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Updated - Sandboxing Pulse CMS for client use

30 April 2013

I recently wrote about how you can sanitise the Pulse CMS admin area so your clients can't break their own sites by renaming, deleting or removing blocks.

Well after a little bit of tinkering I've managed to improve the process so site designers can easily switch between production (fully featured) and editor (limited features) modes.

Here's how it works

  • Download the user.css stylesheet that contains all of the style overrides
  • Add this file into the pulsecms > template directory
  • Edit the header.php file in pulsecms > pulsepro > includes directory and add the following line in the <head> section
    <link rel="stylesheet" href="../template/user.css" media="all" id="userstyles"/>
    
    This stylesheet will hide all of the features that a user could use to break their site.
  • Lastly drag the following bookmarklet to your browser's toolbar: Pulse Admin

Now when you log into your Pulse admin area you'll be in an editor mode with the scary features hidden from view. To show these features again simply click on your 'Pulse Admin' bookmarklet and they should spring back into view. Clicking on the bookmarklet simply enables and disables the user.css styles.

Hidden features:

/Resources/pulseadmin1.jpg

and after a click on the bookmarklet, shown again:

/Resources/pulseadmin2.jpg

Now you can rest easy knowing that your client can update their Pulse site without accidentally breaking it.

Posted at 11:39 in Other stuff

Sandboxing Pulse CMS for client use

30 April 2013

You can find an updated post here that offers a more powerful way to switch between admin and editor modes in Pulse.

/Resources/pulselogo.pngIf you are looking for simple yet powerful Content Management System (CMS) for your web site that is easy to maintain and you (or your client) can easily work with without 100's of options you'll never need then I strongly recommend you look at Pulse.

One of its limitations, however, is the lack of an 'editor mode' that provides just the features a client needs to maintain their site. As a web designer I don't really want my clients editing the names of blocks, or changing the settings of the CMS as this will break the front end of the site and they will be on the phone to me to put it right.

What I've ended up doing is to hide the Pulse user interface items that I think could cause issues if my clients were to use them. For example deleting, moving or renaming blocks, folders or galleries or changing the Pulse folder name are all hidden from view. All of this is done with a simple CSS file that overwrites Pulse's default styles for these items.

What does this stylesheet hide or change in Pulse?

  • Hides the 'delete block' button
  • Hides the 'new block' button
  • Hides the 'embed code' button
  • Hides the 'move to' select list
  • Hides the 'new folder' button
  • Hides the 'delete folder' button
  • Hides the 'new gallery' button
  • Hides the 'delete gallery' button
  • Hides the 'form' button
  • Adds a lock icon to the 'Pulse folder name' field in settings
  • Gives the gallery thumbnails a move cursor

If you don't need any of these options then simply remove the styles from the stylesheet. They are all pretty well commented in the file.

Adding the stylesheet

Locate the main CSS file for Pulse in pulsecms > pulsepro > CSS > style.css and open it in your text editor. At the top of this file we'll add the following import rule that pulls the override styles (see below) in from the template directory;

/* Add user styles (if defined) */
@import url("../../template/user.css") all;

Now just make sure you FTP the user.css file into the pulsecms > template directory. Now when you next log into the Pulse admin you should notice that there are a number of features missing.

I'm hoping to add an easy switch method that allows you (the site designer) to see these features but not expose them to the client. Until that happens I suggest you edit the user.css file name so that these rules don't load while you are working on the site. Once you are done and you need to hand the site over to the client simply correct the file name (back to user.css) and you should be left with a perfectly sanitised site again.

Feel free to download the CSS file and let me know if you spot anything that could be improved.

Posted at 09:41 in Other stuff

Previewing Freeway sites in Firefox 3.6

19 February 2010

/Resources/freefox-sml.jpg

Unfortunately Firefox 3.6 on the Mac shipped with a bug that prevents Freeway users from previewing their pages using the browser. It appears the issue is related to file paths that contain spaces so, for example, if the path to the page you are designing in Freeway has a space in it then Firefox will silently ignore the request.

To allow Freeway users to keep using the browser from with the application I've created a very simple AppleScript droplet that patches the file path and opens the requested file for you. Simple!

Simply download the droplet, and in Freeway set it as a preview application (File/ Preview in Browser/ Browser Setup...). Now when you want to preview in Firefox simply select the Firefox 3.6 Preview droplet and your page should appear in Firefox as expected.

(Apologies to Jon Hicks for crimes against his great Firefox icon).

Posted at 14:26 in Other stuff

Freewayactions.com loves NetRenderer!

22 May 2009

/tools/netrenderer-overdrive/Resources/netrenderer.pngNetRenderer has long been an essential tool for any web designer to instantly check their web sites against Internet Explorer 5.5, 6, 7 and now 8.

While testing a bunch of pages this afternoon we needed to test each of the pages over all of the browser versions and rather than keep switching the version number each time I decided to create a simple test page that uses iframes to load each of the rendered pages all in one hit.

Give NetRenderer overdrive a go.

Type the URL into the Site URL field and click the Render! button. It all runs a very simple block of JavaScript (take a look at the page source) so feel free to download the page and use it locally.

You'll also find a set of bookmarklets for NetRenderer that we created so you can quickly render whatever page you are looking at using NetRenderer. Cool! Simply drag each to your browser's bookmarks bar and click on them when you need them.

And remember... if you love NetRenderer as much as we do then be sure to tip them a few dollars.

Posted at 00:58 in Other stuff
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