THE COMPLETE BEGINNERS GUIDE TO
| Taty Sena
Pag e 31
People tend to get a bit confused about the differences between plugins and
modules, and about what components actually do. So let me try to clear up some
of the misunderstandings.
(You can find some of the free extensions I describe below at:
Plugins are features that can be added to Joomla, which will appear within the
articles themselves, or that relate to interfacing with the articles. For example, I love
having options for people to share the articles on my Joomla sites and to bookmark
them. This is something that should be added to each individual article so that it
works properly, but I don’t want to have to add it to each page by hand.
That’s where the plugins come into play. I searched the Joomla extensions site for
social bookmarks and found several plugins that added that feature to my site. After
installing one, and enabling it, now, when I write an article, the links to the social
networks automatically appear on each page.
Modules can be recognized as being those side boxes on dynamic websites. The
difference between plugins and modules is that modules appear almost as side
menus and shortcuts around the articles.
For example, if you want to have a module that people can use to sign up for your
newsletter directly from your page, you can download a module, or create one that
allows people to do that. Then it’s a matter of deciding where you want that
module to go.
Each template has its particular slots that are created to hold modules. The most
common ones are: Left bar, Right bar, Footer and Header. Most have many sub slots
you can use, where they divide those main areas into smaller parts. For example,
some templates have a user 1, user2, and user 3 on the bottom of the page. That
means you have 3 small columns on top of the footer so you can add several
modules on the bottom of your site.
Now, I mentioned you could download modules and also create modules, so how
do you create one?