DotNetNuke tutorials, tips and tricks

Saturday, October 29, 2005

How to optimize an image before uploading it to your website

This tutorial is a beginner’s guide to preparing images for a web page.

Adding images to a web page makes the page more interesting, visually attractive and appealing to the eye.

If you do not prepare an image correctly before uploading it to your website however, you are likely to lose visitors because the page will take too long to download.

I have come across several DotNetNuke® users who do not understand how to prepare an image before they upload it to their website, so I am going to give you a quick overview of the processes involved, especially aimed at DotNetNuke users.

The tutorial also includes a video which outlines how to optimize an image using Macromedia Fireworks.

How to optimize an image before uploading it to your website

DotNetNuke MP3 Interview: Web Design

I'm very excited, I've just finished compiling an mp3 interview with Brad Schafer from the Schafer Design Group. This is for the How Did They Build It? ... series of interviews.

This is an hour interview discussing web design with DotNetNuke from the very first consultation stage, through to the final website.

Brad has even provided images as examples of his design process for creating logos and the interview goes into some serious detail, I'm sure everyone will pick up and learn something from the interview.

The interview will be available with issue 3 of DNN Creative Magazine - soon to be launched in the next few days.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

How to Manage Pages in DotNetNuke: Video Tutorial

This video tutorial looks at how to manage the pages within a DotNetNuke® Portal.

Essential viewing for the quick and easy way to keep track and maintain your DNN website.

Covering the Admin Menu / Pages option for:

* Moving
* Editing
* Viewing
* Adding pages

Time Length: 3:40 min

How to Manage Pages in DotNetNuke: Video Tutorial

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Advanced Page Settings: DotNetNuke Video Tutorial

This set of DotNetNuke® Video Tutorials covers the advanced settings for a page in DotNetNuke®.

Video 1 – (5:19 min) – 3.5MB

* How to copy modules from a page
* How to shadow modules from a page

Video 2 – (6:30 min) – 4.5MB

* How to add an icon to a page in the menu
* How to change the skin and container settings for a single page
* How to use the hidden and disabled functions
(ie. How to hide a page from the menu and how to display a page title in a menu but not allow access to the page)

Video 3 – (6:27 min) – 4.7MB

* How to automatically refresh a page
* How to use the MetaTags feature
* How to use the Start and End date publishing functions
* How to create links to external URLs and files within your website

Advanced Page Settings: DotNetNuke Video Tutorial

FCK Text Editor Updated to V2.0.0

Those of you that are using the FCK Text Editor will be pleased to here that today Locopon has released a new version.

For those of you that don't know about FCK, it is an online Text Editor that you can use instead of the standard Free Text Box editor that comes with DotNetNuke.

The latest version includes the following:

2005/oct/25 (02.00.00) (Test version)

- Upgrade: Now FCKEditor 2.1.1 is used (Compiled under DNN 3.1.1)
- Added: Support for customization per instance, per module and per portal.
- Added: Simple support for localized templates for image, flash and link gallery (Need improvement)
- Added: Support for the new flash gallery and the quick upload
- Added: Now image, flash and link galleries include your page .css files
- Added: Support for ... and others
- Added: Support to show your DNN .css classes in the styles dropdownlist

You can read further details about FCK Editor here:

Monday, October 24, 2005

Assigning Security Roles to Pages and Modules: DotNetNuke Video Tutorial

This DotNetNuke Video Tutorial focuses on working with Security roles and applying them to the settings of Pages and Modules.

In the video we walk through setting up the various security permissions for use on a Music website. We setup the website so that it has a private members only section available to download mp3s.

This covers:

Home Page:

* How to:
* Allow all users to view the page
* Assign Home Page Administrators to edit the introduction text on the Text / HTML module, but not have access to the Links module

MP3 Downloads Page:

* How to:
* Allow all users to view the page
* Allow MP3 examples to be downloadable by all Users
* Assign the Account Login Module, so that it only displays when a user is not logged in
* Assign a Members only Text Module, set so that it only displays when a user is logged in

MP3 Members Only Page

* How To:
* Allow only registered users access to view the page when they are logged in.

Time Length: 11min 16secs

Assigning Security Roles to Pages and Modules: DotNetNuke Video Tutorial

Thursday, October 20, 2005

DotNetNuke Tutorial: Basic Introduction to Working with Pages

This DotNetNuke® Video Tutorial introduces the basics for working with pages and the menu system, covering:

* Adding a Page
* The Page (Menu) Name
* Page Title
* Description
* Keywords
* Parent Page
* Permissions

We walk through adding 5 pages as different examples of working with the menu system.

Basic Introduction to Working with Pages in DotNetNuke

DotNetNuke Tutorial: How to Assign a Security Role to a User Account

Following the previous tutorials explaining DotNetNuke Users and DotNetNuke Security Roles

This video tutorial explains how to assign a security role to a user account.

Time Length: 3min 13secs
Download Size: 2.3MB

How to Assign a Security Role to a User Account in DotNetNuke

Where next? Learn the final stages for working with Security Roles. First of all get to grips with a Basic Introduction to Working with Pages in DotNetNuke and then watch Assigning Security Roles to Pages and Modules in DotNetNuke

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

DotNetNuke Tutorial: Working with Security Roles

One of the most complex and important elements you need to understand when working with DotNetNuke® is setting up the Security Roles.

This tutorial covers:

* An explanation of Security Roles
* An analysis of what Security Roles we require for a music website & how they will be used
* How security roles work with users

This tutorial is also accompanied by a Video tutorial, covering:

*How to add Security Roles to your DotNetNuke Portal
*Looking at the Auto Assignment of Roles, the Public Roles, and
*Subscribing to a Role (ie. a Newsletter Subscription) as a Registered User

DotNetNuke Tutorial: Working with Security Roles

Computers and WEEE Recycling

Do any of you computer users out there consider what happens to your computers or WEEE (Waste Electrical & Electronic Equipment) when you have finished with it?

If you operate a business in Europe it is now law to recycle your electrical equipment under the WEEE and RoHS Directives.

The volume of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment discarded each year by householders and businesses is rapidly rising. Here is an overview of the problems we will face if we continue sending WEEE to landfill and an introduction to some of the hazardous materials contained in WEEE. - Why you should recycle WEEE.

Click here to find out further information regarding Computer Recycling, where you can search for a computer recycler in your area and place a tender for a computer recycling collection – all completely free.

Click here for further information regarding WEEE and WEEE Compliance.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

DotNetNuke Tutorial: User Accounts: Adding, Editing, Viewing, Deleting

This video tutorial looks at the User Accounts option in the Admin Menu.

These are essential functions to learn for the admin or host of a DotNetNuke portal.

The video covers how to:

* Add a new user
* Edit a user
* View and search your users
* Delete a user

DotNetNuke Users: Adding, Editing, Viewing, Deleting

Time Length: 2min 45secs
Download Size: 2.2MB

DotNetNuke Tutorial: Specifying The Required Fields Upon User Registration

When setting up the user registration options for your DotNetNuke® Portal, it’s important to specify which fields you require your users to enter when they are registering with your portal.

If you only require the minimal details, this can help speed up the registration process for your users.

This video tutorial explains:

How to specify the user registration required fields for a DotNetNuke portal.

Time Length: 1min 51secs
Download Size: 1.4MB

Monday, October 17, 2005

Go DNN: DotNetNuke Directory of relevant DNN sites

I came across an interesting DotNetNuke website today, godnn.

- It states - "The only bookmark you need"

The site provides a directory of relevant DotNetNuke websites, which are organised into categories of:

Modules, Skins, Docs & Tutorials

"You will not find DNN modules here, you will not find DNN skins here, no tutorials and no docs - there are a lot of good websites doing just that. And that is what you will find here - those websites."

Friday, October 14, 2005

Free DotNetNuke Videos

To make it easier for users of the DNN Creative Magazine, I have created a page which lists all of the DotNetNuke Videos that we have created:

DotNetNuke Videos

I've also created a page which lists the free DotNetNuke Tutorials

Hope this helps you find the information you are looking for.

What is the best hosting provider for DotNetNuke?

A question which always pops up in the forums is what is the best hosting provider for DotNetNuke®?

The best DotNetNuke hosting provider really depends on your requirements.

* How many visitors are you expecting?
* Is this for a business or personal site?
* Etc.

They all have an effect on the type of package you need.

The key elements are:

* Stability / Uptime
* Bandwidth
* SQL-Server space
* Shared / Virtual / Dedicated Server
* Website Space
* Number of Email Accounts
* Number of Domains
* Support

DNN Creative Magazine have created an area in the forum, just to allow the DotNetNuke community to post up their current DotNetNuke Hosting Providers. Underneath this post, everyone who uses the provider can then add their own comments.

Once the list has grown large enough, we will pull all of the data together and make it easily readable in a spreadsheet or pdf. – Of course this will be a free resource for the community.

Click here to view the current list: DotNetNuke Hosting

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Free Keywords Research Guide

Researching the major keywords to use within your website is the most important task you have to undergo, before writing any content.

Following this excellent guide Search Engine Optimization Made Easy, it mentioned the Wordtracker website.

I have carried out some further research and found this 75 page guide produced by Wordtracker.

Having read through this in an hour, it’s invaluable. It features leading experts in the SEO industry and asks them to provide keyword advice to a fictional company selling vegetarian dog food online.

Click here to download the free Keyword Research Guide
(Right click and "Save Target As" to download the pdf direct to your computer)

Download Size: 1.8MB

Click here to visit Wordtracker

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Made Easy Free Guide - pdf

What’s the last question you ask when you are creating your DotNetNuke websites?

How do I promote my website to the Search Engines?

I have the privilege of being able to offer all of our registered users, a free 90 page guide called “Search Engine Optimisation Made Easy” by Brad Callen.

With permission from Brad, he has allowed us to publish it on the DNN Creative Magazine website.

Simply register with the website for free, and gain access to download this pdf guide.

I have personally used this guide extensively and found it to be a wealth of knowledge covering all aspects of Search Engine Optimization and Promotion.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Made Easy Free Guide

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

An Introduction to the Principles of DotNetNuke

These are the basic principles covering how a DotNetNuke website works. Essential reading. It will help you gain a better understanding for operating your website and offers an explanation for the following terms:

* Skins & Content
* Database Driven Content and Pages
* Modules & Content
* Containers (Module graphics)

You can read the full free article here:

An Introduction to the Principles of DotNetNuke

Site Explorer Tool from Yahoo! - Checks your website

Yahoo! is beta testing a new tool. It is called Site Explorer and can be found at:

It will search your website and will list all of the pages it can find and all of the links pointing to it.

This is a good tool to make sure all of your pages are getting indexed properly.

Thanks to RockyMoore for this tip in the forums.

Monday, October 10, 2005

DotNetNuke Tutorial: How to copy the content from a localhost install to a live hosted website

How to export the data from your DotNetNuke localhost install to a live hosted website.

DotNetNuke has the option to create a template. This allows you to create a template of your local setup and use it to rebuild the remote site.

Creating a template allows you to export all of the content you have created in your modules (in the localhost install), this will include all of the data from events, FAQ etc - even the skin settings you have applied per page.

What this means is that you don't have to create a backup of your localhost database & upload it, all you have to do is create a template & DNN will take care of the rest.- easy eh?!

If you are exporting the data from a custom module, you need to ensure that the developer has enabled the import / export data function otherwise this method will not work.

Tip: make sure that you have not changed any namings of skins / modules from your localhost install to the actual live install otherwise this will not work.

1) Install the DNN default install first onto your live site
The install procedure: This is (very basically) what you would normally do: (I will cover this in a later tutorial)
a) Upload all of the DNN install files to your hosting provider (You can download from DNN just the install files that are needed, rather than the full source)
b) Create an SQL Database with a username & password
c) Adjust your web config file to the username & password you specified
d) Type in your URL into a web browser
e) Upon opening DNN automatically installs all of the necessary files to your database
f) You now have a working copy of DNN

2) Install the skins, containers and extra modules you require, upload your logo
The Free DotNetNuke Tutorial: Quick Start Guide Video explains how to upload a logo.

3) from your localhost install, Export the template of that portal - Through Host / Portals / Export Template (make sure you tick export content)

4) DNN will tell you where it has saved the template - there will be 2 files that you need to copy (they will have the name that you specified when you exported the template)

5) Upload these 2 files to the same folder within your live install

6) In your live install go to the top admin control panel - on the rhs select Wizard

7) Choose the template you have just uploaded and select REPLACE content

8 + 9) Choose the default Skins and Containers that you originally specified in your localhost install (in the Admin menu / Site Settings)
(If you have selected different skins for each page, DNN will automatically sort this out for you as long as you have previously uploaded all of the skins and containers)

10) Enter your sites details - the Title, description etc.

11) Choose a logo

12) Click on Finish

13) DNN will automatically install your template with the settings you specified

14) Click on Home to view your complete site with the pages & content from your localhost install

DNN will install your own custom modules to the pages you had in your localhost install, but if it doesn't install the data, then you can transfer that across from your localhost database to your live database using Enterprise Manager & all should work fine.

As I stated above, if a custom module does not export / import the data using the Templates this will be because they haven't enabled the import / export function.

- This information I have compiled together from answering questions in the forum, if you want to see the full discussion, you can see it here:

DotNetNuke Tutorial: Uploading a Skin FAQ

When I try to upload a new skin, I go to admin, skin, and click on the module drop down box. But there is no option for uploading skins. How do I upload a skin?

You need to enable the permissions for the individual portal to upload skins, you do this by:

Login as HOST

Go to Host >> Host Settings

Under Advanced >> Other Settings is Skin Upload Permission which is by default set to Host.
Change to Portal.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

DotNetNuke Tutorial: How to change the "Terms of Use", "Privacy Statement" and "Email Templates"

In most cases when you are creating your DotNetNuke website you will want to personalise all of the email templates etc. to match your website content.

The standard templates that come with DotNetNuke, such as the Terms of Use, Privacy Statement, and Email Templates are all editable from one area:

To edit the Privacy and Terms:

1) Go to: Host / Languages
2) Click on Language Editor
3) You will be presented with a list of templates you can edit
4) Scroll down, select
7) If you click on the arrow to the right hand side of the text box, it will open up the Text Editor so that you can make any alterations necessary.

Friday, October 07, 2005

DotNetNuke Tutorial: Can't login - Accidentally deleted the Login page or Login link

This is one of those questions that you regularly see popping up in the DotNetNuke forums, here's the quick tip:

Doh! You've been working hard on your skin, uploaded it and then realised you forgot to put the Login link on it!

How do you now login to your site?

If you add ctl=login to the end of a querystring it forces a load of the login dialog:



John Mitchell has also posted a solution in his blog, where he has created an alternate login page that you can upload, you can view the details here:,guid,05e0a045-4944-4f85-aa12-ac9cb774e2fb.aspx

Thursday, October 06, 2005

DNN Tutorial: DotNetNuke® and Http Compression

HttpCompression allows you to drastically reduce the download size of the pages within your DotNetNuke® portal and will greatly improve the performance of your website - this is an essential tip.

While not a new development, a recent hot topic talked about in the DotNetNuke® forums which can greatly improve the performance of your DNN installation is referred to as HttpCompression.

HttpCompression refers to a method of compressing data sent from your server then passing that data to the client browser where it is decompressed on the fly. Thus increasing the display speed of your pages by sending less data across the pipe.

With an end goal of sending less data sent between your server and your client's browser, what is the best solution for adding this to DotNetNuke?

The answer is simple, and installation - trivial.

To read this tutorial in full go to: DotNetNuke® and Http Compression

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

DotNetNuke Tutorials: DNN Creative Magazine Issue 2

October Issue 2 Released

I am pleased to announce that issue 2 of DNN Creative Magazine has been released.

This issue looks at working with images, from DotNetNuke reviews to DotNetNuke tutorials. The technique section continues with the advanced techniques for managing pages. Plus this issue is the launch of our DotNetNuke MP3 interview series, which is a very exciting adventure for us. We hope you will find them insightful and useful.

114 minutes of video tutorials and 65 minutes of MP3 interviews in this issue

MP3 Interviews:

Have you looked at DotNetNuke® websites and wondered how did they build it?
Well, this is the start of an MP3 interview series which looks exactly at that, hear Chris Chodnicki and Kevin Schreiner from Bi4ce talk about how they built the Bi4ce website.
Google Sitemaps
There have been many questions in the forums regarding Google sitemaps. This interview will provide all of the answers you need, complete with information on how to create Google Sitemaps for free and the pitfalls to avoid.

Have you visited our DotNetNuke forum yet?
If you have any comments or requests for the magazine, please leave your feedback in the forum. Share your experience with the community and leave feedback on your DotNetNuke Hosting Provider.Share and read DotNetNuke® Quick Tips.

DotNetNuke News

DotNetNuke® News?
If you have any news you would like to share with the community, find out how to publish it in DNN Creative Magazine for free.

DotNetNuke® Resource
DNN Creative has been added to the resources page, if you find this magazine useful, I would really appreciate it if you could add your comments here.

thank youSupport the Magazine
Thank you for all of your words of encouragement since the launch of issue 1 in September, it is really appreciated. Please help me to continue this work by subscribing to the magazine.

This is excellent value for money at £20 / $35 for a year which gives you full access to the website – in 2 issues we have already created nearly 6 hours of DotNetNuke video tutorials!
View Issue 2

PS. If there is only one tip you follow this month, make sure you read the DotNetNuke Http Compression tutorial. This allows you to drastically reduce the download size of the pages within your DotNetNuke® portal and will greatly improve the performance of your website!

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Free 41min Video Tutorial Efficion Consulting Articles Module

Following several enquiries, I have decided to make the Efficion Consulting Articles Module Review and 41 minute DotNetNuke Video Tutorials completely free of charge.

This is to allow you to view a full review so that you can see what good value for money a subscription will give you.

Our reviews are not just reviews, they are full video tutorials, not only providing you with information on how to use the module, but also offering further suggestions for how the module can be used.

This particular review consists of 9 Flash Videos which work through practical examples of using the module with a music website.I would be interested in any comments.

The videos:
1) A brief description of how other websites have implemented the module
The modules main features
How to install the module (3 min 5sec) – 3MB

2) How to Insert the Categories module to a page
Configure it so that only administrators can view the module
Adding Categories and inserting the Articles module to a page. (2min 51sec) – 1.98MB

3) How to add an article using the HTML / Text page function
Viewing the article (4min 36sec) – 4.32MB

4) View a demonstration of the different article types.
Configuration options for the display of the articles list, filtering articles etc.
Adding a page with an articles module and
Configuring the site-wide options with the category filters (8min 57sec) – 7.81MB

5) Further configuration examples.
Working with featured articles
Creating a custom more articles link (4min 38sec) – 4.19MB

6) The Approve articles function and searching the articles (1min 39sec) – 1.45MB

7) A workaround for using banner ads (4min 56sec) – 3.95MB

Covering the 3.2 Beta module:

8) View how to install the module and
Fix the problem of the articles no longer displaying (3 min 20sec) – 2.92MB

9) View the additional features: Multiple Categories and assigning them to an article
A demonstration of the areas that still need to be implemented
Roles that can view content (8 min 21sec) – 7.01MB