file, possibly a typo or a misnamed file. Make sure the CSS file is called default.css and is located in the CSS folder. Also, make sure everything is spelled correctly.
 
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