Installing and configuring Community Builder Enhanced

Community Builder Enhanced (CBE) is intended to be an easier to use alternative to the popular but complex Community Builder, both of which extend the Joomla user management system.

Update January 2011: The project has a new web site, so the URLs below have changed. Additionally, much effort is being made to translate documentation and other material into English, so despite my earlier experience this extension is worth a look.

The project site and documentation are entirely in German (use an online translator), but there is a support forum in English. The extension itself comes with language files for several languages, including English and Spanish. These language files are out of date and will have to be cleaned up before being ready for production use.

I found its relative lack of English documentation, combined with my own lack of experience with similar extensions, to be a show stopper for me, and I went back to the more complicated but better documented Community Builder. CBE appears to be a solid product, however, and it may be a good fit for you.

As with any extension, back up your site before installing CBE.

INSTALLATION
Download the latest stable component and any patches. Optionally also download any desired extras, such as the search module.

Note carefully any installation instructions on the download page for each downloaded item; in many cases an item must be unzipped locally and installed per the instructions in an unpacked readme file. Any package that has no such special instructions on its download page nor in an enclosed readme may be installed in the usual way.

First install the base component, then any patch, and finally any optional items.

There is an RSS feed, but only in German. There is apparently no source of security news in English.

CONFIGURATION OF CORE COMPONENT
In Components – CBE – Tools, you will likely want to select “Load Sample Data” to get yourself started. From there you can modify things as desired.

CONFIGURATION OF CBE LOGIN MODULE
CBE’s login module is In Extensions – Module Manager, find CBE Login. Enable it and place it in the same position as Joomla’s default Login Form module. Optionally, make any other modifications to CBE Login as desired. Then disable Joomla’s default Login Form module.

CONFIGURATION OF OPTIONAL SEARCH MODULE
In Components – CBE – Field Management, find a field you wish the search module to be able to search on, and click on its name to open it for editing. Set “Use in CBE-Search” to Yes and press Save. Repeat as desired for any other fields to be made searchable.

In Extensions – Module Manager, find CBE Search and enable it. Optionally, open it for editing and modify as desired.

UNINSTALLING CBE
CBE is uninstalled at Extensions – Install/Uninstall – Components. The uninstaller will inform you that the directory /images/cbe has been left for you to delete manually if desired. Additionally (although you will not be informed) numerous CBE tables remain in the database. The obsessively hygienic may delete them; I prefer to leave such things alone unless there is a compelling reason to do otherwise.

Depending upon any optional components you may have installed, you may find modules to uninstall at Extensions – Install/Uninstall – Modules.

TIPS AND TRICKS
In Components – CBE – User Management – (user) – Contact Info, important user contact fields, like first and last name, are not visible in Opera 10.01 unless stylesheets are disabled. Works as expected in Firefox.

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About Warren Post

So far: Customer support guy, jungle guide, IT consultant, beach bum, entrepreneur, teacher, diplomat, over-enthusiastic cyclist. Tomorrow: who knows?
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