34SP.com Blog

Free Scripts from 34SP.com

My name is Olly and I am one of our website hosting and domain name experts in the 34SP.com Support Department. This post contains a number of tips on getting the most out of your 34SP.com account by using our free scripts.

Not everyone may be aware of this, but here at 34SP.com we offer a number of free to install scripts that any of our clients are welcome to make use of. A script is a program that is installed directly onto your account that makes a complicated or repetitive task easier and quicker. Whether you have a standard hosting account, WordPress hosting, business web hosting, or even a vps hosting account, you may find a script that will benefit you. Several of these scripts will also allow you to make major changes to the look and feel of your website without the need to be an expert in web design or coding.

The scripts on offer are available from http://scripts.34sp.com and fall into a few general categories:

CMS (Content Management System)
>From our installers page, these include: e107, ExponentCMS, Joomla, ModX-cms, Website Baker and WordPress.

A Content Management System allows you to design a basic (and in some cases quite advanced) website – it does exactly what it says on the tin, giving you the ability to ”manage” your site ”content”. Although some of the more advanced scripts require a bit of getting used to, there are a couple that can certainly be considered more user friendly such as WordPress and Website Baker – if you can use a word processing package, you can use these to create your website.

Gallery
>From our installers page, these include: Coppermine

A gallery is a script which allows you to upload a number of photos to your website via a management interface. These images can then be set to periodically change on a given page, or to format the layout so multiple images can be displayed in a neat format. Some html / php coding experience is advisable if you wish to incorporate this script using the same look and feel as your existing site.

E-Commerce
>From our installers page, these include: CubeCart, OSCommerce and ZenCart

E-Commerce packages give you the ability to set up a shopping cart system on your account. Log in to the admin page, upload a picture of your product, give it a price, description and which department on your site you’d like it to appear. Do be aware that you will need to set up an account with a payment gateway (protx, worldpay etc.) in order to accept online payments. It is also strongly advised you get an SSL certificate to engender some trust in your site when taking client details.

Wiki
>From our installers page, these include: DokuWiki and MediaWiki

A Wiki is described as a ”documentation repository” – think of them as a store house of information. Most allow their content to be defined (and redefined) by site visitors’ contributions – some allow these to be moderated before appearing, and some don’t, so do be aware of this.

Forums
>From our installers page, these include: phpBB and Simple Machines Forums

Forums (or bulletin boards as they are sometimes called) allow you to create an online message-driven community. Messages are grouped by topics of your choice. When a user creates a post, other users are then able to post replies to this. Multiple replies to the same post create a ”thread” which can provide a valuable resource of information contributed by several users.

Other Great Free Resources
Guestbook – Not seen so much these days, but this allows site visitors to leave a text based signature to say they’ve visited and usually a short comment about your site.
Awstats – An advanced statistics and site visitor analysis tool. Learn who’s on your site and what they are interested in.
Dada Mail – A mailing list management system that allows user to subscribe and unsubscribe to your own mailshots whenever they wish.
Contact Form – This adds some code to your site that allows visitors to securely send you an email. As addresses are all hidden, this greatly reduces the amount of spam mail that standard contact forms can produce. The form is fully customisable to include any fields that you require.
Icalendar – Sets up a calendar utility on your site that users can contribute to by adding or editing date-based entries.

General Notes
Have a play – If you’re not sure which script is going to be right for you, run an install on a test folder rather than in the root of your account (i.e. installing to the folder ”test” will mean that it is visible on your own domain by visiting www.yourdomain.com/test rather than replacing the normal homepage). If you don’t like the script, it’s pretty straightforward to simply delete that folder. If you do find one that you like and want it to replace your usual home page, just run the installer again.

Other scripts – obviously we can’t list every script available on the installer page (keeping them all up to date is laborious enough as it is!). If you do decide to install your own script and find that you’re running into problems, install one of the versions of phpcgi found on the main scripts page before contacting support – this gets rid of 99% of safe_mode errors in particular.

If it all goes wrong – Drop us an email or use live chat – we’ll be happy to look over your account to see where the problem might have occurred and advise how to prevent it happening again.