Two lessons to learn from Joomla


So many users have lost their Elgg sites and had to start from scratch. A mistake anywhere makes the site disappear, gone forever (although users familiar with PHP admin can do something about it). And when the site is lost, the poor Admin is lost. This doesn't happen at Joomla because, their Admin section is an autonomous entity. You can screw up your site to your heart's content, and you are still able to go to the Admin section (which remains intact), and recover your site.

We need a separate Admin access regardless of whether the site is working or not.


At Joomla, Admin can set permission rights for each and every module module (roughly a plugin in Elgg terminology). The Elgg Admin can only enable/disable it. There is nothing like a global setting, so to speak.

Admin must have control over who have access to what (not just mine/friends in the dashboard).

Appart from the above, the config.php file or some file should include all the paths we enter in Site administration. The sites of many are lost because of mistakes in Site Admin entries - mistakes that can't be corrected.

Elgg can't be a professional application unless these conditions are met with. Less gimmicks, more essentials, developer comrades. Don't behave like the new rich.




    ~ Elgg Ideas is one my fav groups. I have been a member almost since it started (because I have great respect for Uddhava), but the funny thing is that this group doesn't appear under my groups! I had to search and find the group to post a note.

    ~ I was the first Elgg member to start a group conceived as a meeting place for people who sell their service for a fee and those who are willing to pay for their requirements, and it was doing fairly well. The group was deleted with no reason/intimation. Looks like it has been edged out by a group started by Darkwing Duck. I have nothing against this stranger, and I don't question Elgg's decisions, bu this one is really paradoxical, when so many groups contain only a single question posted by someone.

  • Re admin section: 1.8 takes steps to separate the admin area from the network.  Right now it's only in CSS.  You can still hose your admin section by installing bad plugins or making code/DB modifications--that's something that will be nearly impossible to avoid.  Network admins must be expected to use discretion for installing plugins.  Since the admin area uses the engine and plugins, it will be time consuming and difficult to make it a completely separate entity.

    Re roles: Elgg was built intentionally without roles and permissions.  There are plans to improve the hooks and functions so a full roles system can be built, but it's unlikely this will be in core since it goes against the original philosophy.  There are numerous successful Elgg installations in operation without roles.

    Re settings.php: There's a ticket somewhat concerning this.  Might want to add your thoughts as comments.

    Re groups: We cleaned up the groups a few months back taking the number groups from over 150 to about 65.  I merged the lower activity groups with similar groups with higher activity--nothing was deleted.  What groups do you see that have only a single question posted?

  • Nobody has answered my question, why 'elgg ideas' doesn't appear under my groups though I am a member here.

  • Re Elgg Ideas not showing up: Click the "Next" link.