About Design215 Site Manager, version 2.1.9

New Features in v2.1.8

  • Added Product ID menu to Topics
    - Reference products directly from topics without having to create items underneath each topic.
  • New Features for Product Options
    - Allow copy group if only one series. - Added order buttons for individual options. options are now sorted by timestamp created instead of by name.
  • Stats Tweak
    - Fixed a bug where absolute links refering to internal pages were being seen as external referers in certain situations.
  • Copy/Move Items
    - When copying or moving an item (for example, a Guestbook entry) the previously selected destination folder is now remembered so the same folder doesn't have to be selected each time.
  • Logout Link Moved
    - The "logout" link has been moved to the top right corner and currently logged in user is now displayed next to it.
  • New Admin Preferences
    - Added 2 checkboxes to the Categories preferences panel. - "enable items" lets items be turned off if they are not used for a particular category. Defaults to ON for backward compatibility. - "protect" lets only the admin delete a particular category, defaults to OFF for backward compatibility.
  • Easier Category Setup
    - When creating a new category, a new page asks to select a template from a list of existing categories. - This feature was requested by a number of users.
  • Multiple Archive Files
    - Each time the database is backed up, the older backup file is renamed based on the date it was created and a new backup file is created. Only one new file per day can be created.

New Features in v2.1.7

  • Added Products Batch Functions
    - add multiple products to a subcategory.
    - change prices on multiple items at once
  • Minor Interface Improvements
    - Better looking "Save" and "Go" buttons are easier to find.
    - Moved the order buttons to a more convenient location, at the top of each edit page.
  • Bug Fixes
    - Fixed behavior of "logged in" cookies.
    - Fixed javascript "ptools" error
  • Reverse Product Lookup
    Products > Models page now shows all subcategories where a product is listed. Clicking each link will open the appropriate category, subcategory, and item page under the Main tab.
  • Enhancements to Stats
    - Added a "Print" button and a "Exclude Search Engines" checkbox.
    - Rearranged report type, month, and year selectors in a single row.
    - Added server and database timestamps to the bottom of the page.
  • Automatic HTML Handling
    Allows HTML formatting and indentation to remain unchanged if certain tags are present.

New Features in v2.1.5

  • Minor Interface Improvements
    A number of small bugs were fixed and several interface options were tweaked. Issues with line breaks vs. HTML line breaks have been resolved.
  • Shopping Cart Module
    A lot of development went into the shopping cart module. This module may not be present in every installation of the Manager.
  • "Keep me logged in..."
    This feature was added due to several requests. If there are any security concerns, it can be disabled in the master configuration file.

New Features in v2.1.4

  • Popup "File Selector"
    The inner frame that displayed the list of uploaded images has been removed and placed in a popup window to reduce clutter and simplify the interface. Select existing images for any item or upload new images from the same popup.
  • "Page View Spam" Protection
    A new wave of spam designed to target web statistics software has appeared. Filters have been added to the statistics code to prevent this nonsense.
  • Move or Copy Topics and Items
    The "Move to:" menus at the bottom of the Topic and Item pages have been expanded to offer a choice between "Move" or "Copy".
  • Drop-down Menu Dividers
    The "Move/Copy to:" and "Link to Image" menus have been greatly improved by adding dividers that display Category and Topic names.
  • New Products Page
    The layout of the Products page has been streamlined for a cleaner interface.
  • Move/Copy Added to Products
    Controls were added to Move or Copy models and groups of options between Product Series.
  • Preferences for New Categories
    When creating a new Category, there is now an option to copy preferences from an existing Category.
  • Preferences Templates
    When configuring the preferences for each category, templates have been added for common categories like "Gallery", "Blog", "Discussion", "News", "Guestbook", etc. Simply select a template to set all of the preferences in the current Category.

New Features in v2.1.3

  • Remote Server Functions
    Added the ability to set a remote image folder on another server. Copying a few small files to a web site on another server enables remote image gallery management.
  • New Preferences Manager
    The Preferences Modules has been expaned with more preferences to enable or disable fields. While more preferences and fields have been added, the interface has been streamlined for easier access.
  • Minor Interface Improvements
    A drop-menu option is available to link product IDs to images. Modification dates have been moved to the top of category and subcategory pages. Several spelling errors and minor details have been corrected.
  • Tags Module
    A custom keywords management module was built for the Manager used by www.Linkatopia.com. While this module was built for a specific site, it could easily be adapted to manage keywords, tags, or categories for any web site that uses such a system to organize member generated content.

New Features in v2.1.2

  • Guest Account Security
    Several improvements were made to the guest account, making it more secure. When the guest account is enabled, anyone knowing the password can view information in the Manager but cannot delete, modify, or add content. The guest account can be removed completely by deleting it in the User tab.
  • Text Editor
    The text editor was rebuilt so the entire page does not have to reload every time a file is saved. This allows files to be saved at regular intervals while being edited. Improvements were also made to the "Save Changes?" dialog.
  • Statistics Module Improvements
    IP addresses now link to a WHOIS lookup in a small popup window. Page views now link to the named page in a separate browser window. There is a new chart for Daily Unique Visitors. A "Today Only" checkbox has been added. When checked, only the current day's referers and page views are displayed.
  • Wordlist Module
    Fixed a slight bug with the Firefox browser. Added a warning dialog if "Get New Words" is clicked and there is no source text.

New Features in v2.1.1

  • Statistics Module Improvements
    View statistics by month, and use additional sorting options. A new "summary" view displays totals for the currently selected month.
  • Content Editors
    Rebuilt and improved code to remember the currently selected category, topic, and item when navigating between different tabs.
  • Login Security
    MD5 encryption is used on the client side to protect passwords. Login information is sent securely to the server.

New Features in v2.1.0

  • All new content viewer.
    See all categories and subcategories at once without switching between different pages. Access any section of data with the least number of clicks. A simple color coding system helps with navigation:
        Categories   Topics   Items
  • Rearrange objects faster.
    Because of the new content viewer, a single set of buttons is used to rearrange the order of objects, without reloading the entire page each time. This allows an object's order to be changed while it is being edited.
  • New Statistics Module
    Track unique visitors, referring sites, page views, and more. Create multiple counters. View lists and charts.
  • Additional Data Fields
    Several new data fields have been added, creating an additional tier for organizing content.
  • New Preferences
    The preferences module has been upgraded. It has a simpler interface while providing additional options for renaming data fields for each category.


The Design215 Site Manager 2.0 provides the ability to update content on your web site using a number of simple online forms. It can be used to maintain photo galleries, articles, stories, and blogs. It can be used to manage a product inventory, with different product lines, models, prices, images, dimensions, and options for each product. It can be expanded with any number of custom modules or "tabs".

Design215 Site Manager is an extremely flexible system because it can be tailored by your webmaster to perform practically any type of management task. Unlike other content management systems, Site Manager does not create a web site for you with templates. It helps you create, organize, and store content for any web site, whether the site is html or flash, or any combination of the two. Configuration of your site requires basic knowlege of PHP and mySQL but there are no restrictions on how your content is displayed. Using the Site Manager itself requires no programming knowlege and only the most basic data entry skills, easily handled by any member of your staff.

Design215 Site Manager is installed in a folder on your web site. It can be accessed from any computer with an internet connection and runs in every major browser on both Macintosh and Windows. Online access simplifies the workflow of maintaining live content on your site. No software installation is required on individual workstations and no synchronization of data is required between them. For example, your site could be updated from several locations; an office workstation running Windows 2000, a Macintosh laptop using a wireless connection in a coffee shop, or a home computer running Windows XP. In each situation, the only software required is a web browser.

Features Overview

  • 4-Tier User Management for accessing the Site Manager and protected pages on the web site; one admin account, one guest account, unlimited manager accounts, and unlimited registered user accounts.
  • Create unlimited Categories and Subcategories.
  • Use default or custom field names for each Category.
  • Use default or custom upload folder for each Category.
  • Choose the order in which Categories or Subcategories are displayed.
  • Upload multiple images, thumbnails, or other media files at once.
  • View directories of uploaded files, sorted by name or date.
  • Image galleries support thumbnails in separate folders.
  • Image galleries support images on external web sites.
  • All database items are linked by unique ID numbers, allowing categories, subcategories, and other items to be renamed at any time without affecting the data structure.
  • A "Hidden" category allows content to be temporarily removed from the web site without deleting it.
  • Text fields support HTML but also preserve hard returns and blank lines on Macintosh and Windows.

User Management

With any content management system, user access is important. Design215 Site Manager provides several levels of access to ensure maximum productivity and safety. Each user account consists of a username, a password, and an email address. Passwords are stored in an encrypted format and cannot be read or recovered, even by the admin. The email address is used to send a reset code to the user so they can enter a new password if they forget their previous one. Using this method, no passwords are sent through email. There are four types of user accounts; admin, managers, guest, and registered users.

  • admin
    The "admin" account has access to all Site Manager features. Only the admin can assign manager accounts, backup and restore the database, and delete or change category preferences.
  • managers
    The "manager" account has access to most Site Manager features. Managers are trusted with uploading or creating new content for the web site. Managers cannot delete existing categories, and they cannot backup or restore the database. This minimizes accidental data loss.
  • guest
    The "guest" account is a special manager account that is read-only. Your employees who know the guest password can look up information in the Site Manager but cannot make any changes to it. The guest account can be enabled or disabled at any time by the admin.
  • registered users
    The "registered user" account is for providing access to any pages on your site that you don't want available to the public. Registered users CANNOT login to the Site Manager.

All logins to the Site Manager are recorded and include the creation date of each user, the last time they logged in, the last IP address they logged in from, and the total number of times they have logged in. Log information can only be changed by someone with FTP access to the web site.

Content Organization

Design215 Site Manager does not use templates. The administrator creates any number of categories and subcategories based on the needs of the web site itself. Once this outline is created, anyone can enter and maintain the actual data. The simplest example would be to create a main category called "Site" and a subcategory for each page of the site. One of the subcategories could be named "Homepage" and would contain the text for that page. The design of the page itself is up to you and your designer and could be html, flash, xml, or anything else you choose.

What if you have a list of items, like a "links" page, that you want to keep updated using the Manager? Simple. You could create a new category called "Links" and then each subcategory would be a new link in your list. For each link, you would enter a name and url, and optionally, a group name, a full description, and an icon or logo.

In the Preferences tab, you can name the fields for each category, making it easier for the people who have to enter the data.

Images and Galleries

Many sites have groups of images or image "galleries". These could be catalogs of product images or collections of artwork. Design215 Site Manager works with almost any image gallery configuration. Images and cooresponding thumbnails can be uploaded to a single folder or to separate folders for each category. Any number of images can be assigned to any subcategory. Each image has its own title and description fields, as well as a field for cross linking to another page or product.

Say for example, that you sell used cars and trucks. You would create a category called "Cars". Each subcategory would be one of the cars you have for sale. You would enter year, make and model, a headline, the price, and a full description of the car. Finally, you would switch to the images tab and upload any number of images for that car. Each image could have a caption underneath it. If you created thumbnails, you could have visitors click each thumbnail to see a larger image. You would follow the same procedure for trucks if you wanted to keep cars and trucks separated for organizational purposes.

Additional Modules

Design215 Site Manager has been designed to be modular. Even though the system of categories, subcategories, and images is very flexible, your business may have specific needs that require a custom module. Additional modules appear as new tabs in the main menu. Site Manager comes with a couple of default modules and we are working on new modules for the next release. We can also build custom modules for your company for an additional fee. Here are some of the optional Site Manager modules:

  • Products (included)
    The Products module allows you to keep a separate list of any items that you sell. While the category and subcategory system is designed to organize how content is displayed on your site, the Products module lets you organize all of your merchandise by product line or manufacturer, model number, options, and price. A separate page allows you to create groups of options for various products. When a new product is added, the options for that product can be quickly selected from a drop menu, instead of typing them in each time. There is no limit to products or predefined options.
  • Text Editor (included)
    This is a simple text editor that allows you create and edit standalone text files in any folder on your site. It can also be used to create simple html files that can be dynamically included within other pages. A menu of files in the folder is constantly displayed to the right of the editor, allowing you to quickly switch between files with a single click. All text formatting is preserved and line breaks are converted to <br> if the file is saved with the extension ".htm". Differences between Mac and Windows line feeds are translated so you can edit the same file on Windows one day and on a Mac the next. Simple html and css is allowed within any text. Filtering of unwanted tags and scripts is done automatically to ensure the security of your site.
  • Wordlist (optional)
    The wordlist module has two parts. The first part creates a list of all unique words in any section of text that is pasted into the form. The second part allows the user to select any number of those words and save them as keywords. A keyword can be a single word or a short phrase. A Definition can be entered for each keyword and may include html. Once a list of keywords and definitons has been created, it can be used as a site index, glossary, or links that appear in the text of the site.
  • Shopping Cart (optional)
    This is a full featured shopping cart that can be used with Paypal, a merchant account, or as a quote system that doesn't collect payment but emails a quote to both the customer and site admin. This is a free from, CSS based cart meaning that it can interface with any exsisting site design that is standards compliant. Cart contents are stored in a database so the customer can close their browser and return to the site at a later date to view their cart. The member login feature, if enabled, lets customers create a username and password so they can log in and view their previous carts and purchases.

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