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A guestbook is a logging system that allows visitors of a website to leave a public comment. The EZGenerator Guestbook Page is specially designed to meet the need for a guestbook in your site.

To add a Guestbook page to your site:
  1. Go to the Editing Tools.
  2. Press Live (Php) button in Insert page section and select Guestbook page.
  3. Select the preferred layout preset. The Guestbook has a few predefined layout presets.
  4. Set any other options you want and press OK.

Basics

The EZGenerator Guestbook page is a standard guestbook with messages posted by website visitors, displayed in reverse chronological order. You can also enable comments to allow visitors to post further comments on messages. The guestbook page consists of some or all of the following objects: guestbook object, month archive, guestbook navigation, guestbook menu, guestbook search, and link to administrator. You can keep all or some of them in your guestbook page. Each of these objects represents different element of your guestbook .

You can preview your Guestbook page only when uploaded on a PHP enabled server. To test this functionality offline you can Install your own test server on your PC.

Guestbook objects

Guestbook objects can be added, removed or moved to change the design of your Guestbook page. Guestbook messages are listed on the guestbook frontpage in reverse chronological order. Normally each message is posted with a date, content, visitor name and surname, country and email address. You can also include permalink and comments link for each message. These are called object parameters.

Only the guestbook objectis required. Optional objects include:

  • Guestbook menu object creates the menu in your guestbook.
  • Guestbook navigation object creates navigation bar for navigation when messages are displayed on more that one page.
  • Month archive builds month archive.
  • Guestbook search object builds search box for visitors to easily find certain message.
  • Link to administrator screen will lead you to the administrator screen, where you (the guestbook owner) can manage messages and comments.
  • CAPTCHA (human test). Visitors can post messages and comments, they can browse messages archive, but only the guestbook owner can edit and delete messages/comments. For better security use a CAPTCHA in both Sign Guestbook and Post Comment forms.
  • Permalinkis the permanent url of a specific guestbook message. Comments link shows the number of comments posted and opens post comment form. Comments link is visible only if comments are enabled (see below).

    You add and remove parameters in %GUESTBOOK_OBJECT(...)%, within the brackets (see below).

When you first visit your guestbook page and none messages are posted yet, message with Guestbook definition from Wikipedia will be displayed as default. Once you post some messages, the default message will disappear.

Database

This page can use either MySQL or flat files database (depending on the MySQL switch in MySQL Settings). All guestbook messages and comments will be stored in a MySQL database or on the web server in flat files in ezg_data/ folder. You can add multiple guestbook pages in your project, and each one will have its own database.

Customization

Guestbook page is customizable in the following aspects:

  • You can re-order the guestbook objects, as explained above.
  • You can translate guestbook language strings, using Guestbook Settings panel >> Labels.

Guestbook Settings

The following properties are available in the Guestbook Settings panel. Make sure to configure these settings.

This tab is devided into few sections. Some of them have a small button () at the bottom right corner. Press it to access more settings.

Notification

  • Send Notification to (editbox) - Type here the administrator email address. All notification emails when message/comment is posted will be sent to this email address.
  • From (editbox) - Specify email address to be used as "From". Use different email address than in "Send to" to avoid email being marked as spam.
  • Admin Notification (button) - Type subject and message for the notification email.

Frontpage

  • Limit Posts (check box and number selection box) - Sets the maximum number of messages to be displayed in the guestbook frontpage (guestbook object). You can increase or decrease the default number. Uncheck the box if you don't want to set such limitation.
  • Recent Posts (drop-down menu box) - Sets the maximum number of posts to be displayed in the Recent Posts sidebar.
  • Comments (drop-down menu) - Sets the maximum number of comments to be displayed in the Recent Comments sidebar.
  • Limit Lines (check box and number selection box) - Sets the maximum number of lines to be displayed for each message in the guestbook frontpage (guestbook object). If limit is set, a link to message full content will be placed next to it. You can increase or decrease the default number. Uncheck the box if you don't want to set such limitation.
  • Labels (button and editable listbox) - Sets the guestbook labels. You can translate the default labels in your preferred language. Use Default settings button to restore the default settings.

Posts and Comments

  • Require Approval (checkbox) - Check this box if you want to approve messages/comments before they show on guestbook.
  • Enable comments (check box) - Check this box in case you want to allow visitors to post comments on guestbook messages.
  • Forbid url's (check box) - Check this box if you want to forbid users to include url's when they post message/comment .
  • Data (button) - With this option you can add/remove fields in the Sign Guestbook form.

RSS

  • Limit Posts (drop-down menu) - Sets the maximum number of items (messages) to be generated in the RSS feed.
  • Limit Lines (drop-down menu) - Sets the maximum number of lines to be displayed for each item (message) in the blog RSS feed item description tag.
  • Feed Settings (button and editable listbox) - Sets some special RSS settings.

Accessible Macros Fields

Each page has Macros Fields panel, accessed via Toolbar. This panel contains objects that you can insert on page.

 

  • Guestbook object - Creates the guestbook.
  • Sign guestbook Form - Guests must sign in to leave a comment.
  • Menu - Guestbook menu.
  • Page Navigation - Navigation controls for the Guestbook.
  • Hor Month archive - Horizontal monthly comments summary.
  • Ver Month archive - Vertical monthly comments summary.
  • Search - Search for comments or people.
  • Home link - Home page of the guest comments.
  • RSS feed button - This object generates link to guestbook RSS feed (see below).
  • Administrator - This object generates link to guestbook administrator panel.
  • Logged info - This object generates logged info macro in your site - %LOGGED_INFO%. This macro is applicable for protected pages or pages with admin screen (as Online Editable Page, Calendar, etc) and will show username of the logged user along with link to user profile's page and logout link. Check Page Protection for more info on page protection.
  • Logged - will display 1 when user is logged, 0 when not logged (supported in MySQL project only).
  • Logged user - will display name of currently logged user (supported in MySQL project only).
  • Guest count - will display number of guests currently browsing site (supported in MySQL project only, requires Counter enabled and Monitor users enabled).
  • User count - display number of users currently logged (supported in MySQL project only, requires Counter enabled and Monitor users enabled).
  • Users - will display names of users currently logged (supported in MySQL project only, requires Counter enabled and Monitor users enabled).

To make custom design for your guestbook home link, insert your custom hyperlink and use %GUESTBOOK_HOME_URL% as url.

Field parameters

Some fields can be inserted with additional parameters.

Guestbook object - lists all messages with date, content, visitor first name and surname. Using few parameters you can customize this default layout. The parameters you can use are:

  • %date% - The message date
  • %name% - The visitor first name
  • %surname% - The visitor surname (if defined)
  • %country% - The visitor country (if defined)
  • %content% - The message content
  • %emailaddress% - The visitor email address (if defined)
  • permalink - Message permalink. Use ../ihelp/help.php?entry_id=1362139458&title=guestbook-page as url if you insert custom permalink hyperlink.
  • - Message comments link. Use ../ihelp/help.php?entry_id=1362139458&title=guestbook-page as url if you insert your custom comments hyperlink.
  • - Lists all comments posted per message

For example:

%GUESTBOOK_OBJECT( %date%
%content%
%surname%, %name%)% - will list all messages with date, content and full name

%GUESTBOOK_OBJECT(%date%
%content%
March 01, 2013 13:03 %surname%, %name% %country% )% - will list all messages with date, content, date&time footer, full name and country

If you want to change the default date format that is used with %date% parameter, you can follow the following example: %date[mmm d, yyyy (ddd)]%, where the syntax follows the standard %DATE% Macro syntax. If you want to set month or week name in upper case, use MMM and DDD.

Using RSS

RSS or Really Simple Syndication allows visitors to subscribe to websites that have provided RSS information feeds. RSS is a useful tool for sharing your site updates with users that may be interested. RSS makes use of code that scans the content of your blog for updates and broadcasts those changes to subscribers through an RSS feed. EZGenerator blog page uses RSS 2.0 format for the feed.

To set RSS feed for your blog, you should follow these steps:

  • Insert RSS button from Macros Fields panel.
  • Set the RSS settings in Blog Settings panel. Read RSS Specification for detailed explanations on each RSS setting.

Now, if a visitor is interested in your guestbook and wants to be informed when updates are available they can use the RSS button to get the RSS feed.

Administrator panel

The Administrator panel s used to manage your Guestbook - review, edit and delete messages and comments. The panel is accessible through the Administrator link (placed on the Guestbook page) or via Online Administration panel.

To insert administrator link in your Guestbook page:

  • Go to Editing Tools > Macros Fields panel.
  • Drag-and-drop administrator field in your Guestbook page.

Messages

Use the messages screen to review/edit/delete messages.

Comments

Use manage comments screen to review/edit/delete comments, posted by visitors and to aprrove them.

 

Settings

  • Public RSS in protected podcast - check this box if you have protected podcast page but want RSS to stay public.
  • Default Country - set here default country for the Sign Guestbook form.
guestbook