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In-depth insights on content, code, and creativity

Mobile browser detection and redirection in eZ Publish

When you are setting up a mobile website separate from the main website, one of the elements that tends to be an after-thought is main-to-mobile site redirection. This article goes through some of the considerations regarding creating a mobile setting, and main-to-mobile site redirection specifically.  It explains how to use Apache Mobile Filter as one option to facilitate mobile device detection and redirection.

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Using a custom static cache handler for offline wiki sync in eZ Publish

Mugo has an internal wiki to share and store various information for all team members. Previously we used mostly text files saved in Dropbox, which actually worked quite well. However, we are now using a more powerful solution that combines eZ Publish, a custom static cache handler, and Dropbox.

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Subdomain rewrite rule strategy: whitelisting

Here is a quick how-to for a strategy to prevent duplicate content across domains and subdomains of the same site by "whitelisting" discrete domains and redirecting all other requests to the main domain.

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Separate Star Rating aggregate value from "your rating"

eZ Publish comes standard with the Star Rating extension, which adds the ability for users to rate content on your website. It works well out of the box. By default, the interface to rate an article is combined with the aggregate rating on an article. Here's a quick example on how to tweak that functionality so that "your rating" is separate from the aggregate rating.

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eZ Publish DFS - high performance considerations when serving image aliases

This blog post is about how eZ Publish serves content images -- also called image aliases -- in a DFS cluster setup.  The eZ DFS setup is the recommended and most common solution for high traffic eZ Publish sites that are run off multiple servers.  However, it still has some room for improvement when it comes to serving images. In this post, we describe how eZ Publish currently serves image aliases, along with its downsides and some alternative approaches. At the end, we describe a possible implementation with some example performance gains.

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Google Page Speed Service and eZ Publish loading performance

Google Page Speed Service is an interesting new offering for websites. It is currently free, but with limited availability for the time being. It claims up to 20 - 60% speed-up in overall page load. It accomplishes this by routing all site traffic through Google, which will automatically perform some optimizations such as minifying CSS and JavaScript and serving some page assets through its own content delivery network (CDN). This is quite interesting, and there is even a site that runs a test to show you how your site performance will change if you use the service. We ran this test on a few client sites, and certainly there was up to a 25% performance improvement on some; however, for others the Google-optimized version was slower!

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Expanded eZ Publish hosting requirements on shared server environments

We've worked with clients who use multi-server, fully redundant, clustered environments, and we've worked with clients in unique shared environments. If you are trying to determine the suitability of a LAMP web hosting environment for eZ Publish, there are a few simple requirements, which are well documented. In a dedicated or virtual hosting environment with full shell access, setup can be a breeze. However, sometimes the client has a specific shared web server that they must use, whether due to contractual limitations or various other internal constraints. Here is a list of extra eZ Publish requirements and complications that we've seen in shared hosting environments -- something you can check before proceeding!

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Country, State and Page break questions in eZ Survey

In addition to the Matrix question type, we have added these question types: Country (dropdown list of countries), State (similar to country but with USA states and Canadian provinces) and Page break (enabling paginated surveys) to the eZ Survey extension.

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Creating and executing eZ Publish tasks with Mugo Queue

The Mugo Queue extension is a generic framework for queuing specific tasks in eZ Publish. It stores tasks in the ezpending_actions table and can execute such tasks in batches. It includes a ready-to-use task for re-building the eZ Find search index, whether for an entire site or only specific parts of a site. (You can build your own fetch function to re-index, say, just objects of a certain content class.) This blog post explains how to develop your own task.

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New Matrix question type for eZ Survey

eZ Survey is an eZ Publish extension that enables you to quickly and easily build surveys on a site. Its power is in its "ezsurvey" datatype, which enables editors to add different questions (of different question types) per object, without having to create separate content classes for each different survey. The Mugo Survey Addons extension adds a Matrix question type to the default question types available with eZ Survey.

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Creating dashboard widgets in eZ Publish: disk space example widget

In eZ Publish 4.3 and higher, the default Administration Interface landing page after a user has logged in is the dashboard. On this dashboard is a listing of widgets, such as a list of the latest edited content. It is very simple to add a new widget to this dashboard, and we've built an example widget -- showing the server's disk space information -- to illustrate this.

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Create your own Firefox search engine plugin

Do you frequently use the Google, Wikipedia, and other search boxes in Firefox, typically in the top right of the window? Ever wanted to add your own for a site that isn't on the directory? Here's a quick and dirty guide to creating your own Firefox search engine plugin, using the api.jquery.com search as an example.

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