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phpLD 3.4

By David | February 10, 2009 | Home | Blog Categories | News

Just over a year ago we released phpLD version 3.3 which was our most popular release to date. Since then we have been collecting requests from our users, and implementing new features, followed by careful testing. We have put a lot thought, research and time into this release (version 3.4), and we are very excited about providing it to you. 

About Upgrading:

As will all previous software releases, we recommend that our current users wait a couple of weeks to upgrade live sites. There are a couple of reasons for this:
1. The phpLD staff will be very busy over the next couple of weeks helping people, and getting accustomed to supporting the new version. If you have problems during the upgrade, there could be some delays in getting help for you, and we know that can be stressful when your site is having trouble.
2. It is very common for us to locate small bugs after the release. Usually, they are very minor, but nevertheless, waiting to upgrade may very well help you not have to worry about this. Last year in 3.3, we had a couple of minor updates after the release. 
3. You'll find documentation in the supporters forum about upgrading including the changes that need to be made to the templates.

New features in phpLD 3.4

Frontend editing and administration
1. Site Admin - This admin is able to edit virtually everything on the frontend, in addition to having access to the backend administration
2. Super Editor - This user will have all rights of the Site Admin, except they will not be able access the backend administration.
3. Editor - This user has rights for a specific category as well as any sub-categories below the level of the assigned category.
4. User - Items that a user submitted will be editable subject to the admin's approval.

User Management in Admin
There is a new section in the admin area called User Management where the admin can work with user rights, so in addition to the user groups outlined above, the admin can also edit specif actions. For example, the admin may want to grant the ability for a user to edit their own article, or let them add new pages.

Hits Table Cleanup
When upgrading phpLD, your hits table data will be deleted. The main purpose of the hits table is to not allow people to keep clicking on their link to "bump" it up. After the upgrade, the table will again start getting data. The reason we delete the data on the upgrade is this table can become quite large, and some servers timeout, so this will help avoid this problem. In 3.4 we are also deleting older data. So if the admin uses the default setting to not allow people to register a hit more than once in 24 hours, data older than 24 hours is now being deleted.

Adding RSS Feeds to Categories
When editing a category in the admin, there is now a field to enter an RSS feed for the category. phpLD uses the Simple Pie library to show the feed in the category. The feed appears after the links but before the message about submitting when no links or articles exist. By default title that appears before the feed is "{category name} News".

Delete As Spam
In the Administrative Backend, when viewing links there is now a button called "Delete as Spam". So the admin can any or all spam submissions and delete and ban the ip and domain, all in a couple of clicks.

Switch from the FCK Editor to the MCE Editor
After some testing, we felt the MCE editor is far superior, and we are now using this editor. This is the same editor used in Wordpress. We will be able to do more with this editor in the future, and already have some plans for additions that will be possible under the MCE editor.

Require Email Confirmation
When registration is not required to submit a link, there is now an option to Require Email Confirmation (can be used when registration is required too). After a user submits a link, they will receive an email where they have to click the link to confirm the submission. There is also a function that checks for unconfirmed links, and removes them after X days. Note, a link that has received a payment will never be deleted, except manually by the admin.

Category Sorting in Admin
When editing a category, there is a new field called Sort Order. You can change the value and the category will override the default sorting and appear sooner or later depending on the value you assign.

Close Category to Activities
There is now a Permissions link for each category in the Administrative Backend, and it will be possible to Close the category to any or all of the following:
Link Submission, Article Submission, Ratings. Comments

Consolidation of Regular and Featured Links in Admin
We have combined the display of Regular and Featured links into one area, so there is no longer be a Featured Links link in the admin backend. When you search, you will be searching both. You can still sort by Link Type, and featured links are clearly identifiable in the list.

Comments and Ratings for Links
Now the admin can enable this feature for links, and this is no longer a mod. Thanks to VSDan who offered this mod for a long time, and supported us in adding this mod to phpLD 3.4.

Multiple Mod Rewrite Options (SEO URLs)
There are now several different options for setting up mod rewrite rules, and you can find this in Settings >> Search Engine Optimization.

Article Payments
Now the admin can enable this feature and receive payments for articles just as is currently done for links.

Remember Page When Logging In
When logging into the frontend, you will be returned to the page you were visiting after login.

Admin User Interface Improvments
AJAX collapsable menus on the left side
Ability to search for links, articles, users or categories from the admin homepage
Buttons to quickly add an article, page, link or category
More statistics on the admin homepage

Fixed Advanced Search Bug
On the frontend when trying to do an Advanced Search on a directory using many thousands of categories, the page would crash. We now have AJAX enabled on advanced search and this solves the problem.

Improved Security
While this only affects a small number of users, some servers still use setting for Register Globals and Magic Quotes that are not recommended. We have added some code to check for this, and add slashes to prevent injection attacks on this type of server. We were actually already quite secure, but this adds on more layer of protection for these special cases.

Less Attention to Reciprocal Links
On a new installation by default there is nothing about reciprocal links. You have to turn this feature on now. There have been plenty of indicators that doing massive reciprocal link campaigns can affect rankings negatively, and while there will always be some who have a use for this feature, we will have it turned off by default.

Another Free Template
We have a new template called Chrome that is free to use. This is in addition to the Professional template.

Dated Release of Articles 
Set a date for when an article will be published. That way you can load multiple articles and see your content changing daily.

And much more! We've also gone through many of the pages of the admin, and made small improvements, corrected spelling, and much more. We hope this latest version will be the best to date, and look forward to getting your feedback, as well as seeing your site running the latest version, and making use of its features.

Thank you for using our product!
phpLD Team

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Publish date: February 10, 2009
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