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  1. #1
    SitePoint Addict Raioo's Avatar
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    How do I take the community web site I am working on to the next level ?

    What I mean is:

    1. The site offers great fun articles to read,
    2. syndicated news,
    3. jokes
    4. Free email from everyone.net
    5. and a perl forum I installed

    the email and forums both require two seperate login and passowrds (pretty awkward)

    I want to improve this web site so that people can logon with their favorite login they picked and then be able to use email and use forums PLUS be in their own bubble called my Raioo (just like my Yahoo, my amazon.com my eBay..) where I can maintain a good amount of info and services to members (like karma, contributions of photos, artiucles, jokes..)

    I program the site www.Raioo.com in PHP but no mySQL database yet.

    So, please, if anyone can help out with first steps, pointers, articles, tutorials of ABCs of how to take a site to the next level and make it a my Raioo web site kindda thing I'd appreciate it (authentication, creating user configurayions, knowing the users so that they have to have different logins and passwords for different parts of the site.. etc)

    THANK YOu!
    Adnane
    I appreciate the help of everyone at SitePoint.com

  2. #2
    SitePoint Columnist Skunk's Avatar
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    Wow - what an outstanding site

    As far as I know everyone.net isn't a particularly flexible solution if you want to do anything advanced with it - I'd be very surprised if there's a way to use their username/password login system elsewhere on your site, or use your username/password login from the forums to log in to everyone.net

    If you really want to take the site to the next level one way would be to re-write the news system, articles etc in PHP with a mySQL backend, and then allow trusted users from the community (with their own username/password login) access to the site to add new news stories, new articles, columns etc.

    A comments system for the news/articles might be an idea as well.

    That's all I can think of really - people always say content is by far the most important thing on any website and your site looks like it's got an unbelievable amount of top quality content already.

  3. #3
    SitePoint Addict Raioo's Avatar
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    Skunk,

    I don't know what to say I'm very much flattered. I'm really glad you like the site. Thank you so much for the encouragements.

    Rewriting the site to add mySQL is on my top priorities right now you are right. I read some articles about how to do that but I'm still not pretty confident about it especially that I want to design it right (tables that are bonded with each other and stuff like that, to facilitate later on browsing by author, by article, by category, by...)

    I hope I will find a lot of help about that in these forums.

    Thanks again skunk and please visit again

    One more note, there is a book about PHP3 by wrox where they talk in their OO section about Sessions. I think this is something I can use for the myRaioo thingie, don't you think ?

    Adnane
    I appreciate the help of everyone at SitePoint.com

  4. #4
    SitePoint Columnist Skunk's Avatar
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    Full support for sessions has been added now in PHP 4 - in PHP 3 you needed to use a seperate 'class library' called phpLib.

    Sessions are essentially an extension of the way cookies work. With a cookie, you can store information on the visitor's PC and get it back next time they visit. One of the most useful uses for cookies is to 'remember' someone's username and password and automatically log them in next time they visit (like on these forums).

    All a session is is a long random text string that is stored in a cookie on the user's machine - for example:

    499djsa198js9xq8xu29saun9ny234sm

    The web server will create a text file somewhere on the server with that name. This file can then be used to store an unlimited amount of "persistant" data about the user. While cookies are limited in the amount of data they can physically store and are also quite insecure (any user who knew what he was doing could modify his cookie on his machine) sessions can store as much information as you like, and in a very secure manner.

    Using sessions in PHP 4 is extremely easy - there is an excellent tutorial here:

    http://www.zend.com/zend/tut/session.php

    As far as your database design goes the easiest thing is to put together a database design (just showing what tables there are and what fields they contain) and then post it on this forum. If there are any problems with the design someone will quickly point them out. There's a great article on database design here:

    http://www.phpbuilder.com/columns/barry20000731.php3

    Hope this helps, and good luck with the site

    Skunk

  5. #5
    SitePoint Addict Raioo's Avatar
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    Thanks Skunk, I think I will get down to mySQL with the pointers you gave me and will try to tackle the sessions eventually (not necessarily now if you see what I mean) Your help is much appreciated !!!
    I appreciate the help of everyone at SitePoint.com


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