Category Archives: Tools

Subsite Tools: “Manage CustomCF” – Uploading Files

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Tutorial At A Glance

Many elements in CommonSpot require a group of files such as pictures to properly function. Your CustomCF is a folder located on the server from where you can link files to your pages and elements. There are endless uses for this folder, but some of the most common are:

  1. Easily link photos and files to elements on your website (e.g., Content Slider, Include HTML, Include JavaScript, Cycle Images…)
  2. Upload a CSS style sheet for advanced format editing.
  3. Store files that you often link to text or images.

Uploading content on to your CustomCF is simple and requires three (3) steps.

  1. Open “Manage CustomCF”
  2. Browse and select your files
  3. Upload your files

Detailed Tutorial – PDF

After using CommonSpot for a while you have probably noticed an option below “Preview” and “Submit” that looks something like this:

Subsite Tools

This option will open your subsite tools page where you will see various options to the left. You may have used these tools when editing your footer or submitting a service ticket for your site. Another tool–and maybe the most important–is the option to “Manage CustomCF.”

Subsite Tools Panel

As mentioned in the Tutorial At A Glance, your CustomCF is a folder located on the server from where you can link files to your pages and elements. Again, here some of the most common uses:

  1. Easily link photos and files to elements on your website (e.g., Content Slider, Include HTML, Include JavaScript, Cycle Images…)
  2. Upload a CSS style sheet for advanced format editing.
  3. Store files that you often link to text or images.

Here is how it’s done!

Step 1: Open your CustomCF folder by selecting the menu option as seen in the image below.

open customcf

Step 2: Browse your computer and select the file(s) you wish to upload.

browse your computer

Step 3: After selecting your file(s) click upload.

upload your file

And that’s it! Now you can upload files whenever you want and easily access them while editing your site.

Tips & Tricks

Many elements such as “Content Slide” use multiple image files in their setup. For these image elements to work you will need to create a folder inside you CustomCF that you will later link to these elements. If you are creating a banner at the top of your page you may want to create a folder named “BannerImages” and upload your images into this folder.

Have Questions? Leave a Comment.

Using Common Spot’s Redirect Feature

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A “redirect” is when a visitor is automatically forwarded from one page to another page. Common Spot provides a an easy way to setup a page to page redirect. You can use this feature if you have a page that is being replaced by a new page or may have been moved to another part of your website. Note that this is a page-to-page redirect and only affects this single page. (There are options available to redirect a site to another site, but you will need to fill out a Help Ticket and have the web team handle that for you.)
 
To do the page to page redirect in Common Spot, you must first make the original page expire. To do this login to that page and click on Properties Menu >> choose Standard Properties >> on the Main tab >> look for Expiration date. Set the Expiration date for the day you want your old page to begin redirecting to the new page.

Below the Expiration date, there’s an Action drop-down where you choose the Redirect Action. A text box will open for you to type in the URL of the new page or use the Choose option to find the new page. Click OK and that’s it. Do not delete the original page or this feature will no work!
 
Redirects are a very standard way to retire an outdated page but direct any visitors who may have it bookmarked to the updated page.

Turn Off Security Dialog Box in IE

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Most of the time I author pages in Firefox, but lately Internet Explorer (v8) has been my CommonSpot browser of choice. Unfortunately, when authoring in IE, the security dialog box frequently pops up—you know the one—that requires you to confirm that you wish to see secure and non-secure content on the page. Very frustrating.

This morning I was copied on an email between Matthew Ballengee (Multimedia & Technology Services, Health Sciences campus) and another client where Matt outlined the instructions for turning off that pesky dialog box.

So, in case  you don’t know…

  • Go to Tools -> Internet Options -> Security.
  • Click the appropriate zone (Local intranet worked for me).
  • Click the “Custom Level” button.

  • In the “Miscellaneous” section change “Display mixed content” to Enable.

That’s it. Hopefully, this tip will make authoring a more pleasant experience. Thanks, Matt–

Custom Footer Tutorial

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Today let’s examine the Custom Footer feature built into your tools page.  When you log into your tools page, you should see “Edit Custom Footer” listed as the first link in the Subsite Management group.

custom_footer_1

When you click on this, it will show you the current settings for you subsite’s footer and allow you to customize it.

If you have not yet specified a custom footer, then your display will look something like this:

custom_footer_2

As you can see, the inherited footer is active, which means that your subsite is inheriting the footer of its parent site.  The footer that the site inherits may not be the exact one listed here, but the “(active)” lets you know that inheritance is taking place.  To begin the process of creating a new footer, just click the “Create New Footer” button.

If your subsite has already specified a custom footer, then the display will instead look more like this:

custom_footer_3

In this case, the page still displays the inherited footer, but it also shows that it is inactive.  You can delete your current custom footer and use the inherited footer at any time by clicking the “Use This Footer” button.

Whether you are creating new footer or editing an existing one, just fill in the appropriate fields in the form.  A footer is made up of three lines, and each line can have one hyperlink.  To make any of your text a hyper link, repeat that text in the hyperlink field and then put the URL in the address field.  In this next example, in the first line the words “Training Site” link to /cs-training/hallwa and in the third line, the words “Contact Me” link to my email address.

custom_footer_4

Last, if you have a Google Analytics account, you can put the SiteID in the last field, and the custom footer will automatically put all the Google Analytics tracking  JavaScript on the page for you.  For more information how to set up a Google Analytics account, see the ITCS Learning Center, which should always be your first place to look for CommonSpot (and other IT) tutorials.